First Time Mom Victoria’s Change of Plans Hypnobabies Birth

Hypno-mom Victoriaand newborn laying in hospital bed

First Time Mom Victoria’s Change of Plans Hypnobabies Birth

“I used my Peace cue to stay and nice and calm. My husband used the Relax cue and rubbed my hair, which helped me stay calm. At 12:48 on November 3rd, we heard a perfect cry, which brought tears to my eyes! Our baby girl emerged into the world covered in vernix and a good bit of hair.

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On Friday, November 1, I went to work for my last day before maternity leave. The day before, the OB said I was 3 cm dilated. I had been having pressure waves (Hypnobabies word for contractions) on and off for a few weeks but mostly cramping and a heavy of heaviness in my pelvis. When I left work, I was so glad to be mentally prepared for our baby girl to come – nothing would stand in my way from meeting her now! That night my husband went to play a game upstairs and I turned on My Big Fat Greek Wedding to watch in bed. At 7:03 I felt and heard a big pop and I knew my water had broken. I stood up and tried to run to the bathroom but I didn’t make it. Instead, my water broke all over the carpet. There was so much water! I called for my husband and he came running downstairs. He grabbed a bunch of towels for the floor and we both looked at each other. We knew it was time! I waddled to the bathroom and couldn’t believe that water was still coming out. I called my mom and sister to let them know what had happened so that they could fly to town.

Hypno-mom Victoriaand newborn laying in hospital bedAfter that, I started to feel pressure waves and started timing them. They were about 7 minutes apart and very manageable. We talked and tried to assess how quickly things would be moving. We decided that since waves weren’t getting closer together we should try to get some rest. I put on my hypnosis tracks (Your Birthing Time Begins and Birthing Day Affirmations) and laid down on the sofa. Around 9:30 we moved to the bed and I continued to sleep with hypnosis tracks on. Waves continued at 7 minutes apart throughout the night. Around 2 am, we called the OB’s hotline to let them know the situation and they said to come into the hospital once it had been 12 hours since my water broke or if waves were closer together. We set our alarms to wake up at 6:30 and planned to leave the house at 7:00 for the hospital.

At 7 We left the house and hit the highway – we were so glad there was no traffic since it was a Saturday! I had envisioned that my birthing time would start at 6a m after a good night’s sleep and I felt like this was coming true since I had slept pretty well and had a lot of energy.

At the hospital, the nurse took us to triage and told us that the night before had been very busy with women whose waters had broken spontaneously. I was still only 3 cm dilated, but not discouraged. The nurse hooked me up to the fetal heart rate monitor but couldn’t find a place on my stomach that consistently showed baby girl’s heartbeat. Little did I know this would be a challenge for my entire birthing time! Because I was only 3 cm dilated but my water had broken over 12 hours ago, I couldn’t be admitted to the hospital’s birthing center but I also couldn’t go home since the risk of infection was increasing with each hour after my water broke.

I was admitted to a regular hospital room. Because they couldn’t consistently find the heartbeat during each wave, I was still hooked up to the fetal monitor so I had limited mobility. I had requested intermittent monitoring, but since the nurse couldn’t get a consistent read on baby girl’s heartbeat I understood the nurses’ desire for me to stay hooked to the machine for now. I began doing squats and nipple stimulation to speed things up and continued to listen to hypnosis tracks. I tried to use a birthing ball but for some reason, the fetal monitor didn’t pick up at all when I sat on the ball, so the nurse asked me not to use it. Pressure waves began getting farther apart (closer to 9 minutes) instead of closer together. I kept telling myself “my job is to simply relax and let my baby be born.” I was able to stay relaxed and happy throughout this experience, despite being disappointed that I was hooked up to the fetal monitor. The nurse couldn’t find a vein in my arm for the saline lock, so she put it in my hand, which was uncomfortable and ended up causing some swelling issues later on. Despite all this, my mindset and attitude were peaceful and optimistic, certain our girl was coming into the world!

At 1 pm my mom and little sister arrived at the hospital. They were so glad they made it in time for her birth. We had hypnosis tracks playing in the room and my sister kept saying how relaxed she was from the calming music. Interestingly, our nurse said that there were 8 women who came into the hospital the previous night from spontaneous waters breaking and that she believed it was due in a low-pressure change in the weather.

