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Kerry Tuschhoff

Kerry Tuschhoff

Kerry Tuschhoff has not set their biography yet

Remember!

Our Hypnobabies Instructor Training for 2013 is in St. Louis, MO, May 3-6, and we will be closing registration in late March 2013! We are only accepting 50 trainees, so please watch our Training FAQs Webinar now!

St Louis 2011 GROUP Border

Read our Instructor Training Newsletter, which has a coupon code in it for $10.00 off of our Hypnobabies Hypno-Doula Bundle!

Being a Hypnobabies Instructor is extremely gratifying; as you help young families learn to trust themselves, their babies and the process of childbirth, your own journey in life opens up as well!
 
Whether you are a happy Hypnobabies Mom or a "birth junkie" doula, midwife or other birth professional, you can help the women of your community to enjoy childbirth, and be a part of the wonderful change in perception that natural childbirth is going through.
 
Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis
www.Hypnobabies.com
714-894-BABY (2229)
Toll-free: (U.S. only) 877-55-HYPNO (49766)
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A recent article in the Huffington Post describes how new parents can be influenced by hospital staff to doubt their own parenting skills, right from the start. Fear of liability has created some unnecessary hospital admonitions and "rules" about newborn care which new parents actually have complete control over, just like all aspects of their pregnancies and births. Edicts, warnings and "advice" from staff and their sponsors such as formula companies can initiate confusion and undermine new parent's confidence to trust in their own intelligence about their baby's needs. Unnecessary interventions, including interference with breastfeeding and common newborn procedures can affect parent/baby bonding and baby's long-term health:

What Not to Say to a New Mother -- Hospital Staff
The other day I was visiting a family and their just-born baby in the hospital, and in the few short hours I was there, I heard a bunch of surprising comments:

•A nurse told a new dad (who was standing up, holding his 20-hour-old baby) to put the baby down in the bassinet, warning him that his son was safer in the bassinet -- otherwise Dad might drop the baby.

•A different nurse told a new mom (who was holding her 8-hour-old baby) that her daughter would be safer in the bassinet because Mom might doze off and "co-sleeping is not allowed."

These comments by two different staff members to two different families are, to me, eye-rollingly laughable -- obviously babies can be safely held by parents, both seated and standing. Obviously babies don't need to lie in a plastic bucket all the time for fear of being dropped.   Probably the first nurse meant: "If you did drop him, we'd end up with a law suit," i.e., it's potentially dangerous to us, the hospital, not: "It's actually likely you'll drop him"...
READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE

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Some of our wonderful, amazing Hypnoobabies moms have shared with us their baby's birth announcements and birth stories this week. Congratulations Hypno-Moms and welcome to all our Hypno-babies!!

Mom and Baby Faces Sleeping Together

Jennifer K. R.: Liam Nicholas, proud to be an intact male (3rd in our family), proud to be exclusively breastfed (3rd in our family), proud to be birthed naturally and a Hypnobaby (2nd for me), proud to be a lttle brother to Lily and Lucas. Liam was born in the hosptal, we would have choosen a homebirth had we lived closer to a hospital. He was 7lbs, 11oz, 20".

I loved my Hypnobabies experience, both times. I had a pain-free comfortable birth. I used my special-safe place, partner hands-on and cue words. I breathed my baby out (no pushing only "Ahhhhhh") in one contraction. My birthing time started at 10pm and he was born at 3:23am. I remained calm, confident and relaxed. I used a combination of "What If" and "fear releasing" one time with my 1st Hypnobabies birth during my birthing to kind-of "blow away" one drifting thought of an epidural. I knew that this was what I wanted. I knew I wanted to know what it felt like and it was one of the greatest experiences of my life.

I was so excited for both births, I never had a thought of epi during my 2nd Hypnobabies birth because I knew I had the tools I needed to "make it work for me!". You can make it work for you too! Have a beautiful birthing.

Valerie S.: Chloe Aurora was born at hospital 10 April 2012, 9 lb 5 oz, 21.25". She was a week "overdue," and my doctor decided that I needed to be induced. I arrived at the hospital at 6 AM, the Pitocin started at 10. At 3 PM I had not progressed to the staff's liking and they were pressuring me to have my bag of water broken.

