On Sunday 27th July we welcomed a beautiful baby girl Maple Willow into the world at 3:25pm, weighing 7 pounds 10 ounces and 51 cm long.
My partner, Leigh and I had done some research on Hypnobirthing and decided we would complete a course with Katherine. We were so excited to be learning about what birth could be like and the different strategies and breathing techniques we could use. The course was amazing and Katherine was extremely knowledgeable. We practised most days, listening to tracks, reading scripts and getting prepared to welcome our little baby into the world.
My pregnancy went very smoothly and I loved every minute. I was so excited about the birth process and with Katherine running the course in our own home I was confident that I could put into practise during labour, all the positions we tried around our home... But our birth story was not what we planned!
Our birth preferences were that we wanted to stay at home for as long as possible, we wanted a water birth, minimal examinations and monitoring, and definitely no inductions. But during our 40 week appointment the midwife told us that my cervix was unfavourable and so I was booked an induction date. We asked for the latest possible induction date, hoping that we wouldn't need it! So we had 14 days for labour to start naturally. A week went by and at our 41 week appointment the obstetrician told us again that my cervix wasn't ready and that I would need to be induced. He offered us an induction the next day but again we declined as we wanted to give ourselves as much time as we could. To be honest my partner and I were devastated because we had planned for a water birth and we wanted to stay at home for as long as possible and we knew this wouldn't be possible if I was induced. So we continued to try everything to bring on labour naturally; I saw a chiropractor, acupuncturist, naturopath, I ate curry, walked, sat on a fit ball, had sex, read our hypnobirthing scripts, did acupressure! But unfortunately none of these things worked!
Hypnobirthing also prepares you to calmly meet whatever turn your birthing takes and the most important thing was that our baby was safe and well. So Saturday 26th July came around very quickly and that was the day they started the induction. My cervix was examined and was still unfavourable so we decided to go ahead with the gel. We made this decision because after trying so many things to bring on labour naturally, none of them worked for us. Once I'd had the gel I had to stay in hospital over night. By 7pm that night I was 2cm dialated. Nothing was really happening over night so by 7:00 the next morning they broke my waters. We asked for some time for things to happen but my surges weren't regular enough and so after 3 hours I needed the drip. Because I was induced I needed to be monitored, but we were fortunate to have a wireless monitor, which meant I was able to move around. I enjoyed sitting on a fit ball and leaning on the bed. However, the monitor kept picking up my heart rate instead of hers so I had to have a wire monitor on her head just to check the heartbeat was ok. So at this stage I felt like I had cords everywhere (2 on my belly, 1 on the inside of my leg and the drip) but at that stage I was happy to be on the bed, kneeling upright and leaning over the bed head. Things seemed to progress very quickly once the syntocin kicked in.
Leigh was absolutely amazing during the birth of Maple and he really helped me through. The midwives were extremely respectful of our birth preferences, there was no unnecessary talking, the room was dimly lit, we played music and the hypnobirthing tracks, there were examinations but only when they were necessary, no was was yelling at me to push and I was able to be in a position that was comfortable for me. After around 5 hours our beautiful baby girl entered the world! We did delayed cord clamping and we are so grateful that we did!! We had skin on skin bonding time with her as soon as she was born and continued to play calm music for the next 24 hours.
We believe we have such a calm and happy baby because of Hypnobirthing, and we are so lucky to have had the opportunity to learn about Hypnobirthing with Katherine. I know I didn't want to be induced but that's the way it ended up!! I still have a birth story that I am proud of and while hopefully I won't be induced again, I know that we will deal with anything that comes our way! Thank you so much Katherine for everything you did for us, the phone calls of advice and all the questions you answered!
Erin, Leigh and Maple xxx
This is from Leigh!
It was really great to work with Katherine over 2 days to learn about Hypnobirthing. This was something that Erin had researched and was really keen to do, so I was really happy to support her in this. I learnt many things during the course and I helped Erin practise in the months leading up to the birth. It was something we enjoyed doing together. I felt very knowledgeable about what to expect and what options we had leading up to and during the birth of our baby. We were able to delay the induction and we were so glad to be able to do the delayed cord clamping for our baby. Although being induced was not part of our preferences I was still able to help Erin to relax. We played the tracks throughout the birth and I was able to communicate with the nurses on Erin's behalf and then discuss with her what our options were.
I felt as though the course also helped me to remain calm, and positive, which then helped me communicate and support Erin throughout the birth.
No words can describe the emotion of when our little baby girl came into the world! She is a beautiful and calm baby and we love her so much!