Our beautiful boy Liam was born 9th July at 7.05am at 4.23kg!
I experienced a few hurdles in the lead up to the birth…
At 36 weeks, my OB advised that due to my baby not being engaged and 'measuring big', I had less of a chance delivering baby vaginally, creating unnecessary anxiety leading to birth.
I reached out to Jess and discussed some tools to navigate further discussions with my OB. She made me feel heard and validated. My partner Gareth had also been such a pillar of strength and is so confident in me that I can do this! He’s a fantastic support person and reminded me that something one person says shouldn’t affect my frame of mind, that I haven’t once been anxious about the birth during my pregnancy (thanks to the Hypnobirthing course!) which is something I completely overlooked. At the beginning and before my pregnancy, birth was something I feared but I didn’t anymore… it’s funny how we forget how far we have come in our mindset.
Then I contracted Covid at 39+3 weeks and was advised by my OB that being induced at 40+2 weeks was best for me and baby due to having Covid. This was something not part of the plan and I spent several days preparing myself mentally for this change. Again, I reached out to Jess and refreshed on working through the induction process with our toolkit.
On the day of my induction (about 30 mins before, in fact), my OB informed me that he had to go on emergent family leave and wouldn’t be the OB administering the induction. I was provided with another OB who I had never met.
I got to the hospital and was turned away as I was Day 7 post Covid positive and it was against hospital rules to be there. The midwife said that because I’ve had a low risk pregnancy and there didn’t appear to be any medical concerns indicating induction was necessary, she suggested not to be induced as Gareth wouldn’t be able to be with me in postnatal ward.
I met the OB who was meant to induce me on the Friday. I really liked her and felt that she really understood the kind of birth I wanted. I asked to received a membrane sweep to try to get things going. She then informed me that if I were to go into labour there would only be a small chance she’d be there when I birthed baby. I was saddened by this but tried to not let it bother me.
On the Friday, I went to the chiropractor to release my pelvis, had another membrane sweep and went to the gym to do some light exercise.
Then it all started to happen…
At around 1am Saturday morning I started to get surges every 20 minutes. These quickly came down to every 5-7 minutes and then 3-5 minutes. I put my TENS machine on to manage the intensity. Gareth called the hospital and they said to comein.
We got to the hospital at about 3.30am. At about 4am I was seen by the midwife. The midwives were amazing. They saw that I was hypnobirthing and asked to see my birth plan. They made photocopies of it and made sure to place midwives who were familiar with hypnobirthing with me. With consent, they did a vaginal check and saw I was 3cm dilated and my cervix was completely thinned. I went into the birthing suite.
The room was dark and there was heaps of space to move around. We played music and I moved around in different positions while practising my breathing techniques. The midwife left me to do my thing. She came over every 15 minutes to monitor baby’s heart rate with a Doppler (as per my birth plan). The surges were incredibly intense and I requested gas to give me some relief.
I decided to transition to the shower (there were no pools available). Gareth sat on a chair with the shower head pouring warm water over my back. I was leaning on him on my knees. I felt the urge to push. The midwives were monitoring baby’s heart rate between and during surges to ensure baby was comfortable. He was. They encouraged me to keep doing what I was doing. I heard them call an OB to come as I was getting close but it was too late! Liam was born soon after I started to bear down in the shower. The midwife caught him and gave him to me. I held him to my chest and I saw it was a boy!
Apparently I was talk of the hospital amongst the midwives. They were saying that it was such an amazing birth to watch and couldn’t believe how quick the labour was for a first time mum. 3cm to fully dilated in 2.5 hours!
I did experience a 3a tear but was sutured quickly after the birth by the OB on call.
It was the most surreal experience and I feel like I was so prepared thanks to the hypnobirthing classes and techniques that I utilised throughout my pregnancy. I mostly used my B.R.A.I.N.S during my appointments with my OB, but throughout the labour the midwives were so supportive of my preferences.
Thank you Jess for all your words of wisdom and support. I had such an empowering experience due to the knowledge I gained in your course.