Hypnobirthing Birth Stories
Spontaneous hospital water birth
I was 40+2weeks pregnant. 2 am woke up and waters broke, thought we would be able to go back to bed and relax for a while before the contractions got frequent but they were regular straight away, we didn’t actually time them at any point but there wasn’t much let up!
Spent a long time in the bath and then made a nest in the spare room propped up on pillows on all fours and tried the tens machine which seemed to help a lot. Called hospital at 4.30 and forgot to tell them we were hypnobirthing so they said to wait until I was unable to talk through contractions and to call in an hour or so. We ended up calling at 8.30am, deliberately didn’t talk through a contraction and they said to come in. I was dreading getting to the hospital which I think is why we held off and we still waited until the traffic would be better so left at 9.15am and arrived at 9.30am (6 contractions in the car!)
The hospital was chocka and we were told to sit down and wait, I spent a long time in the toilet as didn’t want to be around people! Finally got assessed (30+ minutes after arriving!) and I was fully dilated, I still was using tens.
Moved to a room and they were still unsure about water birth due to platelets, I almost said I didn’t mind not doing it but Nick asked me again and pushed for it a bit more. They said they would get me in the pool and send my bloods off and if needed I would have to get out of the pool (they were worried if I bled they wouldn’t be able to asses the blood loss)
It was so good to get in the pool and be able to push, we had our music on and it was calm and quiet with just one midwife most of the time, my platelet level was 130 so they were happy (the dr from the day before even popped up to say hello as she heard them talking about platelet levels of 90 and thought it must be me!)
Nick said he was amazed that I was smiling between contractions and laughing etc, it was all kind of textbook as we had planned and talked about with you! Theo was born at 12.40pm and I was able to catch him and keep him on my chest and find out that we had a little boy!
I did start to bleed afterwards so had to get out of the pool and have a managed 3rd stage and some stitches, they think I lost approx 1 litre of blood so have given me some iron tablets and Nick has been feeding me up!! We stayed in the hospital that night and came home the following evening.
Thank You sooooooo much for all your help and extra advice on our journey, we felt confident and informed throughout the whole process. I don’t know how many people can say they had the birth they wanted or that it was an amazing experience but for us (in the end) it really was!
Laura, Nick and Theo
A fast, smooth induced hypnobirth
I found this labour much more difficult than the last one as I started having regular surges just 2 hours after the pessary went in… and they continued to increase in intensity all throughout the night, so I had very little sleep. I did, however, once again manage to get through them all using just breathing and visualisations, and found the positive affirmations particularly helpful in reminding me that every surge was taking me a step closer to meeting baby!
Just as with Lucy, the final stage was very quick: I asked to be examined on antenatal at 9.15 as I was getting the urge to bear down, and they found I was 6cm with bulging waters. I waddled down to the labour ward at 9.30 and before the poor midwife could break my waters, they popped all over her and his head was born! He arrived just a few minutes later and was just as chilled out as his sister had been.
…both of my labours were positive experiences, and a large part of that is down to the great work you do. So thank you it really is hugely appreciated!
Birth Centre Water Hypnobirth with GBS
We relaxed while watching some tv and I sat bouncing on my birth ball. At 3 pm I decided to make homemade roast potatoes and a big salad. It was yummy lol
By 6 pm the surges were 8minutes apart and the pressure was slightly more. I didn’t feel like this was the main event as I have zero pain and didn’t feel like it was intense enough. My husband called the birth centre again and she told us to make our way in. The drive is around 45 minutes from our home. We arrived at 7:30 pm and were directed to a lovely private room, where we unpacked, put our humidifier on with lavender oil scent and dimmed the lighting. Our lovely midwife had not had a Hypnobirthing couple before so she sat with us and chatted to understand what we needed from her. At 9 pm the surges were now 4min apart and I had my 1st dose of antibiotics for the GBS bacteria. That took 15 min to go in. At 9:30 pm I went to the pool and got in the water, it was so relaxing and eased the pressure from each surge. I was so relaxed I fell asleep in between surges.
