Footling breech birth with Natal Hypnotherapy

You probably get loads of these emails but I wanted to share my birth experience with you and to say thank you!

In short, we didn’t have the experience we planned but my partner and I know that Natal Hypnotherapy played a very important role.

I know Natal Hypnokate peppereltherapy encourages you to distance yourself from negative birth stories so firstly I want to say that this isn’t a negative experience it just didn’t go as planned. Also, Natal Hypnotherapy works. In the height of panic I did have a thought that it was all for nothing but then my mind seemed to click into a different gear and I was able to focus and reassuring thoughts kept coming to me. I didn’t get the chance to go to my beach or think of the other visualisations I had been practising but the thoughts around trusting my body, being safe and focussed all came to the surface.

My labour started just after I had finished listening to the Effective Birth Preparation CD. My waters broke and contractions started immediately. I rang my partner who left work. I was calm and took my time getting last-minute bits ready and had a shower. My partner arrived and we set off to the midwife-led unit at our local hospital where we planned to deliver. On the journey my contractions were 2 mins apart and intense. I listened to the ‘serious-phase’ track from the Labour Companion CD on repeat.

Arriving at the hospital I was examined and was initially told that we might get sent home! I then went into the toilet where a strong urge came over me and panic set in. I called for the midwife who was able to see that our baby was breach, his toes were visible! At this point it really all went a bit haywire as the midwife-led unit needed to transfer me by ambulance to the hospital 25 minutes away. My partner wasn’t able to come in the ambulance so we were separated. My contractions were massive and all I wanted to do is push but I was being told not too. The midwife looking after us was fab, she had experience of natal hypnotherapy and although it was no longer a calm environment she took on the role of my partner, staying close to me, holding me etc. We were transferred to an ambulance and set off, blue lighting to the big hospital.Alan and Eddie pepperell (2)

5 minutes into the journey I delivered our baby weighing 8lb 9oz, feet first. In all it was 25 minute of chaos but I was able to tune out. I wasn’t quiet but I felt focussed, the ambulance actually made me feel very safe as it was small and quiet (once we had stopped). I also remember a strong feeling to trust in my body which I know was the hypnotherapy working. Also, throughout
all of this our baby’s heart rate never increased, it was perfect throughout and again I like to think that was due to the hypnotherapy. We carried on to the hospital where my partner was waiting and he met his son. We were home later that evening.

A lot of friends keep describing the birth as traumatic as a footling breech birth is so rare – especially in an ambulance!

It was definitely dramatic but I do not feel it was traumatic.

I feel proud of my body and very empowered by the whole event just like hypnotherapy prepared me for.

Although my partner wasn’t there for the birth he feels strongly that my calmness up to the point of discovering baby was breach was down to all my preparation.

I really wanted to share our story as it’s a bit different, and I realise it’s quite extreme but Natal Hypnotherapy played a significant role in keeping me calm initially and triggering empowering thoughts when I was in the midst of chaos helping me do what I needed to do.

So, thank you for this programme. I would definitely recommend it as even if birth doesn’t quite go to plan, it really doesn’t matter it will help, a lot.

Kate, Allan and Eddie Pepperell

My amazing birth – The birth of my baby boy will always be an amazing memory!

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!

The midwives wanted to stay as they said it was so calm!

robyn HillI have often heard from midwives over the years that they love to attend births with women using Natal Hypnotherapy as they aways feel so calm them selves! This week’s birth story reiterates that feeling , but from the mums perspective.

“I wanted to write and tell you about the wonderful, calm birth of our little girl, born at 38 + 2 weeks. My first cramps started at 3am and Robyn was born at 12.50pm, so pretty quick. All went as I hoped – she had been in the right position for a long time and I had used a birthing ball in the months before, so maybe this helped get her head down.

Looking back, listening to the Natal Hypnotherapy cd’s (the labour companion with the relaxing birth music) and doing the Natal Hypnotherapy course with Laura early on in my pregnancy really helped to get me mentally ready early on, and stay so calm which was key to my state of mind when the big day came.

