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Posted by on in Home Birth
I have 5 minutes, so I'm gonna post my basic birth story. I would like to say that Hypnobabies really helped my birth to go quickly. First stage was incredibly easy for me.
Pressure Waves started on 9/4 at night. They were typical like the ones I have been having throughout my pregnancy. These seemed to wake me up a few times, but I didn't think much of them. Next morning (labor day) they were still coming, so DH and DS went alone to a Labor Day party. AT 5pm, the pressure waves started getting stronger and lasting longer, so I called the midwife to give her a heads up. I watched a TV show and then headed to bed to listen to my Hypnobabies track. It was nice to get time to myself - even if I was in my birthing time!

8pm is when the pressure waves started lasting a minute or longer and they were 3 minutes apart. I remained calm, imagining my cervix like a gold ring and listening the Hypnobabies "Easy first stage" through my earphone. Pretty soon, the midwife told me she was on her way!

DH still wasn't back from the party, and the birthing tub hadn't been set up yet. Also, DS had to be put to sleep and I was wondering if he would be able to go to sleep, knowing his little brother might be coming soon. The midwife waited outside until DS was asleep (9:30) and that's when I also told DH that I didn't want to be bothered by anyone. This whole time I had been laying in bed listening to the tracks. When the midwife checked me, she seemed surprised that I was already at 4cm.

Pressure Waves went on until about 1:00am. They were easy to handle. At 1 they picked up and I started feeling them a little more. They started coming faster, and with a pain in my back. I got into the tub which was heaven!  I was coping well, but the babys heart rate was accelerated in the tub, so the midwife had me come out.

The midwife checked me and I was 9cm. Everyone there was so surprised!

MW told me it was time to push and those pressure waves I was having for the last hour are "pushing" contractions. I had no idea or believe me, I would have been pushing lol!

I didn't think I could do it, and told the midwife that I didn't want to go on. She said "well, this baby has to come out some way, so you might as well push!" I knew she was right and with all my strength I pushed with the next 3 pressure waves. The following 3 pressure waves, my body was pushing by itself.

I told myself I'm not waiting another minute to get this baby born and I pushed the head out. I knew the hard work was done and like I had seen in videos, the body would come wriggling out soon enough. I gave myself a chance to relax and then a minute later DG was here at 3:03 am on Sept 6!

The midwife said she was expecting the baby to be born around 7am. There were 2 other midwives there who told me it was a beautiful, quick birth. I'm so glad I finally got my homebirth. Thank you Hypnobabies!
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Thanks to a Hypnobabies Instructor for passing on this birth story from her Hypnobabies Student.

Sophia's Birth
I think our baby was just waiting for us to finish learning all the tools we needed for her birth!

Sophia was born Sunday afternoon at 2:32 pm. The hypnosis really helped me sleep through most of my early birthing time and tools like Peace, Open, Relax and Release were instrumental in an extremely positive, quick and wonderful birthing experience. First pre-birthing waves were on Saturday at midnight, we used the techniques you taught us to slow down the progress get a good rest before things picked up.

 

On Sunday, we woke to powerful birthing waves that were 6 minutes apart at 5am, by 10:30am they were 3 to 4 minutes apart and well over a minute long, and at their peak felt distinctly 'pushy'. Chloe and the rest of the team arrived to 9 cm dilation.

 

Two hours later, John caught perfect, little Sophia and placed her on my chest. No tearing and no drugs, a short and wonderful birthing experience. We cannot thank you enough for everything you taught us. Please pass this story to the rest of our Hypno-classmates and feel free to use it in any other way you wish.
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Thanks to Mary from the Hypnobabies Yahoo Group for sharing her birth story with us!

Our little one is finally sleeping on my chest, so I thought I would attempt to write her birth story...


Elizabeth Marie was born into her fathers arms after a beautiful birth during an April blizzard.  This was my first pregnancy and birth, but because of my background, I knew that I did not want to have a baby in the hospital.  My husband was VERY reluctant to consider my desire to birth at home, but after extensive research, he decided it was the best choice for us.  I didn't have any cervical checks until my MW came over to asses my birthing time.


On the afternoon of Wednesday April 6th, I started to have menstrual like cramping, I was in the NICU working on my bachelors project as I was graduating with my BS April 22nd.  I didn't think much of the cramping because all of my other experiences with Braxton Hicks felt like sharp tightening and from what I previously read on the Internet, what I was experiencing was not my birthing time.  That evening, they became more noticeable.

I was texting my MW, asking questions, and she decided to stop by after leaving her office to check up on me as it was hard to assess me via text.  She arrived around 8:00 pm and checked me at about 8:30pm.  I was 1.5 cm dilated, 85-90% effaced with an anterior cervix.  She told me that if this was my birthing time, it was very very early in it.  She said if everything continued, she could be born that night, but reminded me that things could still stop.  I told her I would be happy with our baby being born 30-40 hours from now, and I wasn't worried about it taking a long time.  She suggested that we go to bed and sleep as much as possible.  That was the best advice someone could have given me.  The pressure waves (felt like menstrual cramps rather than tightening), continued through the night and I continued to listen to easy first stage and birthing day affirmations.


April 7th, my pressure waves slowed and pretty much stopped between 8am and 10am (I think I only had 4 total in that 2 hours).  They then picked up again and mimicked what had been happening previously.  I think the PW's were 4-8 minutes apart with the occasional PW that waited until 9 or 11 minutes to come.  My husband and I spent the day shopping, picked up a new laptop, printer, and network storage.  It was raining, and I had a few PW's that I had to stop walking in the middle of the road until it was over while getting soaked.  It made me smile thinking about how our little girl could be here soon.  I was extremely comfortable, and continued to go to stores with my husband.  At one point, I told him we really needed to get home.  I didn't want to inconvenience my super awesome midwife, so I did not tell her my contractions picked back up from that morning.

I went to bed early (following yesterday's advice), but I woke up and felt the need to get into the tub.  I listened to Hypnobabies in the tub for about 20 minutes with pressure waves 4-7 minutes apart.  I got out because the water did not seem to slow them down as it had previously, and I wanted to try to sleep again.

At about 2am, my husband woke me up, and we were intimate.  At that point, it was like someone threw a light switch!  PW's became stronger and I had to start focusing on them more.  I called my MW at about 2:30 am (April 8th), she did not think I was very far along as I was talking to her on the phone and sounded calm and happy.  I put my husband on the phone, and she asked him questions about how uncomfortable I was etc and he said I was doing great and did only 4-7 minutes apart and I sounded too comfortable.

At about 5:30, my PW's were averaging closer to 4 minutes apart, so we called her back. I think I was a little frustrated as I knew that my little girl would be here soon.  I made my husband call.  She had us update her in an hour as I was still "too comfortable" and I told her during our prenatal visits that I didn't want her here until I was unable to cope with my doula and husband.  She asked me if I felt like I needed Benni (my doula), and I said no, but I would call her if she wanted me too.  My doula lives an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes away depending on traffic and would have to drop her kids off to a babysitter on the way to my house so she asked that I give her a 1.5 hr heads up.

My husband talked to my MW, and she said "I bet Mary wants me to check her," he agreed.  Again, he asked me if I was really in labor.  I didn't know if I wanted to smile, or hit him lol.  At 6:23am, I broke down and told my husband that I was calling my MW because if she didn't get here quickly, I was going to drive my self to the hospital.  I said this to make a point, I did not want to go to the hospital, I just wanted my MW here and I didn't feel as if they took me seriously.


I called her and when she answered I said "Where are you!!" and her reply was "In your driveway."  I suddenly relaxed.  She left her supplies in the car, and watched me labor until 6:45am when I layed down on the floor for her to check me.  She said I was 6cm and 100% effaced with bulging membranes.  I thought that was perfect.  It was the magic number I had in my head.  She quietly told my husband that it could either go really really fast, or really really slow at this point.

She asked me if I wanted her to call my doula, I said yes.  I wanted to make sure I was really in my birthing time before I called her because I did not want her to make an unnecessary trip to my house.  I asked my MW if her assistant was coming, she said "Do you want her to?" and I said yes.  She called her assistant who lived about 25 minutes away.  My MW said I should change positions, so I moved from keeling over the seat of my rocker/glider chair to laying on the floor on my side.  One contraction, I started to squirm, and she placed one hand on my hip, and the other on my shoulder and said "just stay put." I later learned that I was at the point in which I just had to let my body take over and not run away scared.

I felt the urge to pee, so I went upstairs to the toilet.  I couldn't go because I felt that the seat was too low to the ground.  I had a PW on the toilet and it was not enjoyable.  I moved to my bedroom and leaned over my bed for a PW, and again felt as if I needed to pee.  I went to the master bathroom, but was unable to go for the same reason.  I then asked my husband for a towel to go on instead.  My MW had him fetch a chuck, and I was finally able to go (it was literally just a dribble).  I climbed into my bed, and layed on my side with a pillow between my knees.

All of a sudden, my top leg jerked forward.  I thought that was weird, but didn't think anything of it.  During my next PW, my midwife said "Are we going down to the birthing pool or are we having this baby on your bed?"  I was so confused at this point, I learned that the weird sensation I was experiencing that caused my leg to jerk with the first one was actually my body pushing.  I never felt pushy at all.  I told her that I really wanted to be in the water, but I wasn't about to move.  My MW and husband quickly covered my bed with surgical drapes and such to protect it.

MY MW quickly called her assistant who was in-route, and said I was pushing and her equipment was still in the car.  Her assistant said she would bring everything in with her when she arrived.  My MW said "During one of your next PW's I need you to roll to the other side of the bed."  The side I was on was not protected.  I rolled across my king size bed like a pro!  Within minutes, my daughters head emerged, my midwife peeled the amniotic sac off her face (my water never broke and my MW did not want to break it), then my husband reached down to catch our baby.  My MW told me to push, which caught me off guard as I never had to consciously push up to that point.  I smiled, gave a push, and my husband caught our first born!


It was a beautiful experience.  I held her for a few minutes and then asked my hubby to hold her skin to skin (she was still attached to the placenta).  He took off his shirt and threw on his bath robe and held her.  It was amazing.  This was an experience I would have never had if we were in the hospital.  He gave her back to me, and after the cord stopped pulsing, my husband cut it.  My doula arrived a few minutes later.


Although she didn't have a name for a few days, Elizabeth was born at 7:42am, less than an hour after my cervical check at 6 cm.  My body pushed for me, she was out in 11 minutes.  I would have never been able to get through all of the early birthing time without Hypnobabies, and I attribute my succes during my late birthing time to Hypnobabies because it taught me to relax and trust my body.
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Thanks to Jennie for sharing her story!
A couple days ago I was just reaching the point of thinking this baby would never come out. I wasn't at my due date yet, but I was beyond the points when my other two came, and I was SURE this one would be earlier. It's amazing how soon kids remind you they have minds of their own...

I had had a few "practice waves" over a couple days, but nothing strong or regular. They were mostly the kind of thing I wouldn't even notice if I weren't expecting the kid to make an appearance at any moment.

On Sept. 21 I woke up around 5 am and got up to go to the bathroom and get some water. I got back into bed but couldn't fall asleep again. About half an hour later, I had a fairly strong birthing wave but didn't think much of it. A few minutes later I had another. I decided if I had one more I'd get up and start timing them since I wasn't getting back to sleep anyway.

A few minutes later, there was another one. I couldn't go into the living room since my mom was sleeping out there, so I took my exercise ball and my phone into the bathroom and bounced/rolled a bit while timing waves and Facebooking.

The waves were consistently five minutes apart, lasting about 45 seconds. Although they were fairly strong, they weren't yet to the point that I needed to use my hypnosis techniques.

Steve got up around 5:45 and I told him he might need to call Lindsey and Carole (our midwife and doula) soon. Around that time Anna woke up and wanted me to snuggle. I tried to get her to snuggle with Steve instead, but she insisted on me. I snuggled with her for a few minutes, then bribed her with the promise of peanut butter crackers if she went to snuggle with Grannie instead.

It became clear that this was the real deal, so I decided to draw a bath and told Steve to call Lindsey and Carole. I also told him to set up the birthing pool on the patio as we had planned, weather permitting. It was early in the morning and still chilly, but I figured it might be warm enough by the time we needed it, plus we have a propane heater we could turn on if necessary.

While my bath water was running I decided to get the bed ready for later, too. I took the covers off, put a shower curtain down, and put another sheet on top. Keep in mind this is a king-size bed pushed up against a wall and a twin-size bed, so it's a major PITA to make it even under normal circumstances, much less during one's birthing time. I wanted to feel useful, though.

I got in the tub and listened to some of my Hypnobabies "Easy First Stage" track and to the Beatles' "Let it Be" a few times. ("Let it Be" had sort of become my mantra during the pregnancy, and it seemed like a nice accompaniment to the whole idea of just relaxing and letting go.)

After a little while in the tub I got restless and decided to get out.

I walked out to the living room and had the first wave that made me need to stop what I was doing and focus. A few minutes later, Carole, our doula, arrived.

I went out back to see what the temperature was like. Steve had turned on the heater, so even though it was still a bit cool, the patio felt quite nice. With our fountain running, birds flying around our bird feeders, and fog in the background, it felt extremely peaceful, so I decided to stay out there.

Carole and I talked (pausing for waves) while Steve finished setting things up. By this point I had grown tired of "Let it Be," but didn't feel like listening to a hypnosis track, so I was listening to my Beatles mix. I wanted to keep things upbeat and fun.

Our midwife Lindsey and her assistant Courtney arrived and got some other things set up, then they went into the living room to hang out so I wouldn't feel "watched."

My waves started getting longer and a little more intense, so I told Steve it was probably time to finish filling the pool. (Which was very easy, by the way, as Steve had run a hose directly from our tankless water heater.)

Even after the pool was filled, I didn't get in right away because things were going so well on land and I didn't want to mess up a good thing.

Then my waves started getting shorter but closer together and much more intense, so I figured it was time to get in the pool. It was so nice to sit in the warm water and watch scrub jays and hummingbirds flying around the feeders! I told Steve we're getting a hot tub for the patio.

Steve, Carole, and I hung out for a while, with Lindsey and Courtney coming out occasionally to check on me.

Probably about half an hour after getting in the tub (though my concept of time is hazy at this point) my birthing waves started to get very intense. Carole helped me relax my shoulders and gave me hypnosis cues. Lindsey and Courtney came out for good, so between that and my strengthened waves, I knew we were getting close.

I also got EXTREMELY hot, which happened just before my other two kids were born. I had Steve turn down the heater, and Carole put cold washcloths on my neck and forehead.

I had several very long, very close, very intense waves, and I knew (and hoped!) I'd need to start pushing soon.

With Elias, pushing was very easy but took a long time, probably because I was in the standard "stranded beetle" position. With Anna, pushing was easy and very fast (and stealth!). A few gentle pushes and she came right out.

I assumed pushing would be similar to Anna's birth, where my body just took over, pushed, rested, push, push, rested, then she was out.

This time I did feel my body start to push (obviously) but there was no resting! As soon as I started to push, I needed the kid OUT!

I pushed a few times and was sure the kid was stuck. So I just kept pushing until I felt crowning. Another push and the head was out. Two more and the shoulders were out. One more for the body. If I had to guess, the whole thing took a minute.