When they pushed the issue again, I asked them to leave, and while discussing with my doula the repercussions of walking out and labeling the visit a "failed induction," my waters broke on their own and my birthing time began! Thanks to Hypnobabies and my mantra of "open, open, open," my beautiful baby girl was in my arms at 5:09 PM - my birthing time progressed so quickly by the time my doctor arrived, I was already nursing my happy little newborn. Chloe's birth was completely pain-free and comfortable - in fact, I was out running again when she was a mere 6 days old!

Daniella C.: Our fourth daughter and Hypnobaby, Cosima Cecilia, was born at home on 04.04.12. She weighed 6lbs, 6oz and was 20.25" (39w3d). Birthing time began at 11:30am and Coco entered the world at 2:17pm after two pushes. Much to our surprise (again!) is fair and has blue eyes (so far) like one of her sisters and is the perfect addition to our gaggle of girls.

Ashley B.: Baby Brooks born on December 6, 2012 at 2:31 am. Labor started at 10:00 pm. Brooks is my second child, the first one I did hypno-birthing. I was able to use deep breathing and my calming color to get through the contractions. I ended up getting an epidural and had Brooks 30 mins later. It was an amazing, relaxing experience and I wouldn't change a thing! Hypnonbirthing works!



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We sometimes receive the question, "Why would anyone want a natural (unmedicated) birth?"

There are many reasons for choosing to give birth without drugs; childbirth is a normal process and can be very joyful, all labor drugs have side effects which affect mothers and babies, the side effects can be far-reaching, long lasting and very detrimental, etc.

Another reason that we have found is that sometimes labor medications or procedures are found to be dangerous long after use, and in ways that were never anticipated:

The recent drug recall linked to Meningitis has now been expanded to epidurals
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santa mom 2

That's right!

The perfect holiday gift is here at Hypnobabies.

What could be better than an easier, more comfortable pregnancy and birth for Christmas or Chanukah?
Tell your friends, relatives and colleagues that Hypnobabies Gift Certificates are here!

 http://www.Hypnobabies-Gift.com  

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Expectant moms love Hypnobabies products and now they can get them from friends, relatives and co-workers. Hypnobabies Gift Certificates can be purchased in any amount and redeemed for any Hypnobabies products. Recipients can even redeem several Gift Certificates at one time, so family and friends can buy separate certificates to be applied to one large purchase.

 Let them choose their own gift with our Hypnobabies Gift Certificates, to help enjoy an easier pregnancy with our Easy Pregnancy MP3 Set - 6 Hypnobabies audio tracks for $45.95!

Is her heart set on a natural birth? The perfect gift for her this year is our Hypnobabies Home Study Course, and we also have individual MP3 tracks for specific pregnancy issues such as morning sickness, successful breastfeeding, avoiding and early labor and getting labor started!

New moms also love our Comfort and Calm for the New Mother MP3 Set, which allows mothers to sleep better, breastfeed easier and feel more confident as they begin their new-baby journey!

Are you a birth professional or know one that would love to receive our Hypno-Doula Bundle? Our Hypnobabies Gift Certificatescan be purchased in any amount and redeemed for any products.

Tell everyone you know this holiday season about our Hypnobabies Gift Certificates, and make someone's Hypnobabies dreams come true!

 

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malloree-munn-relaxed
Malloree, using Hypnobabies, deeply focused during a "birthing wave", very comfortable. She is aware of everything going on around her; as much as she wants to be.

Will I be awake and aware during my labor using Hypnobabies?


Q) I'm wondering what being in hypnosis will be like when I'm giving birth. My midwife also says she is concerned that I won't be fully present and able to feel or know what's going on; that I'll be like a zombie or something. I understand that relaxation is deep but how much do you know of what's going on around you? I would like to really experience childbirth, just without the pain!

A) Then you've come to the right place! No zombies allowed. You are as aware as you want to be while in hypnosis. The hypnosis experience is different for each person using it, but it is simply focused concentration, like when you're deeply engrossed in a book or driving your car and thinking about something else at the same time. Both are states of hypnosis and you can see, hear and feel everything that you *want to* while doing them.

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Malloree, still deeply in hypnosis after her wave is over

Here are some other perspectives about childbirth hypnosis awareness from Hypno-moms who have been there...

