My third daughter was born on the 22nd August 2018. This is the story of how she came into the world.
At about 28 weeks into my pregnancy, I started researching hypnobirthing and natural birthing techniques.
My first daughter was born via c- section, I got very sick post delivery and there were many medical interventions. My second daughter was born vaginally with help of ventouse and it was another highly medicated birth with lots of medical intervention. Both births I was flat on my back, with drips in my hand and monitoring devices around my tummy. I didn't know, and wasn't told there was another way.
Until I researched hypnobirthing and natural birth methods. I wanted to be more involved in the birth of my child. I didn't want to feel that I was out of control of what was happening to me. I felt in my previous births that I wasn't very informed.
I started watching all the YouTube videos I could. I started listening to meditation tracks and sleep hypnosis tracks. I found free positive affirmation mp3s online that I would listen to daily. I watched positive birth videos and photos. I stayed away from negative birth stories and stayed positive, despite the fact that my husband was very skeptical and thought I wasn't being realistic. I learned about being upright and open during labor and researched different birthing techniques.
I found out that I could bring battery operated candles into my hospital room and became very informed about my choices. I was determined to have the natural, hands on delivery that I wanted!
The night of the 21st of August I went to bed as normal, at 11:30 pm my waters stated leaking. I cleaned up a bit and tried to get some rest but within 15 minutes I was getting some back ache and a couple of contractions. I got the TENS machine ready and had that connected to my back and I woke up my mum (who was staying with us) for extra support because already the contractions were only a few minutes apart and 30-45 seconds long. I had my mum count as I would breathe through contractions. Count of 4 on the in breath, count of 5 on the out breath. Instinctively, during every contraction I placed myself in a squatting position with my hips wide and open.
We left for the hospital within the next hour as the contractions were strong and difficult to breathe through. My husband drove while my mum helped me breathe and count during contractions. Between contractions I had my "upbeat music" playlist going, which I would sing along to before the next contraction.
We got to the hospital and my husband parked the car, when we arrived in the delivery suite I was squatting against a birthing ball breathing/ pushing our baby down. I asked the midwife to please keep the lights dim. I also asked her to prepare a warm perenial compress to give some relief while crowning.
The midwife helped me control my breathing when our daughter was being born. My mum was offering supportive and encouraging words and my husband was holding my hand. Our daughter was born 30 minutes after we arrived at the hospital and exactly three hours after my waters started leaking.
As she came out I was able to grab her and pull her up to my chest. It was the most overwhelming experience of my life. She cried and the tears flowed. My once skeptical husband was now stroking my face telling me that he didn't believe I could do it and he should have never doubted me. My mum was telling me how impressed she was. The midwife said it was a beautiful birth and she hadn't seen a birth like that in a long time.
It was so quick I didn't have time to meditate and get myself in the "zone", use my candles, use my massage oil or hop in the shower like I would have liked to but it was the birth that I always wanted. And even though I didn't find my previous births traumatic, I am very proud of myself for believing in my self and my body even though I didn't have the initial support from my husband.
Thankyou so so much to Lauren for sharing her incredible story!