Our new baby girl Milly was born in the water on Friday 14th August 2009 after a 3 hour labour. She was well past her due date by at least 10 days and I’d been experiencing practice labour for a week leading up to her birth.
Throughout the week I’d been relaxing through any of the practice labour, breathing and listening to affirmations. I found the CDs very useful to get to sleep to – just like I’d found them very useful throughout most of my pregnancy. I felt I was well rested by the end of the week. On Thursday night I went to bed with the usual mild practice surges (contractions/Braxton hicks) hoping that tonight would be the night. To be honest I was totally fed up of being pregnant – along with the constant pressure from friends and family enquiring as to when would this baby be born! I woke a few times in the night disappointed that nothing seemed to be progressing. However I slept soundly between 3-6am and was woken suddenly at 6am with a stronger sensation.
The surges weren’t regular – some coming every 5 mins, others every 2 or 3 mins and some were long, some short. So I was unsure of where I was at. Nevertheless, we called my Mum to come to look after the kids and by 7.40am I’d decided it was time to start to make a move to the birthing centre. Meanwhile, I’d been focusing on breathing and relaxing through each and every surge plus I had some breakfast and a shower.
We got into the car and towards the end of our 10 minute journey I noticed feeling pressure intensifying and very low down. On arrival at the birthing centre at 8.15am my midwife checked baby and me, I was 8 cm dilated, baby had descended right down and her heartbeat was fine. I got into the pool – bliss to be emerged in warm water. Phil used some affirmations and an anchor through the next couple of surges, but very quickly I felt the intensity and pressure increase and the need to breathe downwards. Our baby crowned and I continued to breathe her out – relaxing and letting go as much as I could. My body and my baby did all the work – all I needed to do was breathe through each surge.
It was truly an amazing experience to feel her head crown and feel it emerge – the water giving incredible support to my body. After her head was born one more surge and out came her body. The midwife passed her to me, cord still intact and we just enjoyed watching her in my arms, waiting for the placenta to detach. It felt like a long time for this to happen as I felt this part of the process was quite uncomfortable, and it was harder to remember to breathe and relax when you have this new little person in your arms! Finally after 30 mins the placenta detached and was born, the cord was clamped and Milly had some bonding time with her Dad while I got out of the pool. I then breastfed Milly, enjoying the surreal feeling of having had an incredible experience over the past one hour. A lot had happened in a very short time.
I feel incredibly blessed to have been able to give our daughter a gentle and calm entry into this world. Once again I credit the tools and techniques of HypnoBirthing that helped give me the knowledge and confidence to release, relax and let go. My body and my baby truly knew what to do.