kg hypnobirthing


Tegan, Matt and Leo's Hypnobirthing Story

leo tegan hypnobirthing worthing storyTegan's first birth was so easy she didn't realise she was in established labour and baby was born in bath!

On Wednesday 7th September 2011 I had my last midwife appointment. Baby Leo was 11 days 'overdue' (I was 41 weeks + 4 days) and I had already discussed my choice not to be induced with one of the midwives but today I had a different midwife. I had seen lots of different midwives during my pregnancy and the previous one I'd had for four consecutive appointments and had built a good relationship with. She had been very supportive of my decision to wait and let labour start naturally and said most people weren't that patient! She was very positive and had commented on my good health and flexibility (I put that down to the fabulous pregnancy yoga!). Unfortunately, today I had a midwife who
didn't know me. She was covering due to holiday and sickness, was in a rush and a bit of a bad mood! She was very short with me and said I would have to go to see a consultant at the hospital to make a care plan because they were finished with me now!  I knew that this would be
the next stage but the way she spoke to me was very brisk! The appointment with the consultant was made for the next day and that was that. I wasn't looking forward to having to argue my case but was very certain that if the baby and I were both well, we would wait for labour to start naturally. I was hoping for a home birth and had a birthing pool hired from the community midwives, which was due back on Friday!

I walked to my appointment and back, to try to help gravity and baby work together. (I hadn't been able to do as much walking towards the end of my pregnancy due achy hips and pelvis.) A couple of hours later (about 2pm) my waters broke. It wasn't a big gush but a slow trickle and at first I wasn't sure if it was my waters or if I'd just wet myself! I'd had no surges (the hypnobirthing word for contractions) and so just hoped that things started within 24 hours, so I didn't have to argue against being induced.

By 6pm Matt had come home and I thought maybe I was starting to have some light surges – again I wasn't really sure if it was labour or if I was just a bit hungry or maybe baby had just got into a funny position! Matt rang his friend, to let her know he wouldn't be coming to his badminton club night, as we hoped baby might be on his way.

About 8pm I had a bath and by 9pm I was pretty sure I was in labour and started listening to my hypnobirthing CD and relaxing upstairs in our bedroom. Matt came to bed about 9.30pm but I couldn't sleep. Matt was great, reminding me to do my breathing and to try to relax as the surges got stronger.  By about 1am I was getting stressed telling Matt the surges were really strong and saying I felt I wasn't doing very well.
The surges were very sporadic coming anything from every 5 to every 15 minutes. We knew they had to become regular and frequent (coming every 5 minutes, lasting for about a minute, going on for around an hour) before calling the midwife. I felt disappointed that it wasn't really working very well and that I couldn't sleep, as I thought I'd be so tired by the following afternoon when I suspected baby might arrive. Matt suggested I have another bath and ran it for me. He reassured me saying I was doing really well and telling me that it was all ok and natural.

I got in the bath and it really helped. I totally relaxed for about 20 minutes. Then the surges started coming more strongly again and getting a bit more frequent but still not regular. I asked Matt if we should fill the birthing pool but he said it would just go cold by the time we got round to using it and then it would need warming up again. He asked me if I wanted him to ring the midwife but I said I thought there was no point as it would be ages yet and they'd just have to go away again. Matt suggested I try to check my own progress. (I'd learnt how to do this during my pregnancy. It takes a bit of practice but I felt it would give me greater awareness and control of my own body. For about the last
two weeks I'd been 1cm dilated.) Matt went to do something and I tried to check my progress. I felt something hard and hairy that had never been there before and which I was pretty sure wasn't me! It was the baby's head! I shouted to Matt to come back and stood up to show him saying 'Is this that baby's head?' He was amazed and said it was and that he should probably ring the midwife then! We laughed and I agreed!

