Lucy and Olly came to our hypnobirthing course hoping to learn techniques that would enable them to have a more positive birth experience following the birth of their first child.
Baby Leo was born on Saturday the 22nd of April on the Midwife Lead Unit at St Michael’s hospital, weighing 7lb 8oz, 5 days past his due date. Here is Lucy’s story…
I started with surges every 15-20 minutes at 11.30pm Friday night as I lay in bed trying to sleep. I felt very relaxed. They had shortened to 10 minutes apart by 8am.
I believe hypnobirthing really helped the labour progress. I used calm breathing through this early stage and found lying on my left with a pillow between my legs brought on the surges. A bath helped too, as did bouncing on the birthing ball. I made sure the room I was in was dark. I needed peace & quiet so our 3 year old son was kept in the lounge (once he’d woken).
I rang the MLU at 9am and was advised to try to carry out my day as usual as surges 10 minutes apart could last a while. So I got dressed and ready to see my son. He was really pleased to see me and suddenly I was getting 4 surges every 10 minutes. I had to leave the room and breathe through them. I’m sure it was the oxytocin that helped by having cuddles with him and reading the stories!
My husband called the MLU as I was on my ball and very much in the zone. I couldn’t talk and I knew instinctively that Leo wasn’t far off being born. They said to go in so we left at 10am. The car journey was unpleasant and I must admit I was in a lot of pain because I found hypnobirthing difficult then – my focus drifted because of the brightness (it was sunny) and swerving of the car! Sitting in the passenger seat felt wrong too. I noticed in the car I was very emotional and was shaking. I wondered if it was the transition phase.
Getting out of the car to floor E in the hospital took a lot of focus and strength! I was having to stop every few steps and do surge breathing and repeat the positive birth affirmations while keeping my jaw loose. This helped.
Once we met the lovely midwife and went to the room – stopping every couple of steps to breathe through surges – I could feel Leo’s head descending. I lay on the floor of the room as soon as we got there and felt an urge to push. Olly and the midwife had to strip me because I couldn’t move, it was like my body took over and all I could think about was the sensation to bear down. I needed the gas and air at this point as Leo crowned. It really helped focus my breathing. The midwife encouraged me to stop any bearing down and let the next surge do everything. This was to help prevent tearing and thankfully it worked. Leo birthed very quickly and with ease. The crowning and his birth felt strange but it honestly didn’t hurt. I’m sure having had a vaginal delivery before helped too (as did the gas and air)! But also staying calm and letting my body do the work, which i wouldnt have believed possible if I hadn’t attended the course and learnt the hypnobirthing techniques from Sharon.
It was 50 minutes from parking the car to birth and it took half that time to reach the room! For me, the affirmations, keeping my jaw loose/face relaxed and relaxing between surges helped a lot. Also holding my husband’s hand tightly and having him tell me affirmations too.
This was quite literally the opposite experience to my induction with my first baby and I feel I need to thank you Sharon for the course and preparation. Thank you so much!