My partner and I enrolled for the hypnobirthing class with Pip Wynn Owen in Perth in March and we both got so much out of the sessions.
To start with I was a bit worried about how my obstetrician (at a private hospital) would respond to my birth preferences, but he was extremely accommodating when we discussed that we were doing the hypnobirthing course.
I felt so prepared from the course and although I didn’t use all the techniques that we had learnt (as you’ll read, we didn’t have time!!), I just felt like we had the knowledge and understandings and were prepared for a range of different circumstances.
So I was due on the 22nd May, however, Ian and I very proudly welcomed Xavier into the world on the 19th May (the day after Ian’s birthday and on the full moon!). I had seen my obstetrician on the 15th of May and hadn’t had any early labour signs. He discussed possible induction and said that the following week he would possibly do a stretch and sweep and tentatively booked an induction date for 41 weeks (but was happy to extend that date if necessary).
On Saturday night (18th) we went out for dinner with Ian’s family for his birthday and got home at about 9 pm. Before we went out I thought I might have had a couple of Braxton Hicks, but having never experienced them before I wasn’t sure and I had been standing up at a friend’s baby shower all afternoon so thought that it might have something to do with that. I then had a couple of surges during dinner but wasn’t sure what was really happe
By about 9:30 pm I thought I’d download a surge counter to see if they were regular and we went to bed to rest – unsure of what the night might bring. An hour later I told Ian to call the hospital (ask for the family birthing suite at SJOG Subi! 😊) because they were about 7 or 8 mins apart and they just told us to stay at home as long as possible. At about midnight I’d been up and down out of bed and started to bleed when I went to the toilet, so asked Ian to call again and they said to stay home a bit longer and try to rest.
By 2 am I was passing blood clots and wasn’t feeling right about it, so we made the call to go to the hospital. It took us half an hour to get there – it’s only a 3-minute drive but between packing the car and getting myself sorted between surges it took a lot longer. We got up to the delivery suite a
nd they put the heart rate monitors on my tummy. The midwife then told me that his heart rate had dropped, he wasn’t happy and I needed to slow down and calm down – it’s very hard to calm down when you’re told your baby isn’t happy…But I just kept breathing and reminding myself of my affirmations. She then examined me and I was 9cm and ready to go – hence why his heart rate had dropped! My Dr wasn’t working and the other Dr on call didn’t make it to the room in time, so the two midwives delivered our baby 63 minutes after we arrived at the hospital and he was born at 3:35 am.
My waters never broke, so he was born with them intact around his head. I had tested positive to the Group B Strep a few weeks before, but they didn’t have time to give me the antibiotics and there was no point as they wouldn’t have time to get through to the baby. But they weren’t too worried about him because he was born with his membranes intact.
We didn’t get delayed cord clamping because the cord broke away and I could hear the midwives were a bit panicky about it. But we did get instant skin to skin, so I was happy about that.
So no drugs, no medical intervention and although I had so many plans and ideas for my labour (I had all my affirmations ready and laminated, LED candles, essential oils, snacks for us both, bathers packed, fit balls ready, speakers, playlists and hypnobirthing tracks, print outs for Ian on what to do and reminders on things to tell me etc!) And we didn’t use any of it! I did use a TENS machine at home for a bit and really focused on my breathing throughout the whole thing. I was very mindful when it came to pushing to just let my body do it’s thing and focused on my breath and birthing position. I made sure I was up on all fours leaning over the top of the bed, except when they needed to examine me. I felt so prepared from the hypnobirthing course and really felt like I had all the right tools to get myself through it.
He was born on the blue full moon, with his waters around his head and all healthy – making him extra special in our eyes!! We are completely smitten by him and think he is just perfect!
We stayed in the hospital the usual 3 nights and have been home for a while getting settled into our own routines. Breastfeeding has been a bit of a nightmare with cracked nipples, a lot of tears (on my behalf) and multiple lactation consultant appointments. But hoping we will get there soon and it will get easier. Maybe you could child run a hypnofeeding course!!