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Posted by on in Hypnobabies Blog
Today we read a blog post that encapsulates what every pregnant women needs to know about taking responsibility for her own pregnancy and birthing choices: The choices are always  *yours*. If you don't make them and enforce them, someone else *will* and only you know what is best for yourself and your baby.

Take Back Your Birth

www.ImprovingBirth.org

I went into pregnancy and preparation for birth “willfully ignorant.”  I’d never wanted to experience either, so my perspective on the whole thing was that of an outsider’s.  As I started poking around about giving birth for the first time, I had some vague ideas about lowering the lighting in the room; maybe I’d wear one of my own gowns that I felt comfortable in.  I didn’t want gawking strangers there while I delivered (I mean, how awkward is that?) and I thought it would be very cool if I could cut the baby’s cord, if it wasn’t too gross.  

This was when I began hearing a phrase that absolutely astonished me: READ THE FULL ARCTICLE HERE
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Baby Ryleigh Claire Barron


I do not know where to even begin because everything about the birth was such a great experience. I don't think I would have gotten through the whole pregnancy without Hypnobabies.

I went to see Joanne (ob/gyn) at 38 weeks and...

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First-time mom, Crystal pushes Baby Madison out into her own hands and then sings to her - so beautiful!

"This is a very raw, intimate and emotional clip of Madison being born. It was powerful, intense and overwhelming yet beautiful, calm and peaceful all at the same time. I remember birthing her head and body so vividly. I felt pressure and stretching... thank you Hypnobabies! Definitely one of the most memorable parts of my birth experience! :-)"
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Posted by on in Birth Hypnosis
Welcome to our Hypnobabies Birth Hypnosis Blog, where we share information to help you obtain a better understanding of Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis, Christianity and Hypnosis, How Hypnobabies is Different from Other Birth Hypnosis Programs, "Eyes-Open Childbirth Hypnosis", and much more.
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Two of our Hypnobabies moms shared with us on our Mom's Forum how they used their Hypnobabies techniques and cues to eliminate pelvic and hip pain:

Marilyn wrote: "I have been having a lot of pelvic and hip pain on my left side. My chiropractor said it is probably symphysis pubic dysfunction and it will probably bother me until she's born.

I have been using Hypnobabies to help me deal with the discomfort and it has been a life saver! Especially at night when I'm trying to sleep. I had some doubts about how well Hypnobabies would really work once I was in labor since I'm not in any pain when I practice.

Now I know how well it works and I have no doubts that I can have a completely comfortable delivery."

Emily wrote: "Same here! I've been wondering if the Hypnobabies techniques were working. Then baby started to drop a few days ago making sharp stabbing "pains" in my pelvis. I could not stand or move. Then my hubbs said go lay down and listen to your Hypnobabies CDs. I listened to two while my 2 yr old was napping an literally everything went away!!   Very encouraging for my upcoming birth! I'm so excited for the big day!!"
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One of our Hypno-Doulas, Michelle, wrote us about how she was auditing a Hypnobabies class as a doula and, without even being a Hypnobabies student, she was able to use Hypnoobabies "tools" very sccessfully! Our moms can use their tools for many physical and emotional issues as well, during pregnancy and after their babies are born.

My name is Michelle and I took undergraduate courses in hypnosis (slept through most of them, truth be told! :/ ) but never really connected with hypnosis until auditing a Hypnobabies course to complete my DONA birth doula requirements. I found after the first two classes, I was able to turn my Hypnobabies "light switch" to "off" and get total relief from period cramps. :) :) :) After that I was hooked!
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It's already well-known that Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis helps moms enjoy an easier and more comfortable childbirth, and we'd like everyone to also know how well hypnosis works to create a safer, easier and more enjoyable pregnancy! Below we have posts from moms and birth professionals who used their Hypnobabies techniques and our supplemental hypnosis tracks for pregnancy (and other things), with great success.
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VERY IMPORTANT:

A message from Kerry, Founder/Director of Hypnobabies:

As a childbirth educator and doula since 1989, I created Hypnobabies as a way of assisting women to prepare for childbirth and experience it in a much more positive way than I had myself. Childbirth is a very important, even life-changing experience which can leave the most joyous and beautiful imprints on those who have experienced it…when it has been a positive birth. When it has not, it can leave scars which remain for a very long time, and sometimes never heal.  I believe that the numbers of women for whom the latter is true can be reduced greatly with excellent childbirth education, compassionate support, and the comfort tools to empower themselves in creating the birth experience they desire. I eat, drink, breathe and live to help moms all over the world to enjoy having a safer and much more comfortable birthing, and I feel compelled to open the door to a better understanding about how Hypnobabies fits into this process.

