My whole birth team were phenomenal- my partner, my obstetrician, and midwives. However, I know it was the hypnobirthing philosophy and techniques that helped me to birth without fear and to have the calm, positive birth experience we wanted.
Hypnobirthing helped me feel mentally prepared for birth. I had regularly listened to the guided relaxation and affirmation tracks. I had affirmations and the hypnobirthing visualisations on our bedroom wall. We set up the birthing suite to be a calm and relaxing space- dim lighting, music, lavender and clary sage aromatherapy. My partner kept me hydrated, reassured me, used light touch, and counted breathes with me through surges. He said it sometimes looked like I was sleeping!
A couple of hours before our baby was born, my obstetrician arrived. He very nicely explained to me that they thought my labour might not progressing very quickly. He explained that if things weren’t moving along, I could go home again to rest. He knew I didn’t want to be induced and we discussed waiting as long as possible for labour to progress naturally. By this stage, I was happy to be examined to see what progress we were making. When he examined me, all my doctor could see was the head! I was 9cm! We went from talking about being induced to realising I was 9cm in a matter of moments.
5 minutes later, I was bearing down. I had complete trust in my obstetrician- he talked me through everything that was happening. After 1.5 hours of bearing down, my energy was all but exhausted. I could feel my energy waning. I changed positions but the intensity of the surges diminished. For a few reasons, we then discussed an episiotomy and vacuum. Although an episiotomy was not my ideal course of action, I calmly followed the path the birth was taking. I trusted my instincts and my birth team and our baby was safely born with the help of the vacuum.
I also found this article that you posted on facebook very helpful! http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/health/myth-painful-birth-not-nearly-bad-women-believe/During labour I focused on relaxing and enjoying the time between surges. The wave imagery and knowing each surge would only last about a minute was also very helpful- I could ride out each surge.
Thanks again, from all of us J