I would listen to the tracks on my ipod and use the breathing techniques on my commute to work. I really feel you need time for your subconscious to absorb the information so you can truly believe that you can have a positive birth experience. I was so calm during my pregnancy and this followed all the way through to when baby arrived. I gave birth over a beanbag for support and with gas and air, which I had wanted to do and which felt more natural to me. There was no bed involved, contrary to every birth you have seen in films or on TV. The course made me really think about and understand how different positions work when giving birth.

It was also invaluable to have my partner with me, who had done the course as well and was just as prepared as I was. He was great during the birth and really helped me stay so calm using a lot of the techniques we learnt during the course, with the Natal Hypnotherapy  music on, electric candles, calm dark environment and lavender spray. A very useful technique was staring into my partners’ eyes during contractions – it really helped to calm them down.

The midwives wanted to stay in my suite as they said it was so calm! The final bit of the birth was noisier, but you just make the noises your body needs you to make! My body really did know what to do in the end and my baby did just come out as nature intended.”

Natalie Kaffa

LauraTammaro_130x260Natalie attended a course with Laura Tammaro in Windsor.

To get your own free copy of the Pregnancy Relaxation hypnobirthing track click here

Daniel’s birth

We knew from early on in my pregnancy that this baby was definitely going to be our last. We had both agreed that 4 kids would be great, however after our fourth we both felt that we wanted just one more. So when I fell pregnant we knew that this was definitely the last one so throughout my pregnancy I kept thinking…I have to really enjoy and cherish this as I will never feel / experience it again.

As with all my other pregnancies the last few weeks were a string of on.. off mild contractions. With each of them there were at least 3 occasions when I thought I was going into labour and then everything stopped. This time was no different, but whenever I thought things might be starting, I would simply lie down and do my hypnosis or I would go to bed and wait for things to pick up or fizzle out.
At about a week over the estimated due date I began getting stronger feelings every 10 mins or so throughout the day. As my eldest son (9 yrs) was adamant that he wanted to be at the birth, he stayed at home while we sent the other three off to my parents for the night. By about 9 o’clock it all seemed to stop again. We packed Jo off to bed and then my husband and I sat chatting for a while. I was beginning to get quite despondent and a bit fed up and had a bit of a cry which probably did me the world of good. As I feel there are great expectations of me because of my work, I had been very “cerebral” about the birth and was constantly analysing what was going on in my body rather than following my own advice to others and just letting go and trusting that everything was happening as it should.
As we had filled the pool up, Phil suggested I get in just to have a relax and to try it out (it was new style pool that I had not actually got in to). While in the pool we started chatting about our honey moon 12 years ago and reminisced about it in great detail. An hour after my last contraction they suddenly started up again and then never stopped.

We had a blissful few hours in our candle lit living room with me in the pool, as we chatted quietly or dozed between contractions. I had not planned on staying in the pool as on a self examination I was hardly even a centimetre dilated. However as the contractions began to become more frequent and increased in intensity I did not really want to be anywhere else. By midnight I knew things were well under way and can honestly say I was enjoying it.

The sensations were strong and powerful and I had to really focus my breathing, but as with my pregnancy I kept telling myself that this was the last time I would experience it so I might as well make the most of it. A couple of times I began to doubt my self (classic self doubt phases around 7 cm dilated) but then I found myself saying “I can do this – my body is doing this – just go with it – you have done this before”. It was a completely instinctive response and really helped me. Unlike my other births I found that I was more mobile during contractions as I found that swaying or rotating my hips during contractions was really helpful.

We had decided to leave calling the midwife until as late as possible as my midwife of the last 10 years who had been with me for all the births could not come that evening and so I was likely to get a midwife I had never met before. This had been a worry for me as I was concerned that she may not fit in with our way of doing things. However, half way through I found myself actively letting go of those worries and just accepting that what would be would be. My husband called the hospital at 1am and the midwife turned up about 1.45am. By that point I did another internal check and was puzzled that I could not feel my cervix which made me think I had not dilated at all – rather than realising that I was close to fully dilated. My conscious brain took over for a bit, thinking that if I was not even dilated, how could I cope with many more hours of these contractions. However very quickly I went back into my birthing mode and simply worked with each individual contraction, visualising my cervix opening, breathing rhythmically and rotating my hips.

