This weeks story comes from Morwenna & Peter who did a TCBS Course with our instructor Yvonne Hopkinson from Relaxed Birthing
“I attended Yvonne’s one-day course in preparation for the birth of my second child.
It had been nearly six years since I gave birth to my first, which was an induction because I was overdue. Although my previous birth was straightforward, I hadn’t felt as in control as I’d have liked, partly because things happened fairly quickly and the midwives didn’t believe I was in labour. I wanted to give myself more confidence second time round, as well as learning hypnobirthing techniques to hopefully help me through labour.
The course itself was brilliant. Yvonne was an excellent teacher, calm, patient and really helping each couple address their individual concerns and what they wanted to get out of the day. I left feeling excited about trying hypnobirthing and looking forward to the birth. In the weeks leading up to my due date, I worked out which hypnobirthing tracks worked for me and listened to them each night before going to sleep. Yvonne also came and did a one-to-one session at our home, where we recapped breathing and massage techniques, which was really helpful.
The day before my due date, I woke at 3am as my waters went. I had a few contractions but by the time we went into hospital to be checked over, these had stopped. My waters went properly in hospital (so much water!) and we were told we could go home and that we’d need to come back in 24 hours for induction if nothing happened. I was really keen to use the lovely birth unit at Gloucester Royal, so went for a long walk round the grounds to try to encourage labour to start!
We went home, I had a sleep, and then around midday, the contractions started. They were about 20 minutes apart at first, so I rested upstairs, and distracted myself with Netflix.
They quickly became more close together and I started using the TENS machine as they got to about ten minutes apart. I also focused on my breathing and found each contraction was manageable through this.
By about 3.15pm they were four minutes apart, so we thought we’d better make the 25 minute trip to the hospital! I continued to use the TENS and breathing in the car on the way in, which made the journey just about bearable.
By the time we arrived at the hospital, I was starting to feel like I needed to push, so we abandoned the car in the drop off bay and went up to the birth unit.
I found I was most comfortable standing up and although they asked me to lie down so they could check which way up baby was, I was confident they were the right way up after being checked that morning, so requested not to do this. Yvonne’s course really gave me the confidence to choose the birth position that felt right for me, and to make the informed decisions that felt right at the time.
I continued to focus on my breathing and use the TENS machine, and found transition tough but manageable (which I didn’t feel it was last time) until it was time to push. It took me a few goes to get the hang of it but then baby felt like it wanted to come very quickly, so I didn’t get chance to try “breathing” him out. Julian’s head and body was born all at once, 45 minutes after we arrived at the hospital.
I did have to have stitches for a tear, but overall it was a really positive experience and I felt like I was in control of it.
Yvonne’s course not only helped me cope with the contractions and labour but also gave me the confidence to take control of my birth experience and to give birth in the position that felt right to me. It also equipped my husband with some useful techniques to support me, even though he didn’t have much chance to use time!
I can definitely recommend her course – thank you, Yvonne!”