Lindsey told me to get my baby (after each of my births I had to be reminded by someone to look at/get my baby). I looked down and saw this little creature floating in the water, reached in, and picked it up. Carole announced the time of birth as 10:03 am, 4.5 hours after my birthing time began.

Steve looked and announced that it was a boy. I had been a bit unsure about our choice of boy's name, but this kid was definitely an Oliver.

We covered the baby with a blanket to keep him warm, and the kids came out to see their new brother. We hung out for a few minutes, then I wanted to get out of the pool before I delivered the placenta.

It was surprisingly easy to walk through the house and into the bedroom with an umbilical cord and baby still attached to me.

We settled into bed and Lindsey checked me for tears. I needed stitches with the other kids, and they were a bit smaller and had come out much more slowly. I was sure I'd need a ton of stitches--but no! Not one! I was pretty happy about that!

Oliver started nursing and Steve made some calls to let people know about the birth. Carole and Lindsey thought the baby would be over 9 pounds, but when we weighed him he was "only" 8 lbs, 6 oz. I think his big round head and chubby cheeks made him look bigger than he really is.

The kids came in and held their new brother and we made some more calls/texts. Lindsey and Courtney finished up some other things, then they and Carole left right around noon. It was very nice spending the rest of the day relaxing with my family at home rather than being continually poked and prodded by hospital personnel.

Thanks in large part to Hypnobabies, Oliver's birth was just as easy and peaceful as the other two. Other than one grunt while I was pushing out Oliver, I didn't make (nor feel the need to make) a single peep during any of the births. I definitely recommend the program to any pregnant women!

My wonderful husband and birth team also deserve tremendous credit for being so calm and supportive. I couldn't have done it without them!

 
Jennie and Steve
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Thanks to Janell from the Hypnobabies Yahoo Group for sharing her birth story!

I had been having light waves since Monday July, 18. On Tuesday night, after getting no sleep the night before, I decided to drink a little glass of wine, take a bath while listening to Hypnobabies, and talk to baby about coming out to meet us. I felt very relaxed afterwards, went right to sleep and slept all night. My waves stopped for the most part so I thought "nope, not time yet."

On Wednesday I was having sporadic waves that had more pressure than normal, but I didn't think anything of it. I just told myself "open, open, open" with each one, hoping I would in fact "open, open, open."

I think it was around 6:00 pm I went to the bathroom and noticed I lost a small amount of mucous plug. I tried to not get my hopes up. By this time my waves were pretty regular, but nothing to set your watch by, coming every 5-10 minutes or so with more pressure than normal. Looking back, I should have realized this was it and started listening to my Hypnobabies tracks. I was in denial! Plus, my DH kept telling me I wasn't really in my birthing time. Pffft.

Despite all of the denial, I had a strong sense of urgency that DH needed to go get our last minute things from the store. So I sent him off thinking it was probably for nothing, but better safe than sorry. This was around 9:45 pm. Almost right after he left my waves started coming every 5 minutes with much more intensity than before. I thought it was no big deal. You hear about prodromal labor all the time.

 

They kept up for about an hour and I started thinking it was real. I listened to my Hypnobabies birthing day affirmations and then tried to listen to the easy first stage track, but the waves were too intense to focus by then. This was around 10:50 or so. I realize I'm in my birthing time for sure, haha, and DH is gone!!

At this point I head into the bathroom to pee. I didn't come out for an hour, maybe a little more. Just from my walk to the bathroom and using the toilet, my waves went from five to two minutes apart, and were VERY intense. I was now low moaning and rocking on the toilet to cope. I knew I was in transformation. I was shaking, feeling hot and cold simultaneously somehow, and feeling nauseous. I also started feeling somewhat "pushy", which made me nervous. I was still alone! But I stayed relaxed in between waves, thank goodness. I began texting DH telling him I needed him home but his phone had died, lol. He got back around midnight and I came out of the bathroom shortly after. I never wanted to leave the toilet.

Since this was all happening so fast I never thought to call my MW. So as I leaned over my birth ball and moaned, DH called (at 12:08) and told her I'd been having birthing waves every two minutes for over an hour. She hung up pretty quick!

I tried being on hands and knees for a few waves because of the discomfort in my back, but it was too much. So I moved to a sitting position in an armchair, trying to mimick the toilet, but that was too much too. I just wanted to lay down. I was hesitant to do it since everything you read says movement helps but I laid down on my left side on the couch anyway. This is where I stayed.

I was having to vocalize more loudly as the pressure was super intense. Still, I was able to relax completely in between waves. I wasn't talking, smiling, or laughing, but I was still, and relaxed. I began to feel very pushy but resisted since my MW wasn't there yet. This made it harder but it was ok. At one point my body pushed involuntarily and I yelled to DH "I'm pushing!". I really thought we'd be having an unassisted birth at that point.

My MW got there around 1:00 am and I told her I was feeling pushy. We waited out some waves and then she checked me (my first check the whole pregnancy:)) and there was only a lip of cervix left. She knew I wanted a waterbirth so she and DH tried to get the pool set up, bless their hearts. I knew there wasn't time.

 

I think one of her assistants got there around the same time...not really sure. The timeline is blurry for me here. They were busy getting their supplies ready while I was on the couch, pushing whenever my body felt the need, when my membranes ruptured. The biggest pop ever and SO much fluid. It was crazy....like out of a movie. It wasn't long til baby's head was crowning. DH missed the head being born because our 2 yr old woke, so he went to tell him everything was alright, but he made it in time to see the rest of the birth. The birth happened so fast. I remember my MW telling me to breath and slow down to allow my perineum to stretch, and I tried, but just couldn't. It wasn't *painful* per se, but I definitely felt the stretching! Once the head was born the body came out just as fast. I think the other assistant got here five minutes after the birth.

This birth is such a stark contrast to my other births. I was induced with the other two. Never got to experience going into labor naturally and really felt I was one that couldn't. I'm so glad I had this last birth experience. It was fast and intense...the total opposite of what I had expected.  <3

Oh, I made it out unscathed! No tears or anything! I could have been more comfortable maybe had I realized sooner that I really was in my birthing time, but it all worked out.
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Thanks to Melissa from the Hypnobabies Yahoo Group for sharing her birth story!

Zane was born Sept 18/10 at 5:44pm in his very own room in our home.  I had been listening to the come out baby tracks for the last week as I did not want to be overdue (the ultrasounds were predicting a 9.5 lb baby at term).... (my due date was Sept 19).

I had felt close to labour the whole last month as he was very low and I was getting a lot of braxton hicks/bowel cleansing/menstrual like aching (I was also taking a mixture from my naturopath for childbirth the last few weeks). I was sitting to pee and felt a small "snap", not painful and thought it was perhaps my mucus plug.... nothing on the toilet paper, but then when i was up and moving around I realized that my water had broke.  This was around 1:15pm and I started having contractions within 30 minutes.

They quickly became 3-5 min apart and so I called the midwife and she headed over (40 min drive away from me).  I listened to the easy first stage track and kept moving around as I didn't want anything to stall on me.  When the midwife arrived around 3:45pm she checked me and I was soft and 6cm! At this point I was able to quite easily breathe through the contractions, trying different positions.

At about 4:45 they started getting more intense and I needed my husband nearby to work the cueing.  I climbed into the tub at 5pm and within 10 minutes things became very intense....

I pushed for 20 minutes total, once he was around my pubic arch it could have gone fast but the midwives kept it slow so I would stretch easily.  Once his head was out pushing his shoulders out was easy! Straight onto my chest and love at first sight. I used the EPI-NO with my first born and again with this birth and it did me well again, with no tearing or bruising at all.  He weighed in at 8lbs 9oz (my first was 6lbs 11oz, so 2 lbs larger!).

Hypnobabies was so amazing for me.  I suffer from an anxiety disorder and with my first birth I had an anxiety attack.  Anyone who gets them knows that the biggest fear is having another one, especially when faced with the same situation.  Hypnobabies kept me calm and I never felt the onset of the same anxiety during this labour.  Preparing for the birth, if I started to get anxious at all it was so amazing to put on a track and relax my mind and body.

Although I had the short period of time during birthing where things were very intense and I wanted it to end, I was still not anxious.  I visualized for myself a labour of under 4 hours and it was!  Compared to my first delivery, where it was a 3 day ordeal and 14 hours of what was 30 minutes of this delivery, wow!  It also gave my hubby better tools to help me with- straightforward and easy for him to learn and use.

We are doing great and the biggest challenge is the 2 year old sister adjustment.  Be encouraged all those preparing, if you put the work in it will pay off!  The next day visit with my midwife she remarked how surprised she was to find me 6cm and looking so comfortable.... just like what I had read about other women's stories... yay for Hypnobabies!
I'm going to miss the tracks so I'm now going to go check out what they have for after baby comes!

Melissa
Tagged in: anxiety
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I am hoping to finally get a few minutes to post my wonderful birth story.  Sunday night during a wonderful winter rain, thunder and lightening storm I had my second home birth using Hypnobabies which just happened to turn out to be a breech birth.

Sunday night at 2:32 am we welcomed our daughter Elliana Daisy Grace.  She happened to be born on her due date too.Let me start by saying about a week and a half before my due date I had a full day of pretty regular pressure waves but then they stopped so I was a little disappointed.  Then this past Saturday I also had pretty regular pressure waves but didn't think much of it since I had already had them stop on me once.  Sunday I had a few pressure waves but not many.

Sunday evening around 8 they started getting more regular.  I laid down and tried to go to sleep but by 10 they were getting stronger and I thought I had leaking fluid so I got up to check and realized I was bleeding.  I called my midwife and had her come to check me since I was concerned.  At this point I was very upset at the thought of having to go to a hospital.  I had a hard time trying to stay calm and packed a bag to go the hospital while she was on her way.  I also called to have my doula come too.

 

My midwife arrived around 12 or 12:30ish.  By this time the pressure waves were getting much stronger.  She checked me and decided the bleeding was more of a mucous plug and she wasn't concerned so we made the decision to stay at home. She said the baby was head down and we just sat around chatting and waiting for awhile.  The thought of having a baby in a hospital was terrifying to me.  My doula arrived as the midwife was checking me.  At this point I was able to relax again.  For about the next two hours the waves became stronger.  The pressure waves were definately managable.

 

A little after 2ish my fluids released.  I felt very pushy immediately.  After a push or two my midwife informed me that the baby was breech.  After three pushes out she came. I have to say that even though she ended up breech this delivery was much easier than the birth of my son.  I did not tear this time and I felt the whole thing just went easier.

 

There were many small things I did differently the second time around that made the experience much easier.  My first birth I was not able to relax.  This time around I had made the decision to stay calm and I believe it made a big difference. With my first birth I had no energy for over a week.  This time I was a little tired the next day but day two I felt great and yesterday I went grocery shopping.  I also had started taking iron extract a few weeks before my daughter was born because I had felt run down.  I believe this may have helped also.  I did not have a doula the first time around and this time I had decided it was necessary.  I believe the extra support also helped to keep my calm and comfortable.

 

The little one is waking up so I must go now.  I wanted to post this to encourage others that may have a breech baby that you can still do it at home.
Thanks to Gen from the Hypnobabies Yahoo Group for sharing her story with us!
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Posted by on in Home Birth

This is a long birth story! I decided to write out all of the details since I really learned a lot and enjoyed reading the details of the other birth stories on the list.


A little background: Grace is our second child. I also used Hypnobabies during my pregnancy with our son, who is 16 months old. He was posterior though, and I had terrible back labor for about 5 hours with him and then pushed for 2.5 hours before he was finally born (drug-free!). I was really unable to use the relaxation techniques due to the back labor and worried the same thing would happen with Grace’s birth. But I loved using the Hypnobabies during my pregnancy and felt it would be my best chance for another drug-free birth.

For this pregnancy, I read every word of the Spinning Babies website and did the inversions regularly and did pelvic rocks every night. I also saw a Webster-technique trained Chiropractor throughout my pregnancy and hired a birth doula.

We were using a wonderful midwife who only delivered at the hospital. I was really hesitant to go to the hospital for delivery, but the local birth center closed after my son was born and we decided we weren’t ready for a home birth since my back labor had been so bad.

Back to Grace’s birth: Dec 31st, the day before she was born, my husband and I took our son to the Zoo and walked around for about 3 hours. I started having pressure waves during that night. They woke me maybe ten times, but I was able to go right back to sleep each time. They got more regular when I got up around 7am. I told my husband that today might just be the day. I was 40 weeks and 4 days pregnant, the same length as the pregnancy with my son.

My husband took over taking care of our son and I was able to lie on the couch and read the rest of the birth stories in Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth for the second time. The PW’s continued but were not regular for a few hours. Around noon, I started doing last minute cleaning of the house and reading through the Spinning Babies techniques again while doing figure 8‘s on the birth ball..

At 1 pm, we decided we should start timing the PW’s. They were anywhere from 3 to 10 minutes apart for a couple of hours. I called my midwife around 3:30pm to let her know today may be the day. She said to call her and head to the hospital when they were between 3-5 minutes apart for an hour. The PW’s were fairly strong, but I was able to completely relax during them and felt great about it! I had only experienced back labor with my first baby, so I was excited to feel what a “normal” PW felt like.

For the next couple of hours, the PW’s were mostly from 2-7 minutes apart but then I’d have some 10 minutes apart. The Hypnobabies was so effective at eliminating any pain that I was telling my husband I thought we must have a long way to go.

Around 5:30pm, they started getting more intense. So I asked my husband to massage my shoulders at the beginning of each PW. There would be quite intense pressure, my husband would massage my shoulders and I would use the Hypnobabies relaxation techniques and the “p**n” would almost magically disappear in seconds. Most were 2-5 minutes apart, but there would be a 6 or 11 minute break that threw me off for the timing. I had to completely focus during the PW’s at this point, but they were so manageable that I was still thinking I had a long way to go.

At 7:30pm, I spoke with our Doula who suggested I lay down for a while and see what happened. Up to this point, I had been in an upright position for the last few hours. As soon as I laid in bed, I had two really intense PW’s that lasted 1.5-2 minutes long, but they were 7 minutes apart. I was starting to think we should probably go in and get checked. My husband put our son to bed at 7:45pm. I stood up for a couple of waves, then back in bed for one really intense one. At the end of it I literally jumped because I felt like something had “punched” through my cervix. I told my husband we had better get going. I stood up from the bed and a second later my water just gushed. It was 7:58pm. My husband called his mother to come stay with our son, it was a 15 minute drive for her.

It suddenly occurred to me and I told my husband: “Things are about to happen very fast!”. This was when it first crossed my mind that we may not make it to the hospital. My husband went into turbo mode and started racing around trying to load our car. I started having PW’s every 1-2 minutes. So every time he was almost out the door with a load, I called him back in to help me. I really needed his help massaging my shoulders as hard as he could at this point. It was amazingly intense but we were doing it!

I told my husband I wasn’t going to be able to make it to the car, much less the hospital. He tells me now he was horrified. He did his best to convince me we could (MUST!) make it to the car. It was right about then that I started to feel pushy. That’s when his mom arrived. I asked my husband to close our bedroom door for privacy. I told him I was pushing and went into our Master bathroom and he brought me some towels. I knew my husband was scared and that was about the time I started praying myself. I knew we could do this as long as there were no major problems. I told my husband he better go ahead and call 911.