From that moment on my mood totally changed. I felt great. I was really calm and happy. I could not believe that the baby's head was already starting to crown and that I was so far along! I realised that the hypnobirthing had totally worked! I'd been stressed because I thought I had another day to go and that I'd be exhausted by the time baby finally arrived. I realised the surges had been strong because baby was about to be born! (I'd had very strong rectal pressure with the more recent surges and realised that was baby's head descending!)

Matt rang the midwives – no answer on the first number so he tried another. The woman told him to ring an ambulance in case the midwife didn't get there in time! He was instructed to go and open the front door and then asked how I was and told not to leave me! Poor Matt said he was the only one here! He rang my Mum who came in (my parents and youngest sister live next door). The ambulance crew arrived and came and asked me how I was. I said I was fine and that the baby's heads was just crowning and showed them! The midwife arrived having followed
the ambulance. There was a point when there were six people in our bathroom! (It's a pretty small bathroom too!) The midwife asked if I was comfortable and I said that well we'd planned to use the birthing pool but I thought this would have to do now! (My father-in-law had joked, saying I should just use the bath and I'd told Matt that it wouldn't be possible because it was just too narrow and not deep enough! Famous last words!)

I was really chilled and able to talk normally to everyone and asked my Mum to get the camera and take some film and photos, which she did. Everyone was there ready and at one point I said, 'Come on baby we're all waiting for you now!' The ambulance guy asked me how strong the contractions were and I said I was having strong surges now. He said, 'Right on the next one give it all you've got and push'. I said, 'I'm not pushing, I'm doing hypnobirthing, I'm going to breathe my baby out'! Poor bloke! They went and sat on the stairs then and left Matt
and the midwife to it! My Mum gave them tea and biscuits.

The midwife said how well I was doing and just 20 minutes after she and the ambulance had arrived, baby Leonardo was born, in the bath! It took just three surges for his head to come and I didn't push at all, my body did all the work. Then I said to the midwife that I could feel the cord around him and she said 'ok, so what we'll do is....' I interrupted her saying, 'No he's coming!' and with one more surge he shot out between my legs (I was kneeling low in the bath, being careful to keep his head in the water). Matt said baby Leo banged something on the side of the bath (head?! Leg?!)! The midwife scooped him up and passed him to me. He was pink and perfect with brown hair and blue eyes. I said I know
everyone loves their own baby but he really is gorgeous! He needed the extra time to get extra cute! He was crying at his rude and speedy entry. After a bit of a cuddle Matt cut the cord (which had stopped pulsating) and then took him for a cuddle in the bedroom. Matt talked to him and he stopped crying.

The midwife helped me out of the bath and I delivered the placenta on the toilet with her suggesting I do the same as before, bear down and use my breathing again. I did and it came out quickly and easily. I went and joined Matt in the bedroom and after checking me, the midwife said I did need stitches but that she could do them then and there and Matt and baby were able to stay with me. I had second degree tears, which I put down to the narrowness of the bath (I couldn't get my knees very far apart!) and the speed with which he came in the end.

After that I got into bed with Matt and my youngest sister came in to see the baby with my Mum. Leo was weighed and was a lovely 8lb 6, again a benefit of that extra time in the womb. I fed him and we all had tea and biscuits and then champagne! It was just so wonderful.

Everyone left at 6.30am. Matt and Leonardo both went straight to sleep. I had little Leo in my arms and realised I should probably get some sleep, so put him in his Moses basket and we all went to sleep.

I felt great after the birth. I didn't experience any pain – only the tightening of my muscles and the pressure of the baby's head descending. I didn't push; my body did all the work. I know hypnobirthing played a major part in our birthing experience. It gave us the confidence to have a home birth and enabled Matt to support me throughout the labour and help me stay calm. All the information we gained meant we were well informed to make decisions throughout the pregnancy and labour and in the end I had exactly the birth I wanted – a natural-home-water(!)-hypnobirth.

Even if things had gone differently I really believe the hypnobirthing practice and tools would have been useful. We didn't get the chance to listen to my playlist, light any scented candles or read through scripts but the overall experience was amazing and I wouldn't change a thing.

