Emma’s Birth story
It was quite a journey to get there in the end. My OB gave me the option to induce from 37 weeks (because of our stillbirth with Elke), but it never felt right to me as I had natural births with our first 3. So I set myself a goal to get to 37 weeks and see how I felt.
At 35 weeks – we experienced floods here in Northern Rivers. I was cut off from Lismore hospital, and my mum and Leon were in Brisbane and the highway was cut off! This was the gestation that we lost Elke – so it was an extremely stressful week, but I just had to lean into trust. I reached out to a homebirth midwife who came to do heartbeat checks at home and gave me the emotional support I needed. It was a really interesting process to go through. I realised I was perfectly ok if I went into labour and had a homebirth – it helped a lot with my anxiety and fear of something going wrong. I had no other choice – so I had to fully surrender. After 3 days the roads opened up and I was able to access the hospital and my OB again. However I kept the midwife coming weekly for heartbeat checks and emotional support.
Got to 37 weeks and felt like I could do another week. Got to 38 weeks and felt like I could do another week. Discussed a stretch and sweep and possible membrane rupture for 39 weeks. That felt good in my body, so settled in with 39 weeks as the end date. Would you believe at 38+6 I tested positive for covid!? My OB didn’t want to induce while I was positive, so I was told I had to wait until day 7. I just rested all week and tried to get myself better. I had daily checks with a homebirth midwife to ease my anxiety.
Got to Day 7 and then the hospital said – actually you need to get to day 10!!! So more surrender and had to wait another 3 days. This was important to me, because it meant that the staff didn’t have to wear PPE and I would be treated as “normal”, and Leon would be able to stay after the birth.
I asked for a stretch and sweep at 39+5. I lost my mucous plug and had some minor niggles, but nothing happened.
So – we finally made it to day 10 (40+2). I went in and my membranes were ruptured at 11am. Mild surges started at 12pm – about 10 mins apart. By 12.45 these had stopped. So I put on the “baby come out” track and lay on the bed. I text my doula/birth photographer who was waiting in her car for the green light to come up – and I told her I was going to do a meditation and see how the next 30mins goes.
The most incredible thing happened! With 3 minutes to go on the track (from memory when you were saying the baby comes out the birth canal) I got the most intense contraction, where I had to stand up and breath and sway. From that point on, my surges were consistent, a few minutes apart. I text the doula at 1.15pm and said – you better come in. It took her 45 mins to get through hospital covid procedures – and by the time she arrived in the room I was not talking through surges.
At 2.30 the midwife asked if I thought we needed to call the OB. I could talk between surges, and I thought I had another few hours. She left the room. At 3pm she came back in and I was having surges back to back and definitely was no longer talking!! It was game on.
30 minutes of active labour and very intense surges, I felt the need to bear down. A few breaths and our beautiful rainbow baby boy was born in to the world. It was the most healing birth and I am so incredibly proud of my body and the fact that I only needed my membranes ruptured to bring labour on.
Iggy Bowes was born. 3.30pm. 3.85kg. 40+2.
I am still blown away at the track – coincidence or the reason?? I am convinced the track helped me relax and my body to respond.
Thank you for your support and for sending through the track for me to listen to. Quite incredible!
I have had 5 births. 4 natural, drug free, intervention free births. And Elke’s birth – was also beautiful using hypnobirthing to help calm me and connect in with my body. I am so grateful for all that I have learnt and I am looking forward to helping other women with this in the future.