A difficult pregnancy, but powerful birth

Mama R – “We both got so much out of your Hypnobirthing Course and I do think the prep we did helped me to have the most wonderful birth. Our daughter came out alert and blinking at 7lb 7oz. She had no signs of being over-baked and was born at 42 weeks plus 6 days. “

Bit of background: I had a difficult pregnancy, I was nauseated to some extent the whole 10 months, I had loads of growth scans because my bump wasn’t big enough. I could rant about the utter idiocy of plotting an individual on a graph of an average population… I very much doubt it was a population of 31yr old, vegetarian powerlifters! Wish I’d had the guts to tell my very sweet community midwife where to stick her measuring tape.

We did your Hypnobirthing Course mainly so I could get my own way and have a home birth despite my partners initial horror at the idea. We both got so much out of your course and I do think the prep we did certainly helped me have the most wonderful birth on the CLU.

On the Tuesday I announced to the Pregnancy Yoga class “I’m 42 weeks!”. That week I was feeling good, I was still active and walking to the gym in town. And ignoring my very nice midwives pleas to book an induction or do a sweep. However, I did think maybe I need to start optimising things. So I got an aromatherapy acupressure and reflexology treatment, it was a lovely treat and did wonders for my fat ankles and tired back. Then that night (2am) my waters went in spectacular fashion! (I recommend a waterproof sheet, now doing fine work catching the odd lake of breast milk.) I rang the hospital and, after a brief discussion, we decided I didn’t need to go in and the community midwife could pick up my case in the morning. We sort of went back to sleep with the help of a bit of Hypnobirthing visualisations. Next morning my mum arrived, we put up the birthing pool, wondered around Roath Park, read books and bounced on my ball. At this point I was sloshing clary sage, jasmine and lavender oils everywhere.
Still nothing the next day and my mood changed. I did not want another walk round the park. I just wanted a bath and a back rub.

Finally I agreed that I would go in to hospital for an assessment: 36 hours after my waters went I had a dull period pain type ache no discernible contractions. I was taking paracetamol at night and using the Hypnobirthing visualisations to relax. Suddenly I really liked the butterflies Hypnobirthing visualisation!

On administration was 3cm, I asked a midwife for her frank opinion she said if I wanted to avoid the Oxytocin drip to have the prostaglandin gel. She was right. I snuck home for a bath and a nap. 2 hours later my partner (who had been timing my surges) really wanted to go back to hospital. I thought he was being OTT. But had my focus elsewhere.
In fairness, I was now having difficulty walking as the surges came. The same midwife eyed me as I walked back and told me I was probably ready for upstairs. I thought she was very silly and this couldn’t be labour; I was fine, just visualising the muscle fibres of my uterus and my baby getting ready for its big leap. Walking up to the consultant lead unit should have terrified me but I felt fine. Just as it was getting a bit overwhelming gas and air was presented to me. It was marvellous! I was stood up hugging a ball on the bed with my partner pressing on my back and I felt very powerful. The rocking motion with the surges was totally instinctive.

When the urge to push came it was such a relief, I had started to feel a little adrift. But the sensation grounded me. I’m not a fanciful person but even in white cold room I felt totally connected to my baby; I didn’t moo, I roared! After 40 mins of pushing a little baby was placed on my chest. I was expecting to love her, but the happiness was a complete surprise. I had secret doubts about being a mum all through my pregnancy but when this small slimy being rooted for my nipple, I knew it was going to be wonderful.

Our daughter was born looped in her cord, wearing it like a feather bower. She came out alert and blinking at 7lb 7oz (a very respectable size). She had no signs of being over baked and was born 42+6.

On transfer out of the unit, I tried to thank my very brilliant midwife she said it was the most powerful birth she had seen and that it had all been me (she was awesome and I’m pretty sure she says that to all new mums). She was in the background for most of it, but stepped in with the gas and air and put pressure on my perineum. For all that I am so so grateful.

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