I would like to again thank Naomi Newland who was our inspirational hypnobirthing practitioner and also Rachel and Shirley whose fabulous pregnancy yoga groups I attended throughout my pregnancy. I wish all the pregnant couples out there wonderful birthing experiences and could not recommend more highly hypnobirthing.


Caz, Sean & Evie's Hypnobirth Story

evie rose stanbridge hypnobirthQuick and easy homebirth for their 2nd baby

The morning that Evie Rose Stanbridge arrived I woke up felling an urgency to use the toilet for no 2's! So I practised my J breathing. This happened twice more within the hour so it gave me plenty of J breathing practice!

I began to experience some surges from 5am. These came every 5 mins, as I'd planned for a home birth I remained calm, relaxed and comfortable in my own bed listening to my Hypnobirthing CD's. At 7am when my surges were 3 minutes apart we informed the hospital who advised someone would be with us by 9am.

I continued to remain comfortable in my bed whilst my husband Shaun had the task of preparing and filling the birthing pool for our pending baby girl.

At 9am my waters broke and at 9.15am the midwife & a trainee midwife arrived who were very respectful of my Hypnobirthing. The midwife examined me straight away and at my own decision I got into the birthing pool. At this point I was 7cm dilated, very calm and relaxed.

At 9.45 things continued to be controlled and peaceful and as things were progressing very quickly the midwife called for the second midwife from the hospital. It was now 10.30am and the second midwife had arrived. By this time Evie's head was making an appearance and urges to breathe her out were beginning to take over.

At 10.51 she made her full appearance wanting to go straight on my breast for feeding. She was calm, alert and a beautiful colour. She had a good feed and there was no rush at all to get out the pool.

My husband cut the cord and at my request I got out the pool and delivered the placenta on the toilet.

I had no problems throughout my birth and NO PAIN RELIEF required. I

I thoroughly enjoyed our experience of our home hypnobirth and as a result I have a healthy happy calm baby daughter.

Thank you so much for teaching us all about Hypnobirthing. You are a star and a great teacher! I will always be willing to tell my great story of Evie's birth.

All our love

Caz & Shaun X



Naomi, Aaron & Freya's Hypnobirth story


Naomi's 1st Hypnobirth story written for her Hypnobirthing Practitioner - 5 hour Hypno-water-home Birth!

When discovering I was pregnant for a second time, I was very keen to learn techniques to help me achieve a beautiful homebirth, as I was bitterly disappointed to find myself in hospital after attempting 24hrs of labour at home for the birth of my 1st daughter.

I had hoped for a home birth for my 1st child after being inspired by my mother-in- law and her stories of birthing at home. I also dearly wanted to escape any unnecessary medical intervention as the words forceps, epidural and caesarean sent shivers down my spine as I am a big wimp when it comes to anything to do with hospitals. After 24hrs of labouring at home I gave up and requested hospital admittance as I was exhausted, felt out of control and totally overwhelmed by what was happening to me.

My daughter was born an hour after hospital admittance, drug free. However, as I forcefully pushed her out without using the contractions to help as I wanted the ordeal over with as quickly as possible, I tore very badly below – 3rd degree tears – ouch! I then had to endure a humiliating experience, whilst as high as kite on gas and air, waiting for a consultant to arrive and subsequently stitch me up, which took over and 1 ½ hrs as he was busy with other patients. I feel, I therefore missed out on those initial precious moments with my baby. Also, my daughter had been born so quickly due to my panicked pushing she'd swallowed too much mucus and was therefore did not breathe when first born, so was whisked straight away in those 1st few seconds to help clear her airways and it took what seemed like an eternity to hear that reassuring 1st cry.

When my husband was sent home an hour later (as this had all taken place in the early hours of the morning) I was mortified. I was stuck on a hospital ward by myself, with a baby in a clear plastic cot staring at me and I had no idea how to even pick her up, let alone comfort her, it really wasn't how I'd planned my start to parenthood. I'd envisioned my husband and mum alongside me, in the comfort of my home, providing the loving support and reassurance that the hospital simply didn't.

