Hi Janine (Janine Fowler – Hypnobirthing Australia practitioner),
I hope this email finds you well!
I just thought I’d let you know I had our baby last Thursday night, and it was a great experience! The hypnobirthing worked so well that I didn’t realise I was in labour and nearly didn’t make it to the hospital!
My story starts on Wednesday (18/03) (38+2 weeks pregnant) when I went into the hospital for monitoring after reduced movement. He (the baby) checked out fine and a scan looked good too (fluid and blood flow) but his movements still weren’t 100% normal for him. The obstetrician advised me to go home and monitor his movements and to come back the following day for more CTG monitoring and if his movements still weren’t right then we would talk about induction (which you know I did not want). So I said if we were heading down that path if I could have a stretch and sweep to see if we can get things moving naturally to which he agreed. I was 2cm dilated and 50% effaced (1cm thick) before she did the stretch so things appeared to be heading in the right direction. I had some mild cramping afterwards and some spotting but nothing crazy.
I woke up the next morning feeling achy in my lower abdomen but definitely no contractions. So I dropped my son at daycare and went to acupuncture (I had been going weekly since 34 weeks). I told her the story and she only did 3 points, but apparently, they were the strongest induction points.
After acupuncture, Blixa called me (he was at work) to tell me he had been to a patient that morning who was being tested for Covid-19 and he had to go into isolation until the test results came back which could be 4-6 days. I knew Deep down I would have the baby before then so I was scared he wouldn’t be allowed at the birth. During this time I had noticed just some very mild period like pains (barely noticeable) and didn’t really think anything of it (other than a reaction to the stretch). I called my midwife who said he would not be allowed at this hospital. Our manager at work said she would try and sort it out and get the results fast tracked.
In the meantime I went to my appointment at the hospital for monitoring and baby’s movements still weren’t 100% back to normal. The monitoring all looked good again (although the mild contractions I was having were showing up maybe 10 minutely on the CTG but they weren’t really painful). The obstetrician looked back at all my scans and said it looks like the placental function is starting to drop off and that may be contributing to the reduced movements and suggested an induction on Monday. I was very hesitant to agree and asked if it could be scheduled for the end of the week to give my body more time to go into spontaneous labour. She agreed and suggested another stretch and sweep. By this point it was about 4pm on 19/03. I was 3-4cm dilated and only 0.5cm thick and she was pretty confident I would go into labour.
On the way home I had a few contractions (more noticeable than the ones I’d been having all day but still nothing too bad). I got home and did some dishes, had dinner with my son, bathed him and put him to bed. By this point I figured I was in pre labour, assuming it would go on all night so I sent Blix to the shops for snacks.
At 8pm my midwife called and confirmed that if I was to go into labour Blix would not be allowed at the hospital. My contractions from this point died off in intensity and frequency. Blix told our boss who made some phone calls through to DHS and an hour later (9pm) it was all sorted and confirmed that he could come. I knew at this point my body needed me to relax, so I set up a space with my birth ball where it was dark and I popped some clary sage in the diffuser and listened to surge of the sea. The contractions picked back up again/started and just before 10pm I decided to time them as they were now somewhat more intense and definitely more frequent. They were 3-4 mins apart and lasting about a minute. Blix timed 4 contractions and said it’s time to go to the hospital. However I was dealing incredibly well, I actually didn’t think I was in labour and told him we would stay home and reassess in an hour but we started making some calls to get our friend here to watch our son. Blix in the meantime convinced me to go get checked at this hospital.
About 10.30 I noticed an increase in intensity of the contractions and I really had to focus and breathe through them now.
We got in the car at about 10-45 and as we were leaving the driveway I had a large contraction and knew it was time. I told blixa to get to the hospital fast.
As we were driving I realised I was in the transition phase of labour and had a lot of pressure. When we were still about 7 minutes from the hospital, I had the urge to push. I was trying to hold it back which was probably the most painful part of my whole labour, going against what my body was telling me. We got to the hospital and as we approached the front doors I fell to my knees and I had to push. My waters broke. A midwife met us downstairs (they knew we were coming and that I was pushing) and she had a quick look and saw head on view. I got on the wheelchair and they (literally) ran me upstairs. It was 1108 as I was wheeled through the doors of the birth suite and 6 minutes later Blix got the opportunity to deliver our precious little Jude Leonard Webster. The placenta was delivered with no issues and I didn’t lose much blood either.
I had kept myself calm during the whole issue surrounding Blix attending the hospital, and I kept going back to principles I learnt during the hypnobirthing class and how keeping calm makes a big difference (hence why when I panicked at 8pm when my midwife called my contractions more or less stopped).
Creating a beautiful space that I laboured in at home (although not for long due to the speed of my labour) made my labour progress perfectly, just when I needed it.
The breathing techniques were so effective at helping me get through the contractions, it made them seem much less intense than they would have been if I was tense.
All in all, it was a fantastic birth, I felt supported and confident in my body the whole time and I’m still on a high from how great my body and I are !!!
Thanks again for the class, I found it very beneficial.