The following is baby T's birth story.
It is the EXTREMELY long version. The short version is that everything went well. :)
The method I used had me using different words: pressure waves are contractions and birthing time is labor. :)
Back in November, Mr. H and I did a lot of talking about the birth of our new baby. We had had a pretty rough experience with C, and I had a nagging feeling in my head that with some changes it could probably go a lot better for me both emotionally and physically. We started to talk about doing the birth unmedicated. I of course was really nervous to commit to that. I am REALLY low pain tolerant and I felt like it was only really hard core moms that chose to go that route. I softly committed to it, saying I would just see how far I could get without an epidural and go from there.
I had a great doctor, Dr. Beth Hardiman. She was a fan favorite of my ward, and I had been so impressed with her my entire pregnancy. I really felt like she listened to all my concerns and was so calming. She encouraged unmedicated births, and recommended a birthing class “Hypno-birthing” to me. Well, as luck would have it, I called and the class was already filled. I looked into some of the options, and they were really expensive. Mr. H and I talked to some of our friends, and they told us about their experience with it. My friend said she didn’t really think it helped her as well once they got to the hospital. She did say though that she felt like the process and doing the birth unmedicated was really remarkable. She mentioned that she felt like it taught her techniques that helped her through the rough getting used to a newborn stage. J She then said she had heard great things about ‘hypno babies’. It was different than the hypno-birthing, and she said that she had heard it was really effective. We looked into it, and it looked really good. It sounded a little hippie/ weird for me, but I was pretty anxious to try something. I had another friend who had done it and loved it. We decided to purchase the at home study class. I committed to having an unmedicated birth that day. Mr. H committed to being my birth partner.
The class was amazing! Once a week, Mr. H and I would do the scheduled readings and scripts associated with it. The first week I was really skeptical. I kept laughing and had a really hard time taking it all seriously. But as the weeks progressed, I became continually amazed. This was our second baby, and we were learning so much! I loved listening to the joyful affirmations everyday, and really felt like it was boosting my confidence in my body and the birthing process. Hypno babies uses self hypnosis, which felt like really deep relaxation. I would do a relaxation process every day, and it was amazing. I loved taking an hour and relaxing during the third trimester. My third trimester was my easiest, and I know it was because I was teaching my body how to relax. I began to realize how powerful the classes were working as we continued to progress. I have anxiety, and my body will often go into a panic attack. It always seems to get worse with pregnancy. Anyway, as soon as we had learned some of the partner relaxation techniques, when I would start a panic attack, Mr. H would say the cue words and my body would instantly come out of it and relax. It was so powerful!!!
The nice thing about the hypno babies was that I was so confident for the birth! I had practiced visualizing it, and it happened almost exactly that way. I felt calm and prepared. I was also really excited! It was weird…I had never considered myself a person that would do birth ‘unmedicated’, but I was about to do so and was excited about it! I wasn’t scared at all.
The week before T was born, I stayed pretty busy. I was finishing everything off my list and I was trying to have as much fun as I could. The Saturday night I was at a party celebrating favorite things. I had noticed that there was quite a bit more pressure in my pelvis than before, but wrote it off. I was planning on T coming late, and so I didn’t think anything would happen for another week or so. (With C I was induced, and so I had not idea what labor was going to feel like). At the party I had a few pressure waves that felt a little different, but nothing that was too bad. I went to bed that night at one. At four thirty I woke up to some discomfort. I didn’t know what it could be, but I decided to time the ‘discomforts’ and see if they could even be timed. They could, and were about five to seven minutes apart, lasting about a minute each. I wasn’t in any pain, however, and I really believed it was a false alarm. Mr. H woke up, but I told him to go back to sleep and that it was not the real thing. I told him that I was going to go back to sleep too. Well it turned out I couldn’t go back to sleep, and around six thirty I decided to time them again. They were about four to five minutes apart. I had listened to my scripts in that time and it was pretty relaxing. I called my dr. to ask her opinion. She said it sounded like it might be time and told me to come in around 8:30. We had a nice relaxing morning, and our friends came and got C. I showered and got