Rachel’s Successful Hypnobabies Hospital VBAC
“So, while things didn’t go exactly as I planned, the experience was everything I wanted it to be. My hypnosis helped me sleep for months and months of uncomfortable pregnancy, helped keep me calm throughout the day at work and get through hours of pressure waves at home/in triage, and it helped me be OK with the interventions I got.”
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My guess date was Friday, 1/18, but I had been having pretty significant “practice” pressure waves (Hypnobabies word for contraction) during the weeks leading up. Overnight of the 17th I was up a lot, very uncomfortable, needing to use the bathroom frequently, and feeling a bit nauseous. I kept my hypnosis on repeat to help get myself focused and back to sleep. That day I had a full day of meetings scheduled that I couldn’t miss, so I went to work, but really had to push through my day.
While I still wasn’t sure exactly what was going on, I left work a little early after my meetings and by the time I came home (around 1:30 pm) my pressure waves were 6 to 10 minutes apart. I immediately went to my room, kept the lights low, and started listening to my birthing day tracks like Easy First Stage (Hypnobabies main birthing day track) and Birthing Day Affirmations.
I listened to them on repeat for a while, knew this was getting serious, made arrangements for my mom to come to pick up my son, and then decided to get into a bath/shower. That helped for a little while, but things definitely started to pick up quickly, so I got out and went back to my bed. I was able to use my hypnosis tracks (along with watching a YouTube video of lava flowing, which I used to visually represent my orange hypno-anesthesia) for another couple of hours, but by 9 pm I was really starting to feel more discomfort and told my husband I was ready to go to the hospital.
When I got there, there was a lot of activity in the delivery wing because of a small winter storm, so they couldn’t have someone come check me for a while. Eventually, someone came, and I was 3cm, 90% effaced, and baby girl was VERY low. After that, I had to hang out some more in triage until someone could get me upstairs. This definitely messed with my head a bit, and I had a hard time concentrating. My husband, who did not participate in my practice but did read up on his role, was really great at putting pressure on my shoulder (Hypnobabies Relax cue to help deepen hypnosis) and telling me to relax during a pressure wave, which totally helped. I hadn’t realized how tense I was getting until he told me to relax. It was pretty amazing!
We finally got up to my room around 11:30 pm, and because things were looking so good on the monitor, they allowed me to do intermittent monitoring and go into the shower. I was in there for a while, but the water never got super-hot and there was nowhere to sit, so I wasn’t very comfortable. By that time my pressure waves were really picking up and I was having a hard time staying focused, even with my headset on and the hypnosis playing.
I knew I had a long night ahead of me, and with my family being there it was going to be even harder to focus. So, at 12 am I got out of the shower and decided the best thing for me at that point was to go for the epidural. I was originally trying to avoid because it left me too numb and completely detached from the birthing process with my son (and I think
partially led to my need for a c-section with him), but after all my hypno-training I was ok with this change in plan. I knew it would help relax me and I could further enjoy the process. Heck, I was pretty proud of myself that I got this far without one! I completely attribute that to my consistent hypnosis training.
Luckily, this epidural was absolutely perfect. It gave me the right amount of numbness, but I could still feel all the pressure and knew when I was having pressure waves. I could move my feet and legs which I couldn’t the last time and felt way more in control and connected to the experience. By 5 am, after a slight stall at 7cm (which put me into a bit of a panic because it was also where I stalled permanently with my son, causing me to have a c-section), we agreed to start some Pitocin to get things moving again. This time it worked like a charm, and by 7:30 am (on my actual guess date!) I told my nurse it was time to push.
Wow- the pressure and NEED to push is a very real thing that up to this point I had only read about. And what a relief it was to finally be able to push! At one point while I was pushing the midwife and nurse offered to get me a mirror so I could see what was going on down there. They felt it would help me focus on where to push and motivate me to keep going. It worked! I could see everything, and it was absolutely amazing. I recommend anyone to try that if it’s an option! 20 minutes of pushing later, out came my perfect little lady.
So, while things didn’t go exactly as I planned, the experience was everything I wanted it to be. My hypnosis helped me sleep for months and months of uncomfortable pregnancy, helped keep me calm throughout the day at work and get through hours of pressure waves at home/in triage, and it helped me be OK with the interventions I got. And, of course, led me to my successful VBAC and beautiful baby girl. We are all so in love! ❤️