My waters broke in the pool at around 12:30 am Monday morning, now the surges were high in pressure but still no pain. The midwife would monitor the baby’s heartbeat in the water every 15-20 minutes. At 1:30 am another midwife came in to administer my 2nd dose of antibiotics, as she was lining up the needle I pulled my arm away and said “Heads coming” the pressure was very intense, it wasn’t quite the head, it was the membrane in front of the head! That took around 20 minutes to come out, then I knew the head was coming. This was the only bit of pain I felt. My body was automatically pushing the head out as I was breathing and making odd noises.
The water was very murky as the baby had pooped and of course the blood, so no one could see anything, I shouted: “heads out!” And in the next surge, his body followed. This was 2:11 am. We could not see in the water so I felt around for the baby and slowly brought him up and onto me. Eyes were open and looking around but there was no cry, so we massaged baby for 15 seconds and then a big cry came out. (This is considered quite normal for hypnobirthing babies that are born calmly ~ E Townend) At that point, I checked between the legs and told everyone “it’s a boy!” At this point, my husband was crying and completely overwhelmed. I wanted to birth the placenta before cutting the cord but after an hour of waiting we decided the cord was done, it had turned white, so Garry cut it and I was then given a shot and the placenta followed within a few minutes. I did not have any tears just a graze on my labia that needed a few stitches. We slept for 8 hours straight before little one woke to feed. It was such a wonderful birth experience. So calm, and the result is a very calm and relaxed little baby. We called him Elijah Harry and he weighed 7lb 3oz. The midwives could not believe how wonderful the birth was and that it was 4.5 hours long. Thank you so much for all your support and for teaching us how lovely it can be. I cannot recommend Hypnobirthing enough to everyone.
Until you actually experience it, you have no idea how fantastic it really is.
T & G
Positive IVF Hypnobirth
Our Journey to parenthood was not an easy one and after five years and a round of IVF, we were thrilled to finally be expecting our first baby. My thoughts then turned to the birth. I was petrified- I have a really low pain threshold, even a papercut makes me feel queasy. I really wanted to be brave and have a natural, drug-free birth, just like my mum and sister, but I was worried I might not cope and start crying for pain relief.
Due to having a blood disorder in the family, I was told I would not be able to have an epidural. That meant if I needed a caesarean, I would have to be put under general anaesthetic and would miss the birth of our longed-for son. This meant I had to find a way to change my mindset and stop panicking about the labour.
I went to a local Positive Birthing meeting and met other people who spoke about their positive experiences of labour and childbirth- a totally different concept to anything you see on TV or hear about- and why do people always tell you their horror birth stories as soon as you are pregnant?
I met Erika and found out about hypnobirthing classes. I had heard about hypnobirthing from a few friends. I am a keen yoga enthusiast and so deep breathing and relaxation was not an unusual concept, but could I really go through labour just using breathe?
Erika came to our house over a 3 month period in the lead up to my due date and went through the hypnobirthing course. It was great as we were in our own environment and we could both take the time to think about and prepare for the birth together. I listened to Kathryn Graves nearly every night and always fell asleep to the deep relaxation scripts before they finished. I found this so great- I actually started looking forward to the birth and the start of labour.
The morning that I woke up in labour, my surges were already 5 minutes apart so I slept through the start of it all. I listened to my cd and did all my breathing techniques learned on the course and felt really calm for the duration of the labour. We used lots of the tips Erika gave us for active labour and getting the oxytocin levels up. I had hoped for a water birth but it wasn’t possible this time. I was able to labour using just gas and air for the surges. As they became very intense when I neared full dilation, Owen really helped me to stay focussed using the imagery we had discussed on the course and using really encouraging statements.
I could not have got to the end without him. I didn’t use the gas and air when pushing for the last part and the midwife guided me through the final stages. Our beautiful son arrived at 11.59pm, eyes wide open, and our world was filled with joy and love.
SJ & O Thomas
Swift Hospital Hypnobirth
H arrived on the 5th December, one day after his due date. I realised contractions had started at 6 am, stayed in bed until 7, and then it all went very quickly from there. Contractions were much more frequent and intense than I had expected for that stage, and the midwife came in for my 8.30am appointment and suggested she examine me at about 9.15, by which time I was already 4cm dilated. We went off to Wexham and H arrived at 3.50 that afternoon, things slowed down slightly when we got to the hospital, but it was all far quicker than I had expected given this was our first baby. We had the hypno scripts playing throughout and the midwives were so respectful of our birth plan it was great. I was able to get completely in the zone and just use gas and air.
