Rachel’s Hypnobabies Home Water Birth
“As things progressed my body would tremble a bit between waves. Kyle would put his hand on my shoulder, using my Relax cue (Hypnobabies cue to deepen hypnosis). I would instantly settle, and rest! It was incredible.”
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One night (at 39 weeks) after a relaxing massage, and acupuncture I woke up to powerful pressure waves (Hypnobabies word for contractions) that felt quite different than my practice waves. I was so excited, but I wanted to wait to be sure we were having baby before waking my husband Kyle. Two hours later, after consistent waves I let him know baby was on the way!
We excitedly chatted about everything and then rested together for a few hours. I used my Hypnobabies tracks, and cues to stay comfortable. I was surprised by how calm we were. By early afternoon my waves tapered off. I did some walking, but mostly just took it easy. I knew she was on the way. Hypnobabies taught me to enjoy any lull in my birth as it was a good opportunity to rest. So that’s just what I did. Thank goodness because I was in for another 24hr stretch!
That evening my waves picked up again. My sister and hubby convinced me to call my midwife. My waves were 4 minutes apart for the entire birth, right up until transformation (Hypnobabies word for transition), so it was hard to gauge when to call in the team. When my midwife arrived, I was 5cm, really calm, laughing and joking with everyone between waves. Everyone hustled around setting up the room and birth pool. We all took a rest when I thought I could sleep. We were surprised to find we slept through the night! By morning we were all a feeling ready for baby! Those days were long but never overwhelming, never painful, only tiring.
Finally, in the afternoon, my husband and midwife suggested I try the birth pool. The water felt incredible! I felt a burst of energy, and before I knew it, I was in transformation (Hypnobabies word for transition). Kyle sat by the birth pool, reading my hypnosis scripts to me to help keep me in hypnosis. Rather quickly he tossed the book. He was a Hypnobabies pro by then. He knew all my cues, and the Hypnobabies language so well. He was making it up off the cuff.
Each and every wave, he spoke to me and kept me focused. As things progressed my body would tremble a bit between waves. Kyle would put his hand on my shoulder, using my Relax cue (Hypnobabies cue to deepen hypnosis). I would instantly settle, and rest! It was incredible.
Even during this time I was able to tell my team what I did and didn’t need. I said no to cervical checks a couple times. I felt things progressing and was completely aware of how close L was to being born. I wasn’t okay with being touched by anyone but Kyle during this time.
I stayed in the same position for a long time because I felt it was quite helpful to be resting on my knees and moving my hips around during my pressure waves. My midwife suggested a new position after a while, saying it may speed things along. “You seem to be suffering a bit.” I was shocked to hear that! “I’m not suffering, I’m busy!” I replied. Nonetheless, I gave her suggestion a try but found the change took my very manageable pressure waves to an unmanageable discomfort. So back I went on to my knees. I wasn’t worried about time. I needed to take care of myself, so I did. Around this time the midwife’s assistant arrived. She was sweet, respectful and kind. She was also a stranger.
She swooped in during a pressure wave and began offering encouragement. As soon as the pressure wave was over, I told her she was great but had to get away from me as I didn’t know her. (Please note, I am a very outgoing person. I’m someone who talks to everyone. My need for privacy that day was surprising but crucial. I never even called the birth photographer.) Her assistant popped up and waited on my loft until baby was crowning! It was such an act of respect. I’ll never forget her understanding.
Soon I realized we were nearing the end. My midwife asked to check me again, and I asked what she was hoping to find. She wanted to know if my baby had come down. I still can’t believe it, but I checked myself and told the midwife I felt her head an inch away. “Oh! Okay!” With that, she jumped into action getting ready to catch our little girl.
The assistant found her way in the background, helping the midwife and respecting my space. At the moment of crowning, I was very vocal. It was this powerful noise that felt so good to get lost in.
I felt a lot of pressure and tension, so I began to support myself with my hand just as crowning began. There was a moment of fear, the smallest hiccup in my chest just before crowning. The tension of her head resting so close, made me think, “Oh my gosh! This is it!” Then in the very same breath, I laughed to myself and brushed it completely away. I was having my baby exactly as I wanted to. There was nowhere to go, nothing to do. I was already there. I was doing it.
I pushed, hard. I was loud. Pushing felt so good, even if it didn’t look that way! I held my husband’s hands and used him as leverage while pushing. I tried different things that felt good with those 5 or 6 pushing waves that brought her to us. I pushed with my pressure waves, pushed longer than my pressure waves, and finally pushed a little before, through and after a wave. Moments later she was born. An instant wave of relief washed over me as I pulled my baby to my chest, up and out of the water.
The first pic of us together is so funny to me, because my face looks completely and utterly confused. I held my baby, and asked: “What just happened?” I couldn’t believe it. I thanked everyone so much for their kindness. My midwife and her assistant were so kind as they helped our baby into my husband’s arms- her placenta still attached. They guided me as my placenta came, getting out of the water and into my bed, etc. Then when everything was still for a moment, they left us in our room, surrounded by peace and quiet. We spent an hour or so with baby, establishing breastfeeding, and chatting. I ate piece after piece of the chicken pot pie I had prepped. I’ve never been so hungry in all my life. Finally, when we were ready, baby was weighed, measured and all that.
My experience was beautiful, and I wouldn’t trade a moment of it for anything in the world. Kyle always knew how to support me and was an incredible guide. That night and every visit after my midwife would take a moment to tell Kyle how great he was, how rarely she saw such a wonderful partner. Hypnobabies was a wonderful part of my pregnancy and the key to what we needed to create the birth experience of our dreams.
As we wait for baby number 3, our last little one, I am not counting down the days to our son’s birth. I am counting down the days to beginning my Hypnobabies practice. Baby will come in his own time, and we will be prepared, confident, and relaxed.