ready, and listened to some more scripts. Mr. H was a little frantic (I had to remind him I was in no pain and he could slow down driving to the hospital. It was pretty cute.) We walked up to labor and delivery and I told them that I thought I was in labor. I was extremely calm and felt totally fine. I could tell they thought I was crazy J but said that they would have someone check me. My dr. arrived and she said she thought I might need to go home and wait it out a bit more, but she would still check me out. (I had asked in advance to not know what I was at but for her to tell Mr. H for later reference). Come to find out, I was an 8 and 100 % effaced. She laughed and told me to keep up on what I was doing because it was working really well. We got admitted and got to have a lovely suite. I was strep B positive, which was a little bit of a bummer, because I had to get a saline lock in. It ended up not being a big deal, and as soon as it was delivered they unhooked me and I was good to go. We covered up the clocks and started to just relax. Covering up the clocks helped me to not think about the time. I used the scripts a lot, and I also used Mr. H and the cue words “peace” and “relax”. Those helped immensely. The pressure waves were only a little uncomfortable, but I was able to walk around, laugh with Mr. H and get excited for our little baby. I also used the tub which was AMAZING. I laughed with the nurse and Mr. H, telling them I felt like I was at the spa. It was a lovely couple of hours. Mr. H and I felt so close, and so happy. I couldn’t believe I was doing it! I felt so much love for Mr H. It was amazing to me that we were doing it! Later, the nurse and my dr. commented on how impressed they were with Mr. H and what a great team we made together. I couldn't agree more.
At around two thirty, I was at a ten, but my water still hadn’t broken. My dr. told me she could break it for me. I wasn’t sure about that…I really wanted to do everything on my own. I finally decided it would be okay if she did, and as soon as I did, my water broke! I realized at that moment that I was actually really scared of pushing. (I did not realize this earlier!) In retrospect, I think my fear of pushing was what slowed my body down so much. After my water broke, things started moving. I tried a lot of different pushing positions, and each one felt different and did different things. At this point, I lost my focus. I panicked, because I could feel Thomas inside of me, coming down, and I felt like there would be no way for him to get out. J I had an amazing support team all around me, guiding me and building me up. My dr did warm compresses and massaged me the entire time, and the nurse and Mr. H were both my cheerleaders. At one point, I remember saying “I can’t do it!” It was the first time I had felt this way, but everyone around me cheered and said “You ARE doing it!” They brought me a mirror (which previously I had thought I would NEVER use one), and my dr showed me T's head crowning, and then she had me feel it with my own hand. That gave me the momentum I needed: seeing him made me laugh and I was smiling when he came out.
I will never forget the feeling of absolute joy as T came out and was immediately put on my chest. When C was born, they took him right away, and I didn’t have that skin to skin time. The hospital I delivered at was very pro skin to skin time, and I was so appreciative. He came out squawking, but he immediately calmed down when he was placed on my chest. There was something so special and sacred about those moments. Everything else was a blur: the placenta came out, and I was done. My dr. informed me that I hadn’t even torn!!! Hooray! Then everyone left us alone while I cuddled my new little boy. I felt so happy and so good! I couldn’t believe I had done it, and that it had gone so perfectly. What an amazing prize at the end. T was beautiful. He had dark hair and these piercing dark eyes. We got to be alone with him for almost two hours before they ran any sort of tests on him and weighed him. I think those two hours were some of the happiest of my life. The amount of love and joy I had for this little boy filled my heart.
The rest of our hospital time was lovely. I felt amazing! I was able to walk just fine and felt totally back to normal in under 12 hours. Thomas was a dream, and we had such a great time cuddling him and basking in his newness. We really struggled naming him. Christian was our tipping point, when he told our friends that he would have a baby “T”. It fit just right. His middle name, Patric, is after my dad, and there couldn’t be a better role model for him to have.
I’m so glad I did the hypno-babies method. It felt so empowering to have worked so hard towards a goal and then to make it happen. It was such a beautiful experience, and left me feeling so good and happy. I was so grateful at how it drew Mr. H and I so close together. Having a new baby around the house is hard, but I’m so happy and grateful that T is ours for forever. He’s stretching me in new ways, but I know that he is blessing our family. His little spirit is so sweet, and he brings a spirit of peace into my heart.