He told the 911 operator I could feel the baby’s head and was pushing. I could hear the operator telling him to get me to lay down. I was kneeling on the floor and had no interest in laying down at that point. After just a couple of pushes I could feel the baby crowning. I tried my best to slow her head from coming out too fast but wasn’t very successful. I could hear the operator tell my husband several times that he had to get me to lay down. I said, “I’m NOT laying down”. Another push or two and I caught the baby and laid her on the towels. I glanced at the clock. Grace was born at 8:35 pm. I noticed how long the cord looked and unwrapped it from around her neck although it wasn’t tight. Thank God, she immediately started crying. Just my husband and I there to bring her into the world. It was a wonderful, amazing experience we will never forget. I felt great!

Just a couple of minutes after she was born, the Fire Department arrived. Soon our bedroom and bathroom were crowded with men. The EMT’s arrived about 5 minutes later. It was pretty funny to me when the EMT mentioned a couple of times that this was the 6th baby he had “delivered”! They took the three of us to the hospital by ambulance.

Grace’s apgar scores were 8 and 10. She weighed just 6 pounds 3 ounces which was a surprise to us since our son had been 8 pounds 7 ounces. She is the sweetest baby, just beautiful and such a blessing - my husband and I are absolutely thrilled. He did an amazing job helping me. I couldn’t have done it without him! I feel like all of the techniques I used contributed to me having such an easy birth this time. I have loved learning and practicing Hypnobabies and know I wouldn’t have had such success without it. I will definitely be using it again for our next baby!



written and shared with permission from a mom from the Hypnobabies Yahoo Group.
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This is the story of how Blake chose to enter into the world on August 22nd at 12:50 pm. I begin at the beginning of my pregnancy so that others will see the journey my husband and I went on. How the choices we made and did not make affected us. I hope that other women will learn from my experience to listen to their inner self. I was blessed that I ended up with the birth that I desired (even though it was not planned this way) but for many others I know that this does not happen. They settle for something less than what they desire. I want other women to know that they are powerful, strong, and know how to follow the best choices for themselves no matter what others think or say.

Blake’s story begins in December 2009, when I found that we were pregnant. This after a few years of not preventing it. I soon found that there were many decisions about the care we wanted to receive and how we wanted Blake to enter into the world. I met with Julie Byers, a doula, to discuss options. Before meeting with Julie, I had joined the AnMed hospital practice in order to start receiving the prenatal care I needed. I met with Julie at a coffee shop and we began to discuss what I wanted, felt I needed for my care, and what I wanted in a birth. Speaking with Julie and having her listen to me “ramble on” allowed me to realized the kind of care I wanted and the type of birth I wanted. She suggested that I speak with her friend Carey Collins who is a midwife and learn more about homebirths.

I e-mailed Carey and left it at that. For many months I continued my care with AnMed but each time we went for a check-up, I felt rushed, not heard, and not pleased with my care. After going to AnMed to have blood drawn, Brandon and I stayed to tour the birthing unit of the hospital. We left the tour unimpressed and knowing that we were going to change practices. This was solidified in our minds when we asked the nurse if laboring mother’s could move around and her response was “No, you have to stay in the bed because the baby could just slip out if you were moving around”. All the way home I said “I will not be delivering there“.

We then started to look at birthing at Oconee hospital. That way we would be closer to home. We set up a tour of their birthing floor and was impressed with the attention, the one-on-one time the floor’s supervisor spent with us, and the answers we were given to the questions we had. We then asked for recommendations of doctors who delivered there. We were given names. I soon made an appointment and switched care providers.

Still unsure of what kind of birth I wanted I decided in April that I would meet with Carey, a midwife. By the time this meeting came to pass I had done much research on home births and discussed home birth with many different individuals. All with their own opinion of whether it was safe, appropriate, and all with their own opinion of what I should do. Brandon and I knew we wanted a home birth deep inside but we wanted to please those around us, so I discussed with Carey the possibility of her being our monitrice and laboring as much as possible at home and then going to the hospital to deliver. After meeting with Carey, and discussing the options, I decided that laboring at home and birthing at the hospital would make everyone happy. (Did I put much stock into how I felt about this? If you asked me then I would say yes. If you ask me today I would say I was the only person I did not listen to.) From this meeting with Carey, I loved the bond that quickly formed between the two of us and the knowledge she provided into understanding how I was feeling and the knowledge she had of birth itself. We decided that day to work with Carey, a decision I will never regret!

We soon went for our first visit with our new care provider and were impressed with the time she spent with us discussing our pregnancy. We were happy with our care until a visit in June when I went one time by myself and gave the doctor my birth plan. As I sat with her in the office the doctor began to write on my birth plan and marked out parts of my plan. Asking me questions that were formed in medical lingo that I didn’t understand. I left that day feeling bullied and beat up. At this point, I knew again deep inside that I really wanted a homebirth but I still didn’t listen to my inner self and continued care with this provider.

The visit in July was no better. From the urine specimen I gave when I first went in for that appointment they found protein. I was called into the doctors office and was told that I had to do a 24 hour catch and that they would probably have to take the baby early because I was showing one symptom of preclampsia. Even though I had no other symptoms they assumed this all this from one small dipstick. The doctor spent no time discussing with me what was going on and again I felt bullied and rushed. While in her office I asked her questions and questioned what she was doing. She would give no answers in terms that I could understand. I left completely panicked and immediately called Brandon and Carey. Carey was calm and reassuring that it was nothing and the doctors reacted that way to cover themselves. It turned out that it was nothing when the results came back from the lab. Again at this point I should have listened to myself when I KNEW I wanted to switch to midwife care but yet again I did not. I continued care with the providers and now had to go to appointments once a week.

Through the rest of the months I continued to meet with Carey and continued to wish for a home birth. But I kept telling myself at least with doula I could labor the way I wanted at home before having to give birth at the hospital. Brandon and I also began a Hypnobabies class with Julie. Each Thursday through the months of May and June we met with Julie and three other couples to share stories, excitement, and learned a way to control what our bodies felt during our child’s birthing day. We practiced everyday, listening to the scripts, doing prenatal exercises, eating healthy, and dreaming and talking about the birth we wanted. Through out the class, I often wondered to myself if this is really working, will I be able to do this when the time comes, and will I remember how to control my mind and body because Blake’s birthing day was so far way. Other important information we learned through this class was about birth and the process a women’s body, the baby, and the mind goes through during this special time and how our bodies were designed when we let them, to give birth in a natural way without help. Little did I know how important all the things we learned from this class would be!

Jump forward to the month of August. At the last visit to the doctor before Blake arrived, I was told that I would probably go full term and then some. This meant another two weeks. I was excited because it would give me a few weeks with my kids at school before Blake arrived. The first week of school when kids were back was a difficult week. There was a lot of stress and excitement all in one for me. I came home the Friday before Blake’s birth tired and worn out. My long term substitute backed out at the last minute and I was stressed. The next day was Saturday. That night I looked at my belly and told my son “Blake I am ready when you are, you come when you are ready, I love you”. Little did I know that this would began the process of Sunday becoming Blake’s birthing day. I believe that by giving Blake permission to come I honored him, my body, and what was to come.

Sunday I woke up with small cramps and a small, tiny, amount of discharge. Nothing that alarmed me or made me think Blake was coming anytime soon. I was busy planning on being at school the next day and seeing my kids for the second week of school. Brandon asked me around 8:45 if I was up to going grocery shopping because the cramps were a little stronger (Let me say here none of the cramps I experienced during my birthing time were anything close to what I have experienced during my period).

I told Brandon sure we must continue on with our day. Before we went to Bi-Lo I asked Brandon to take a picture of my belly. We had been meaning to for quite a while because I finally “looked” pregnant. I am so glad we did this. In the back of my mind I think I knew that Blake might be coming in the next few days. At 8:45 we left for Bi-Lo. As we shopped through Bi-Lo I had to stop every now and then because of the cramps and I would “look at the shelf” and made comments jokingly that if these cramps are pressure waves than this is nothing. I also looked at Brandon after one of them and said jokingly “I smile and feel happy after my pressure waves.” This came from one of the Hypnobabies scripts that I had ingrained into my brain. I really could recite many of the scripts by heart. After making these comments Brandon and I would bust out laughing at each other!!

 

We didn’t even consider that those really were pressure waves, I thought my body is just getting started and I had a few more days to prepare. On the way home, I mentioned to Brandon that I thought Blake had dropped because I had a huge gap between him and my ribs. Blake was always in my ribs during the pregnancy. I should have taken this as a clue but since I was not experiencing anything I thought of as “labor” I choose to continue to ignore what I was experiencing and dismissed it.

When we returned from the store, I started to have diarrhea on top of the cramps. I asked Brandon to call Carey just to ask if this was normal. This was around 10:00. Carey reassured both of us that all was normal. This was the normal way for the body to get ready for the birth that was to come and it could be another couple of days. She reminded us just to continue with our normal routine and ignore it.

 

After speaking with Carey, we decided to watch a movie that we had rented the night before. I tried laying down and watching but the cramps were uncomfortable and I kept having to go the bathroom. This continued for a while. I would lay down to watch the movie, watch about minute or two and then I would be up and going to the bathroom. I soon claimed the toilet as my throne. During my time on the throne, Brandon was busy gathering items for the hospital. Later I asked him if he knew it was going to happen and he said he thought he should be ready in case.

 

After being on my throne for a while, I found some comfort on the birthing ball by bouncing up and down and rolling my hips back and forth while sitting on it. I told Brandon just to turn the movie off because I couldn’t remember what was happening during each time I cam back from the bathroom. The comfort from sitting on the birthing ball only lasted a few minutes and it was back to my throne in the bathroom, where I felt most comfortable. Again I should have started putting the signs together because Julie told us in the class some women spend lots of time on the toilet during their pressure waves because it is most comfortable.

 

I still didn’t realize what was going on because I was waiting on the “labor pains” that many women speak of. I was only having pressure and they were not even like the Braxton Hicks I had experienced in the months and weeks before.

Wanting to get off my throne and try something else I remembered how much water was a comfort to me during pregnancy. I asked Brandon to run a bath for me. He soon joined me at the side of the tub as I took a bath. During the short time in the tub, Brandon poured cups of water over me and spoke words of encouragement and peace. He tried to comfort me through the cramps, pressure, and the many feelings I was experiencing. Quickly the bath became uncomfortable and I moved to the bed. I was there for no longer than 5 minutes. I had just enough time there to put my I-Pod on for only a few seconds and found a Hypnobabies script. The only words I heard on the script were the words “open, open, open”. I then threw off the I-Pod and ran to the master bath to claim my throne once again. At this point I still did not realize that I was experiencing pressure waves and dilation.

This time I called for Brandon to come to the bathroom because every time I tried to use the bathroom I now felt as if I was going to throw up as well. Brandon’s job became to hold the trashcan and allow me to lean over his arm that he held in front of me during the cramps and sensations of pressure. During these moments he spoke words of affirmation and words of comfort that he learned in our Hypnobabies class. He helped me to relax and remember that my body knew what it was doing and that my body was made for this. Soon I began to move back and forth between the floor and my throne.

 

I asked Brandon to call Carey around 12:26 and tell her to head this way because I no longer felt comfortable being without her. I needed her reassurance that everything was normal. At this point we still did not know that Blake would be entering the world in a few minutes.

Soon I asked Brandon to help me to move to the floor and that is when my water broke. It felt to me as if it was gushing everywhere and flooding the floor. I told Brandon I think my water broke and said he was not so sure because it really was not very much. Worrying it was going everywhere Brandon reassured me that it was ok and that the water was no problem to deal with. I soon asked Brandon to move me back up to my throne.

As I sat on my throne, I felt the need to use bathroom but nothing was happening each time I tried. I began to feel a greater amount of pressure down below and moved my hands to see if I could feel what was happening. I could not. Through each intense set of pressure waves, Brandon gently held me up and to told me to relax, breath deeply and slowly (which is hard to do), and to allow my body to be loose and limp. Again all these affirmations and prompts came from our Hypnobabies class. Looking back I was surprised at how quickly all the scripts came back to me and how my body was using them without me knowing.

After being on the throne for a few minutes I then felt the need to move back to the floor. This is where I felt the most comfort while I experienced the pressure waves from where Blake was at inside of me. I still didn’t realize at this point what was happening. I was waiting for the intense p**n of labor that I grew up hearing about. When Brandon got me to the floor I began to push as if I was using the bathroom. My body wanted me to push and so I did. It was the only comfort to the pressure I was feeling and as I pushed I thought that I felt something coming out.

 

Yet again I felt below and this time I thought I felt hair. Brandon at this point saw Blake’s head and hair. He said it would peek out and then go back in. I really thought I felt it too but Brandon told me it was “nothing, don’t worry about it” when I asked him what it was. Later we laughed about this and how he choose to tell me a little white lie. He said he told me it was nothing because he was doing his best to keep me from freaking out. My husband knows me well because we were all by ourselves and Blake was on his way and had I realized this I probably would have freaked out.

At this point I don’t remember much because of the way my mind and body were working together. Brandon said very quickly Blake’s head peeked back out and that he told me not to push. Then Blake’s head come all the way out and Brandon told me to give a little push. Brandon was able to see Blake turn as he slid all the way out at 12:50. This was something Brandon was expecting because during our hypno class we saw pictures of how the baby turns in order to leave the body.

 

When Blake came out, Brandon quickly laid him on my chest and covered him with a towel. I was in shock and kept asking Brandon if it was a dream and if Blake was really here. I then kept shouting at him what time is it, what time is it. I wanted to know the time of our precious baby’s birth.

Brandon called Carey back to tell her Blake had arrived (it had only been 24 minutes since our last call to Carey to head this way) and she to could not believe that Blake was already here. She was still 15-20 minutes away from the house. During this time on the phone Carey assured Brandon that everything was fine. However Brandon had a hard time hearing her because I was so consumed with excitement and joy (meaning I was loud). Brandon handed me the phone and said “Carey wants to talk to you”.

Carey quickly got me calmed down as I began to experience the euphoria of holding my son that my husband caught and gazing into my son’s eyes. I still had a hard time believing that this was not just a pregnancy dream. Brandon propped me up and continued to speak words of love and told me how impressed and in awe he was of what I had just done. I in turn told him how proud of him I was for catching our son! Did I mentioned that smoke detector went off and Blake christened me while we were cuddling on the floor all before Carey arrived?

Carey finally arrived to the house as I laid in the bathroom floor. She came in wheeling a suitcase full of midwife stuff and said to Brandon “boil a big pot of water” as she passed straight through the house to get to Blake and I. Brandon later said to my mom, “yes you really do boil a pot of water like in all the old movies.”

Carey came in the bathroom and checked Blake and I over and began to step into action. She helped me to birth the placenta and showed Brandon and I the ‘tree of life’ that is on it. I wish I had Brandon take a picture. She also helped me to nurse Blake for the first time on my chest while he was still attached to his umbilical chord. She checked over Blake and I before moving us to the bed.

 

While I was in the bed coming down from the adrenaline, Carey clamped and cut the chord and she had Brandon cook me some eggs and toast. Carey began to feed me and Brandon said I kept falling asleep between bites. While Carey was looking after me, Blake was being held by his father. After eating, Carey put Blake in the bed with me and helped me to nurse again. Then Brandon weighed and helped measure Blake. He was 7lbs 9oz and 21 inches long. Soon Brandon crawled into the bed and spent time with me and Blake while Carey cleaned up the bathroom and started a load of towels in the wash.

