Siobhan & Ian

THE DIFFERENCE A ‘WELL PREPARED’ BIRTH PARTNER CAN MAKE

first baby, Jan 2014 workshop

Our daughter Erin was born on Thursday 13th February 2014 weighing a very healthy 8lb 6oz. She really is adorable and we are so in love with her. Our whole labour birth experience was amazing and Ian and I couldn’t be greater advocates for natal hypnotherapy.

So…..her arrival…… My waters broke on Tuesday 11th, just a day after due date but contractions didn’t start so I was induced with gel on Wednesday 12th at 1pm. From there it started to happen quite quickly and I managed with breathing techniques and then the tens machine. I definitely had a moment of self doubt around 7pm when I was given the decision to go to the birthing centre or labour ward. Because they were asking me if I wanted to go to the labour ward I was worried that they thought I wasn’t handling the contractions very well but Ian made sure I remembered that that is what I had wanted the whole time when we were planning and to have faith in myself and I am so glad he did. We moved to the birthing centre at around 7pm and I was 4cm, continued to use breathing, visualisation and tens machine. Out of nowhere I was doing a strange lunge movement switching legs throughout each contraction, it really helped me visualise baby moving down my body and using the strength of the contraction to bring us closer to baby but it really did come out of nowhere!? Maybe my own version of the pain dial?? Weirdly I only felt contractions in my back the whole time, none on my front. When we got to 11pm I was 7cm and decided to switch into the birthing pool, warmth of the water and massage from student midwife were brilliant and I also started to use gas and air. I was pushing for around 2 hrs and Erin was finally born at 3.43am. She was almost born in the pool but as I was having trouble getting her through I moved to the bed and with the change of position she came out very quickly! I am so glad that we were in the birthing centre, midwife and student midwife were with us the whole time, they understood hypnotherapy and made sure the room was dimly lit, warm, calm. Midwife was also using lots of the triggers we had learnt with you. When I was pushing Ian said that my face would change from intense pain to a smile when she told me she could see baby’s head, there was lots of dark hair and baby was almost here. When Erin was born and they put her on my chest she was so alert and wide eyed it was such a special moment and any pain I had been feeling just melted away. Ian was there for the whole time and was completely overwhelmed with what an amazing experience it was and nothing like the school video/every other graphic version of birth he has been exposed to. I think it is hugely important that your partner understands and is involved in the preparation as well as the birth, something that I was undecided on before. The support and encouragement they can give you throughout is so valuable and I think makes the experience more special for you both.

Ian and I honestly cannot thank you enough. We can’t imagine having a better birth experience. Being able to manage my emotions in the lead up to labour as well as during it, is for me something so special. I have (had!) such a fear of pain for a long time that there were times when I wondered if I would ever be able to have a baby and seriously considered maybe not having one because of it. I will be forever grateful that I have had such a positive experience, a beautiful daughter and an even closer relationship with Ian. I am definitely a sharer of a positive birth story rather than a horror story and a huge advocate for natal hypnotherapy.

Erin

Erin