My Hypnobirthing and Overdue Baby Birth Story
I’m finally getting around to writing the hypnobirthing labour and delivery story of my second baby, a baby boy we like to call Mini M!
Mini was born in May 2015, 2 years and 2 months after his sister, Miss M. After a beautiful hypnobirth, I really hoped to get the same experience second time around. There were only 2 changes I really wanted to make, if possible.
I wanted to try to labour and give birth in the water and I wanted to try and do that at home.
A home birth wasn’t on the agenda for my first birth. I was a nervous first timer before I attended a hypnobirth course and our house then wasn’t cut out for it. My new home in the UK was a bit more suitable and I really felt that having a home birth would allow me to ensure that I could at least labour in the water in case a pool wasn’t available at the hospital I was booked in to. During the birth of Miss M, I had to be constantly monitored so unfortunately couldn’t get into the water at all so I hoped to be able to this time.
I spoke to my midwife who agreed to let me plan for a water birth and I got in touch with a wonderful company, Birth Supplies, that provides everything you need for a home water birth. They very kindly loaned me the Birth Pool in a Box and accessories such as the pumps to inflate and deflate the pool, liner, floating thermometer, hose, floor mats etc. I excitedly had a practice run at setting everything up. The pool took about me 15 minutes to get into place in our dining room and inflate. It would then have taken an hour to fill according to friends – we have a fairly slow water supply but still not to long.
Miss M was born 3 weeks and 1 day early and throughout my second pregnancy I was absolutely convinced that I’d have another preterm baby. I just felt like I would, because I had previously.
When I went for my 12 week scan, they brought my date forward by 6 days and this confirmed for me that I’d have another early baby. Then as my bump grew and space inside it ran out, I again just knew that this baby wouldn’t be waiting until his due date either.
Well, my due date came and it went.
I was uncomfortable with pelvic pain, acid reflux and impatient to meet by second tiny terror so I did everything I could do encourage his eviction. And I mean EVERYTHING.
I bounced on a birth ball, I ate spicy curries, I walked until I couldn’t walk any more and I pretty much showered in clary sage oil for days. Nothing happened. Not even the slightest hint of a contraction.
I met my midwife who scheduled me in for an induction and I’ll admit I felt disappointed. Out came the birth ball and I bounced. And I bounced. And I BOUNCED.
I was scheduled to be induced on the next Tuesday so spent the Saturday morning before making our plan for the day in advance. We would drop Miss M off at my mum’s house on the way in to hospital, then head there, get induced, have the baby and come back to my mum’s later that day and stay there for a few days while I recovered. I like plans!
Having the plan made me start to feel a bit better, being induced was commonplace and not the end of the world and I knew at least that by mid next week, Mini would be here and the pelvic pain would be a distant memory.
By around lunchtime on that Saturday, I started to feel some light period pains and come to think of it, I’d felt them on and off the day before as well. I’d put it down to all of the bouncing, after all it was a long time since I’d done anything resembling exercise!
The period pains were about 20 minutes apart, very light but a feeling of the ‘jitters’ came over me and I knew, I mean I REALLY knew, that something was starting to happen. Of course I also knew that labour can last for days and there was still a chance that I wouldn’t have the baby before the induction but as the day went on, the period pains got a little closer together.
As I became more convinced that things were moving, we decided to head to my mum’s house and stay the night there. It would mean getting Miss M there in advance of labour so she wasn’t rushed there in the middle of the night. So off we went.
The contractions got a little more close together but still nothing too noticeable so we headed to bed at around 10pm. I lay awake for a while and then must have dosed off but at around midnight, I woke with a startle – and a bigger contraction. A MUCH more intense one that came over my whole bump. Things were happening!
Now I had to wake up Mr M so we could head back home, blow up the birth pool and fill it up – exciting! It was exciting until before I had the chance to wake him up, another contraction came. And another. They were 2 minutes apart – how did that happen so quickly! I woke up Mr M and we quickly realised that if we were to get the chance of a water birth, it would have to be in the hospital. We could call them on the way and they would start to fill the pool ready for our arrival which would be a lot quicker than us going back to our house and starting from scratch. In hindsight, I could have kicked myself for not thinking clearly enough to have at least blown up the pool before we came to my mums.
I woke my mum up and told her we were heading off and we got in the car. As we had planned a home birth, we hadn’t even been to the midwife led unit at the hospital before so I had to use google maps to direct Mr M which way to go! This meant that he had to stop the car every time a contraction came so I could breathe through it, then set off again after each one. In my head, I knew there was a very real possibility of me giving birth in our car but I desperately hoped not – Mr M does not keep a clean car!
As it was around 2am, we got to the hospital in record time and were shown up to the MLU which was so much lovelier than I thought. It was styled very much like a standalone birth centre and the room had everything I could possibly need for the birth – a huge birthing pool, birthing ball, stool, relaxing bed, gas and air.
The midwife came in to introduce herself and I got myself into the pool, ahhhh bliss! The midwife asked what I wanted on the radio and I said I didn’t mind. We somehow ended up with the football, um, what?! Luckily it was turned down very low and I only remember hearing it as I got into the pool and then after the birth.
In preparation for my second birth, I had reread my Marie Mongan Hypnobirthing Book (affiliate link) and been practicing my breathing techniques with the mp3s but I did wonder whether they would be as effective as the classes I had taken previously.
My practice paid off though and (with gas and air) I breathed my baby down until he was ready to make his appearance – come on baby! He did not come on. Clearly pretty comfortable in there, he was stuck.
The midwife monitored him between each contraction and his heart rate was very stable but my labour started to slow down so right at the end, I had to come out of the water to give birth ‘on land’.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, out Mini came! We hadn’t found out his gender previously but had been convinced we would have another little girl so imagine our surprise when a boy baby with boy bits was dangled before me!
Mini was beautiful, the image of his sister, and was placed on my chest for the best cuddle ever.
It was such a magical feeling to finally hold him, to have him on the outside and in my arms and for my little family to be complete. A boy! I never imagined he would be a boy. We didn’t even have a boy name and it took hours for us to finally come up with one later that day.
After my stitches and the baby’s checks, I showered, got dressed and packed my bag so we could go home. Off we went to my mums to show Miss M her new sibling.
As we came through the door she shouted “I got a babby bubba!”. She was so excited! Then she took another look at Mini’s little red newborn face and shouted “I got a PINK babby!”. I had to look away so as not to laugh my uterus out – so funny!
Whilst I didn’t get to give birth in the water, I’m so grateful for having the opportunity to labour in the pool and highly recommend it to anyone as the best pain relief. I need not have worried about whether I could hypnobirth effectively again as the breathing came to me very naturally. However if you have never hypnobirthed before, I would say definitely do the class rather than rely solely on reading and listening to mp3s yourself as I had the best midwife who led our sessions and without her, I don’t think I could have truly learned the techniques on my own.
I feel so blessed to have created a beautiful, wonderful family with my husband and I’m looking forward to planning the rest of our lives now.