 

At this point no one but Carey, Brandon, and I knew Blake was here. It was wonderful to enjoy our son in the peace and quiet of our own home, in our own bed, in our own way. Carey respected us and our wishes in a way I will never forget.

That is the story of how Blake chose to enter into the world on August 22nd at 12:50 pm. Again let me remind you that I begin at the beginning of my pregnancy so that others will see the journey my husband and I went on. How the choices we made and did not make affected us and our child.

I truly believe that during this pregnancy and birth even though I did not listen to myself, that my son Blake, my body, my mind, and God knew that deep down I desired:

  • - a birth that was not at a hospital

  • -a birth where the mother’s body was the guide

  • -a birth where only love and affirmations was given to the mother

  • -a birth that was comfortable with no fear or p**n

  • -a birth where the mother’s wishes were followed and space respected

  • -a birth where Dad was active and allowed to experience all the joy and excitement of birth


I am blessed because in the end I did experience the birth of my son in the most intimate and perfect way.

Would I had experienced all that with the birth that I had planned at the hospital?

Being completely honest I would have to loudly say No I would not have.

To end Blake’s story I want to quote my mother law from her post on Facebook:

“Brandon and Jenni brought Blake into this world with only God present......what a special time and a special blessing! Praise God !!”
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Posted by on in Home Birth

Yalana’s Unexpected Home Birth in Less than 22 Minutes


Saturday Jan 29th 2011, I was studying all day. I was having some contractions but I thought they were just toning contractions. They were nothing I couldn’t study through or do anything else for that matter. I felt great! My husband, Lucas and our son, Austin went to Impressions Five and then went bowling. I stopped studying at 6pm to clean the house because Lucas’ brother and sister and their spouses were coming over to drop off some food for us. They came and we all had some good laughs. After they left, Lucas told me he was planning on taking Austin out to play with his cousin Tahara the next day. I wasn’t happy about this because Lucas had been having a tendency to not answer his phone lately and my sister lives about 45 minutes away. I just felt like he needed to be close by. But he convinced me that he would keep his phone on him and he told me, “Your going to be in labor at least 2 hours right. So that is plenty of time to get home to you if you need me.” I agreed. We put Austin to bed and I called my sister Theresa to tell her that I had been having toning contractions all day but they weren’t much but maybe they would get stronger over night. She said ok and that she would keep her phone by her. Lucas and I watched Bones and then I listened to my Hypnobabies “Visualize Your Birth” tack on my iPod and fell asleep (I always fell asleep listening to my Hypnobabies tracks).

I slept great (I think listening to the Hypnobabies had something to do with it). I woke up at about 5:50am to go to the bathroom. I had a contraction and notice that I lost the rest of my mucus plug. I came back to bed and told Lucas that I thought I was really in labor now. I had another contraction and used deep breathing to relax through it. I could feel it in my back so I got on all fours to make myself more comfortable. Then I asked Lucas to heat up a rice sockie for me to put on my back. I also made him plug in my iPod to charge because I wanted to begin listening to my Hypnobabies “Birthing Day Affirmations” so that I could relax even more with each contraction (wasn’t quite time to do this thoughJ).  And I told him; maybe I should call the Greenhouse Birth Center and just let them know I am in labor. He agreed.

I called my little sister Theresa first though; this was at 5:57am (I was planning on having her at the birth plus she is one of the post partum doulas at the birth center). She asked if I wanted her to meet us at the birth center and I said I didn’t know because I might just labor at home for a while until the contractions get stronger. So I called the Greenhouse and left the message with the messaging center.

A minute later (6:05am) Shelly, one of my midwives (who was already at the birth center because another mom was in labor there), called me back. Just as I answered the phone, I started to have another contraction. I told Shelly to wait one second. I got on my bed and breathed to relax and just allow the contraction to happen. After it was done I told Shelly what was going on. She thought I should come in and not wait too long. So I told her I would take a shower and have Lucas get things around and we would come in. So Lucas began to shave his face and get the bags around. I felt like I had to go pee again so I sat on the toilet. Right then my water broke and I was having another contraction but this time it was different. I felt some pressure. So I reached down and I could feel her head. Lucas asked me if I wanted to just go right to the birth center.

I said, “No, she is coming now. Call Shelly back. And bring me some towels.” So he laid some towels down for me as he is trying to call Shelly back but the line to the birth center was busy (Shelly said she was calling Clarice, the other midwife for back up since there was already one mom at the birth center). So he called Theresa and told her to come to our house now or she was going to miss it. She thought he was kidding (since he pranked her earlier in the week that I was in labor when I wasn’t). Meanwhile, I can feel Lana’s head moving down. So I get down on my knees on the towels Lucas laid down for me. I didn’t have to push. My body was bearing down with the contraction. Lana slipped right out into my arms. I can’t even begin to describe how amazing it was! She was perfect! She did not have a cone head that’s for sure.

Just prior to this (6:10am), Lucas had gone down stairs for something while on the phone and finally got through to Shelly and told her we wouldn’t be coming in. By the time he came back up stairs he could hear Lana crying. He looked at me holding our little bundle and told Shelly, “Yup, she just had her.” Shelly said when she heard her cry over the phone it was 6:12am. Lucas went and got baby blankets.

Austin woke up and came into the bathroom. All smiles when he saw his baby sister. He said, “MOM you squeezed your baby out!” Then he came and sat by me. Lana started to nurse and we were as happy as could be. Theresa got there soon after and helped put some warm towels on me. Lucas made me breakfast… I was hungry! Shelly arrived and helped cut the cord and get me up and into bed. It was AMAZING! It was so calm and peaceful and everything I could have hoped for and more!

And what a 180 from Austin’s hospital birth! No drugs, no throwing up, no IV’s or epidural. No heart rate monitors… no lying on my back in the worst position to push for over an hour and NO episiotomy! I couldn’t have asked for more. God is wonderful and women really can have babies with out interventions! I could move around (the greatness of not having local anesthetic)! And my bottom wasn’t in pain from an episiotomy tear. What a difference not having those two interventions made! And I got to get right back in to the comfort of my own bed with my baby. No having to pack up into a vehicle or move from place to place. Lana was measure and weighed right in bed with me. She was 7bs 8oz and 20.5 inches long. The comfort of my own house was amazing. My wonderful sister helped me take an amazing herbal bath with Lana a few hours after she was born and I was able to take a shower and get dressed. And I feel great.

Maybe its coincidence but I really think the Hypnobabies childbirth program that I had been doing since 17 wks pregnant really had something to do with how calm and relaxed and fast Yalana came into this world. Hypnobabies taught me how to relax which I tended to have difficulty doing. It gives only positive suggestions about childbirth and how with each contraction you will smile and feel so happy that your baby will be in your arms soon. If you fight the contraction it just brings the fear-tension-pain mechanism into play and makes you feel pain. Hypnobabies teaches you how to deeply relax so that all you feel is pressure and no pain and gives positive affirmations about how quick and easy labor will be if you just relax. I wonder if this is why I was so comfortable studying through contractions the day before and only thought they were toning contractions. I wonder if listening to it while I feel asleep made it so I didn’t feel any contractions and slept so great. I only experienced discomfort with the contractions I had just prior to giving birth but it was manageable just with breathing (but this is why I wanted my iPod charged so I could listen to my Hypnobabies:). And the feeling of birthing Yalana right into my arms with out interventions was so very empowering and amazing. I cant find words to describe how absolutely amazing it was.

 
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Lars was born September 6th at 9.58 pm.

I studied Hypnobabies for this birth so I have used Hypnobabies terminology in this story and I refer to Hypnobabies sound tracks.

Sunday September 5th we awoke to a summery morning and decided to drive the hour into Stockholm to the aquarium, thinking "baby won't come if we stay around the house". We found parking and started the rather long but beautiful walk from the car to the aquarium. My birthing waves started immediately but did not inhibit my walking. I said to DH that both we and Helena (HB MW) have hour drives so it will time perfectly if this is it, but that I hoped we didn't have to pay admission just to turn around again. The waves were mild but it felt good to sit in front of the big tank, relax and just watch the fish go by. We ate lunch at the aquarium's cafe overlooking Stockholm, watching boats go by. I felt so happy and peaceful, the waves stopped all together and I enjoyed a great slice of Pecan Cheesecake. During the car ride home I listened to my Pregnancy Affirmations and had two waves that hour. They picked up once we were home and we started timing them at 6.20 pm. They were 2 to 20 minutes apart and 40 seconds to 2 minutes long. There was no pattern but this was a lot of action for me. DD went down to sleep and I sent a message to my midwives to say, "tonight is not impossible".

As I got into the shower that evening I looked at my belly and thought, "this is it". An immense sadness washed over me. The beginning of my pregnancy was difficult. The "why am I doing this?" kind of difficult, but these last three weeks -  feeling good, home from work, connecting to the baby in my belly, having time for me, energy for DD and DH (despite the mood swings) – it had been luxurious and it was coming to an end. The future was unknown. Another wave came and I thought about how saying "good-bye" to my belly meant saying "hello" to my baby. I quickly indulged in my right to be sad that something nice was ending, smiled toward the future and got happily in under the calming hot water.
At about 11 pm I went to bed. I listened to the Fear Release track and then to the Birthing Affirmations. I must have fallen asleep towards the end of the affirmations.

Monday September 6th
I woke up to a wave at 1.30 am after about an hours sleep. I went downstairs at 2 am and posted at our DDC.  Between 2.30 and 3 am my waves increased and after some good advice from the ladies at MDC (mothering dot com), I called Helena (my HB MW) just to let her know what was going on. She said it sounded like things were progressing. I said, yes, but that they were mild, I felt good, that I was eating some cereal and was going to try to rest. She thought this sounded good and I was to keep her posted. DH heard me on the phone and came down to check on me. We went back to bed, I listened to Deepening and fell asleep after that. I woke up to waves a few times between 6 and 8.30, DH called in to work and when DD woke up we went down for breakfast.

At 9.50 am I go to the bathroom and yell, "yeh!" when I spot some blood. We go for a walk at 11 am to a beautiful waterway near our house. My waves have been 15-20 minutes apart and I update my MWs. DH puts DD down for a nap around 12.30 pm, I warm some leftovers, and Helena (HB MW) calls to check on me. Between 1 and 2 pm I rest and listen to my Birthing Affirmations and between 2 and 3 pm my waves are 2 to 7 minutes apart and about 45 seconds long. DH makes a yummy Greek salad. I notice my Mucous Plug is loosening at 3 pm and it's mixed with blood. Carina (PN MW) calls to check on me. My MIL picks up DD, who kisses my belly and says "see you later". I'm not sure if she's talking to me or the baby, but my heart warms.

 

I listen to my Birthing Affirmations while I shower. I feel calm and excited. At 5.50 pm my waves are 3 in 10 minutes. Helena, who lives an hour away is on full alert, but I don't feel I need my MWs just yet. At 6.50 pm I call Carina (who lives 20 minutes away) to say "not yet but soon". My sitz herbs are steeping, the house is prepped and ready. I'm feeling good and the waves seem very effective and I enjoy them from my birth ball listening to Billy Holiday. DH is preparing seaweed soup for later and pasta for now (he told me later, this was a great task to take his mind off being nervous). He comes by now and then to put a hand on my shoulder and give me the "Relax" cue, which really works to send a wave of relaxation through my body and brings a smile to my face.

I decide it's time to listen to the Easy First Stage track. The track starts and she's talking about the strong waves I'm feeling and I'm feeling nothing, except the baby hiccuping. I'm thinking, "Typical! They stopped." Then I feel one coming and "Pop!", gush. I hop off the newly prepared sofa bed and yell, "My water, time to call."  DH admits later to looking at the stove three times to see what water I was talking about (there was after all, soup, pasta and an herbal bath going on there) before realizing, "Oh HER water". DH calls the MW's and I rush to update at our DDC (this made DH giggle and shake his head at me which in turn made me laugh).  I dry myself off and DH lights lanterns in the garden for MW's. I wait out another wave leaning on my birthing ball, amazed at how much water continues to gush. I'm enjoying my tagliatelle when Carina comes in.

Carina listens to the baby. I ask her to use a doppler so I can hear too. Baby is calm. Mommy is too. I move to a softer chair and Carina does some acupuncture for my abdomen and legs. I move back to my ball to enjoy some more waves. DH moves the dogs to the basement and meets the HB MW, Helena, on his way back up. He helps her carry the scale and things. He tells me the night is starry and beautiful. The milky way is visible and the big dipper is right outside our door. Carina and Helena sit on the floor, we chat and laugh, I close my eyes and enjoy my waves saying "Peace" to release anesthesia into my body. I feel relaxed and happy. DH gives me the relax cue. Billy Holiday's "Solitude" comes on and I inform everyone that it's my favorite.

 

I need to pee and Helena wants to listen to baby. He or she is still calm. The waves get way stronger when I'm standing. DH whispers to me "open, open, open." There's no more water gushing now, the baby's head must be wedged down the birth canal. I lean on the media center for support and Helena massages my back.  This feels so good, I just want to stay there but I feel it's time to listen to Easy First Stage. I want to turn my switch off and then get it back to center. DH puts the track on the speakers and I sit in a chair and listen. I go way down and then quickly count up to 2 so I can be active and talk while still under hypnosis. My MW's are new to Hypnobabies and very curious so I explain to them while DH massages my feet with lavender oil. I feel warm and cozy. The waves are really strong now. "Open, open, open," I tell myself. The track reminds to be "limp and loose" and I remind myself that it's just pressure and tightness, that it is I who chooses how to meet these waves.

 

I glance at my birthing bead bracelet and feel the power of all the mamas in our DDC, all the mamas through out time birthing our daughters and sons. I pull up whatever foot DH is not massaging to the other knee and kind of flap my leg up and down like a bird. This feels perfect and after each wave, which are very tight together now, I find myself looking at DH, smiling and my eyes are watering. I'm SO happy! Those moments there with DH are indelibly written in my mind.

I am so comfortable in the chair but I know and say out loud that it's time to stand up. I love how in tune I am with my body. No one tells me what to do, I just know what needs to be done. Standing up launches things forward. I feel DH's hand on my shoulder, "relax". Carina sets a ring of acupuncture needles around my abdomen and back. The waves come hard. The pressure is incredibly powerful, it's hard to stay on my feet. I fall into DH's arms, breathing and focusing on the tightness which is moving my baby down and out.

 

"Peace", I breath anesthesia into all the birthing muscles. DH whispers "open, open, open". Helena grips and massages my feet, keeping me grounded. The Hypnobabies track ends and DH asks me what I want to hear. "Music, you chose".   Johnny Cash, "Hurt" comes on. I love this song and I want to say that but the words can't get out. Helena listens to baby again and smiles, saying nothing is stressing out this baby. I smile and  fall to all fours gripped by a wave. "Eisenhower Moon" by Jesse Sykes plays. I smile to myself. I feel the baby moving down and out. We are so close. I tell myself to breath.

 

"Rainbow Connection" covered by Willie Nelson. I want to explain that this is DD's namegiving song but the time for small talk is far past. I'm just talking to myself, breathing anesthesia to my cervix, down my birth canal. There's plenty of room for welcoming my baby to the world.