So, despite my first experience of child birth being mostly positive (it certainly wasn't on the same scale as some of the horror stories I'd heard) I felt determined that this time round I was going to find a way to achieve my dream birthing experience in the comfort of my own home. It was then that I discovered HypnoBirthing and was enthusiastic and convinced by the logic and theories from the start of our classes.

I absolutely loved the lessons and felt amazing after my practise sessions. We were desperately trying to move house before the baby arrived and endured the most stressful moving dramas along the way and with a hectic toddler in tow, I was very grateful for all the deep relaxation techniques that we'd learnt together as they gave me the strength to remain positive and find time to refocus and give my unborn child the attention that it deserved, which I had so freely dedicated to my first pregnancy.

So, despite my mental erasing of my due date, it came and went, and the midwives started discussing inductions and monitoring. I was absolutely determined to avoid hospital but paranoia about baby's health had started to get the better of me by +14 days, so the night before hospital monitoring was due to begin, Aaron and I tried every trick in the book to get things going (Sex, Major hot curry, DIY reflexology from youtube etc) and low and behold at 1am that night, I woke up with a tummy rumble that felt like it could just be the hot curry playing havoc internally. After two more quite intense tightenings, I awoke Aaron who tried to go back to bed again thinking that nothing would happen for a while. However, instinctively I knew that this baby was in a hurry to come, so after about an hour and half of listening to the Rainbow Relaxation CD in my bed, coping marvellously with the sensations, we called my other birthing companion out who raced over in taxi and arrived at 3am. By 3.30am, Kerri thought we should call out the midwife as my surges were beginning to pretty much come continuously. I was quite oblivious and so deep in my "zone", I was surprised when the midwife arrived and introduced herself.

She asked permission to examine me just to determine how far away baby was, which I was happy to let happen although I didn't want to know the response (I afterwards found out I was 4cm at this point) and soon after I found myself in my water pool in my kitchen which relaxed me even deeper.

My surges were pretty intense from this point onwards, Aaron and Kerri did an amazing job reminding me of the affirmations that were all around us which helped me to remain focussed. I must admit though that during this period there were times when I came out from my trance and felt pain but when I was able to go back within using the breathing techniques the surges were reduced to discomfort.

The final stage took around ½ an hour to birth, I went with what my body was telling me and with a few almighty but controlled surges, the baby's head was born into the water. The midwives were really encouraging me to push her out as the head was quite big. Waiting for that final surge felt like a lifetime, but in the most magical moment of my life, finally our baby was born into the water and was placed on my chest. I'll never forget the most beautiful moment when we looked into each other's eyes, so glad to be meeting each other at last and continued to bond skin to skin.

I was in shock for a while afterwards, as I seriously couldn't believe that it had all happened so quickly and smoothly. Our wonderful daughter Freya Lilly was finally with us. My birth from the 1st surge to Freya's emergence took just 5 hours, 2 ½ hours of established labour but it only felt like half that time. I was amazed to discover it was morning!

I totally credit Hypnobirthing with empowering me to be in control of such a beautiful experience. It certainly wasn't the silent affair seen on a lot of birth videos but it was our special unique birth that we'd been dreaming of. I was chuffed also as there was absolutely no damage down below which was one of my biggest fears especially as she was a fairly big girl at 8lb 12oz.

One of the best bits about birthing at home was being in my own bed moments after, breast feeding, eating Coca Pops and drinking tea followed by a glass of champagne with just my husband, Kerri and Freya.

Freya is the most chilled baby possible. She's an absolute dream. She settled in her Moses basket from night 2 without ANY fuss, and has done so from that night on. Aaron and I couldn't believe that we were getting at least 7hrs sleep a night! She's also slept through the night from 7 weeks and at 13 weeks, regularly slept for 12 hours at night. We are blessed! A total contrast to our 1st baby.

