I’m so proud of the pregnancy, labour and birth
This week’s birth story comes from the lovely Charlotte who attended a TCBS Hypnobirthing Course with Jessica Shipley of The Calm Mama Co covering Leeds, Bradford and Skipton.
Thank you for sharing this wonderful story with us!
My pregnancy with my third baby was going pretty much as I expected. I was consultant and midwife care as I’d had a caesarean with my first baby. We’d done hypnobirthing for the first time with our second pregnancy, after reading a Hypnobirthing book. I’m naturally anxious and wanted to see if hypnobirthing could help me improve my birth experience. My second labour and birth had been great, I delivered vaginally which is something I wanted having previously had a section. For this third pregnancy we attended the course.
Being under the consultant for my third pregnancy I had scans every few weeks. At 38 weeks the scan showed that baby had turned into a breech position. The consultant was very quick to book a section for me which isn’t what I wanted. My head was in a spin and I felt very emotional that the birth I had visualized was not going to happen. I also had a lot of anxiety about having another section as my first one was not a good experience for me or baby.
I got in touch with Jess as I felt so out of control and sad about what was happening. She was great, she really reassured me that even if I had another section it wouldn’t be the same as last time, she really understood the way I felt. She reminded me that it’s my body and I can go back and question what I’d been told. She also found some advice online about how to spin baby.
I decided I couldn’t just go ahead with the section without trying to find another way to have the birth I’d planned for. So, I rang Maternity Assessment at the hospital and asked to speak to someone about the way I was feeling. MAC were absolutely great; the midwife listened to me and understood the way I felt. She told me about a spinning baby technique website and got me an appointment to see a different consultant.
I saw the consultant and he explained the reasons why a section had been booked for me and moved the section date, so I felt I had a bit more time to get to grips with everything. He also agreed to perform an ECV to try to turn baby, this is a procedure which is more complicated with a previous section scar.
I went on the spinning baby website and I tried out the techniques ahead of my ECV to see if I could get baby to turn. A few days later I went back to hospital to have the ECV. The consultant scanned me first to determine where baby was, and she had turned! I cannot even explain how happy I felt at that moment.
So, my section appointment was cancelled and we went back to plan A, a vaginal delivery. At 40 + 2 my labour started spontaneously, I stayed at home for about six hours then went into hospital. I had my affirmations playing the whole time, even in the car! I found they really helped because I’d listened to them from about 30 weeks, every night and sometimes on an afternoon if I was having a nap, I found them so relaxing. I wasn’t listening to every word, but I’d heard them so many times I knew what was being said and I found that very calming.
When we got to the hospital, I explained I would like a water birth, something I’ve wanted from my first pregnancy. Jess had advised us to say we wanted a water birth when we rang the labour ward initially so they could prepare for that which was great advice! Water births are more complicated with a previous section so I wasn’t sure I would be able to have one. I had a brilliant midwife on the labour ward who was happy to support me through a water birth. She explained everything so I understood the risks etc. When I got to hospital, I was already 6 cms so could get straight into the pool. My husband got the affirmations on the Bluetooth speaker, he put up photos around the pool of our children, our wedding and honeymoon and special holidays, the lights were dimmed and there were battery operated candles all making the place very safe and calm.
Less than 3 hours after we arrived at the hospital our baby was born in the pool, just as I had imagined it, very calm and really beautiful. The moment that I held her I felt such a sense of achievement and absolute wonder at this tiny human who had been with me the whole time, we’d done this together.
Hypnobirthing helped me so much, even though this was my third baby. It taught me to trust myself, be confident and believe in myself and my body. It brought me a newfound respect for what my body can do and how my mind can achieve anything. With Jess’ help I achieved the birth I wanted because she believed in me too and she was there with some great advice when I was in a really bad place. I’m so proud of the pregnancy, labour and birth me and my daughter achieved, and I know that it wasn’t just down to us that made it that way. The midwives, the second consultant I had and most importantly my husband all made sure that we got to where we wanted to be.
I hope by reading this, if you’re an expectant mum, you can take some strength, power and over all belief in yourself and your body.
If you want to create your own positive birth you can start today!