Beth and Baby Kai
I had an awful pregnancy with different health issues including hyperemesis, a long standing heart issue and daily injections for blood clots before pregnancy.
I was extremely anxious as I was high risk and didn't know how my birth would pan out. I tried reading books but they made me too anxious. I decided to wait for my antenatal class to get information and be able to ask questions. However due to Coronavirus, all of the classes were cancelled. I decided I would take an online hypnobirthing course to try to prepare myself.
It was the best thing I did! My husband also did the course with me so he understood it and knew how to help me. I used the breathing techniques to keep myself calm leading up to birth, I also loved using lavender oil.
In the early hours of 2nd May, I started to have mild contractions. I used the breathing techniques to practice getting through them. The contractions gradually started to get worse. I continued using the up breathing to get through them, I also used heat and lavender oil too.
On 4th May, my contractions were finally 4 minutes apart so I headed to hospital. I was examined and I was 3cm. They kept me to see if my waters would break on their own or if they needed to break them, due to me being high risk. I continued to use the up breathing to get me through the contractions and my husband used the massage technique on my lower back for every contraction. I also made sure I stayed in an upright position for the contractions and tried to move as much as possible.
I was left to progress for a bit in triage and the only way I coped with the immense pain in my back was by up breathing and my husband massaging my back for every contraction. I felt like I was struggling so the midwife suggested a shower. My husband held the shower head on my back which helped. I did initially want a water birth but due to my medical conditions, it was too risky. So I settled for the shower!
Once I was out, I told the midwife that I needed pain relief so she examined me and I was 7cm! I couldn't believe I had got that far with no pain relief, but just up breathing, massage and water! I was taken to the delivery suite where I had gas and air. There were several times when the pain was so bad in my back that I panicked but my brilliant husband got me back on track with my breathing by breathing with me and helping me to focus. I'm so glad he learnt hypnobirthing with me!
They wanted to monitor both mine and Baby's hearts due to my heart issue and unfortunately it meant a probe on Baby's head and me being confined to the bed. I was upset that I couldn't move around however I kept going with the breathing and massage.
I felt myself needing to push so I did, I kept pushing with my contractions but kept doing the up breathing as the midwife took the gas and air from me. My contractions slowed down so I was given a drip to get them going quicker again. After nearly 3 hours of pushing (about 2 hours of coached pushing) nothing was really happening and I was getting frustrated.
The consultant then came in, examined me and told me that my baby was back to back and also looking the wrong way so I wouldn't be able to push him out like this. She said his heart rate was dropping rapidly and he was very distressed. She advised me that I needed to be taken to theatre right then to have an instrumental delivery. I calmly asked for more information between contractions using BRAIN. My husband and I were happy to go ahead as our baby's life was the most important thing and we would do anything to make sure he arrived safely.
The consultant told me I'd have to push the hardest I could otherwise I'd need a c section which was something I really didn't want. I also was adamant that I didn't want an epidural however I was told it was necessary for the instrumental delivery.
I got into theatre and it was all a bit of a blur! I had the epidural and an episiotomy to help baby out. I pushed my absolute hardest despite not being able to feel much and he was born very quickly with the ventouse. Normally I'd be so anxious about anything like this, but because of hypnobirthing I was able to stay calm and make the best decisions.
I felt so disappointed in myself that my birth was going so well then ended in a way I didn't want, however I'm so glad I stayed calm and managed to safely deliver my beautiful baby boy. Hypnobirthing was honestly the best thing I could have done to prepare myself, as I expected myself to have been so anxious and panicky. But I was the complete opposite, calm, focused and level headed.