Thank you so much Di, for teaching us so well and being a great source of support when I had moments of doubt. We've had such a super positive experience. Hypnobirthing defiantly rocks and has changed my thinking and life so much that I'm now training to become a Hypnobirthing practitioner!


Naomi, Aaron & Leonard's Hypnobirth Story

leonardBirthing a 10lb baby at home with no stitches!

Naomi's Birth Story... My long awaited home Hypnobirth... No 3!

My story begins 14 days past my due date. The fortnight since my EDD had dragged along very slowly and I was looking forward to arriving at 42 weeks as my previous 2 babies had both been born at exactly 42 weeks. My whole pregnancy I had been telling everyone and myself that it was likely that I would carry right to the bitter end as this is clearly how long my body took to cook its babies. However, with having 3 babies in 3 years I was secretly hoping that my body would remember what to do and give me an early surprise. But as my guess date came and went and every day slowly dragged by, I soon realised that I was in for the long haul and felt confident that my baby would again also be born on day +14.

I was therefore very happy to field off offers of induction from my midwife and explain to all my well wishing family and friends that I was happy for nature to decide when my baby should be born. My daily mantra became "baby comes when baby is ready".

I did let my midwife book me in for a planned induction on day 14 though, as both of my girls had arrived on the night prior to planned inductions, so I thought that perhaps I needed that threat to let go mentally and let my birthing begin. Ha ha! Not the case this time, as I awoke on day +14, still pregnant and absolutely no sign of anything happening anytime soon.

As a HypnoBirthing practitioner, I was super keen to avoid induction as I was desperate to have another home birth and also I knew that by interfering with, what I believe to be, a very natural process, I could perhaps send my birth into a different direction which could eventually lead into invention being required. I had supreme faith that my body was in charge and that my baby should decide when the right time to be born would be. I did however understand that there are risks involved in prolonged pregnancy but felt that whilst my baby was strong and active and my health was fine, I was happy to take each day as it came. So when I phoned triage at 8am that morning I explained that I was cancelling the planned induction but willingly agreed to attend the hospital for monitoring.

The monitoring process involved being strapped up to a machine that measured baby's heart rate, uterine tightening and baby's movements – all of which were perfect. In fact, I was having surges (The HypnoBirthing word for contractions) that I couldn't even feel. I agreed to a vaginal examination as I curious to know if things were getting started and "hurrah!" my cervix was 1cm open. Perhaps the baby would be here soon, I started to think.

As I was now +14 days, before I was allowed to leave Triage, I had to endure quite a pressurised conversation with the doctor who was trying to persuade me to be induced there and then as planned. I found the language that he used particularly threatening and fear inducing. In fact, at one point he actually told me that I HAD to be induced. I had suspected that I would need to have some difficult conversations about my decision to continue with my pregnancy past 42 weeks, so was prepared with all of my answers and very firmly and politely explained that I fully understood the risks of prolonged pregnancy and that I did NOT have to be induced that day, I was aware that he had to offer me the CHOICE and I could respectfully decline. I agreed to return the next day for monitoring and to discuss the option of induction again. However, the whole experience of attending Triage which reminded me of the dramas in "One born every minute" and the intimidating nature of the doctor made me even more determined that I was going to have my baby at home in a loving, peaceful, positive environment where I could focus on my beliefs that birth can and should be normal and natural.

My husband dropped me over at my mum's house in the early afternoon so that I could spend some time with my 2 girls, aged 19 months and 3yrs old. As soon as I was in a safe, calm environment, my surges suddenly became more apparent and I spent the next couple of hours playing with girls and distracting myself by sorting out a huge box of Duplo that my dad had found in the loft.

By 3.30pm I felt that things were picking up quickly so called my husband to drive me back home so that we could prepare for our homebirth. I spent the next couple of hours doing some last minute housework (I wanted a clean orderly house before baby arrived!) whilst Aaron prepared our beautiful birthing area by moving furniture, inflating the pool, setting up the music and lighting candles everywhere.

