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I ROCKED my birth - thank you, Hypnobabies!

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Samuel Stephen’s Birth Story
I had a completely natural childbirth with my first born, Sophia, and primarily used the Bradley Method for my birth preparation. I also took a couple of private Hypnobirthing classes a few weeks before I was due, but I can’t say I was able to use any of the techniques from that when I gave birth. I had a great birth with her; it was about 12 hours of active labor, including two hours of pushing; but it was definitely more intense and challenging than with Sam.

I started having some pressure waves in the early morning (around 3:30 AM) on Sunday, 11/11, “Sesame’s” due date. But once I woke up and started moving around, the pressure waves subsided and I thought it was another false alarm, as I had been having some pressure waves on the Thursday and Friday prior that didn’t amount to much. So, we went about our day and had a fun family Sunday – taking Sophia to the park on a beautiful 60+ degree day. I did notice though, that I started to lose my mucus plug very slowly throughout the day. Thought it was a good sign, but didn’t want to get my hopes up that this was the big day.

The pressure waves started coming on pretty intensely around 3-4 PM, so I took a shower and started to relax some. I had a lot of nervous energy, so I ended up pacing our first floor listening to the Birth Day Affirmations and timing pressure waves, relaxing and breathing through each one, picking up a bite to eat and some water every time I passed by the kitchen. When it started getting a little more intense, I went and sat on my birth ball, leaning over the couch arm and put on the ‘Early First Stage’ track. I alternated between these two activities for the next couple of hours. I also took a warm bath and labored there for a little while, going loose and limp over the side of the bathtub when pressure waves would hit and swaying side to side in between. I basically was in “center” moving around in between pressure waves, and “off” when a wave would hit, both in the tub and on the birth ball.

I wasn’t “perfect” in my use of the lightswitch, but I made a point to go loose and limp every time a pressure wave came up, saying “open, open, open” and “peace” to myself, and visualizing my cervix opening. The imagery of my cervix being a golden ring/melting butter (on the ‘Early First Stage’ track) was especially helpful. I think just relaxing and riding the pressure waves and visualizing my cervix opening made a world of difference between this birth and the birth of my daughter.

I wanted to wait as long as possible before I headed to the hospital, so I called my midwife once the pressure waves were 4-5 minutes apart and pretty intense for about an hour. The thing that was difficult was that my frame of reference of “intense” was my daughter’s birth… and these pressure waves were nowhere near as intense as that. I was hesitant to go (my husband wasn’t at all!), but when I started to get the shakes, I knew that baby “Sesame” was coming soon.

The ride to the hospital was probably the most intense – I felt every bump in the road while I vocalized every contraction while lying in the backseat. But we made it to the hospital and quickly made it up to L&D. I was calmly walking there, pausing to breathe and relax between pressure waves. They checked us in, and we made our way over to our birthing room.

My midwife said she wanted to check and see how far dilated I was, and I told her that I was going to be at 9 cm (as per my birth day visualization scenario!)… she said I was way too calm to be at 9 cm. Imagine all of our surprise when she checked and I was at 9 cm+… just a little lip of cervix left! Wooo hoo!

They needed to keep me on the monitor for 20 min, which was really annoying, but I managed through a few additional pressure waves and then felt the need to push. I somehow was on my back, and they were able to assist me in flipping over to hands & knees (which I wish I would have done for the birth of my daughter), and it was maybe 5-6 pushes and Baby Sam was born! I remember the midwife saying to wait a minute before I pushed again, but I was ready to get him out and didn’t wait! The pushing stage was really intense this time around; I felt the ring of fire and the pressure waves were intense – versus with Sophia, I never felt the need to push, the pressure waves were totally manageable, but pushing took forever.

We thought for sure “Sesame” was a girl. Almost 100% sure. So when the midwife asked if my husband wanted to call it and he said “it’s a boy!” – I just couldn’t believe it! I think my response was “What!??!” It took me a good day or so before I wrapped my head around the fact that it was a boy and could stop saying “I can’t believe it’s a boy!”

All said and done, it was about 7 hours of active birthing time, maybe an hour/hour and a half that was really intense, where I felt the need to vocalize the pressure waves. And from the time we checked into the hospital and the time Sam was born was not quite 45 minutes. Pushing was maybe 15 minutes of that 45; didn’t even get the chance to put on the ‘Pushing’ track!

I also kept on telling everyone how “I rocked this birth!” It was amazing. I know that second babies come a lot easier and quicker than the first, but the fact that the pressure waves were no where near as painful (but yes, it still hurt! Just not as strong and not for as long as they were the first time around) and especially the reaction of my midwife saying I was “way too calm to be at 9 cm” prove to me that the Hypnobabies program worked and made this birth absolutely incredible. Another thing that was really nice was that I remember pretty much everything about this birth - a lot of Sophia's birth was a blur.

I did the home study program and started listening to the Hypnobabies tracks when I was about 4 months pregnant, and listened to it as I fell asleep at night. Occasionally, I’d listen during the day (so I could actually know what’s on the CD’s), but 95% of my listening was while sleeping. I also wasn’t perfect about getting all of my fingerdrops/eyes open hypnosis/directing anesthesia practice in. The program still worked.

So, keep listening ladies, and ROCK your births!
Carrie =)
       
  • Replied by Jenn King Lasek on Tuesday, November 20 2012, 12:15 PM · Hide · #1
    Thank you for sharing Carrie!

    "My midwife said she wanted to check and see how far dilated I was, and I told her that I was going to be at 9 cm (as per my birth day visualization scenario!)… she said I was way too calm to be at 9 cm. Imagine all of our surprise when she checked and I was at 9 cm+… just a little lip of cervix left! Wooo hoo!"
    - Just a testament to the power of our amazing minds!

    "I also kept on telling everyone how “I rocked this birth!” It was amazing."
    - I just absolutely LOVE this! :)

    This is why I teach (& love) Hypnobabies.
    Enjoy your babymoon
    Jenn
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  • Replied by Allison on Tuesday, November 20 2012, 01:00 PM · Hide · #2
    Congrats on your little boy! I'm so glad you rocked your birth and know how it feels to get your first check and be at 9cm! I had my VBAC on 10/11, a month before you, and still haven't had time to write up my birth story, so way to go on being on the ball too! For me, from within an hour of realizing I was in my birthing time, I got checked and was at 9cm, and I am convinced it is really the power of hypnosis that helped my body open so quickly with so little pressure. Will share my story soon, ahem, as I have been saying for the last month!
    So glad you can enjoy that wonderful birth high!
    Allison
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    Replied by Anne Ferguson on Thursday, November 29 2012, 02:22 PM · Hide · #3
    Beautiful story!! So awesome that your midwife didn't believe you were that far along. Thanks for sharing!
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