An Amazing Home Waterbirth
So pleased to let you know I had a little boy on the 25th Feb. He was born at home in the birthing pool weighing 8lb 1oz.
He’s perfect and looks so much like J did as a baby! We have named him R.
The hypnobirthing was amazing the breathing worked so well and I cannot even begin to explain the difference between R’s birth and J’s.
I stayed so calm throughout the labour and it all happened so naturally. I never even had gas & air! It was the most amazing experience and within 5 minutes of giving birth, I said I would do it all over again!
Olivia and Baby R
A Calm, Unplanned Breech Home Birth
We just wanted to share our birth story with you… It’s an interesting one!
My story starts at exactly week 38 at the end of the day at work. I’m a teacher and the children had just gone home I felt quite queasy so said to a work colleague I was heading home because I didn’t feel 100%. So I headed home but stopped at the shops on the way to buy treats for work as it was my last day the next day. I then went to pick my 3-year-old son up from his nanny’s house now it was about 4 pm. I had a small bloody show whilst at my mother in laws house but just carried on not saying anything because I knew this didn’t necessarily mean I would have the baby on this day. I reached home at about 4.20pm and by now started to feel light tightening.
My husband was working at the Chelsea flower show so wasn’t going to be home until about 8.30/ 9 pm. I decided to call my sister in law at about 4.30pm as felt slightly uneasy being by myself although I did think it might just be Braxton Hicks. She didn’t get the message until 4.50 and called me back I still had a bloody show and the tightening were still quite light but slightly more frequent. She headed to mine but I called her on the way to bring her car just in case (I think I knew the arrival might be coming soon by now). She got to mine about 5.10pm I asked her just to play with my son H and I would potter around the house and be as normal as I could for H. My sister in law told me to call my husband I wasn’t sure as didn’t want to interrupt him unnecessarily however at 5.30pm I did and he said to call him back in an hour to see how I was doing and he would leave then.
Labour Ward Hypnobirth
I was hooked up to the Syntocinon drip to make my labour progress quickly and I had to wear a fetal heart monitor as my daughter’s heart rate was regularly dropping when the medication was increased.
However, the midwives were fantastic and totally respected our hypnobirthing preferences and did everything they could to keep me mobile. I was able to listen to the scripts we’d practised and get into the positions that we had learnt on the hypnobirthing course. The lights were low, conversations and noise were kept to a minimum and we were able to create a very relaxed, calm environment.
16 hours after my waters broke, with no pain relief other than gas & air, I gave birth to a perfectly healthy baby girl. She came exactly on her due date and weighed 8lbs 6oz – which was very unexpected! I did need some extra help in the final stages, and she was delivered with the aid of a ventouse, which meant that I had to have a small episiotomy. But, within 90 minutes I was up on my feet and showered, and walked to the maternity ward pushing my baby in her cot.
Giving birth was in no way the scary ordeal that I had imagined prior to the hypnobirthing course. Thanks to Erika and her teachings I felt confident and excited in the run-up to labour, and the tools and techniques that we learnt certainly helped me to remain calm and in control throughout. I had total trust in my body and its ability to birth my daughter naturally. We couldn’t plan for the meconium and it did alter my original plans – but it was still an amazingly positive experience, and certainly, something that I will be happy to do again using hypnobirthing.
An Early Christmas present!
I wanted to let you know that Billy arrived as an early Christmas present! He came on 20th, 10 days ahead of the due date, which was nice with hindsight, no time to worry too much about what would be!
The labour was intense but super-quick and worked out as we’d hoped! Waters broke at 2.30am. Got checked out at Wexham, wasn’t in labour and baby was fine, so sent home to sleep and then be active the next day and hope labour would begin ahead of an induction.