Given that my last birth had been an amazing calm, quick and relatively pain free Hypnobirthing experience which only lasted 5 hours from the 1st surge to my baby girl being born – just 2 ½ hours of established labour, I honestly thought that this baby was going to fly out. I'd joked the whole was through the pregnancy that I was just going sneeze this one out and had even prepared my husband for the possibility that the baby may be born before a midwife was in attendance and had explained to him how to check if the cord was round the baby's throat! So I was deadly serious when I spoke to my 2nd birthing companion and my best friend at 5pm and said that I was sure we'd have a baby by the end of the day. Little did I know!

I was experiencing very erratic surges, they would be very intense for 40 – 50 seconds or so and then drop off to weaker shorter ones but the whole time I could feel my cervix stretching open and my muscles working together. I was so happy that things had finally started of their own accord.

Hypnobirthing works on the theory that by being totally relaxed during birth a woman's body behaves in a different way to that if she has fear or anxiety within her system. This ensures that the uterus behaves in the way that nature intended and eliminates the FEAR – TENSION – PAIN syndrome.

Therefore, I knew that I had to totally relax and surrender to the birthing process in order for my body to be able to get on with the job in hand, so I lay on my sofa surrounded by candles, listening to my HypnoBirthing affirmations and relaxation CD on loop for a couple of hours until my surges finally felt more intense and productive. During this whole time I focussed on staying calm by using Hypnbirthing breathing.

We called out the 1st midwife who arrived at about 9pm by which time I was in a blissfully calm state, totally chilled out. After examining me, she informed me that the baby was still in unfavourable position as its back was round on my right hand side rather than the optimum position on the left or front. I had been aware that the baby was OP since my 36 week appointment and had been doing yoga positions, hypnosis sessions, using affirmations and had even purchased a doughnut shaped beanbag to encourage gravity to be able work with the baby whilst I lay on my front, but this baby was determined to stay put until it had to move! I was 3cm open at this point which was great news, things really were finally happening. The midwife explained to me that while the baby could be born in it's OP position it would be a much easier birth if it moved round before descending down the birth path.

As time went by I felt that it was time to get in the pool as I clearly remembered the wonderful relaxation properties that the warm water had from my previous birth. I got into the pool and was delighted to find that the water assisted my comfort levels considerably! I happily floated in the pool holding onto the handles in various positions, mentally willing the baby to turn. After 90 minutes the midwife examined me again and to my absolute dismay, I discovered that I was still only 3cm! I was completely devastated by this news, especially as the midwife had been requesting the baby's changing mat and warm towels only moments previously! I really had felt like we'd been making progress.

It was now midnight and I couldn't help feeling that the last 8 hours had all been in vain. My midwife was brilliant at this point, as my positive mental attitude started to dissolve. She explained that I was doing brilliantly by remaining superbly relaxed and that the reason I hadn't made any progress was that my body was trying to turn the baby to make my birth easier for me. We decided that she would go home to get some sleep and that I should try to get some rest and call her again when things picked up again.

The next 3 hours or so were really tough. I was very tired and my HypnoBirthing skills were really tested. I had moments where I totally lost faith in myself and even at one point considered going to hospital. As soon as the doubts and anxieties crept in, I lost control of my breathing and the panic and pain would spiral. I kept bringing myself back to trusting in my body, that body knew what to do and my determination returned. I spent this time doing various yoga positions and trying to relax on my "bump bag" when finally I decided to sit on my birthing ball learning forwards onto my dining table. I was circling my hips and pelvis on the ball when suddenly my waters popped and gushed everywhere. I think at this point the baby also moved round. I was elated! Just as I was about to give up, my body gave me a signal that actually my labour of love was advancing. I had a "show" at this point too, so I was finally reassured that the baby was on its way.