Over the last few years we have been hearing about experienced Hypno-Moms and others who, with the best of intentions want to send other moms our Hypnobabies course's audio tracks electronically, or just send them our Hypnobabies Course CDs. Those tracks then become the only Hypnobabies materials that the receiving mom would get to prepare for her birth with Hypnobabies. We also hear from moms who have used Hypnobabies in the past but cannot find their Hypnobabies Home Study workbook so they simply want to use the audio tracks to "do" Hypnobabies again. This indicates that they think they will remember all of the vitally important information in our written materials, or that they think Hypnobabies' written materials are simply not important enough to read again with this new pregnancy. The truth is that there is quite a lot of information on what each Hypnobabies hypnosis technique is and how it is used, allowing each Hypno-Mom to fully understand how to learn (or re-learn), practice and use Hypnobabies to their best benefit. Additionally other extremely important information about pregnancy, birth and post-partum are being missed when there are no Hypnobabies workbooks or handouts. Even experienced moms who have had several babies benefit greatly from reading these materials since our course is so comprehensive.

It is extremely important that any mother desiring to use Hypnobabies (and all birth professionals) understand fully that simply listening to Hypnobabies audio tracks without the rest of our program materials is not adequate, and anyone who does so is actually not using Hypnobabies. We firmly discourage this practice, not because we are being protective of *ourselves* but rather out of concern for our Hypno-Moms.

Although all of our Hypnobabies course is copyright and trademark protected and it is therefore illegal to duplicate in any way, *that* is not our greatest concern here at Hypnobabies regarding moms "sharing" Hypnobabies tracks - our Hypno-Moms are. Each mother *deserves* to have the best birth experience they can, and Hypnobabies was designed to be an extremely comprehensive childbirth hypnosis COURSE so that moms would all have information and birthing materials to help them create that for themselves. We have made it quite clear that if a mom actually wants to use Hypnobabies for her baby's birth, she needs to...

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(Continued from our post: Misconceptions about Hypnobabies... directly below this post)

Carole Thorpe,VP of Hypnobabies writes:

Sadly, misconceptions abound about hypnosis and its use in childbirth. The most common misconceptions are:

That hypnosis is merely another method of coping with pain, or that it's pain management, or that hypnosis is just flowery guided imagery delivered in a monotone voice that induces deeper relaxation than other methods, or that hypnosis distances a woman from her body during her baby's birthing, or that it denies her basic physiological responses that others create through enduring pain, or that women won't remember their baby's births, or that moms must lie still and listen intently to hypnosis recordings...their birthings entirely scripted, for hypnosis to be of any use. None of these assumptions are true of real self-hypnosis, deepened to the level of somnambulism, which is the depth of hypnosis that one must achieve to create an anesthesia effect in the body.

When a birthing woman is profoundly relaxed and deeply in a state of self-hypnosis, she responds to pre-learned, post-hypnotic suggestions so profoundly that her body creates endorphins, serotonins, melatonins and other relaxing hormones and stress reducing brain chemicals. This happens automatically and all the smooth muscles in her body, all the muscles controlled by the autonomic nervous system relax so powerfully, that there is a...

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Posted by on in Birth Professionals
Hypno-Curious?

Myths & Misconceptions about Hypnosis for Childbirth
We are very proud! It is now common knowledge that Hypnobabies® Childbirth Hypnosis is a very successful childbirth hypnosis program. Women consistently show us how intelligent they are as they seek out our program and it is obvious that they know exactly what they want and need, or they wouldn’t even investigate the possibility that childbirth can be much more joyful and empowering by using hypnosis. In terms of helping women have much easier, more comfortable and even pain-free birth experiences, we have taught many thousands of expectant women how to trust in their bodies, their minds and their babies. The results have effectively and very positively changed the way women experience childbirth, the way babies are being born and the way the world perceives natural childbirth. It seems only realistic and logical that those involved in working with expectant women would be hugely supportive and willing to learn whatever they can to help women have this kind of birth experience, with the ensuing positive feelings of empowerment and memories of a joyful birth.