By the time we got home labour was in full flow! Contractions were pretty much straight into 1 min every 3 mins! We called the hospital again and they said to hang on in there, as I could still speak there was probably more time to go and to call back in an hour! So we got into hypnobirthing mode as much as we could – oil burning, hypno music, breathing, bath, massage, keeping upright etc – but it was intense and the contractions were strong and close together! So over an hour later we called again and I had a quick word with them and they said it was up to me whether I wanted to come in. I think the English ‘not wanting to be a burden thing’ was going on a little with us, along with being desperate not to turn up and then get sent home again as the thought of that journey in the state I was in was hugely unappealing! But shortly afterwards I decided it was time to go in. The journey was pretty bad, I don’t remember much but it seemed to last an age.
We got to the birth centre, somehow managed to get up the stairs. I was 8cm when the checked me out, and there was just enough time to get into the pool, get on the gas & air and less than 45 minutes later Billy was born!
There was a point when his heart rate had dropped and they made the decision to get me out and down to the labour ward, so had me stand up and started putting towels around me, when a massive contraction came again and I think something inside me decided there was no way on earth I was going anywhere so I knuckled down, focused on breathing and his head then came and a little while later he was out!
What an experience! The rest was all fine. The afterbirth was easy, I had no stitches and hardly lost any blood. What I’m really surprised about is just how immediately the extreme sensations are completely forgotten! I’ve found myself unable to articulate what it was like when friends have asked. And it’s unlike any other experience like injury as everything stops as soon as he is out. I hadn’t expected that at all.
And then meeting Billy…to begin with, I think I was a little in shock and rejected him and freaked out when they passed him to me. But pretty soon I took him and then everything changed! I’ve never liked babies and I was worried about this but I absolutely adore him. He’s a tiny little thing (6lb 4) and super-cute and I never thought I would love anything as much as I love my dog, but Billy trumps this (just!) He’s so small and delicate and soft and I just can’t compute how he came out of me just a week ago! My mind is truly blown!
So thank you for your help – hypnobirthing definitely helped make our experience a positive one.
H & C
A partners recollection
When I woke up and heard H move about and heard her say ‘oh no’… I initially thought something happened to Alba (dog). So when H told me her waters broke it was a little surreal. Though soon after everything we went through during the hypnobirthing and NCT classes got to me and I felt calm and able to support H.
We drove to the hospital to get H checked out and were told to return home. Get some sleep and have an active day. If labour had not started within 24h from then H would need to be induced, which I knew H was not keen on. However, on the return home contractions started and when home surges came through less than 3 minutes apart for about 45’’ – 60’’. This confused me since I was expecting a gentle start and H to be elated at first. It seemed that the first part of labour was skipped and went straight into the serious part. The hypnobirthing and training helped me know what to do. I ensured the bath was running, dimmed the lights, lit some candles and got some scent of the one I know H preferred. This helped H to relax between surges.
Contractions soon intensified and I spent most of my time helping H through the ‘up’-breathing which seemed to help her relax.
Around 6.30am we decided to return to the hospital. We called the birthing centre twice before and were told to wait as long as possible in order to avoid being sent back. When in hospital H was 8cm dilated and everything accelerated from then on.
The bath was running as we got to the hospital so H could go straight in. Contractions really intensified and some of the items we went through in hypnobirthing clearly got to me and helped me to help H. There was the point where H panicked (‘I can’t do this’) proceeded by a clear break from the really intense contractions. It was clear Billy was making his way through the birthing canal and I tried to support H the best way I could. When the midwife urged H to keep calm I reminded of the ‘down’ breathing which seemed to have some effect with H. After arriving at the hospital little Billy was born 44 minutes later not only stunning his parent though I am sure the midwives and assistants!
Although all happened in an intense rush both H and I never panicked and managed to stay calm. H and I spoke after birth to what extent the hypnobirthing helped. Although not always obvious I think it created that base to fall back on and also helped us to stay calm throughout the experience. I recall myself discussing with H when to go to the hospital and there was some doubt about when to go. From hypnobirthing, I knew that instinct is a major force in birth and I remember saying to H to go with what she feels. There have been similar situations in the hospital later on.
Billy’s birth was an intense though very rewarding experience. I am not sure whether it would be been the same if did not prepare as we did in the months leading up his birth. The hypnobirthing helped create that mindset of calmness and approaching birth with a positive experience which got us through where we are now.