Throughout the whole day, the nurse would come in over and over to “fix” the fetal monitor. We went through 2 blue tooth monitors and 3 regular monitors, but none of them worked consistently. Every time I would have a pressure wave, they monitor wouldn’t pick up baby girl’s heartbeat which made the nurses and doctor nervous. I was not worried about this and knew that fetal heart rate monitors were inconsistent. I knew my baby was safe and happy inside me.

At 4 pm, I was checked again and was only at 4cm and 80% effaced. The doctor and nurses were very respectful of my birth preferences but also let me know that the longer we went after my water broke, the higher the risk of infection to baby girl. I decided to start Pitocin with the hope that my body would take over after only a small dose. A few hours passed and things were getting more intense. Pressure waves increased and I was able to use my Peace cue (Hypnobabies cue for instant physical comfort and to direct hypno-anesthesia). My husband was very helpful by using the Relax cue (Hypnobabies cue to deepen hypnosis) and repeating different parts from the scripts. He was my rock during the whole process! He knew exactly what I needed and helped me ride out each pressure wave.

At 8 pm I told my family that they should head home since it didn’t look like baby girl would be coming out that night. Over the next few hours, I began to shake really hard due to the Pitocin. It was hard to stay in hypnosis during this time because the shaking was very involuntary and shook the whole bed. My husband applied counter pressure to my legs and back to help with the shaking, which helped me feel more centered. I was surprised by how intense the waves were in my back and hips. I used a peanut ball in bed to try to open my hips more, which unfortunately was very uncomfortable. At 11 pm, pressure waves were very regular but I was only at 5 cm. I decided that if I was going to have enough strength to push baby out the next day, I would need to sleep. For me, that meant getting an epidural. At this point, my water had been broken for 28 hours and it was becoming a race against the clock. At 11:30 pm, I got an epidural and was able to rest. The nurse who came in to give the epidural advised me of the risks and then asked for my permission to give the epidural even though she was still a nursing student. I felt confident and respected saying “no thank you”.

All night long the nurse would continue to come in and try to fix the fetal heart rate monitor. I continued to not be worried about this and knew my baby was safe. I could still move around well with the epidural and tried to get comfortable during pressure waves (I could still feel the most intense ones). I could feel baby girl descending into my pelvis. At 6 am, I was checked and told that I had a partial cervical lip but that I was at 9cm dilated. The doctor tried to move the cervical lip to the side but was unsuccessful.

At 11 am the doctor began suggested everything possible for us to avoid a c section. We tried a device to make sure my waves were strong enough – even with the epidural, this was extremely uncomfortable. I used my Release cue and Relax cue. This device showed that pressure waves were in fact strong enough and that, even if I got to 10cm soon, the cervical lip might keep baby from descending (she was still only at -1 station). The doctor explained that we were now taking a risk by continuing to wait. The likelihood of infection to the baby was very high and it was looking like baby girl just wasn’t ready to come out on her own. The doctor indicated that we could keep waiting but that waiting it out longer didn’t look like a vaginal birth would be successful within the next 24 hours.

At 12:15 pm (41 hours after my water broke) the doctor told us that we should talk about whether we would like to pursue a c section. Admittedly I was heartbroken and a little scared. But even more than all that, I was tired and desperate to meet our baby. I knew I would have a lot to process about the past 42 hours since my water broke, but that I needed to make a decision that was best for me and my baby. I talked it over with my husband and we decided to move forward with the c section. I then got my mom’s opinion, since she had 2 c sections for me and my sister. She agreed that it was a wise decision for us. I told my husband that I was a little scared and kind of in shock since we had been through so much preparation to have a non-interventionist birth. He had memorized some of the hypnosis prompts and was very comforting. The nurse came into prep me for surgery and said “you have done everything you could do to avoid a c section. You can rest easy knowing you did all you could.” This was very affirming for me. My family prayed with me and they wheeled me into the OR.

The lights in the OR were so bright. I asked for something to cover my eyes so I could stay in hypnosis and the doctor gave me a folded-up pillowcase – she was so kind and thoughtful. I used my Peace cue to stay and nice and calm. My husband used the Relax cue and rubbed my hair, which helped me stay calm. At 12:48 in November 3rd, we heard a perfect cry, which brought tears to my eyes! Our baby girl emerged into the world covered in vernix and a good bit of hair.

We are so glad to have our sweet cherub in our arms! My husband and I both agreed that Hypnobabies helped us make informed birthing choices and to stay calm. We definitely plan to use it again with baby #2!