Just wanted to give some feedback about hynobubs and my experience of hypnobirthing.
We loved the course!...
As a Midiwfe I thought the course was a good mix of clinical and non clinical info and didn't get too into the medical / midwifery side of things... I suppose I had quite high expectations of how I would manage both pregnancy and birth. Pregnancy was HARD for me and while I had times of joy especially when I felt my baby move and grew a belly, for the most part I felt sick, uncomfortable, very stressed and a bit low. I was working very hard, travelling and living away from home to work. This is where hypnobirthing came in.
My partner Brian and I signed up to Hypnobubs online course around 33 weeks - I wished I had done it earlier! Something that I hadn’t expected was that Hypnobirthing was as beneficial for me in pregnancy as it was in labour. Brian and I loved the couples bonding time together snuggled on the couch completing the “Hypnobubs” course in our own time. It was great for Brian to hear about labour and birth in a positive way, so often blokes hear a lot of negativity and fear too.
Most importantly Hypnobirthing helped me when I was admitted to hospital with high blood pressure. I was put under a fair bit of pressure to have an induction at 38 weeks and also advised to have a third trimester ultrasound which estimated a "big baby" (those two words should NEVER be said in a sentence together to a pregnant woman). As it turned out, my blood pressure was actually okay, it was high on occasion probably due to stress and white-coat syndrome. So I was okay, my baby was okay and I was back to low-risk birth centre care but I was now filled with fear and lacked confidence in my body. Enter the Fear Release track AKA best-thing-I-ever-did-for-my-body-and-baby. With the help of my Midwife and hypnobirthing I declined the induction.
Then I waited. And waited. And I DID eventually go in to labour. It was an awesome, sensational experience…however I don’t feel that I hypnobirthed… I became hysterical, filled with fear, crying, begging, wailing “I can’t do it, it’s not happening” and then getting even more hysterical because I was scared of how hysterical I was “something must be wrong, I am going crazy!” as I am normally very quiet, introverted and stoic. It did not help being a Midwife and analysing the labour as if I was at work. This wasn’t transition, this was a good six hours of hysteria! The sensations of labour were strong and very intense but not what I would describe as pain… the sensations just got the better of me and I was overwhelmed. Brian and I were “lost” as to what to do, I was too far-gone for light touch and positive affirmations - no one in the room could even talk without me getting upset. I found it very stimulating and upsetting to have my obs and the baby’s heart rate taken.
Luckily there were some gorgeously decorated hypnobirthing affirmations stuck to the wall in the birthing centre, so I could look up and read those which helped a lot. My Midwife protected the birthing space, keeping things dark, quiet and above all staying calm and in control herself. I needed more help than I thought I would to get through labour so also used gas, morphine & water birth, all which I think actually go quite well with hypnobirthing if needed! In the last 15 minutes I finally realised I was actually successfully birthing and I calmed down, shut up, dropped the gas and pushed a big boy out with lots of control and no tearing, in the birth pool at the birthing centre. So I may have hypnobirthed for those last few moments but hypnobirthing is well worth it even if you only manage it for a bit in my opinion.
As I held our baby in the birth pool, having declined an induction, having done it myself, without being strapped to lines and monitors, without being in a hospital, with a partner who was involved and closeby, I felt strong and empowered. Brian announced that we had a boy. He was 3960g at 40+5 and we named him Thomas Leo.
Yes, labour might have been intense and overwhelming but I was now filled with endorphins and oxytocin - a beautiful cocktail of love and feel good hormones which lasted weeks and weeks postnatally. What a lovely way to start a family.
I didn’t actually get a heap of good photos after birth, (Brian and I wanted to soak up the moment technology-free) but I am so proud of this photo of me when we got home that evening, 6 hrs after birth I am healthy, mobile and feeling on top of the world - THAT is what I wanted from birth and that is what hypnobirthing helped me to achieve.
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