We did it!!
Our beautiful daughter Amelia Olive calmly entered the world on Sunday 21st April. Our hopes became reality when Jason and I got into the bath and I breathed Amelia down to be scooped up into Jason’s arms at 3.16am.
Our story begins at 2am on Saturday morning when I awoke to period like sensations that came in waves every half hour. I was very comfortable, so after seeing Jason off to work at 5.30am I went back to sleep until mid-morning. In the afternoon Jason and I went for a walk through the market and pools at the beach at South Bank. My waves of sensations were coming exactly every 5 minutes for around 30 seconds. I was still extremely comfortable and each time a wave came I was relaxed and breathed calmly.
We shopped for groceries, cooked and enjoyed a delicious dinner, and got into bed to watch a movie. I had a craving for waffles and ice-cream, so we got back up and made those before lying back down again around 10.30pm. The period like sensation became stronger, and Jason got me a heat pack with clary sage oil. Suddenly an intense surge arose, and that was the beginning of Amelia’s descent. The surges came every 2 minutes for 30 seconds. We called the midwife, who thought that it was the beginning of pre-labour and suggested we go back to bed and call if the surges were lasting longer than 30 seconds.
I couldn’t lie down. I was freezing cold but needed to be on my hands and knees. The midwife’s suggestion of lying down was all Jason needed to put him to sleep after being awake since 2am and working in the heat all day. So…I was on my own for the next hour passing through the waves that were ‘bringing my baby closer’!! Through my mind the affirmations swirled- I knew that I could do it, and that each surge was bringing Amelia closer. I used the ‘surge of the sea’ technique to breathe, also imagining filling a balloon and watching it float off into the distance.
By the time Jason awoke at 1.20am my temperature was on fire and I had been pushing for a while. We called the midwife, who told us to call an ambulance. The paramedic kindly offered me pain relief, to which Jason quickly declined explaining that wasn’t a part of our birth plan. Like you said Melissa- a labouring mama is very open to suggestion- so I asked him what would be waiting for me in the ambulance!! Between surges I walked down the stairs and found the stretcher mattress to be like a fluffy cloud of heaven on my raw, carpet burned knees. I had 5 surges in the 15 minute trip to the Birth Centre and even though the option of relief was there, I concentrated on listening to Jason who kept me focussed on my breathing. The best part of the ambulance ride was that we didn’t have to park the car!!
We arrived at the Birth Centre at 2.15am. I declined the vaginal examination- I knew Amelia wasn’t far away. I whipped off my clothes and eagerly attempted to get in the bath…however the bath was still filling so the midwife had to coax me out until it was a little deeper!! Jason continued to talk me through breathing until the water was deep enough to get into. The midwife talked quietly to Jason, who in turn talked to me.
In the bath I was the most concentrated and calm I had been all night. I breathed
her down calmly, comfortably and easily. The midwife continued to respect our wishes and spoke in a quiet calm voice directing myself and Jason through the last movements until Jason brought Amelia up to the surface of the water. She was quiet, relaxed and alert and was feeding within 10 minutes.
We are both so thrilled that we were able to have the birth experience we were hoping for- all natural, no intervention, and quiet, calm and intimate. Thank you Melissa for giving us the skills and information that made this amazing experience possible!
Nellie & Jason, Clayfield, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia