Friday, February 13, 2009

Another fast HypnoBirthing story

Here is a story of a couple's birth from another HypnoBirthing practitioner where the mom & the midwife didn't believe she was truly in labor!

BTW...Jamie is a woman, in the couple she carried the baby. Just wanted to clarify since the name Jamie is gender-neutral. If one didn't know that, it could read in a very confusing manner. : )

Hi Kristen-
This is Jamie and Sarah (we took your HypnoBirth class in the summer). I am finally writing to tell you our birth story and announce the arrival of Lucy Magnolia! I know you said you loved hearing people's birth stories and wanted to be updated. I've been thinking about writing this for awhile, but now I finally found the time.
So, I'm sure every birth is a long story, so I'm still trying to figure out how to condense this, so I'll cut to the chase and then give you details: Sarah and I were planning on a home birth - and we had one! my labor was only 4 hours (and yes this was my first baby!), so things progressed so quickly that Sarah actually delivered the baby before the midwives could get here! wow!
So, the morning she was born I woke up feeling different. I had no idea I would go into labor that day, I was thinking maybe the next day or two. She just felt heavier inside me and my low back ached in a dull way it hadn't before. I had been swimming the whole week before she was born, but decided to not go swimming this day. My back started to feel more achy and slightly crampy, but I didn't think anything of it, so I just spent an hour on my hands and knees stretching on the exercise ball.
At noon my mucous plug came out, but I was cautious to not get too excited since I knew it could still be a few days. But then I realized, I shouldn't have cramps if I'm pregnant... I think I'm beginning labor! So I called our midwives and she said to eat some protein and take a nap. So I tried to lay down, but when I had a contraction it hurt so much worse to be laying down, that I hopped up out of bed and spent the next 2.5 hours walking around the house - stopping to breathe through the contractions. My contractions were only a couple minutes apart this whole time. We called the midwife at some point and told her this early on, and she said it was very normal in pre-labor for them to be very close together and then they should space out.
I was still thinking we had 12 or 18 hours to go, so I didn't think that much of it. I was "afraid" (for lack of better words) of the midwives coming over too soon to only find out I was 1 cm dilated - so I overreacted by being too tough and holding out too long. oops!
So at 2:30, I went in our room and got on my hands and knees with the exercise ball. When I had a contraction I would just breathe through it and Sarah would push on my back as hard as she could (I was having back labor the whole time). From 2:30 until 3:50 I did this. Sarah was in and out of the room - she was trying to set up the birth tub in the other room and get the house ready for labor.... then my contractions changed and I had to stand up - it felt as if my abdomen was pushing down and pushing the baby out!
Sarah came back into the room and I was standing, holding onto the window sill - my thighs quivering so hard during each contraction I thought I might collapse. We called the midwife at 3:57 to say come check me and that it felt like my body was trying to expel something. She clarified if I felt the need to push. I said no because I was so focused on not pushing (like you taught us!) and just breathing and allowing my body to do its work!
Midwife said she was on her way. I went into the bathroom and sat on the toilet, I reached down and felt something ! Sarah called the midwife back to say the head was coming out, but she told us it was probably the bag of waters.... and it was. It broke into the toilet. (Sarah is still on phone with midwife) after my bag of waters broke, with the next contraction I felt her head! I continued to breathe through the contractions and allow my body to do its work. Once her head was out, I could no longer feel my contractions. I got off the toilet and on my hands and knees on our tiny bathroom floor. Sarah was still on the phone with the midwife who was coaching her to have me push. I pushed as hard as I could, but NOTHING was happening. I still couldn't feel any more contractions. Her head was out for about 4 minutes with nothing happening. I could hear the tone of Sarah's voice change and become a bit more serious. The midwife instructed her that "that baby needed to come out NOW" and Sarah was to pull, however hard it took. Sarah finally got her hands around the base of her head and neck and pulled and she finally slipped out and started crying immediately. We wrapped & dried her off a bit and I held her to my chest covered in towels until the midwives got there about 15 or 20 minutes later.
Sarah and I both were so calm. Everyone says we must have been in shock and perhaps we were. We are both such calm people I feel we were just well prepared for the event.
Reflecting on being in labor, Sarah never once said any of the HypnoBirthing "things" during my labor. It was just quiet. I was in my own little world. We both figured we had a whole day of laboring that we didn't want to start anything to early. Sarah could also tell I was just enjoying the quiet of the room. The only time I made noise was when I pulled myself up on the window, (probably in transition?) I moaned a bit during those contractions. Although we did not actively use HypnoBirthing during labor (prompts, music) we both feel it absolutely prepared us for being so calm during labor and allowed me to just breathe, relax and allow my body to do the birthing. It helped me trust my body to be able to handle each contraction. I am so thankful we took your HypnoBirthing class. I believe it made a profound impact on how I handled my very fast labor and delivering on our own! I believe my body was using the HypnoBirthing I had practiced "subconsciously" while I was just focused on breathing through contractions even though Sarah was not prompting me, speaking to me or playing our birthing music.
Thanks Kristen for your class. Lucy is now 13 weeks old and doing fabulous. I feel almost all the way healed, but WAY better than I was. We are all doing great and loving being a family. Best,Jamie

Kristen Olberz, RN, CH, HBCE, HFT
Portland, OR

So, for anyone who isn't familiar with HypnoBirthing, we teach our moms to push by bearing down gently while using her breath to bear down/push vs vasalva pushing where the mom pushes forcefully while holding her breath. So, HypnoBirthing moms don't "push", but they are encouraged to breath & use their breath while nudging the baby down with their muscles & breath similar to the way that one bears down during a bowel movement. This helps the body work with labor vs against it. In other words, they push, but much more gentle than the type of pushing encouraged during most births.


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