My surges started about 10am on the 7th of October, but they were so mild I was only just aware of them and wasn’t sure whether they were practice surges or not. At this point they were 8 minutes apart and I settled in at home on the couch hopefully to wait for baby’s arrival. At 3pm, the surges were at 3 minutes apart and I commenced losing my show at this point.
I contacted Charlotte at this time to touch base and receive some comfort and to ask some questions to make sure I was on the right track. My show continued to loosen over the coming hours and by 9pm I felt I needed to see someone to touch base. We made our way to the hospital to see the midwives.
The midwives held off doing an internal, instead watching my behavior on arrival. After discussion we agreed to an internal to see where we were at, I was 2cm. I was given the option of a bed on the ward or making our way home to await events in comfort. We opted for the latter, trying to take on the midwives suggestion to get some sleep in the comfort of our bed. We arrived home about midnight and I went to bed.
After an hour, I knew it was time to make our way in again. All of this time I was using my breathing techniques, trying to keep calm and relaxed.
On arrival, I settled in the intensity of my surges. It was like my body knew we were settling us into where our baby was to be born and I could begin to focus without the distraction of moving from one place to the next. I was 5cm on assessment and felt an urge to start birth breathing not long after. I breathed through this with the reassurance and encouragement of my midwives and was 9cm by 5.30am.
Breathing baby down felt not only easier but much less intense. From my last exam it was not long before we met our little girl Lily at 6.43am 8 October born a very healthy 4.1kgs. We could not have been happier with her.
We were lucky enough to have 45mins wonderful minutes of skin to skin, however, due to a short cord could not breastfeed during this time. The cord was detached and I was able to breastfeed our little girl. At an hour and 15mins the placenta was still in situ with no signs of separating and my blood loss was bordering on high, so we made the decision to move to an active third stage management. The placenta was delivered at an hour and a half but I continued to lose some more blood. At this point more staff were called in to ensure safety and daddy and bub went to have some time to themselves in the bathroom in the peace and quiet. I was sorted promptly and with great respect and we were once again a family.
I know looking back that the whole experience would have been a very scary and confronting had we not had the education from HypnoBirthing and from Charlotte. Knowing our options, both of us feeling completely prepared and knowing we can always ask questions and say no was not only comforting but empowering. This was especially true considering our final birthing aspect when despite not being completely normal, we still felt we understood what was going on and why things needed to happen they way they did.
We loved our HypnoBirthing breathing techniques and listened especially to the affirmations track during labour and birth. We adapted my preferred instant relaxation technique to my needs during labour with great affect.
While at times I wasn’t sure I would be able to have a drug free birth as I do describe my birth as painful and I did still have a few worries when labour commenced. I did in fact have the beautiful, drug free, empowered birth I had envisioned.
Teresa and Sean – parents of Lily