 

All of sudden words come to me. "My red raspberry leaf tea!!! I need it!"  I know I'm way past needing RRL tea but it's the last desperate cry of a woman about to let herself lose control. I'm about to give myself over to something far more powerful. "2 cups of water! 30 minutes!"  "Oh that's a lifetime right now," I manage to say sarcasticly. Helena laughs, DH runs to the kitchen. DH admits later he put in 4 cups of water. I sense this because I insist between waves, "How much water did you put in?!". He assures me from the kitchen that the tea is fine and I can insist no more.

 

"Put on the pushing track!" I yell. DH runs back, hits play, gets down in front of me and I hold on for dear life. I'm growling our baby out. I hear the track telling me there's plenty of room. I growl again. I listen to track, go to "my special place" where I am always safe and can be with my baby. I let go of my baby's hand, telling her/him I welcome her/him. It is time is for us to meet out in the world. This visualization is so beautiful and powerful to me. Carina and DH change positions. DH is going to catch our baby.

 

There's no time to rest between waves. A sip of juice, growl, a sip of juice, growl. I know there is only one direction to go...towards my baby. I feel a small burning sensation and tell myself, "peace", sending anesthesia out in front of the baby's head. He's crowning, the wave ends and he slides back up. "Come on!" I yell and prepare for the next wave. Growl! Out comes his head. "What does the baby look like?" I ask. "Like DD but with less hair" answers DH and I can hear he's smiling. Helena tells me I'm going to push the baby out next time and I know it. I get up on my knees and hold Carina around the shoulders. GROWL! 9.58 pm, three hours after my water broke, out comes baby into DH's arms. "It's a boy", he tells me.

 

I smile, fall forward, breathing heavily and try to glance backwards. Helena untangles him from his cord which was caught tightly around his neck but luckily is long. This is why she told me to push him out on that last contraction. It was time. He had really twisted himself up in it. Carina helps me turn and gets me propped up against DH. Lars comes to rest on my chest. He's gorgeous and very content. Carina brings me a cup of RRL tea. Helena laughs and says that's the first time she's heard anyone give instructions for brewing tea during the second stage of birthing. It hasn't brewed for quite the instructed 30 minutes, but it's very tasty anyway.

Lars was 8 lbs 9 oz, 21 inches long. Carina and Helena hugged us and wished us a good night. We celebrated with non-alcoholic champagne and cheese sandwiches. DH lit a fire and the three of us cozied down to sleep. DD came home when Teddy was 12 hours old and it was love at first sight.
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This was my second hypnobirth and my 1st homebirth.  It’s a long story of a fairly short birth. :)

 

On Monday the 15th I started feeling contractions that were definitely stronger then braxton hicks but they came with about the same frequency as I’d been having braxton hicks so I didn’t think much other than my body was getting ready to have the baby, but it still could be anytime.  I’d also been feeling sharp pains in my cervix for a while but wasn’t sure if it was just baby poking me with her little hands, or if it was my cervix dilating as some thought those pains were.

 

On Monday I also felt more mucus when I wiped after going to the bathroom, but it was just clear or whitish so I didn’t think it was my mucus plug.  On Monday night when my husband, Mike, and I were in bed, I had an emotional breakdown and accused him of not remembering what it was like to have a newborn.  He’d made some comments about things we could do after the baby arrived that I thought were ridiculous.  I got everything out that I’d been thinking and voiced some of my concerns about having a new baby.  At first it turned into kind of a heated argument and I cried a lot and Mike was mad but then we had a good discussion and both of us went to bed happy.  Sometime in the middle of my crying I had the thought that maybe this was an emotional release I needed to do to be ready for baby and for the first time thought that maybe the signs were pointing to it happening pretty soon- maybe even the next day.  I didn’t say that to Mike, though.

 

I woke up the next day, Tuesday the 16th (3 days before my guess date) and felt the same as I had the day before.  I had sporadic pressure waves that were like strong Braxton hicks but I hardly gave them a thought.  I dropped my daughter off at preschool at 9, stopped at a favorite coffee shop and got tea and coffee cake and then headed home to start on some projects that I had planned for the morning.

 

By the time I got home around 10, I realized that I probably wasn’t going to get anything done because I was having pressure waves that were still really sporadic but I felt best just relaxing on the couch.  After I got home I went to the bathroom and when I wiped I had a bunch of tan, bloody mucus.  Definitely my mucus plug.  I called Mike at work to let him know what was up but at that point I didn’t know if this was going anywhere so he should stay at work and not be too excited.  I texted our doula to tell her the same.  After all, some women deal with this off and on for days before their birthing time really starts, right?

 

Not too much later I talked to Mike again to let him know that I didn’t feel like I should drive to pick up our daughter from preschool because I didn’t want to have one of these pressure waves while I was driving.  He said he’d pick her up at 11:30 and then come home and work from home for the rest of the day.  In the meantime, I piled up pillows on the couch and leaned forward against them.  Just in the last couple of weeks my baby had been sometimes turning a little posterior so I wanted to give her every encouragement to be in a good birthing position.  I put on the easy 1st stage track and listened to it out loud.  I was really comfortable and my pressure waves weren’t too frequent.

 

Mike and Sairshe got home a little after 12 and I turned the track off so I could interact with them.  Mike puttered around getting his workspace set up and checked his work email.  Then he started making lunch for the kiddo.  I asked him to scramble a couple eggs for me since all I’d eaten was coconut coffee cake and I had the foresight to think that if this was really the beginning of my birthing time, I should eat something a little better.  I didn’t really time my pressure waves at that point but when I did think to look at the clock they seemed to be really irregular- 10 minutes, then 5, then closer to 15 minutes.

 

Around noon my midwife’s office called to sat that Catherine, my midwife, had been called to a birth and needed to reschedule my appointment (I’d had one scheduled for that afternoon) and since I wasn’t ready to say for sure my birthing time had started, I didn’t mention it and just rescheduled my appointment for later in the week.  Mike thought that I should have said something.

 

At some point my daughter started to bother me and I regretted turning off the easy 1st stage track so I told Mike he was on his own with her and moved to my bedroom.  I tried to recreate my comfy couch spot by piling pillows up against my headboard and leaning onto them and I turned on the easy 1st stage track again.  I couldn’t really get as comfortable as I’d been before everyone got home, though, and I was a little frustrated.  My pressure waves seemed to be coming with a little more regularity and were getting stronger so I told Mike he should probably call the midwife and give her a head’s up.

 

I heard him talking on the phone and then he came into the room I guess to ask me something but then he said he’d call her back in 5 or 10 minutes.  Catherine told me later that Mike hadn’t been sure if I was having a pressure wave or if I was just resting but either way, he hadn’t wanted to disturb me right then.  I had been having a pressure wave but was still able to appear pretty relaxed.  When Mike came in again and saw that I’d opened my eyes, he asked if I wanted Catherine to come and check me and I said something along the lines of “I guess so.”  He called her back and asked her to come and I also heard him call our doula and tell her to come over too.

 

This was maybe 1:30 and my pressure waves seemed to be suddenly coming more regularly- 4 or 5 minutes apart- though they still seemed pretty short and were really manageable.  Somewhere around this time I asked Mike to call my mom and tell her that baby was on her way.  My mom lives out of state but had asked us to let her know.  Our daughter was in the dining room eating lunch and Mike started inflating the birth pool in the living room while I stayed in the bedroom.

 

As soon as that was all set in motion, I had several really intense pressure waves.  I definitely couldn’t be still through them so I’d quickly put my lightswitch in center and sway my torso back and forth while I knelt on the bed.

 

In the easy 1st stage track Kerry reminds us several times that “you are safe and your baby is safe no matter how much power goes through your body” and that was my mantra during those intense pressure waves. It was SO much power!  I felt like in my head I was yelling that mantra to myself and I didn’t feel particularly calm in my head but my physical body stayed as relaxed as I could make it.  Even though I was still sitting/kneeling on the bed my legs started feeling kind of shaky during these intense pressure waves.

 

I had the fleeting thought that it felt kind of like transition but then dismissed it because my pressure waves had only recently become regular and still weren’t terribly long or close together.  I then started to doubt if I could keep up this calmness and looseness through out my birthing time if this was how intense it was going to be.

 

I decided I needed a change of scenery and felt like I should go to the bathroom so I sat on the toilet.  My next pressure wave definitely felt pushy.  I yelled for Mike and had to yell a couple of times and pretty loud since he still had the air pump running to blow up the tub.  At that point I realized I wouldn’t have time to use the tub but water felt like it would be amazing.  I thought of filling up the bathtub since that would be quick but then decided even that wasn’t really worth it.

 

Mike came in and I told him that I was feeling a little panicky and that we could have this baby before anyone got there.  Almost immediately my 3 year old came running in to say “Midwife Catherine’s at the door!”  I think this was about 2:15.  I was glad it was her.  I’d thought it might be the backup midwife since Catherine had been called to a birth earlier.  (It turned out that the other mom wasn't too far along so Catherine came to my birth and then an hour or so after my baby arrived, she went back and attended the other birth too.)

 

Catherine checked me while I was still on the toilet and said that the baby was right there and then said “I’d like to run out to my car and get my supplies really quick.”  I wasn’t about to say no to that.  :) When she got back I said that I didn’t want to have the baby in the toilet and she said that I’d better move now then.  I remember saying several times that I wasn’t ready for this to be happening so soon.   I was feeling really hot and I was right next to an open window and the cold air coming in felt really nice.  I didn’t really want to move but also really didn’t want to have my baby in the toilet.  I asked Mike to get a washcloth wet and he put that on my neck and forehead and it felt amazing,

 

Catherine helped me move to the bedroom and I brought my phone that was still playing the easy 1st stage track.  I got on my knees on the bed but felt like being in a more upright position so I asked for something to lean against.  I still had the big pile of pillows on the bed so Mike moved that closer to me and I got in the same position I’d been in before- up on my knees but leaning forward onto pillows.  Immediately I was pushing.  I asked Catherine a couple of times if it was really ok to be pushing because I still was having a hard time believing that I was at that point already.

 

She assured me that it was fine and my baby was ready to be born.  With each pressure wave I vocalized a low (but loud) “aaahhhh” noise and let my body do the pushing.  I didn’t have to think about it, it’s just what felt right to do.  It was amazing to be able to really feel her moving down.  With my 1st, I pushed for 40 minutes and never really felt that movement with my pushing.  It was really great to feel that my pushing was doing something and it wasn’t painful at all.  I said once that I felt stretchy and that’s really all I felt.  My only discomfort was that my legs got tired being in that position.

 

I was really thirsty and Mike gave me sips of tea in between waves and he put his hand on my shoulder and reminded me to relax and told me how great I was doing.  After a few good pushing waves, my water broke and I really felt the pressure of baby’s head.  I think it was the next pushing wave that she was born.  She seemed to just fly out of me and I immediately felt an emptiness in me.  It was a weird sensation and I think it was because I hadn’t really been prepared for her birth to be so quick.  I had just felt like I was really in my birthing time and then she was born!

 

I heard her cry immediately and then Catherine passed her between my legs so I could pull her up to me.  When my older daughter was born, a dr I’d never seen before came in my room at literally the last minute, decided she didn’t like something about baby’s heartrate and whisked her out of the room as soon as she was born.  When they brought her back, she was all cleaned off and wrapped up.  The first thing I said when I pulled this baby up to me, all wet and blue and covered with vernix, was “I never got to see Sairshe like this!”

 

It was so amazing to hold that brand new baby.  Seconds after she was born, the room got really quiet for a second and at that moment we could hear my hypnobabies track that was still playing quietly just as Kerry was saying “. . . your beautiful birth.”  Catherine said “That was beautiful indeed.” I turned around and saw that as I was pushing the 2nd midwife, a nurse and our doula had all arrived just in time to see the birth.  Mike was holding Sairshe who got to see the whole thing too.  She got a little nervous after the baby arrived so she went back out to the living room and played with our doula while I birthed the placenta and nursed my new baby.

 

A little later she came in and we all snuggled up in bed together, which was awesome because that had been my special place that I’d practiced imagining for so many weeks.

 

Carys was born on November 16th at 2:34 pm, only about 20 minutes after Catherine arrived and just over 4 hours since I’d had the first thought that just maybe my birthing time was starting, but I wasn’t at all sure. I sure am glad we had a homebirth planned because I’m pretty sure we would have had one regardless!

 

Hypnobabies worked great, even though I didn’t have a lot of time to use my tools this time! There were maybe 2 or 3 pressure waves that were pretty darn uncomfortable but the rest of the time I was really comfortable, even when I was anxious and not sure if a midwife was going to arrive in time.  I listened to the tracks mostly as I was going to bed each night so I slept through them and just as everyone says, that really does work.

 

Birth is truly amazing and Hypnobabies helped me experience it in comfort and without any fear. Mamas, you can do this too!
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This pregnancy was sooo much different from Garrett’s. I had been experiencing Prodromal Labor for a month, and was beginning to wonder if our little bugger was ever going to join us. The day before my birthing time began, we were scheduled for a Biophysical Profile/NST. The tech said the baby had a lot of amniotic fluid, and was big (8lbs 14oz). We decided to find out the sex, after waiting almost 41 weeks, in hopes it would help me visualize the birth better and perhaps help bring on my birthing time. The tech ALSO said that the baby wouldn’t come anytime soon. Ha!

The next morning, Garrett woke me up around 3am for his usual walk-me-back-to-my-room/potty routine. I was having some pressure waves, which was pretty normal for me, and really didn’t think much of it. I decided to try some nipple stimulation to see if it would help them continue or get stronger. I did 15 minutes on the breast pump, and had some decent waves going. They were about 10-12 minutes apart and lasting 30-40 seconds. I checked my email and then went back to sleep listening to my Birthing Guide (Gotta love Hypnobabies! I’d been listening to my birthing guide for a few days, trying to bring on my birthing time).

When we went to the BPP/NST the day before, I picked Brad up at work and left my car there, so the plan was that we would get up that morning and I would take him to work so I could bring my car home. I had a feeling that this was “it”, but we decided to still take him to work. After we dropped him off, Garrett and I went to Target to pick out some cars as his baby gift, and then to Chuck E Cheese. I would have SKIPPED Chuck E Cheese completely, because the pressure waves were getting stronger, but Garrett was looking forward to it and I knew it would be a while before I would be able to do something with him alone, just because, again. So we went for about an hour and he played. I’m glad we did, he had so much fun.

Once we got home, however, I really felt like I needed to rest. Garrett had napped in the car, and was not going to stay asleep once we got home. I called my neighbor to see if she could take him ASAP. Right before she came to get him, my pressure waves definitely picked up in intensity.

 

When I would use the finger drop (Hypnobabies technique) for a contraction, my sweet little boy would poke me and go “Are you awake mommy?? WAKE UP!!” Yeah, time for him to go!! He left around noon.

 

Brad came home for lunch. We decided the waves were about 6 minutes apart, and lasting about 45 seconds to a minute. I was 4.5 cm and the baby was very, very low. We felt like we were going to have a baby soon, but after the way my labor stalled with Garrett, we decided that Brad would go back to work for a couple more hours and then come home early. I listened to my “Creating Anesthesia” track in the rocking chair and dozed for about an hour until my midwife called. I was still able to talk through the waves, so we decided she would finish up her day at the office she works at in North Miami and she would come straight to me from there.

