“…the experience was so much calmer, better and more empowering than my first labour!…”

Here is a fabulous birth story sent to us from Han! Thank you so much for sharing Han! 

“When I had my first baby 3 years ago I heard about hypnobirthing, but as a sceptical and logical person I fairly quickly dismissed it as a load “hippy rubbish”. Labour with my daughter was pretty traumatic when I went 14 days overdue which resulted in a painful induction and every medical intervention (short of caesarean) available in modern medicine. The result was that I felt no control over my labour, was pretty shell-shocked afterwards and didn’t bond with my daughter for a few months.
When I got pregnant again, I was obviously incredibly excited, but that quickly gave way to panic and fear over having to give birth again. It was when I was around seven months pregnant that I stumbled across The Calm Birth School online course. This time, I thought I’d give it a chance as I figured it couldn’t hurt to try! The MP3s were so relaxing and the videos and literature actually made sense and because they had a basis in science so I very quickly stopped being sceptical and practised hard.
The day after my due date on a Sunday afternoon, I started getting mild and infrequent surges. It took me a few hours to realise that’s what they were, so I went to bed early to save my energy. I didn’t tell my husband what was happening and asked him to sleep in the spare room as I wanted to make sure he rested up as much as he could.
The next morning, I told my husband what was going on as I had my show and the surges were definitely getting more powerful, but they weren’t painful. I had a TENS machine so I put that on to distract me and went for a short walk. I was in this latent phase of labour for around 30 hours all in, but using the breathing techniques and the MP3s it was all really manageable and I didn’t feel the need to go to the birthing centre as I was coping well.
Around 9pm on the Monday night, I felt that the baby wasn’t moving as much so we called the birthing centre and they suggested waiting another hour or so and then going to the labour ward if I still wasn’t happy, so that’s what we did. When we got to the labour ward, they checked and found the baby was all fine so they told me I could go downstairs to the birthing centre after they had checked my blood pressure. Unfortunately, it was a little high so I had to stay where I was. This was the first thing that upset me and threw me off as I hadn’t made it there for my first labour either, but I took some deep breaths, put on the affirmations MP3 and carried on. 
I was in a room with a pool, so the midwife started filling that and said I could get in to help relieve some of the discomfort. Whilst I’d wanted a water birth, my blood pressure meant that wouldn’t be an option anymore, but it was lovely of her to let me get in for a little bit. She examined me first and I was 3cm so she gave me a sweep and then left me whilst the pool filled up. The pool took 45mins to fill up, during which time the surges were definitely getting more intense, but I could still breath through them. 
It was lovely once I got in, but from pretty much the moment I got in I was feeing a lot of pressure, like I wanted to push. I assumed that was just things progressing – I had an epidural for my first birth so I wasn’t sure what the sensations would feel like. I have to admit that it was around now that I started to lose control and I forgot the breathing techniques as I was panicking. The surges were really intense at this point and I ended up shouting at my husband to push the emergency button as I now recognised that I was pushing and the baby was coming.
The midwife got me out of the bath and on to the bed to examine me, but she’d barely started when the baby’s head came right down and was crowning. It was a very surreal and intense feeling; so much so that I admit I screamed and swore quite a lot and wasn’t very calm anymore! I was only 3cm about 45 minutes previously so the speed of everything was a little scary and I had no pain relief at all. Two surges later and Phoebe was born at 00:33 on Tuesday morning weighing 7lbs 14oz.
Apart from the last part where none of us realised I was in transition or the second stage, the experience was so much calmer, better and more empowering than my first labour. I felt like I was in control, people listened to me and when my second daughter was born, I instantly loved her. I put that all down to hypnobirthing. Suzy’s MP3s and breathing techniques honestly made so much difference to the point that I almost (almost!) enjoyed it. 
To anyone who is feeling this isn’t for them or that it’s just a load of nonsense, I’d really honestly say that I’m one of the most sceptical people around but I put all my efforts into it and used the techniques I found to be most useful for me.”

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