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Home / Birth Stories / Birth Stories
08 Jan 2020

Incredible & Empowering birth experience

My husband and I attended a hypnobirthing course with Anna at Rock Your Birth in November after finding out we were expecting our first baby to be born on the 5th January 2020.

After slowly losing my mucus plug over the course of a couple of days, a bit of a scare labour was starting on Christmas Eve and plenty of braxton hicks, back pain and cramps, I thought my waters may have trickled in the early hours on my due date. I called the midwife lead unit at the hospital who asked me to go in within 12 hours to do a swab test to check if my waters had actually gone. Off me, my husband and mum went to the hospital at 3pm that afternoon and they advised me that my waters hadn’t gone but after an examination, I was told my cervix was 2-3cm dilated and had started to soften. The midwife performed a stretch and sweep and we headed home. I had constant cramp and back ache after the sweep but managed to get some rest and broken sleep.

I woke up the following morning and my surges started around 7am. My mum came over and after going to work, my husband came to work from home to be with me an hour later. I had a soak in the bath which helped and things seemed to slow down. My surges went on all day (although I now know they were fairly mild at this point) they were lasting 45 seconds and were 4 or so minutes apart. I got through using my birthing ball, my husband kept the living room curtains drawn with low lights on and played relaxation music. I also used my breathing techniques when needed.

We called the hospital later that night and they advised me that my surges weren’t lasting long enough and they didn’t want to invite me in just yet but being a first time mum and not being able to call a local midwife, they agreed for me to go in for reassurance so off we went. I was examined and was told I was just over 3cm but my cervix had now fully softened, shortened and had moved from back to front. The midwife said I would progress better at home and it was now the early hours of the following morning so with some stronger pain killers, I agreed to head home and I managed to get some rest in between surges.

Waking up that morning the surges were longer and stronger and throughout the day got progressively worse. Lasting at least 60-75 seconds and coming every 5 minutes. I got through the day at home with my birthing ball, breathing techniques and support from my husband and my mum. At around 6pm we called the midwife lead unit again at the hospital, as I wasn’t sure how long I would be able to continue at home. The triage receptionist (not a midwife) wanted me to go and get in the bath and see if it slowed things down?! I explained I had been examined the night before and my cervix had softened and dilated and she questioned whether that actually meant I was in labour!? She also said they wouldn’t want to invite me in unless they were sure I would be staying. I started to get upset after being like this for 2 days and eventually put the phone down, as I didn’t feel supported. I decided to stay at home and re-focused on breathing through the surges. My mum and husband timed them on my app so we had a good record of what was happening. Around an hour or so later a midwife called from the hospital, saying she was expecting us to have travelled in (the triage receptionist must have passed my notes over). After speaking with me through a few long and strong surges the midwife really wanted me to go in so I agreed.

The midwife I had spoken to on the phone met me at the doors to the unit and took me to be examined. I had managed to get to 5cm dilated at home, I was elated! The lovely student midwife turned on the water and start filling up the birthing pool. She then told my surprised and excited husband that we wouldn’t be going home without our little boy! My husband started to unpack our hospital bag putting up my fairy flights, candles, affirmations, photos, setting up the diffuser and music. The student midwife read my birth plan and really took on board what I wanted from my birth experience.

It was lovely getting in the water and after coping for 2 hours I asked for gas and air. My husband was so supportive and my mum kept me focused on my breathing. After 3 hours I asked to be examined so I decided to get out of the water and was told our sons head was almost there. I pushed in an all fours position trying to keep focused through the strong surges, which were coming thick and fast now. The midwife suggested as I had been drinking quite a lot of water that my bladder might be full and after trying to use the loo (I must have relaxed with muscle memory) I shouted ‘something is there!!’ I instinctively put my hand down and felt our sons head. The midwife kindly reminded me I couldn’t have the baby in the toilet :-) and moved me to a small birthing stool which worked wonders and within 2 or 3 lots of surges Jack Thomas Lynch was born at 4.15am on the 8th January weighing 8lbs 7 ounces.

At that moment I just forgot everything, the two days of contractions and the 4 and half hours actually labouring at the hospital. He was just so perfect and I was instantly head over heels in love with him. My husband and my mum were also extremely emotional and it was just a lovely moment for us all to share... something I will truly never forget. I had a small internal tear but otherwise it was a straight forward vaginal delivery and within 7 hours of Jack being born we were on our way home to settle in as a family of 3.

Thank you to Anna for all the support and techniques she taught us, as well as arming us with all the information on our choices and making me feel empowered. I had a really incredible birth experience overall, which I really believe wouldn’t have been the same without the course.