I straightened the house a little bit, cleaned the bathroom, etc. Around 2:30 or so, I lost a little bit of my mucous plug. My waves were coming about 4-5 minutes apart, but were very short (30 seconds). I called Brad and told him to haul butt home.

 

By the time he got there, things were getting VERY intense. Laura was on her way back from North Miami. I knew my birthing time was imminent by now, and was SURE this little one was coming at home. Brad started to fill the birthing tub and got the bed ready. He tried to come to support me through each wave.

 

Around 4 I decided to get in the ¾ full tub, because the waves were becoming intense for me. Once in the water, I put on my First Stage track again, this time on the CD player instead of the Zune.

 

About 15 minutes after that, I decided to switch to “Pushing your baby out” since I was having some MAJOR pressure. Brad talked to Laura around this time, and said she was stopping at her house quickly.

 

I told him to tell her to come NOW! I was HOT and decided to get out of the tub around 4:40 or so.

 

Right after that, it was time to start pushing the baby out. I labored on my hands and knees on the bed for the duration, which wasn’t very long. I could feel her moving down and kept telling Brad to check for a head. Around 5 or so, there WAS a head. Brad called Laura to let her know the baby was crowning—she was right around the corner. She came upstairs, and a few minutes later, Summer Elizabeth was born.

 

I have NO idea when my water broke—IF I really had as much fluid as the U/S tech claimed the day before, I must have had a fast leak. Because there was no gush when she was born. She was covered in vernex, has a TON of hair and brown eyes (Garrett had very little hair and had blue eyes when he was born). It took her about 12 hours to take to breastfeeding. She was 21 inches, 7lbs 13 ozs. (Surprise, surprise, the U/S was off by a whole pound!)

 

Recovery has been a breeze so far. I was in the shower within half an hour of her birth. No tearing. In fact, I honestly don’t feel like I’ve had a baby. My midwife yelled at me because I asked her if we could go for a walk at our 24 hour appt.  Summer is finally getting the hang of nursing, and is SUCH an easy baby. She let us sleep 2 - 4 hour stretches on her second night, which I thought was pretty darn good!!
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I posted a few months ago about wanting a home birth vs hospital birth.  Everyone on this group was so supportive  and we decided to do a home birth.  I am so glad that we did.

I thought I was going to be "overdue" but I figured that, like my first child, it would only be a few days.  Umm..nope, I was 13 days "overdue".  At 41 w 4 d my midwife wanted me to go to the hospital and get an non-stress test.  Everything looked was great except for a couple of jabs from the on call doc about my homebirth so I went home.  At 41 w 6 d I went back for another one.   Ugh.  I was really stressed at this point because my midwife couldn't continue my care after 42 weeks.  Everything looked amazing again.

I got home around 3:00 and took 4 T of castor oil. It wasn't bad since I mixed it up in a root beer float :) Nothing happened...and by nothing I mean none of the side effects that you hear castor oil giving you. I figured it was worthless. My mom and I walked to the store to get some stuff for dinner and we rented a movie. The boys got home from hiking and we started the movie around 8. I don't think I made it even5 minutes into it. I was sitting on the exercise ball and pressure waves started coming every minute and a half. I started panicking thinking that this is not right, these are way too fast.   My husband Brian gave me a blessing and I got in the shower. Brian called the midwife, Kathy. She said she would be about an hour. I got out when the hot water ran out and they had spaced out to about 5 minutes apart. These were easy to handle, every time one would come I would just drop to my knees and lean on my exercise ball in front of the fan. Kathy got there and got set up and took vitals and everything. I was a little worried labor was going to stop. Finally at two am I asked Kathy to check me and she called it a generous three....I was a little discouraged. Right after her check things got intense fast. Brian was totally AMAZING.  I really don't know what I would do without him. I got in the tub which felt great. After an hour Kathy wanted me to get out and walk around some.

I started feeling the urge to push so she checked me and I had a little lip left but said I could push if I wanted. I labored on the toilet for a little bit and then got back in the tub. I didn't have that overwhelming urge to push with Claire but boy....I couldn't have stopped pushing if I wanted to.  My midwife was so laid back. She just sat in the rocking chair and every 5-10 minutes (I think) came and checked the heart rate which was always great. I loved being by myself to push. I could reach and feel the head coming down. BOP It was really hard to slow down when he started crowning and I did let out a scream when his head came out...I totally felt a little tear...yuck. END  He was born in his amniotic sac which was so cool. I tested negative for GBS  but was positive for my first pregnancy so I visualized my water not breaking.  Yay!

Kathy just came over and guided him up to the surface and unwrapped the cord which was around his neck and body. I sat back and brought him up to me. It was amazing. He just looked around at everyone and didn't cry at all. He had some stuff in his throat but Kathy said it wasn't bad and he could work it out. No rough suctioning!! We sat in the water for a long time. I think it was over ten minutes before his cord stopped pulsating. No crying...just relaxed. Finally Brian cut the cord and took Jack...my feet were falling asleep. I couldn't stretch out in the tub because I was a little too short to reach the other side without Jack getting too low to the water.

He was born at 6:18 am  on 6/18 so I went from  a 3 to delivered in 4 hours. He had 9/9 apgar scores. I think I nursed him in the tub and then when I got out. kathy examined the placenta which I delivered when I was in the tub. After an hour maybe? she did the newborn exam. Nothing was rushed...everything was done at the end of my bed. My baby was never taken way. I had one tear up but it wasn't worth stitching and hasn't hurt. Amazing considering Jack is over two lbs heavier than my first at 8 lbs 15 oz! In fact, my bleeding has been so much less compared to Claire's birth. Pain too...I took someIbuprofen but not much and not all the time. Recovery is going so good this time.  He is three weeks old and we have moved from Washington to Utah.  I loved my homebirth and my husband, who was TOTALLY against homebirth when we were first married, loved it too.  He talks about it all the time.  Once again, Hypnobabies was amazing. I kept repeating phrases over and over.  It was intense but awesome.
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Posted by on in Home Birth
Drives herself home from work and has the baby 2 hours later!

Part 1:

http://confessionsofamisplacedalaskan.wordpress.com/2010/04/19/baby-hancock-has-arrived/

Part 2:

http://confessionsofamisplacedalaskan.wordpress.com/2010/04/21/im-a-babycatcher/
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Our second son, Harvey "Boone" was born on August 22, weighing in at 10lbs and measuring 24", a beautiful healthy boy born at home in the water. I've not posted often, but have enjoyed all the birth stories and practiced hypnobabies semi-faithfully (listened to tracks according to schedule, did all the reading, but was pretty lazy about practicing and did not work w/my husband on it at all) since about 21 weeks, so thought I'd share my story, it may be long!

My first son was born in the hospital after I naively allowed induction at 41 wks basically due to my own apathy about the importance of how a baby comes into the world and the OBs recommendation - I assume as my family has a history of big babies, but really we were both quite healthy and there was no GOOD reason for it. I planned on going w/out the epidural but that plan changed quickly after contractions set in so I had nubain and the epidural and delivered my 9lb 8oz boy after approx 6 hours of labor I didn't really feel. I tore badly and nursing was a nightmare and I resolved to not visit the hospital again with my next pregnancy.

Fear of tearing again and many recommendations from natural birthing forums led me to Hypnobabies. As I mentioned above I was faithful about some parts and not so faithful about other parts but in general really enjoyed the positivity and confidence boost I gained from listening to the affirmations, and the self hypnosis helped me be calm through some crazy work hours in my third trimester. I felt like it was helping but was fairly skeptical as to how "painless" my birth would actually be.

I came to my hometown in CA on the first day of August, my guess date was August 13th and I wanted to settle in with  my 3 year old before that day rolled around. When I got here the adjustment for my son was more than I had expected and I really didn't get to do my HB practice as much as I'd expected, but I got in some tracks here and there. the 13th came and went with only some mild practice waves, which was still exciting as I hadn't had any before in the pregnancy. I was feeling great and doing lots of walking and enjoying the beach and reuniting with old friends, so I was OK with going late.  A full week later though and I began to get nervous as things got more tricky with my husband getting work off to come and be with us and I was nervous about him missing out on the labor. Also I felt bigger by the day and started to have some shivers thinking about delivering baby shamu naturally ;-) In the end, my husband got time off from Thursday the 20th til Thursday the 27th and that was that, if I went later I'd just have to call when the time came and hope he could make the 7 hour drive in time.

We (my husband, me, my parents, midwife, other family members and friends) came to the consensus that Saturday the 22nd would be a perfect birthing day for me and winked at our Thursday appt as we decided to reunite on Saturday to welcome the baby. Friday me,  my husband and son had a GORGEOUS day on the coast, went for a long walk down to the beach, to the toy store where my son got some beautiful blocks, to the seafood restaurant for some food I was craving, home for a relaxing evening. I scanned the HB binder to see what track it was I wasn't supposed to listen to til after 40 wks and decided that was the one to listen to that night - the birthing day affirmations. Well, by the time it was done I was having some more practice contractions that carried a hint of period-like cramping, but no biggie at all.

I went to bed about 9pm and slept pretty well, but woke up at 12:30a with more distinct cramping that kept me awake and drove me to fix some RRL tea and call the midwife who was encouraged but told me to try to get some sleep and see how things went. I did and slept fitfully til 4:30 at which time I felt that there were definitely contractions that I could time at this point and I woke my husband to go get the computer so I could time them at contraction master. They were about  5min apart and lasting just over a minute - I timed four of them and my water broke all over the bed. I was pretty shocked and hollered at DH to fill the tub and get me the phone - I called the midwive and then there was flurry of activity as lights were thrown on, my son woken up, grandma and grandpa woken up and I headed for the bathroom as contractions intensified.

It gets a tad blurry here, I know I had a BM and was very happy that I would not be pooping during labor, I remember clinging to DH and starting to get pissy when he would touch me wrong ("don't RUB my back!  PUSH on it) I had him lifting my belly a la "back labor no more" which helped a lot. I had some contractions on the toilet and some leaning on the wall and some on all fours. The midwife arrived and the pool was filled and I remember wanting nothing more than to get in it, though I'd never felt strongly about it before - I think I just didn't want to support my own weight anymore.

I got in and started to feel the panic set in - I can't say I was in hypnosis at this point, I'd listened to a fear release and again to the birthing day affirmations after my first call to the midwife, but no finger drop or anything like that. Anyway the distinct thought that I could not do this went through my head and out my lips though everybody says it didn't sound like i believed it at all. I was saying "AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH" over and over and over to get me through contractions, as well as squeezing DHs hand and biting the side of the pool.

I despaired that I was losing my cool so EARLY in labor as I'd only had my water break just about an hour ago! But all of a sudden my body tensed and bore down - I could not believe it but I was PUSHING! Things changed drastically as far as my outlook - I was almost there! I couldn't believe it and I just went with it, going slow as directed by my wonderful midwife and my son was delivered peacefully (aside from some very primal sounding grunts on my part) into the water at 6:21am on the day we had designated two days earlier as his ideal birthday!

I had a 2nd degree tear which was completely painless when it happened and just a pinch here and there to have repaired and has barely slowed me down. I also lost a lot of blood when I delivered the placenta and got shocky for a bit but recovered extremely well and all in all the experience was beautiful and peaceful and not nearly as uncomfortable as my hospital birth with my first son.

As far as HB goes, I have to say I was not sure how I felt about it at first. I felt like I did experience a good amount of p**n after my water broke and that perhaps painless childbirth is a cruel thing to suggest as being possible.

(Note from Sheridan ****Hypnobabies doesn't say birth will be painless.  While some moms do have a completely comfortable birthing experience, that isn't the main goal. )

Looking back on it though, it has dawned on me that I would in no way describe anything leading up to that point as p**nful. And that was a good 8.5 hours of labor I was in - I would love to know how far dilated I was when my water broke, that would be a good indication of how well HB worked for me - had I been checking into a hospital they probably would not have believed I was in labor, but in reality I was probably at a very advanced stage of labor!

So I really didn't get myself in hypnosis during that time b/c I didn't know that he would be coming so soon - my time line in my head figured I'd be delivering later on that afternoon or evening. But he came just about and hour and twenty minutes later, so I really have to say that HB was a resounding success for me and had I been less skeptical I probably would have realized that those kind of crampy waved were true labor and that I should have been working on a deepening track or something. As it is, I really do not regret the time I spent in p**n as it has given me a certain degree of awe at what I can do and how well I did and I can now say I have truly EXPERIENCED the wonder of a natural birth.

I will always highly recommend Hypnobabies and do credit it with the speed and my amazing experience and the confidence I had throughout this whole time, even some complications following delivery, that everything was fine and me and my baby were healthy and allowed me to welcome and embrace my waves. My midwife also noted later that during pushing my butt was completely relaxed and loose, something I was surprised to find out and totally credit to Hypnobabies as I do faintly remember telling myself that the baby was pushing anesthesia ahead of it and mentally telling myself to "release".
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Our baby Freya was born a few weeks ago. I had planned a hospital birth with midwives but it didn't go exactly as planned. Birth is like that. =)

It was awesome.

Note: May need BOP. Does contain mentions of pain but awesome Hypnobabies Birth nonetheless.

Let me just say that that my first birth was sort of weird. My water broke first and I didn't go into labor for quite awhile so I was looking at an induction. There was a lot of family stress at the time. I walked and walked and walked when I probably should have rested. We made a brief trip to L&D where the midwife confirmed amniotic fluid, we discussed what would likely be an induction the next day, and she confirmed that my cervix was tightly closed. My doula confirmed that I would unlikely go into labor if I hadn't by then.

I did end up going into labor at the 14 h mark and then it got pretty wild. I got to the hospital at 5, chose to have an epidural, and dilated to 10 within an hour. And then they confirmed that the baby had not descended at all. Thanks to competent midwifery, they "allowed" my body to continue to labor for another five hours when DS completed his descent. I was posterior until the very end. I proceeded to have a vaginal delivery. I would have had a c-section with almost any OB. I was grateful for the unplanned epidural because it allowed me to have a vaginal birth but I really wanted it and this one to be natural. I hated the beached whale feeling of the epidural and I wanted an active role in this birth.

Well, I got one. =)

This time I prepared more faithfully with Hypnobabies (I started so late I only got about halfway through last time.) I also saw a chiropractor who resolved my breech presentation and saw a acupuncturist to encourage dilation. Honestly, I was skeptical at both but I think they probably helped. =)

My water broke at around 9 p.m. on Saturday. I took a shower and went to bed. Didn't call DS, doula, or midwives because DS was doing something important and I didn't think I would be laboring for a long time. I slept well and DS slept well. He was kind of annoyed the next morning so I probably should have called. I got my first gentle birthing wave at around 9 a.m. the next morning. I had gently ones every hour or so... I listened to "Early First Stages" "Deepening" tapes all morning toddler-wrangling but didn't really try to stay in or use hypnosis.

At around 11 a.m. I started to feel a bit more pressure when a wavehit and I sent DS and DH to the park, intending to do a Fear Release and get into a deep state of hypnosis and maybe take a nap. I also called my doula to let her know that I thought my birthing time was starting. (I had hired a hypno-doula but hadn't even met her yet.)

