By Ludivine, Brussels, Belgium
I wanted to tell you about my amazing birth story.
I started having contractions at 5pm on Sunday 13th. I told my boyfriend I thought it was a labour contraction and waited for the next one which came about a few minutes later. From then, we tried to calculate how often they happened and if they were truly frequent.
Since, the contractions was already quite strong, I went to my bedroom, put my preparation for birth CD on and repeated to myself to remain calm and relax and to welcome the sensations as they were a sign that my body was getting ready for the birth. The were soon coming every 7 minutes which surprised me as I had thought I would have had a longer rest time between each one. After about one hour, they were coming every 4 minutes and were getting stronger. At this point I started listening to the labour companion CD. I was still pretty calm even though the pain was getting more intense but I remember feeling really excited between each contraction.
My boyfriend was supposed to work that night so he called to let them know he would not be there. After 2 and a half hours, the contractions were coming every 2 minutes so we decided to leave for the hospital. I found it quite hard to remain focused during the journey which took us 20 minutes so I was pretty relieved to arrive. When the midwife checked at 9pm I was so happy that I was already 6 cm since . I told her I didn’t want an epidural and I wanted to go to the “Salle Nature”. My mistake was not to tell her about my hypnotherapy preparation and that I would prefer that she address my boyfriend instead of me but in my mind, I had not expected the contractions to be so close and I had imagined I would have more time to exchange with the staff before I really tried to get into a hypnotic state.
Consequently, I can’t say I was able to use the visualisations and I don’t think I was as calm as some mothers can be, but I was definitely able to repeat to myself that I had to let my body work for the best and that I didn’t want an epidural that would block the natural hormones and make labour last longer. The midwife took my blood and left. I was a bit cold and the intensity of the contractions was making my body shake. My boyfriend went to get a coffee and I didn’t really like to be left alone in the room however, when he came back and I couldn’t stand his hand on my back or even to see him look at me. Poor Will! He had to hide behind the birth chair. I had two monitors which I really hated. As I was twisting during the contractions, the part that was measuring the baby’s heart was moving too and the student midwife had to back several times to put it back in place. I couldn’t move freely and that annoyed me a bit.
When, the midwife said she would do a second examination (it was about 10.45pm) I was almost fully dilated and the midwife said that if I felt the urge to push I could! I was so happy to hear that! I then knew that it would soon be over and I felt so strong that I had managed labour without asking for an epidural. I remember thinking I would not be able to get on much longer with the same sensations but I remembered reading about the self-doubt phase and told myself that it probably meant that it would soon be time to push and that I was about to meet my baby. And I was right!
Even though it took me about 45 minutes to let my baby out, it didn’t feel that long and what I enjoyed the most was the fact that my boyfriend was right behind me as I was squatting in front of the bed and he was lifting me up with his arms under mine as I was pushing the baby down. I was eventually sitting on his lap when Yhoni came out. Just amazing! It would not have been possible if I had had an epidural which might have been the case if labour had lasted longer.
Now I am convinced that if things went that fast, it is thanks to Maggie’s great advice which I heard on the CD and read in the book. It was very important to me to understand how the body works when it comes to giving birth and the role of hormones and to learn what hypnosis really is. I listened to the birth preparation CD so many times that the suggestions and phrases definitely triggered positive responses in my body. The birth of my baby boy will always be an amazing memory! I have told all my friends about the Natal Hypnotherapy programme and I really hope some of them will use it!