Curiously though, we occasionally have resistence in the professional birthing world regarding support for hypnotic childbirth from some childbirth educators, midwives and doulas (labor assistants). The good news is thatmost of them are so amazed and in awe of the kinds of births our Hypnobabies moms have that they react very positively indeed, with comments like...
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Posted by on in Birth Professionals

Pain-Free Childbirth?
By Kerry Tuschhoff, HCHI, CHt, CI

Hypnobabies is actually..."Easier, More Comfortable Childbirth"
 
First and foremost, it is important to understand that although many of our Hypnobabies moms do experience pain-free births, not all of them do, and we do not promise or guarantee that will be the case. Hypnobabies is dedicated to helping each birthing mother have the *easiest, most comfortable birthing experience* that she can have. This is one of the first concepts our students learn, since our student workbook directly states the following:
 
You are about to embark upon a journey to learn how you, your Birth Partner and your baby can have a much easier, more comfortable and joyful childbirth experience. It will take dedication, planning and a willingness to be open to new concepts, and all will be well worth your effort and time.
 
At Hypnobabies, our motto is, “ENJOY your baby’s birth … in comfort, joy and love.” This is exactly what we work towards and what Hypnobabies was designed for, as you will see by the wording of each Hypnobabies script. It is important to remember that we cannot promise you a completely pain-free or drug-free birthing.
 
Although the majority of our Hypnobabies moms do have very comfortable births, some even pain-free, it is important for anyone using this course to understand that every birth experience is different, just as every pregnancy is different, you need to know and accept that your own will be the perfect one for you, no matter what path your birthing journey takes.
 
There is no “right way” to do Hypnobabies, no one outcome or effect that every woman experiences. Therefore, there is no “failure” should things go differently than you originally planned. You will always be a successful Hypno-mom as long as you practice and use your Hypnobabies techniques, cues and scripts. Every woman has the kind of birthing that she needs to have, and every woman deserves to have the best and easiest one she can, so keep practicing your Hypnobabies skills until baby is born, and use what you have learned during your birthing … and afterwards.
 
Childbirth is so much easier when you use the incredible power of your own body, mind and spirit together, and that’s exactly what you are doing with Hypnobabies. Enjoy your course, your practice and your wonderful birthing!
 
As you can see, Hypnobabies does not guarantee a “pain-free” birth experience to anyone, and makes clear that birth outcomes for each mother are completely unique. This is exactly why we have affirmations and hypnosis scripts which include suggestions and directives such as...
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Posted by on in Birth Professionals
123 Mom and Friend 6Birth Workers Rock!

At Hypnobabies, we appreciate all wonderful birth professionals; those who, like us, have dedicated their lives to assisting expectant and birthing families. Helping pregnant moms, their birth partners and familes to have safer, easier and more comfortable pregnancies and births is a mission we all take on lovingly and respectfully. With education, support and encouragement, more births can be joyful and more babies can be born gently and kindly.

We have included some excellent articles and information in this blog section just for birth professionals that we know you will find fascinating.
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I loved reading this nurse share her experience with Hypnobabies.
My journey to a calm and comfortable childbirth was not an easy one. I was the girl who said she would never try a natural childbirth. Why, you may ask? Let me start by saying that I am a Registered Nurse. I remember back to my nursing school days very vividly. I remember watching and assisting women with the birth of their babies, watching them scream and writhe in pain. To me, that was no way to welcome the birth of your baby. I knew from that point on that I would be getting an epidural when the time came for me to have babies. I wanted to enjoy the birth of my baby and that did not appear to be possible without an epidural.

Fast forward to June of 2010, we were expecting our first baby, a little girl. We were so excited about adding to our family and could not wait to meet our daughter. I ended up going into labor on my own at 41 weeks. I received my epidural when I was dilated to an 8. I thought that epidural was the best invention in the world. Well, once my water broke, we found meconium present in the amniotic fluid. The NICU team had to be present at the birth. My epidural had me so numb that I pushed for three and a half hours. My fabulous midwife was saying that we might need a vacuum extraction to get my daughter out. Luckily, we did not need that and she was born after a lot of effort on my part. She wasn’t breathing adequately so she had to go to the NICU. I had to stay in my hospital bed because I was too numb to go anywhere. Once my epidural finally wore off, I got to see my daughter…four hours after she was born. I didn’t get the bonding experience I so desperately craved.

When I got pregnant with our second child, I knew that I wanted a better experience. I knew there had to be something more fulfilling available to mothers. I knew that getting an epidural was not an option for me this time around so I started looking into natural childbirths. I researched birth doulas and while doing that, came across the Hypnobabies program. I was skeptical, to say the least, but thought that it would be worth a try. I figured that using my wonderful Hypno-doula, Anne, and using Hypnobabies was my best chance at having a natural childbirth.

Click here to read the rest of her story!
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Thanks to Monica for sharing her story!
Okay, so I know that Juneau is now three months old, and who writes a birth story when three months have already passed?  The problem is that I have been trying to figure out how to put into words what an amazing experience Juneau's birth was, and I feel like no matter what words I choose, I won't be able to do it justice.  But I figure, if I don't write it down now, it may never get written.  So, here I go....

Where do I begin? We found out we were expecting in late August 2011. Juneau is our second child. We had our son, Phoenix, in May 2010. In preparing for Phoenix's arrival, I studied the hypnobabies program.  It was great in helping me to relax and enjoy the pregnancy.  I think that with the aspects of being a first time mom and not being sure of what it would be like to actually give birth, I wasn't 100% confident in what I was doing and was very willing to defer to the medical professionals in terms of what needed to be done.  This led to a cascade of interventions that led to me giving birth to Phoenix in the operating room, completely numb from the neck down, unable to feel or see anything.  After he was born, I was so shaky from the medication that I couldn't hold him and then he was taken for his newborn cares to the nursery and away from us for a few hours.  All of these things really traumatized me and I knew that I did not want a repeat of that experience.

With this pregnancy, I was determined to have a natural birth. I studied the hypnobabies program again and armed myself with as much knowledge and support as I could.  We decided to hire a doula to help us achieve our desired birth experience and I am so glad I did.  Mandy was our doula and she was phenomenal.  We met with her several times before Juneau's birth and she helped me to work through the issues that I had after Phoenix's birth and let those go and realize that this was a new birth and a new baby.  She helped me to gain confidence in myself and the fact that I could have a natural birth.  The hypnobabies program again helped me to focus myself and relax during the later stages of pregnancy.  I read up on different natural birth books and websites.  I read as many natural birth stories as I could gaining inspiration and motivation from the fact that all of these women had been able to do it.  I knew that I could do it too.

On one of Mandy's visits, we practiced different positions to help ease the discomfort of pressure waves.  This made me excited to be able to put into practice all of the different tools and in a way I couldn't wait to use them.  Little did I know that practicing them would be about all I would get to do.   My due date was May 2nd and I knew from the start that I would most likely go past that.  Everyone around me was saying they were sure I would have an April baby, but I remained calm in the fact that my baby would come when she was ready (and it would most likely be after May 2nd).  This helped me not to feel pressured or anxious when May 2nd came and went.  We went for our weekly doctor's appointment that day just to be sure that baby was doing okay.  On the ultrasound we confirmed she was a girl (thank goodness otherwise her pink room would've needed a quick paint job) and they guesstimated she was 6lbs 13oz.  Fluid levels looked okay and I was contracting when they hooked me up to the monitory.  The doctor never pressured me for induction but said that if she didn't arrive on her own, he didn't feel comfortable with me going more than two weeks over.  Even though he talked about it, I was never phased because I knew that she would come when the time was right.

I was hoping for a Cinco de Mayo (May 5th) baby and the fact that there was a supermoon that night was inspiration.  May 5th came and went and still no baby.  Early the morning of May 6th, things started happening...I felt more intense pressure waves that were gaining strength and not going away with a drink of water or resting.  I felt so excited and sure that today was the day.  I kept in touch with Mandy through the early morning hours (sorry for the 3AM texts, Mandy!) and waited to see what happened.  It was cute, because I woke Nevada up and he wanted to know right away if we had to go to the hospital.  It wasn't anywhere near that point yet, but it was nice he was so concerned.

By mid-morning the pressure waves were continuing and some were coming as close as every 6 minutes.  I didn't know how things were going to progress so I asked Mandy to come over, just in case.  Grandma had come to pick up Phoenix earlier in the day.  Once Mandy got here, things started to slow down and they weren't as regular.  I would still have to concentrate on them, but it wasn't anything that was unbearable.  Mandy was calm and supportive, never second guessing what I was feeling.  By about 5:30, things had pretty much fizzled out and I was disappointed.  Having never experienced my body begin the birthing time on its own, I felt kind of defeated.  Again, Mandy was reassuring saying that my body was definitely working and just preparing for baby.

The next few days passed without incident.  There were pressure waves here and there, but nothing too serious and while I was anxious for her arrival, and for people to stop checking into see how I was doing and if the baby was here yet, I was still at peace with knowing she would come when she was ready.  I had been sleeping on the couch for the last few weeks of pregnancy because it was where I could get the most comfortable and most nights I stayed up watching tv because sleep wasn't easy to come by.  On May 9th, Nevada sat up watching tv with me for a little bit and headed up to bed around 10:30.  I was still awake watching American Pickers when I felt a strong pressure wave.  Hmmm...that felt a little bit different than before.  I figured I would just lay there and see what happened and if any more pressure waves wanted to make their appearance.  That was around 10:45 or 11. Sure enough, another one came along not too long after.  I had to close my eyes and focus on my hypnosis to feel comfortable during it.  I didn't want to jump the gun, so I continued to lay there and see what would happen.  Around 11:30, I thought this is the real deal and I started timing the pressure waves.  They were between 6-8 minutes apart and definitely intense.  Around midnight, I headed upstairs to get Nevada up.  This time he could tell things were more serious and he asked if he should call his mom to come and watch Phoenix.  I told him to do that and call Mandy.  I tried to talk to Mandy but the pressure waves were intense enough that I didn't want to do that, so Nevada talked to her instead.  She suggested I get into the shower to see if the waves would continue or if they would fizzle out.  So around 12:20 I got into the shower.  The pressure waves continued and seemed like they were coming faster.  The warm water felt good on my stomach, but it was hard to stand in the shower without holding on to something.  After I got out of the shower, it was difficult to get dressed, but with Nevada's help I managed, having to stop every few minutes to work through the pressure waves.

By the time I got downstairs, Nevada's mom was there.  Mandy was on her way, but figured it would take her about an hour from the time we first called her at 12:15ish.  Nevada's stomach was upset so he was looking for some Pepto and talking to his mom about where it could be.  At this point pressure waves were coming every 2-4 minutes and were super intense.  I told him to forget about the Pepto and that we needed to get going to the hospital.  I made it into the minivan and put my ipod in with hypnobabies playing.  Nevada called Mandy and told her there was a change of plans and we were headed to the hospital.  She would head there too.  We also called the hospital to let them know we were on the way and found out that the one doctor from the practice that I didn't care for was going to be delivering babies that night.  I took in the information and then let my concerns about it go.  She was going to be there to catch my baby and that was it, the rest of it I was going to be in charge of.

I listened to hypnobabies the entire car ride and did a lot of deep breathing and was starting to make some low noises to help get through the pressure waves.  What seemed like the longest 15 minutes passed before we made it to the hospital.  Nevada dropped me off at the entrance and I stood holding onto one of the posts for support.  He zipped in the parking garage to park the car and didn't even have time to grab the bags.  We figured if we needed something, he would have time to run back out.  It was then that I saw Mandy running across the parking lot too.  My entire team was in place...it was time to have a baby!

I tried walking to the entrance, but that wasn't going to happen so Nevada ran and got a wheelchair for me.  I was still doing lots of breathing and low moaning and working through the pressure waves which felt like they were right on top of each other.  Nevada started to wheel me through the lobby and took me to the green elevators.  At this point I was with it enough to tell him he was at the wrong ones and had to go to the blue elevators.  I remembered from our tour 2 Blue.  We zipped around and got to the right elevators and headed up.