Well, about 20 minutes, yes labor started with a bang. The pressure waves started coming irregularly but strongly and progressively. I think I took four showers in about an hour. Spent some time on the the birthing ball. The Hypnobabies really did help, especially the visualizations like seeing my cervix opening and reminding me to relax- relax - relax.

It is funny how certain fears can prey on your mind. I actually avoided doing the Hypnobabies Fear Release for a couple of weeks. During this time I kept thinking that I needed to at least wait an hour to call my doula back. That it was just embarrassing to call a half an hour later and ask her to come. She had told me it would take an hour to get there as well. I finally surrendered but it took me quite awhile to get a break enough to actually make a phone call, which was in the other room. I think I was able to say something like "I need help" and she talked me through three pressure waves that came together. She later said that she drove very very fast after that phone call. I called my husband and told him to come home and call MIL to watch toddler. This was almost one p.m. I remember being pleased that I almost made it to my hour mark for the doula phone call.

[BOP warning] The pressure waves became far more intense with very little break. I no longer just felt pressure and yes, they were painful. If I was at the hospital I would have asked for something. Part of the pain was caused by fear-- fear that it was going to continue for hours and hours and that the baby wasn't descending again. I kept thinking open-open--open move-turn-rotate posterior baby. When I could I remembered all of the effort and ($!) I spent to get to this point with the chiro - accupunturist - doula. (I also had complete placenta previa for awhile.) Silly, right? Crazy active labor and the two thoughts I could string together is I spent a lot of money to feel this way! I can't get an epidural again!

My husband got home at 1:30 and helped me through two pressure waves. Toddler was terrified because he came home and the lights were off the Hypnobabbies was on LOUD, the shower was pouring and mama was "vocalizing" on the potty. He went straight to the phone to call EMTs because he didn't think he could transport me to the hospital. He tried to calm toddler at the same time. He came back a minute later and helped me through another contraction and I put my hand down and I had quite a lot of bloody show. I kept urging him to draw me a bath and get me some cold water. He left to get the water and calm hysterical toddler. He said something about EMTs.

I felt some really strong pressure in my rectum and thought it was some diarrhea. I was already near the toilet. I pushed down thinking I had to get it out and felt something I realized I had a head. It was *that* urge. It felt like a *huge* release because the urge to push and the pushing felt so much better than the pressure waves. I also had this huge flood of relief because it meant I had been through transition and that I was close to the end of labor. It was a wonderful, empowering feeling and I wasn't scared in the least.

I had a flash that either this was a healthy strong baby or a baby in distress who needed to get out and I pushed hard. I didn"t feel any pain. The head came out and I could tell she was no longer posterior. At the next pressure sensation I pushed hard once or twice and she slid out. I lost my grip and she briefly landed in the toilet. I got a better grip and pulled her close. The cord was long enough that I could hold her close to my chest to maintain her temperature. She started to breathe. I felt amazing. We had a beautiful beautiful baby and I was just flooded with joy. I called loudly for my husband.

My toddler rushed in hysterical, saw the baby, and I asked him with a big smile if he wanted to meet his new sister. He ran out. My husband comes in says something about contractions - and um - we have a baby. Well, he was stunned. The 911 operator tells him to clear the mouth and he does. I hold her close.

The EMTs arrive about three minutes later and help me to the bed. There are (no joke!) twelve people in my bedroom to help with the "emergency." I just gave birth to my baby and can't help making snarky comments about our health care system in my head. Luckily there is a big waterproof pad there for morning toddler snuggle-peefest. They clamp the cord and we are transported the the hospital. Baby nurses the whole way. MIL has arrived and is with toddler.

After a brief stop at the ER we pick up doula in the hall and go L&D. Doula is great in that pushy doula way.. "You aren't putting a lot of traction on the cord, right?" The OB on staff helps deliver the placenta. No tears, just a tiny skidmark.

This recovery has been *so* much easier than my first. Nursing is going well and Freya has already regained her birth weight.

The amazing thing is that I wasn't scared at all during the delivery and it was so much more powerful and awesome then my first. I really have to thank both Hypnobabies and these boards for helping me be knowledeable and calm throughout the birth. Toddler likes baby.

It was so wonderful to be an, er, "active" participant in my birth.

Thanks!
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Posted by on in Home Birth
This is the story of my baby Paul's beautiful home birth on the morning after his guess date, and the events leading up to it.

Wow, was that a huge surprise to us or what!  My first baby was induced 12 days past his guess date and my second baby was induced 8 days past her guess date.  We certainly weren't expecting this baby to be more or less on time!  We were just putting DS (4 y/o) and DD (2 y/o) down for nap/quiet time when my water broke.  DH was just finishing up reading a story to DD and I had gone to her room and closed her blinds and gotten things ready for her to nap.  I was walking back down the hall to the living room thinking to myself, "Hmmm, so this is the guess date.  I guess if we're ever going to have a guess date baby we'll have to wait for another pregnancy since nothing's happening today.  Oh well, only something like 3% of babies are born on their guess dates anyway..."  And no more than 2 seconds later my water broke!  But I didn't know it at the time.  It felt like the baby whacked me inside with a wrench, a very weird and sore sensation I hadn't felt before.  I yelped, "OW!" and tried to describe it to DH.  The next "braxton hicks" wave felt very different too.  I was sitting down at the kitchen table and making out the grocery shopping list, but when I got up I started to leak a little bit of clear fluid with white flecks (vernix?).  This happened with the next 3 waves, soaking a pad and then some each time.  At first I thought maybe it was just the mucus plug, since I heard that sometimes it can be very watery.

DH went to get our weekly groceries, and I called my midwife at around 4:00 pm.  She said it sounded like my water broke, and since I hadn't felt baby move for a while (which was normal for this pregnancy--I guess a prenatal sign of how good a sleeper and mellow he is!) she wanted me to come in so she could listen to his heartbeat.  She told us to stop by a local restaurant to get some eggplant parmesan on the way since we most likely would be trying to have this baby within the next 24 hours.  WOW!  That totally shocked me!  I hadn't even washed our gender-neutral baby clothes yet!!  I had washed the blankets, but not the clothes.  I quickly put that load of laundry on and started getting things ready for the trip to the midwife's house (about 30 minutes away).  DH got home and I quickly washed the grapes he bought and stuck them in the freezer, since our midwife suggested we have some frozen grapes on hand for the birth (and now they are one of my favorite foods!  Delicious!).  We called in the order for the eggplant parmesan and quickly unpacked the groceries and headed off.  We were listening to Weird Al and Flight of the Conchords, of all things, on the radio on way there!  Good to keep a sense of humor about it, I guess. :) But I did end up with some bizarre songs stuck in my head during my birthing time thanks to that!  Everything was fine with baby when we got there, and we were given instructions to call every hour or two, or if anything changed, to let her know how things were going.  I was also to take another dose of evening primrose oil (I had been taking 3000 mg twice a day to ripen my cervix) and an extra couple of 5W herbal pills which help prepare the body for birthing.  The midwife also told me that she had been praying that this baby wouldn't be born "late" like the others.  I was really touched to hear that.  I was very blessed to have a midwife who shared our faith.

We stopped by the store on the way home to get some castor oil per midwife's instructions and some ready-made dinner for DH and the kids.  As we were walking around the store, my pressure waves were getting closer and more intense.  I was putting my "Peace" cue to good work!  We also looked for some liquid calcium which was on the list of supplies to have ready (although our midwife told me that just having regular calcium pills was OK too).  I remember swaying through a pressure wave waiting for help from the pharmacist, just smiling to myself thinking how the customers and workers at the store would be shocked if they knew I was actively in my birthing time.  We picked up some Lunchables for the kids' dinners and a sub sandwich for DH while we were there.  The last few pressure waves in the car on the drive home were very "interesting" indeed!  I was happy to get home and bounce on the birthing ball for a bit while DH and the kids ate their supper.

I quickly put the clean, wet baby clothes in the dryer. :)  I called to give our midwife an update around 8:00 pm, pressure waves were about 5-6 minutes apart.  She said she was on her way over, but I told her I didn't think she needed to come just yet.

DH got the kids tucked into bed after I took my last pregnant photos with both of them.  I fluttered around trying to get stuff done (blow up the pool, etc.) and then decided to take a shower.  That wasn't the brightest idea, since it depleted our hot water that we were trying to fill the birthing pool with!  Fortunately we were able to get the pool filled before I needed it anyway.  The midwife called while I was in the shower and told DH she was coming over.  She got here around 10:30 and asked if she could check me.  We live in a somewhat rural area, and I allowed her to check to get an idea of whether or not her assistant should come right over or wait a bit before coming.  I was only 2 cm (she checked me the previous Friday and I was 0 cm but "soft").  My pressure waves were feeling a lot stronger, but I wasn't having much trouble relaxing.  The midwife stayed until 11:30 pm, setting up all her stuff for the birth.  Then she said that the best thing is for us to get some sleep, for me to sleep between contractions if I could, and that she would go home and be ready to come back when I couldn't sleep anymore.  She told me to drink a little glass of warm OJ with 2 tablespoons of castor oil and take five more 5W pills as well as my strong brew of red raspberry leaf tea before bed.

At this point I was really exhausted.  I went to bed late the previous night and got up extra early (and couldn't sleep for over an hour in the middle of the night, being stressed out about baby names of all things!).  I was going to take an afternoon nap, but then my water broke and so those plans never worked out either.  Another plan for "next time" is to make sure I get to bed early every single night from 38 weeks on!

I made a little bed on the couch, on top of one of the blue pads from my birth kit, and DH slept next to me on the floor.  We had the Hypnobabies birth CD playing on the kitchen radio.  I dozed off for a few minutes and woke up in a lot of discomfort from a very intense pressure wave.  I had been using my Hypnobabies techniques, but of course I couldn't really focus on that and sleep at the same time.  After that wave was over, I got up and tried some different positions, sitting on the ball, etc.  I found that the Hypnobabies techniques weren't helping as much as they did earlier in the evening (but they did help quite a bit, since all of those pressure waves while I was actively using my techniques were a LOT better than the one I woke up from).  I didn't want to wake up DH, since I knew he was also very tired and we had a long night ahead of us.  I was feeling desperately tired, so I decided to sit on the ball and lean up against the arm rest of the couch, with a couch cushion wedged between me and the couch to rest my head on.  I fell asleep for about 10 minutes and again woke to a horribly uncomfortable pressure wave.  But this time I felt a little more refreshed.  That mini-nap really made a difference!

I decided I really didn't want to wake up to another one of those unmanaged pressure waves, so I got up and managed another one which was better, but still very intense.  I decided things were getting really serious and I woke DH at 12:30 am, who helped me through every wave from then on.  What a difference that made!  With Hypnobabies, there is a cue that the husband or doula or whoever can use--put a hand firmly on the shoulder or forehead of the mom and say "Relax."  This really helped me a LOT!  There were some pretty intense waves that instantly felt much, much better when DH did this.  Mostly it just made them feel partially better, though (about 60% more comfortable than without).  But this cue also helped me stay relaxed, which really was the main thing.  Next time I'm going to spend a lot more time practicing this with him, since unfortunately I only practiced with him 3 times (and hence it only 100% completely relieved the discomfort of pressure waves about three times, ha ha!).

I called my midwife, and she arrived a little past 1:00 am.  She checked me and I was at 5-6 cm with pressure waves 2-3 minutes apart.  I was so happy to hear that, since I barely made it past 3 cm with my previous 2 (hospital) births before getting the epidural.  And those labors were very p***ful and difficult to cope with compared to what I was experiencing in my Hypnobabies home birth.  She gave me the go-ahead to get into the birth pool, so I went to the bathroom first and then got in.  Since my baby was posterior, the midwife suggested it might feel good to lean over the side of the pool.  I tried it for one wave, but it felt horrible!  I tried a few different positions, some made the pressure waves feel better but gave me cramps in my legs.  Finally I found something that worked.  I was a little disappointed because the water really wasn't making things feel much better than they did on land.  And the shoulder-touch "relax" cue that DH had been using with me successfully on land wasn't working as well in the water.  I realized that on land he had been using my left shoulder, but now how I was sitting, he was using my right shoulder since it was closer.  I told him "that shoulder isn't working!" and he moved to a place that was more behind me, where he could reach my left shoulder again.  But I didn't like having him behind me versus in front of me for some reason.  Thinking back on our practice sessions, I now remember he always used my left shoulder from the front during practice and never my right.  I'll make sure we practice lots on BOTH shoulders from BOTH directions if we're ever blessed with another baby!  It wasn't long after that, maybe a wave or two, before I got to transformation.

I had 2 transformation waves and then I thought I had to go to the bathroom for #2.  My midwife asked if I had any pressure on my bottom because she thought the baby might be coming soon.  I said I had a little and needed to go to the bathroom.  She said it might be the baby coming, and I thought "YAY!"  But part of me didn't believe I could be at that stage so soon.  I was tired and the waves were intense, but I didn't feel like I was at the end of my rope (like I've read in many non-Hypnobabies birth stories as a sign that the baby's almost here).  I got out of the pool, which was set up in the kitchen, and went to the bathroom down the hallway in between waves.  Somewhere at this time the midwife called her assistant and told her to hurry up and get here.  The assistant, was apparently on her way and almost to our house.  I sat down on the toilet and suddenly I had to push!  The midwife said, "You've got to move your hips to the edge of the toilet seat.  You don't want this baby's head to come out in the commode!"  But I had no idea how to maneuver that, so I just stood up, and I had another pushing pressure wave.  I told my midwife and DH that I couldn't keep doing this standing up, and I wanted to try the birthing chair.  But unfortunately it wasn't put together yet (it consisted of 2 pieces that slide together--easy to assemble, but we needed something NOW).  So we quickly decided to run down the hall to the bedroom between pressure waves.  Luckily we were prepared for the possibility of birthing on both the couch and the bed, with plastic and old sheets over both.  It was the weirdest feeling waddling down the hall (naked!) with the baby's head coming down and the midwife's hand practically holding it in!

We got to the bedroom and I jumped up on the bed just as the next wave hit.  At this point the waves were not at all p***ful--they felt so good!  The urge to push was so strong that I couldn't help vocalizing a bit, but it wasn't due to p**n.  And out came our baby's head, while I was in the hands and knees position!  I heard our midwife say something about seeing a beautiful baby, and DH said something about that too, and I thought to myself, but the baby's not out yet, how can they say he or she is beautiful?  Ha ha!  Anyway, then the midwife suggested I flip over to my back to push the rest of him out, with DH holding my legs.  Apparently there was a little shoulder dystocia and she thought trying this other position would help.  And it did!  Paul was born with the next push, for a total pushing time of 3 minutes!  He was born at 1:56 am.  And although I never got to listen to the "Pushing Baby Out" track, I felt absolutely no p**n or "ring of fire" as my baby was born--just relief from the pressure.

Paul had his umbilical cord wrapped once around his shoulders when he came out, and once the midwife untangled him, she placed him right on my chest.  I quickly checked to see if he was a boy or a girl and found out he's a BOY!  Poor little guy was all pale gray-looking, and DH was sent out to the living room to fetch the oxygen tank.  We rubbed him with some towels, and he started breathing and crying after making a few little gurgly noises, no oxygen necessary.  Soon he pinked up nicely.  The midwife then took a look and said, as if surprised, "Yes, he IS a boy!"  Ha ha!  I guess she didn't think I could have gotten a good look in such a short time.  I told DH that I was right!  I had been thinking it was a boy for the last few weeks, since every time I talked about the baby I used "he" or "him" for some reason, without really thinking about it.  Here is baby Paul's very first picture, although unfortunately it came out blurry due to the low light in our room at the time (but I'm so thankful that my baby was born in such a cozy, loving environment!): http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47b9d622b3127ccec793140cc02300000040O00AbMmzJuzZsmIPbz4a/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/ About one minute after he was born, the assistant arrived.  So much for that!

