KELLY'S BIRTH STORY
Following the traumatic birth of my first little girl, I knew I needed to make this birth a positive experience. I had read about hypnobirthing and how it can help you achieve this and decided to go ahead and book a course. I’ll be forever grateful that someone recommended Laura to me as I honestly believe I wouldn’t have been able to do this without her!
We started our hypnobirthing course in June 2020 when I was 25 weeks pregnant. I started the course with quite a negative mindset of birth and lots of associated anxieties. By the end of the course, I was actually excited to give birth! Something I never thought I would say. The techniques and strategies I learnt are what made my second birth such a positive experience. Knowing I was in control and what my birth choices were enabled my births to be so different. My first an emergency C Section with lots of interventions and two days of labour, my second a VBAC and a 5 hour labour.
On the day of the birth I remember feeling some mild cramps and took myself on a walk with my eldest little girl to try and distract myself. That night my waters broke just as I was relaxing reading in bed. I got back into bed for an hour and tried to get some rest. At this point the surges were getting stronger so I ran a bath and listened to the guided relaxations on the Freya app. I also used this to time my surges. Meanwhile, my husband was getting everything into the car and calling my Mum who was going to be looking after our eldest little girl. I remained in the bath for over an hour before the Freya app alerted us to needing to call the hospital. They assessed me over the phone and asked me to come in. I had successfully spent the first 3 hours of my labour at home, something I didn’t think I would ever be able to do.
My plan had been to have a water birth, mainly for pain relief. Unfortunately, the hospital was very busy that evening (September is apparently their busiest month!) and a pool wasn’t available. Whilst I was disappointed, it didn’t send me into panic mode as I used my hypnobirthing techniques to remain calm. Our midwife Kirsty was amazing and looked through my birthing plan, making sure I had everything to hand that I needed. I really felt like she understood how I wanted to give birth to our baby. She worked with us to create the right environment, dimly lit and quiet. After an initial examination and only being 2cm dilated, my surges suddenly started to become stronger. I remained in the UFO position and quickly realised I needed to push. The only pain relief I needed was gas and air - the breathing techniques I had learnt helped me through the surges. 2 hours after arriving at hospital, we welcomed our little girl into the world.
We requested the golden hour and all our wishes for this element were met by our lovely midwife. We had delayed cord clamping and a long period of skin to skin contact. I also had aromatherapy to help deliver the placenta. After also having the injection, sadly my placenta didn’t want to be delivered and after a significant blood loss, I was taken to theatre to have it removed, alongside having my third degree tear stitched at the same time. We had an overnight stay in hospital due to the risk of infection from the retained placenta and also to monitor the blood transfusion I had needed in theatre. Whilst this element of the birth wasn’t what I had hoped, it was still a positive experience and I was able to remain calm and in control throughout.
Giving birth was a truly magical experience and the hypnobirthing is what made all the difference for me. It helped me achieve the birth I wanted and I would do it all again in a heartbeat!