Claire’s Birth Story
When my husband and I got pregnant we did extensive research on the having the safest birth possible for both mother and baby. We chose a midwife as our healthcare provider based on exceptional outcomes research. We quickly came to the conclusion that natural birth was what we wanted. Our midwife recommended using Hypnobabies for pain management and we began the extensive self-study course. We practiced everyday and did all the recommended cues and affirmations. We knew we were not ready to have a home birth, but we were apprehensive about birthing in a hospital because of unnecessary medical interventions. Our midwife assured us we would be fine and to put together a Birth Plan.
I am happy to report that I was able to give birth in such a perfect way! The nurses at the hospital were so wonderful, loving and patient. They really facilitated such a spiritual birth for our little one. They were so respectful of our preferences. They used a Doptone instead of the external fetal monitor and allowed her to be placed immediately on my chest when she was born for an hour. She was able to nurse immediately, and they also did all procedures in the room with us. My midwife is truly an angel as well. She knew I desperately wanted to have a natural hypnobirth and she was there and supported me the entire time! Even when I felt like it was going to be impossible, she reminded me that I could do it and to stick with my plan.
I woke up at 1:30am Saturday morning with menstrual-like cramps that started in my back and wrapped around the lower part of my abdomen. They were about 5-10 minutes apart and very regular so I was sure my birthing time had begun. I laid in bed for an hour but I was restless so I decided to start baking brownies for the nursing staff. Our dog came down to see what the commotion was, and then went upstairs to wake my husband.
We went to the hospital around 9:15am once I had been having pressure waves for 1-2 hours and they were 2-3 minutes apart. We called the in-laws to start their journey from Ohio, paged my midwife and called my Mom. We loaded up the car and were on the way to take the dog to doggie day care, I was deep in my hypnotic trance with my headphones on when I noticed blue lights in the rearview mirror. We were being pulled over! My husband jumped out of the car at the red light and motions to the police officer that I am in labor by pointing to his belly. The officer pulled up beside us, took one look at me and asked if we needed a police escort. We thanked him and said we could make it on our own.
I was still in trance but I was getting a little uncomfortable and irritated at the disruption. When we got there, my pressure waves slowed down considerably because I was nervous about being in the hospital. I was only 3cm dilated so my husband and I walked the halls for an hour, bounced on my birthing ball and paced. When my midwife checked me around 1:00pm I was 5-6cm and 100% effaced. I used my hypnosis and was able to stay in trace during most of the dilation. I could hardly feel the pressure waves at all.
When I was 7-8cm when my midwife suggested I get in the tub. I was a little reluctant, but I decided to do it and my husband helped me. I was so glad I did because it provided tremendous relief and allowed me to catch my breath. My husband was so wonderful! He was with me the whole time helping me with my hypnosis cues, bringing me water, snacks and holding my hand while they checked the heartbeat. He didn’t leave my side once, not even go to the bathroom! My mom was there supporting me the entire time as well. Her Lamaze experience definitely came in handy during the pushing phase.
I was fully dilated around 5:00pm and tried pushing in several different positions. It was very hot and when my mom asked if she could loosen my gown I grabbed it and tore it off. My modesty went out the window as I was fully concentrated on staying as comfortable as possible. I was getting frustrated, feeling that I wasn’t making progress and almost came out of my trance. I leaped on to the bed in high position and grabbed the mattress and screamed. My husband and mom came to my rescue quickly and reminded me that I can do this and to RELAX! I agreed and made the conscious decision to continue with the tools I had for hypnosis.
Looking back on it, I would guess this would be what they refer to as “transition”. Finally, I was most comfortable on my side. I tried to push with every pressure wave, but since I was so deep in trance, I could only feel it at its peak and wasn’t able to utilize the full force. With every round of pushing everyone would exclaim “THIS IT, PUSH HER OUT!” They got me the mirror and showed me part of her head sticking out. My midwife encouraged me to feel her head as well. I knew I could do this; it was just going to take some time. I had to pace myself. I pushed and pushed and in- between I used my relax cue to catch my breath and took sips of water. It was amazing that I had so much control considering I had no pain medication. My midwife used bottle after bottle of mineral oil to massage and stretch me.
We listened to the “Pushing Baby Out” CD it seemed like 100 times but nobody could reach the CD played to turn it off or change CD’s. Centimeter-by-centimeter, baby Claire was born at 9:30pm after 4.5 hours of pushing. I had a very small tear that didn’t even bleed. It was so awesome, as soon as she was born and they placed her on my chest she looked up at me with those big eyes. How amazing! I did it all natural and my baby is so healthy and relaxed as well.
She is beautiful and her head was perfectly round despite such a long time in the birth canal. She nursed right away and was very content. What a spiritual and euphoric experience! We are truly blessed and it was worth all the hard work. It means so much to me that with all the loving support and patience of my midwife, husband and mother, I was able to be empowered to have the perfect natural birth. Later I found out that some of my friends had actually placed a bet that I would end up with an epidural. You can imagine how excited and proud I was to tell them my birth story!!!