On the morning of the 15th April 2014, I went into natural labour with my first baby at 5 days past his guess date. At 5.00am I woke to go to the loo, and had my show. I knew this could happen days before labour so tried not to get too excited! However at 7.00am my waters broke and it was as in the movies… a big rush! I knew that I had to get labour going within 24 hours to avoid being induced, so I hopped in the shower, got dressed and hubby Jarret and I took the dogs for a walk. I was getting Braxton Hicks quite regularly, but they were nothing more than a light tightening sensation.
Once home, I got onto my fit ball and started doing hip rotations. At 10.00am I started to feel light surges and by 10.30am I knew I was officially in labour! The surges started at 4 minutes apart and quickly got closer and closer together. They were not painful at all… in fact it is hard to describe the feeling. It was more like intensity and a tightening in my lower tummy. I practiced my surge breathing and listened to my hypnobirthing music and Surge of the Sea relaxation and visualisation CD, which I really felt worked well for me!
My whole body remained loose and limp… it looked like I was fast asleep most of the time. I decided to hop into the bath to relax, listening to my affirmations, which kept me very relaxed and calm.
My husband timed the surges, and by 12 noon they were 2 minutes apart. He suggested we get ready to go into the Birth Centre, however I was unsure as I was expecting things to get far more intense before having to go in. I wanted to avoid being sent back home, and they were so completely manageable that I really didn’t believe I was ready to go.
The midwife told us we needed to come in ASAP, so we packed our things and got to the Centre at 1.00pm. I continued listening to the affirmations in the car to avoid slowing my labour with a change of environment and this seemed to work well!
Once at the Birth Centre, I agreed to be examined. I was already 8cm dilated! I could not believe it! I hopped into the bath around 1.30 pm, and relaxed to my hypnobirthing music, practicing my breathing and sipping on water. At around 3.15 pm I felt I was ready to bear down, and my body started doing this automatically without me even trying. I told the midwives and they encouraged me to work with my body. As he moved down the birth canal, the midwives kept asking me if I felt a burning sensation but I didn’t feel a thing. About 45 minutes later, at 3.56 pm, our baby boy Lachlan was born.
I pulled him out myself which was incredibly empowering. Apart from being checked when I first arrived, I had no one touch me my entire labour. It was amazing!
When I pulled Lachlan out of the water, his heart rate dropped and they had to cut the cord straight away. He gave out a little squeak, but he was not breathing so they had to take him away to give him oxygen. I hopped out of the bath and started hemorrhaging and lost 850mls of blood in a very short space of time. I was so in my ‘hypnobirthing zone’ that I was completely unphased by what was happening.
I felt for my poor hubby who was in a state as he did not know who to go with! I was so calm and relaxed that I told him to go with Lachlan. He began breathing fine, but they needed to monitor him for a couple of hours to make sure he was all ok. My bleeding stopped on its own (they think I had a burst vessel from the placenta coming away from my uterus), but I also needed a couple of stitches.
Once baby and I had both been sorted out, they brought him to me and placed him on my chest and he started breastfeeding straight away! He was very alert from the get go, and is a very relaxed and calm baby. He feeds like a little champion too!
My labour was such a breeze, and such a wonderful experience. I used to be so fearful of labour, but hypnobirthing really enabled me to work with my body and have a wonderful pain free experience! Many people do not believe me when I tell them that it was so wonderful, and I didn’t even need so much as a Panadol.
I cannot recommend hypnobirthing enough! I will also say that part of it was due to very healthy eating before and during pregnancy, as well as me being very fit before falling pregnant and keeping up with exercise throughout my pregnancy. I don’t think my labour would have been nearly as quick and easy if I was not fit and healthy.
Kerry-lee & Jarret