Not long after the midwife arrived, I began to feel that familiar pressure as the baby had moved down and was ready to be born, At that point I had another moment of self doubt as I looked at my husband and said “ I don’t like this any more!”. I also stared shaking which my conscious mind told me was a great sign as the baby was about to be born. A few contractions later I began to involuntarily start pushing. Just before I began pushing I found myself thinking yet again – this is the last time you are going to do this – enjoy it, remember the feelings, cherish this incredible power in your body, trust your body and go for it. Within seconds my body took over and simply pushed my son gently down and out as I continued to breathe rhythmically making low groaning sounds. His head and body were born in just one slow continuous push lasting about 3 minutes.

My husband had woken our eldest son just a few minutes earlier and so he came down just in time to see the baby being born. It was wonderful to have my body give birth with no one touching me or the baby. The midwife was fantastic and totally respectful of our wishes – all she did was check my blood pressure and the baby’s heart beat when she arrived and then left me completely alone. As soon as he slid out of my body, I completely came out of “the zone” as my son likes to put it and excitedly said “where’s my baby” as I had not put my hands down to catch him. After fumbling around at the bottom of the dark pool, I scooped him up and gazed down at this wondrous new addition to our family. He was so calm that I actually think he was still asleep. He did not make a sound or even open his eyes. He wriggled a little and then snuggled into my arms – he was perfect!

As I had had a slightly low lying placenta I decided to get out of the pool to birth the placenta which came out quickly and easily as the baby latched on and began feeding. My eldest son (aged 9) clamped and cut the chord. He even put on a pair of gloves and had a feel of the placenta as the midwife explained what was what and how it worked.

It had been such a wonderful birth and I felt so blessed that my last birth was as close to perfect as it could be. It had been hard going the last couple of hours and I had the usual feelings of self doubt – but once again, never did I feel out of control, never did I feel fear, never did I feel that my body was not able to birth my baby. My unquestionable faith in my body, my ability to use hypnosis to truly relax my body and my trust and belief that I was perfectly designed to birth my baby carried me through. I am physically no different to any other woman. I do not believe that my body is better equipped to give birth than other women. I do believe however that my beliefs and my mind set are what make the difference

By letting go of fear, by truly trusting your body at a subconscious level and by learning how to work with your body through relaxation, breathing and visualisation, I know that all women have the possibility to have a positive birth. The crazy thing is that it is not difficult to achieve. Self hypnosis is so simple and easy and yet it can be life changing. My deepest wish is that I can get this message out so that all women have the opportunity to have a positive birth experience.

Baby no.5 update

It has been a couple of weeks since my last entry as life has been hectic over xmas and new year.  With only a week or 2 until baby No 5 I am getting myself as prepared as possible.

I have had a tough few weeks physically with some bad back pain and an awful bout of a urinary tract infection. However as with all things in life I have gained some positive outputs from this.

For the back pain I have discovered “earth shoes” – the soles are slightly higher at the front than the back so when you stand and walk the pelvis is tilted very slightly which relieves a huge amount of pressure from the spine.  I have worn these non stop for about 4 weeks and have no more pain or twinges – a miracle when 39 weeks pregnant.  I got them from http://www.loveshoes.co.uk/  – highly recommended to any pregnant woman or any one with lower back pain.

Re the UTI – I am so opposed to antibiotics (especially when pregnant) but came so close to taking them as the condition went on for almost a week and I spent about 4 days in real discomfort strapped to the loo!!.  However with perseverance, drinking about 12 pints a day and taking apple cider vinegar, honey and intense probiotics I have got through it with out having to compromise my or my body’s immune system so close to the  birth.  The other wonderful learning is that I have have had more energy, felt more alert and my skin looks amazing due to the volume of liquid I have consumed.  It appears I have been so dehydrated for years!

My third blessing is that I have rediscovered the magic of my own hypnosis CDS!  Inspite of working with them day in day out for so many years, it is only by practising what I preach that I remind myself of how beneficial they are.  I have been listening to my home birth CD and still get amazed at how relaxed and calm I feel after listening to them.