This week’s birth story comes from a lovely couple who attended a TCBS Hypnobirthing Course with Beccy Angove of The Beautiful Birth Club, covering Gloucestershire and The Cotswolds
Thank you for sharing this wonderful story with is!
Pregnancy, pandemic and cancer!
At 26+5 weeks pregnant lockdown began.
Lots of classes had already been cancelled, I managed two classes of yoga and one chiropractor session and hypnobirthing through the NHS never started.
At 28 weeks pregnant I was diagnosed with cancer. It was in the soft tissue of my arm and the operation had to happen soon, within the next few weeks in fact. Easter Monday I find myself in hospital completely on my own preparing for an operation at 29+5 weeks pregnant. I was put in a side room to reduce my contact with others as while the hospital had been ‘ring fenced’ they didn’t want to risk it with my pregnancy. The loneliness of that night will be something I never forget.
The operation was successful and even though I had good clean margins the aggressive nature of the tumour meant I’d have to have radiotherapy but that can wait until baby is here.
The only shining light through all of this madness was the fact that I was going to be starting hypnobirthing.
Beccy and I had exchanged a couple of Emails and my husband and I discussed it, is hypnobirthing really something we want to do? Is it going to suit us?
How wrong were we! Hypnobirthing helped me to reconnect with my pregnancy, lockdown meant I never got the maternity leave I had dreamed of and with classes cancelled I started to feel disconnected from my pregnancy, as a first-time mum I was panicking.
I can honestly say if it was not for Beccy and her hypnobirthing course there is absolutely no way I would be coming out of this pregnancy as held together as I am.
For me I felt like I had let my baby down, I was already consultant lead thanks to my BMI and thanks to a family history I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. Now my poor baby had to go through an operation. How much more could I let my baby down? I was not providing them with a safe environment to grow.
This is when the affirmations rescued me. I chose the three I needed the most and stuck them on my mirror a constant reminder that my baby and I are strong.
Lots of the techniques my husband and I learnt in hypnobirthing become tools at our disposal for everyday use. The visualisation were something my husband looked forward to, a sceptic at first but now relying on them for his own mental health.
Being in hospital once again on my own but this for my induction was a very different experience. Yes I was lonely but it was nowhere near as bad as it had been for my operation. I was tired thanks to a family of seagulls but with hypnobirthing if I started to feel scared it was ok as I would pop on the right MP3 for how I was feeling and immediately I would feel calmer.
While my birth was not how I planned I know that if I didn’t have hypnobirthing I would have a very different story about my birth and I would probably talk about it as something that happened to me rather than something I did. At every point of my birth story I was in control Drs would give their opinion and using my BRAIN I would decide what was best for me and my baby, I trusted my baby. I trusted my body.
Hypnobirthing has not stopped for me since my baby has been born. With radiotherapy looming I found myself listening to the music and doing my wave breathing. I would listen to the fear release MP3 to help calm me for the unknown.
During my first session of radiotherapy it was my calming music I used to help centre me and again with my wave breathing. I was in a very uncomfortable situation but remained calm throughout.
During this time of radiotherapy I have also had to use my thought exchange a lot. I have tremendous guilt about leaving my baby with family members while I go for treatment. It’s a hard pull at my heart when at only five weeks old I’m having to leave my baby every week day. But the affirmations and thought exchange got me through.
Hypnobirthing really is an amazing tool to have at your disposal and I am so glad that we found Beccy with her guidance, patience and amazing knowledge to help guide us through our pregnancy.
If you want to create your own positive birth you can start today!