So my “due date” of Dec 10th came and went. Funny how everyone else seemed more worried about this than me and my hubby. I loved being pregnant and our baby was obviously very happy where he was too!
By Saturday night (14th) I knew something was starting to happen. The first surge I felt was at 10pm and wasn’t intense at all, they were just very patchy and all over the place time wise. So I spent the night propped up with pillows on the couch in the lounge (couldn’t get comfy in bed). I did manage to doze off a little in between surges and intermittent wandering around the house.
By 8am things were getting a lot more intense so I woke Chris up and he ran me a bath. I just continued with my surge breathing and relaxation techniques we learnt in class.
Chris called our midwife around 10.30am and let her know where we were at. She wanted us to wait until the surges were a bit closer together and call her later on. By 12 I knew I was definitely ready to go. My surges were still not close enough or long enough but I insisted it was time so we arranged to meet at Waitakere Hospital for a check up and then the plan was to go to Birthcare from there.
Just before we left home my surges stepped up a notch and I really felt the need to push! I had another three like is in the car on the way to the hospital (on looking back now I’m pretty sure I was in transition at this point). We met our midwife at around 1pm and another surge came and I told Chris and our midwife “I really feel like pushing” – they were not expecting that!! She did an exam and I was fully dilated and ready to go (no trip to Birthcare for us). Our midwife started to fill the birthing pool for me and Chris was rushing about trying to get everything prepared for our peaceful birthing experience (he had to rush out to the car and get everything since we thought we were going on to Birthcare afterwards!).
Once I made it into the birthing pool I felt really great and knew I was ready and could do this. I was so relaxed I had my eyes closed the whole time listening to our relaxation music. Through the whole time in the pool I spoke about three times, just to tell Chris “nearly” as in baby is nearly here. He was amazed to see our baby’s head half way out and me just squatting there calm as anything. I turned to lie sideways to breathe Connor’s head the rest of the way down and Chris received him with our midwife watching closely right next to him, guiding him along (this is when my waters broke too). He had arrived, we have a son!! (His sex was a surprise).
We had some time skin on skin in the pool while the cord stopped pulsing. Unfortunately Connor didn’t initiate his own breathing straight away (fairly common with water births I’m told), so they had to take him from me for suctioning and oxygen. In this time I got out of the pool, birthed the placenta and got in bed for cuddles with our son once he was given the okay. Back to skin on skin bonding for us for about the next hour, it was amazing. (So after arriving at hospital at 1pm, our son arrive at 2.16pm!)
I had one tiny tear which didn’t require stitches and barely any discomfort after the birth. I truly believe this was due to me not pushing or holding my breath. Instead I used the birth breathing “breathing down” right to baby.
Chris and our midwife were both very impressed and proud of me for how I managed through the birth. My midwife had had a few other clients use hypnobirthing techniques in the past but not to the extent to which I did. I really did feel like I just went to my own little world or “in the zone” so to speak. I really wasn’t too aware of anything happening around me. We filmed our birth and I just watched it for the first time the other day. I was very proud of myself to say the least. I have also shown the video to a couple of girlfriends who don’t have children and have been previously terrified of childbirth. After watching our birth they have let go of some of that fear and I’m pretty sure they will be using hypnobirthing techniques when the time comes for them!
I just want to say a huge thank you to you Claire, not only for teaching Chris and I all of the techniques we used in our birth but for sharing your birthing stories and your birthing video. We need to get more positive birth stories out there for other women to help them feel empowered and fearless when it comes to childbirth and to give them the confidence to rely on their bodies doing what they’re made to do and getting back to drug free births being the norm.
Warmest regards and sincere thanks Claire – keep up your fantastic work!
Emma, Chris and little Connor xx