We called delivery suite and the same midwife came out again. My husband and birthing companion spent ages getting the birthing pool back to temperature while I focussed on becoming deeply relaxed again with my CD's on loop. Once again getting in the pool was magic. Everything finally came together and happened relatively quickly from this point. I was 4cm when I got in the pool and within 2 hours I could feel the pressure in my bottom and as my surges continued to grow in intensity I knew the baby was making its journey down the birth path. I used my Hypnobirthing breathing techniques to assist this process but don't mind admitting that the urge to push really took over at this point. So I followed the lead of my body, however I was extremely tired by this point and found this made the sensations incredibly intense. I kept losing control mentally, I requested some gas and air which really helped ground me again. The mouth piece was particularly useful to help me control my breathing techniques. I used the gas and air at the start of the surge and then used the power of the surge to assist my body with moving the baby down the birth path. It took about 90 minutes to reach the birthing stage. I had some moments of doubt again at the "transition" stage as my cervix became fully open but my birthing companions were brilliant at using Hypnobirthing prompts and getting me back in control and relaxed again.

The final stage of the birth was quite unexpected. I could feel the baby crown and I was being very careful to take this stage very very slowly as I didn't want to tear. I tried to let everything unfold naturally. The wait in-between surges felt like an absolute eternity. I could feel the baby trying to twist its shoulders round but it seemed stuck. Suddenly, the midwifes were ordering me to get to my feet with my leg on the edge of the pool and instructed me that I needed to push with all of my strength at the next surge. The next moments are all a bit of a blur but when the surge finally arrived, the midwives assisted the baby and quickly cut its cord. My husband shouted "It's a boy!" but none of us could take in this news as our baby was very blue and floppy and the 2nd midwife was busy using rescue breaths and massaging him to bring him to life. Finally, after these heart stopping moments we heard the wonderful sound of his cry! The midwife later told me that his cord had been wrapped very tightly around his neck. They'd become aware of this when the baby's chin had failed to present when the head was crowning, hence the urgency of the end of the birth. The midwifes were absolutely brilliant and I can't praise them enough for remaining so calm and keeping me so unaware whilst they must have been having a minor panic.

I finally got to hold my gorgeous baby boy and feel the magic of our life long emotional bond. I was amazed at how big he was, however, I would never have guessed that I had been carrying a 10lb baby! (Well 9lb 15 ¾ oz) – Especially as I am only 5ft 2"! No wonder it had been such a mission to get him to turn and also to move down the birth path. He looked about 3 months old! He went straight the breast and fed easily for the 1st hour.

It took a while for the shock of the whole situation to wear off but eventually I felt totally empowered that I'd stuck with my intuition to have a home birth and felt incredibly proud of myself that I'd birthed a 10lb baby at home with no damage to my perineum (no stitches hurrah!) and no chemical pain relief. My total birth had taken 18 hours.... 14 of which were spent at 3cm trying to get him to turn and only 4 hours of established labour.

I must admit that the HypnoBirthing practitioner inside me was a bit disappointed that my birth wasn't the text book HypnoBirth that I'd dreamed of, but after discussing it through with the midwife the following day, I realised what an amazing birth I'd managed to achieve. I agreed with my midwife that if I'd been in hospital then it would have been highly probable that interventions would have been used, as if I hadn't of been calm & patient and allowed the baby to get into the best position, then birthing an 10lb OP baby would probably have had a totally different outcome. Having 2 other small children to care for meant that I was very concerned about having a quick recovery time and I can happily claim that after I got over the initial exhaustion I was feeling on top the world and was back to being a proper mum again within 2 days. I haven't even experienced baby blues as i've been so pleased with the way my birth played out and totally in awe of my clever body and baby who knew what to do. This is another lovely benefit of Hypnobirthing.

So I am writing this as Leonard (known as Lenny) is 12 days old. He is an absolute dream baby, I honestly couldn't ask for a better behaved chap! He sleeps and feeds, sleeps and feeds, even at night! I am getting more sleep now than when I was pregnant, which is an absolute blessing as I need all my energy for this crazy family life that I now have! It also supports the Hypnobirthing theory that calm pregnancy and birth = calm baby.