He latched right on and started nursing right away.  We waited about 20-30 minutes until the cord stopped pulsing, and then DH cut the cord.  Once Paul stopped nursing, they had DH take his shirt off and hold Paul skin-to-skin for a while, while I worked on birthing the placenta.  That was such a tedious thing to do.  I was so tired and just wanted to rest.  But our midwife kept telling me to push.  I didn't have to work on this part of labor with DS or DD, and I was feeling lazy and exhausted!  But at the time I thought maybe it had to do with wanting to prevent too much blood loss since we were at home, after all.  The placenta was born 44 minutes after Paul.  I was so glad to be rid of it!  It looked healthy, with the cord insertion site on the side instead of in the middle like most placentas.  The midwife and her assistant asked us if we wanted to keep the placenta, and we gave them the go-ahead to double bag it and throw it away.

DH got to weigh Paul, and we joke about DH "playing the Stork" like some people "play Santa" ha ha!  Paul weighed in at 8 lbs 10 oz, one ounce heavier than DS was and 14 ounces heavier than DD was.  He was 21.5 inches long.  The midwife checked him out, and everything looked and sounded fine. Here's a pic: http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47b9d622b3127ccec792d7d3a04900000040O00AbMmzJuzZsmIPbz4a/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/ Then our midwife asked where his clothes were, and I told her that they were still in the dryer!  The assistant went to fetch them, and we went through the clothes together, picking out Paul's first outfit.  We ended up dressing him in a little green onesie with footie pajamas over it, since the baby socks were still in the attic. I secretly bought that onesie as well as another one before we even got pregnant, planning on giving these to DH as a fun way of letting him know about the pregnancy.

The rest of the morning is sort of a blur.  They got me to drink various things, like a bottle of Gatorade, a glass of coke, and a glass of chlorophyll (eeewww, tastes like water out of a film canister!).  And then they got me up to the bathroom, but I couldn't pee yet.  The midwife helped me take a shower, and I went back to bed.  At this point Paul was fast asleep, and all I wanted to do was to sleep too.  But they were bugging me to drink my drinks and eat my semi-frozen grapes, cheese sticks, and nuts.  DH and I were lying in bed with Paul, while the midwife and her assistant bustled around the house, cleaning up, doing laundry, and even unpacking our dishwasher for us.  It felt like the lap of luxury.  After a while, the midwife told me she couldn't leave until I peed, so I got up and peed. :)  She gave us some instructions, and I fell asleep.  She stayed a little longer and helped DH do more cleaning up.  It was around 5:00 am or so when she left.  DH was still bailing out the water from the pool (the pump our midwife loaned us didn't work with our hose, boo!) and getting the house kid-friendly again.  He didn't go back to bed until after my mom arrived around 6:30 am to help with the kids.

DS woke up at 6:00 am and started talking about the baby with DH up in the front of the house.  I think he must have known something was up with all the excitement the night before.  I woke up when I heard him, and I called him.  He came into the bedroom and his face just lit up when he saw baby Paul.  It was so adorable!  He is still completely in love with his baby brother.  He just doesn't like to let Paul out of his sight, it's so sweet.  One of the first things he did when he saw Paul was to hold up 3 fingers and say, "Three kids to play with!" :)  In this picture he was counting Paul's tiny little fingers: http://im1.shutterfly.com/media/47b9d622b3127ccec792b4f161f200000040O00AbMmzJuzZsmIPbz4a/cC/f%3D0/ps%3D50/r%3D0/rx%3D550/ry%3D400/ It was wonderful having my mom come over to look after the kids while DH, Paul, and I slept the morning away! :)

I am so very thankful that I used the Hypnobabies program to prepare for my birth.  Without a doubt, it helped my birth to go very smoothly, and I never want to birth without it again!!   Paul is such a happy, calm baby, and several of my friends think it has to be due to Hypnobabies and the calm, loving circumstances of his gentle birth.

Thanks for reading! :)
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Posted by on in Home Birth
West= my 22 month old Son
John= my husband

The Birth of Mabel:

Mid-morning on Oct 2nd I called my midwives to ask about labor inducing herbs they have. I was "due" on 9/28 according to ultrasound measurements (or 9/25 based on LMP-last menstral period). I was huge and very tired of being pregnant.  One of my midwives (Heather) reassured me that this was indeed coming soon and that she thought we should hold off on the "big guns" until the following week. She advised me to get some acupuncture and maybe go on a date with John.

My friend Tele agreed to watch West while I got acupuncture and my friend Amy agreed to come over for a couple hours  to hang with West while John and I grabbed a bite to eat. It was wonderful of both my friends to help us like that.

I was having very irregular, very mild contractions on and off that day and was hoping acupuncture would kick things into gear. Alas after my session they stopped. I was very upset. I was venting to Tele how I thought acupuncture was actually slowing things down for me. I just sooooo wanted to be done being pregnant. When John came home from work a couple hours later I started having some again, this was around 4pm. They were very mild more more regular and around 5 mins apart. 15-20 later Amy showed up to watch West. I told her that maybe we'd be having the baby tonight, but it wouldn't be for a while and that we still were going to eat.

On our way to the restaurant I called the midwives to tell them that tonight, but it wouldn't be for a while. However after I got off the phone I was noticing that the contractions were closer together and although they weren't painful I did have to focus during them. I decided it wouldn't be a fun dinner and I wanted to go home and listen to my Hypnobabies. I just wanted to be in a good place so when labor really did kick in I'd be ready. On the drive home I did get overwhelmed with emotion and started crying. Good tears, I was so happy that this long journey was going to end. I called the midwives back and told them that maybe they should come over sooner. Heather told me she was on her way.

So we get home around 5:30 and I just zone out in the basement listening to my Hypnobabies "Easy First Stage of Labor" tract-- I took my first dose of Bach Rescue Remedy to help keep me calm. We asked Amy to stay until West went to bed and she very nicely agreed. Around 6pm Heather comes in and just sets stuff up while I lay in bed listening to my relaxation tracts. After about a half an hour I ask when I can get in the birth tub, she tells me I can now. Sweet. I wasn't in any pain or discomfort, but the contractions were getting stronger. However as soon as I got in the water I thought I ruined things as the water felt sooooo good and so much more relaxing. I thought for sure I got in to soon and my contractions were much more comfortable. The other midwives show up by this point.

Around 7pm I started moaning through the contractions, there was so much power surging through me I just had to moan. I also started feeling emotional again at the peak of each contraction. After a few of them I finally let go and just sobbed. It felt so good to release that energy. John tells me he's going to put West down for bed around 7:40 and since it seemed like we still had a ways to go it seemed like a good time for him to go. He gets back at 7:50 (with Amy upstairs with West, John didn't need to make sure West was asleep yet).

When John got back I had a HUGE, INTENSE contractions, the midwives told me that the amniotic sac was "right there" (an inch or two from my opening). Then next GIANT contraction my water broke. The next MONSTER of a contraction her head came out. I was beyond shocked. I had no idea that I was about to push her head out. I just couldn't believe we were there yet. Both John and I were like  "what just happened. You have to be kidding me". The next BIG WAVE came and her body came out. I just kept saying "what just happened?" over and over again. I just couldn't believe it was over. How could I have just done that?

After I birthed the placenta there was much discussion on her size. The midwives thought she was 9lbs or more... but she looked so little to me. They got one scale out and it said 10lbs 5 oz. I didn't believe it. Luckily they also had their digital scale to so they weighed her there. 10lbs even. I was again floored. How could I deliver a 10 lb baby with 2 pushes. Impossible.

I felt great though. Wonderful even (minus the fact that my "girl region" was quite achy). The best part of the whole thing was when West saw her for the first time. He had the most wonderful dreamy smile. Oh the love!!

**side note: while I was listening to the "Easy First Stage of Labor" tract my contractions (sorry "pressure waves") would just disappear, almost fade to nothing, and I'd think "oh wow, this is working for me... I can't believe I'm one of those people this is working for!!"
Tagged in: 10 pound baby big baby
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Posted by on in Home Birth
I found out I was pregnant with Cooper, Son #3!  I didn't want to have a replay of Jack and Riley's birth and ended up at a free standing Birth Center.  The pregnancy was full of apprehension at first with me on Progesterone so I wouldn't miscarry.  I had terrible morning sickness, but otherwise, it was an uneventful pregnancy.  My Midwife suggested I take Fish Oil, which wasn't suggested to me with my other two births.  At 39 weeks 5 days, I went into labor with Cooper.  It started with the Midwife stripping my membranes and later that afternoon, my labor was off and running.  I was feeling really good for being in birthing time and this time, I used techniques from the HypnoBabies home study course.  This course was much more comprehensive than HypnoBirthing IMO.  I kept track of my pressure waves on the computer, but didn't even really feel like labor other than a few squeezes here and there.  At 6p we packed our bags and dropped the boys off at their friends house for the night.  We made it to the birth center around 8p and my contractions stopped!  As usual.  Rich ran to get me a sandwich and after he got back, and I ate, I started feeling something.  Around 9p, pressure waves started up again with gusto and I felt great through them up until about 7cm.  My Midwife checked me and told me my cervix was swelling because I felt the incredible need to push, but I shouldn't because I'm not totally dilated.  I was so upset.  I thought my cervix was going to burst and I couldn't stop needing to push.  I couldn't breathe through them and felt so defeated.  She got this worried look on her face and that worried me.  Then she asked if I wanted to go to the hospital and I said yes because I thought I was going to explode or die or something.  The EMT's get there and the one guy was such a jerk.  I got really annoyed with him and wanted to kick him (honestly, I can't remember now what he said, but I remember my anger!) and that is where Rich said the cervix dilated.  I thought it was the bumpy ride to the hospital, but anyway...I'm in the hallway and I thought that I must have a hemorrhoid about to burst because something was coming out of my bottom and I was totally freaked out.  It wasn't a hemorrhoid.  It was Cooper's head crowning.  I got into the hospital room when I realized that I had in fact dilated and I was pushing a baby out at that moment.  The nurses were so busy and thankfully my Midwife caught him just in time.  The Doctor wasn't even in the room yet.  So a 5 1/2 hour labor with a crazy ambulance ride and there I was in a crappy hospital yet again.  This was very close to my ideal birth (no meds, no tears, no interventions except for the membrane stripping,) but not quite.

Cooper was 11 months old when I found out I was pregnant again.

Anyway, I was so apprehensive of giving birth again.  It just seemed too tedious to even think about.  Part of me wanted a C-section and knocked out to just get the labor over with.  Part of me still wanted to try for my ideal birth.  I had lost confidence in myself along the way.  My friend talked me into a homebirth.  She made so much sense to me that day and I decided to just go for it and not analyze it anymore.

I met a few Midwives and settled on one that seemed to fit.  She had almost 20 years experience and her Birthday was the same as Coopers, so it felt serendipitous as Jack (my oldest Son) would say.  The pregnancy was so beyond uneventful.  Very little morning sickness, in fact, I didn't even notice the pregnancy much until the end.  This baby was a week late!

On the 27th of August, I woke up, nursed Cooper and felt a gush down below.  Well, I didn't really leak much the rest of the day, except maybe some bloody show and mucus.  I walked, I ate, I napped, I nursed and my pressure waves never really got going.  I had some really strong ones, but nothing that would keep up at the same level.  My Midwife was so easy going and said that I wasn't on a time limit.  I just had to keep anything out of the Yoni and all was fine with her.  She came over around 7p or so and hung out for several hours.  My friend Michele came over too and we went on a walk.  Around 10p, I was tired and my pressure waves all but disappeared.  I felt so deflated and told everyone they can go home, false alarm.  They all left around 11p or so and I went to bed wondering when this show would get on the road.  The show got on the road around 1:30a when I woke up to a very sharp pressure wave that left me stinging and shivering.  I ran to the shower to see if that would chill it out so I could get back to sleep and I had three more in succession.  I knew this was it and called out to my husband who didn't hear me.  I then started calling him every bad name I could think of because he wouldn't wake up!  Finally, he heard me and rushed in and I told him to call the Midwife back.

Then the details got hazy on me.  We went down to the main floor where I got my water and brought my pillows down and got ready for the Midwife to arrive.  When she got there we greeted and laughed about the birthing time and I had several more pressure waves that caused me to really pause.  I had on my HypnoBabies MP3 tracks and tried to relax and get into the groove.  We went down into our finished basement because the pressure waves were pretty close together and I just wanted to be where I knew I would land.  I held my husband a lot during the pressure waves and relaxed and gave in to the sensations.  My verbal relaxation cue was the word "peace" but at some point the word wasn't helping.  I remembered that in the book, "Spiritual Midwifery" Ina May Gaskin, the worlds leading Midwife said that saying the word "love" completely relaxes the vaginal sphincter and opens you up.  So I started a mantra "I love you, I love you, I love you..."to my Husband.  It felt so good to say and to give to him during this process and at some point I started saying it to Gryffin.  I told him how much I loved him and wanted to meet him.  The contractions never did get too close together and I had some rest time between them the entire labor.  My Midwife never checked my cervix for dilation and I just labored for awhile wondering if I was in active labor yet.  Several hours later I asked my MW if I was in active labor and she laughed.  At some point I asked to get in the tub and spent several hours in water.  A few times I got out to shower for a change of scenery and to see if that would help feel better, but it honestly was so intense, there was no letting up.  I just had to get through it.  There was about 40 minutes of what must have been transition where I started shouting that I was done and that it could stop and I just wanted to escape the sensations.  It's incredibly powerful and overwhelming.  Finally, there was what must have been a 5 minute lull and I crashed with my head back on the tub and napped.  I woke up to a crazy popping sensation and it was then that I knew my water had officially and totally broke.  It wasn't too long before I started feeling the need to push, but it wasn't overpowering.  It was manageable.  I got nervous and asked my MW to check me and she refused.  She kept telling me that I was doing great and to trust myself.  That was the best gift she could have given me.  I started pushing, but he was so far up still.  I wanted to see how much farther I had to go and felt for his head.  I felt that he had hair and it was wet.  I got so excited to know that he was coming.  It took about 30 minutes of pushing to crowning.  The last two births, I barely pushed when I was finally given the approval before they shot out of me.  Gryffin was tough though.  I was very tired pushing him out and every time I felt him slip back in, I would get so put out.  I really wanted him out bad at this point.  Once I pushed his head out, my MW had to help maneuver his shoulder and I felt his last kicks as he did his final descent.  Immediately I felt like an empty, but very much relieved vessel.  I was on all fours and had to step over his cord and grabbed him tight.  I had just a skid mark, so no stitches for me again!

It was so empowering and amazing and magical and I was on such a high afterwards.  Every woman has her story, whether it be adoption or labor or deciding not to have children and travel instead.  My life has been full of exciting wonderful stories, but nothing feels as though it defines me like laboring with Gryffin.
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