Arriving at L&D makes me laugh when I think about it.  We pulled up and of course they started asking me questions.  I was able to answer some between pressure waves.  "What are you here for?"  Umm...I was thinking I really wanted to eat some good hospital food...I'm having a BABY!!!  Mandy crouched next to me and kept reminding me to breathe and to lower the sounds I was making to help keep in control.  Nevada helped by answering some of the questions and they took me to a triage room.  Things were super intense at that point and I just kept on focusing to get from one pressure wave to the next.  They told me to get undressed and I'm still not sure how I managed to get my clothes off and get up on the bed, but I did.  They checked me and said I was 8 cm.  Thank God!  Things were so intense that had I been at a 4, it would've been hard.  While there, the nurses were asking if I wanted an epidural and I was confident in my decision to tell them no.  After I was checked, they took me over to the L&D side of the wing (I guess now they believed me that I was having a baby?).

Once in the L&D room, I was checked again and found to be 10cm and complete. Mandy and Nevada were by my side with water and helping me with peace cues and touching my shoulder which I later found out really helped me relax.  In the moment, I wasn't realizing it but Mandy said when she would do that, she could visibly see me relax into the pressure waves.  Once the doctor came into the room, she was getting ready to break my water.  Mandy noticed what was happening and asked me if I consented to it.  I said no, and the doctor stopped.  I think it made her a little bit mad because it was 2 something in the morning and she probably wanted to get this show over, but it was my baby and we were going to have it my way.  As I worked through the pressure waves, I had my eyes closed most of the time to help me keep my focus, but I did open them at one point and saw the doctor kind of statnding at the end of the bed with her arms crossed looking at me frustrated.  Too bad, this was my birthing experience.

After just a few minutes, I started to feel like I wanted to push.  This was intense pressure.  Not pain, but pressure.  According to Mandy's notes it was around 2:25 that I told them I wanted to push.  The pushing phase is kind of a blur.  I know that was pushing for a few minutes when my water broke.  While pushing, I still had my eyes closed and I know there was a time or two when I didn't think I was going to be able to do it.  The nurses and Mandy and Nevada all cheered me on.  Then all of sudden the pressure changed and I could feel Juneau moving down and out.  I never experienced a ring of fire as they call it but just a lot of pressure.  Finally I heard someone say the head was out, and I gave another push to get the rest of her out.  They had to remind me to open my eyes so I could see my baby girl.  She was immediately put on my chest and I looked down in wonder at the little miracle that had just been inside of me.  Juneau was born at 2:50AM, approximately 1 hour after arriving at the hospital.  She weighed 6lbs 3oz and was 20 inches long.  She had a full head of hair and the most perfectly shaped head.  (At the pediatrician's office they asked if she was a c-section baby because her head was so round).  It was love at first sight.

When the doctor was stitching things up, she was going to give me a shot of Pitocin.  Mandy again asked me if I consented to it and I asked the doctor if I needed it.  Her response was well, we routinely give Pitocin after birth.  I again asked her if I needed it and if I didn't, I wasn't going to consent to it.  So, guess what, no Pitocin!  It was amazing how powerful it felt to take my healthcare into my hands.

After Juneau's birth, we told the nursing staff that we wanted all of her newborn cares to take place in the room.  So she was bathed, monitored and taken care of where we could see what was going on and only after we had been able to cuddle for a significant amount of time.  It was fantastic never having her leave our side.  Such a different experience than the first time around.

After I was stitched up, I was up and walking around within about 20-30 minutes and surprisingly felt great.  We transferred to our postpartum room and as opposed to the first time around, I could walk and move and had no issues.  When the nurses came in and asked what I wanted for pain management, I told them that I felt okay and I would let them know if that changed.  So after Juneau's arrival I didn't have ANY pain medication-not even tylenol or advil.  I just felt like I didn't need it.  Things were a little bit sore, but it wasn't anything I couldn't handle.  I felt like SuperWoman!  I think the nurses thought I was crazy because they never had moms who didn't need pain meds.

The adrenaline from the experience still gets me today when I think about it.  When discussing with my doctor my desire to have a natural birth, his advice had been to stay at home as long as possible and come to the hospital when you are ready to push.  I didn't think that I would actually do that, but sure enough, I came in at an 8, progressed to a 10 within about 10 minutes and was ready to push baby out within about an hour of arriving at the hospital.  I couldn't have imagined a better scenario.

I credit the awesome experience to my Hypnobabies hypnosis studies, my awesome doula, and my ever supportive and loving hubby.
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