I've learnt a lot about birth from this experience, most importantly, about how all the tools that Hypnobirthing can be applied to birth, whatever path the birth takes. I also know now that birth doesn't have to be easy and straight forward for it to be empowering and positive. After achieving this challenging birth.... I now feel like I can do anything that I set my mind to, which is what HypnoBirthing is all about. The power of the body and mind connection.

I have had a lot of comments about how lucky I've been to have straight forward births but I do point out that is not all down to luck, I put a lot of work into getting myself in the best position to be able to achieve my wonderful births. I attended pregnancy yoga twice a week, practised daily relaxation and fully embraced Hypnobirthing theories which have totally changed the way I think about birth. I believe that all this emotional and physical preparation has helped take control of my birthing destiny.



Emma, Tom & Ella's Hypnobirth Story

ellaEmma's 3rd baby - A painfree arrival, without stiches!

1st Hypnobirth experience and our baby 1st born at home 

Hi Naomi,

Am currently sat in bed baby gazing and so so happy, she's utterly divine!

We're both sorry you weren't there, but by the time things heated up events over took and we completely forgot to call.

My surges started at 5.30am and they kept up all day, I managed to get a little kip around noon and it was all super chilled. The surges kicked up a notch around 6pm and were coming every 5 mins. 2 midwives arrived at 8 ish, both incredible; one had newly qualified the other more experienced. I was examined and stupidly insisted on being told the results. Tom feels bad as he felt he should have been bossier with me, but I don't regret it as I was already quite surprised I'd been labouring for so long given Aidan's birth was so quick, only 4 hours from start to finish.

I was only 3 cm, but my midwife was great and said to dismiss it as I was clearly the type to suddenly go really quickly. The surges were so strong at this point but was using the slow breathing and getting through it ok, Tom was great with the prompts and I found them so powerful.

I got in the pool around 9 ish and it was fab and maxed out for 3 hours, during this time my surges slowed in frequency but not intensity. I was examined at 12.30 with my complete agreement and no pressure. The poor midwife didn't want to share results but again I insisted which although if I did it again I would've relinquished control to Tom as it was disheartening to know I'd only gone to 4 cm, again the midwives were really encouraging and said not to worry and that it would be best to move around if that's what I wanted, which I did as felt the need to get active.

It did the trick as the surges came thick and fast and like with Aidan I was ready to breathe down in no time, this last hour or so was when the magic of hypno birthing really happened. I went into myself, had a truly spiritual experience. Don't get me wrong, labour is still what it says on the tin but my power to cope overwhelms me still. I was standing in the bathroom when I knew it was time to breathe her down - I'd been a bit sceptical as to how this transition would naturally happen, but blimey it did!

I felt an immense sense of calm and euphoria that I would soon meet my girl, guided by Tom I simply breathed her down feeling her slowly emerge without any pain or the so called "ring of fire". she was out in 2 gentle surges!

The midwife sat me on the loo and I was handed my angel. She needed a good rub to get her awake she was so chilled! Tom cut the cord and I spent the next 4/5 hours skin to skin with her, she fed for 4 hours straight!

The midwives were amazed at the lack of blood loss and I was overjoyed that I didn't need any stitches and could pee without stinging!!!!

All in all it's been the most wonderful experience of my life and I have you and hypno birthing to thank for empowering us to be masters of our own destiny, fight society's conditioning and create an event that we're still reaping the benefits of. Ella is such a chilled contented baby and we're all amazed at how alert and responsive she is. The "secret life of the unborn child" had it right when it said about infants being able to pick out their father's voice from within the first few hours of life. Tom read the rainbow script almost every day and it has had such a profound effect on how they've bonded.

I could gush on and on, but really wanted to let you know how well it all went for us. Pop over for tea and cuddles whenever suits.

Much love, Emma xxxx


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