Thursday, September 26, 2013

Laura & Will's HypnoBirthing story

Laura & Will took my HypnoBirthing classes at Seaside Women's Health in Encinitas, CA (North County San Diego). Here is the birth story of their first baby:

Will and I got to meet our baby at 12:01 am on April 9, 2013. Our baby Taylor was born at 37 weeks and she was 8 pounds, 20 inches long. The nurses and doctors told me if I had her at 40 weeks, she would likely be 9.5 pounds. The whole process was incredible! I did have some intervention but my husband and I were both confident in our decisions and I am also happy to say that the hospital staff was very accommodating and understanding of my wishes.

My labor was not ideal but I am happy with the outcome. My water broke and woke me out of a dead sleep around 1:50am on April 8. I wasn't sure if I peed my pants or if it was my water. I was expecting a trickle like I had heard for some many people. That wasn't the case with me! :)  Around 3 am, the surges came and were about 6 minutes apart. I started listening to the rainbow relaxation and center my head. We called Scripps around 4 am because things felt like they were progressing pretty quickly. We took our time, packed and got things in order. We arrived at Scripps Encinitas around 545 am. They did a few tests on me to check if my water broke but it kept coming back negative. I assured the OB that it was undeniable. After some time and movement, they were able to get a positive test. During this process, they were measuring my blood pressure and it was high for about 2 hours. They were worried I may have pre-eclampsia. Until they got those test results back, they had me lay in the bed and kept close tabs on baby. This was very upsetting for me because by 11 am my contractions had slowed to nearly nothing. 

My midwife then came by and confirmed the test results were negative for pre-eclampsia and now their focus was getting labor going for me. We discussed the possible use of pitocin. I explained to her my wishes not to have intervention. They gave me 2 hours to get up, walk around and do what I need to do try to get things moving. Unfortunately, after walking quite a bit and using the techniques from class, my body would not take over active labor on its own. My contractions were maybe every 10 minutes. They started me with a pitocin drip. My nurse and midwife were very open and explained things well. Even with the pitocin, the surges moved up to an inconsistent 6-7 minutes. We gradually increased the pitocin for the next 5 hours and it wasn't until the drip was at 6 that the surges were 3-4 minutes apart and I was dilated to 6 or 7. This was at roughly 18 hours of labor and my whole body was exhausted. I had trouble keeping my focus and relaxing. The nurse and my husband were using counter pressure and massage to help. 

I decided to get the epidural at this point. After, I laid in bed for another 2 hours and had dilated to 10 within an hour. My new nurse let me lay there and rest for another hour before starting to push. He told me to breath, relax and let my body move the baby down some on its own. Even with the medication there was still a lot of pressure. I continued to use counter pressure which helped a lot! I pushed for about two hours.

I am happy to say that I was able to contribute a lot with the medications and was amazed at actually feeling the advancement of my baby through the process. After birth, my baby was so calm and alert. She handled all 22 hours beautifully although we both had a bit of a fever at the end. We got an amazing 2 hours to bond skin to skin and she fed twice before they took her for a bath. I also tore some during labor but only required just a couple stitches. If it wasn't for hypnobirthing, I would not have made it as long as I did without pain medicine. My husband was also very impressed at the process. 

Although things were not the picture perfect hypnobirth, we were able to take each obstacle step by step and make a decision on our terms and not necessarily the hospital's. 
Congratulations,  Laura & Will! Even though your birth wasn't your ideal birth, I'm so glad that you had a positive birthing experience and that the classes helped you & Will confidently make the best decisions for the best outcome for you & your baby. That's really my ultimate goal for my classes---not a quiet, peaceful birth like all of the videos (which is definitely one of my main goals)--but a birth in which you & your partner are empowered, in control and make educated, informed decisions every step of the way so that no matter what happens, you can look back at your birthing experience and know you did everything the way that it needed to be. So, I'm pleased to hear that the classes helped you make the right decisions and feel as in control as possible during your birth experience.

Thank you for sharing your hypnobirthing story! Enjoy your babymoon!

If you'd like to take Carol's HypnoBirthing classes to prepare for your upcoming birth, you can learn more about her class schedule at www.AWellLivedLife.Net. If you are outside of the San Diego area, you can visit to find a Practitioner near you.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Jocelyn's VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section) HypnoBirthing Story

Jocelyn came to my HypnoBirthing classes very late in her pregnancy. So late, that she started with class 5 of a series that was ending, just to ensure she got all of the classes in before her impending birth. She actually didn't make it to class 5 of her own class series!

She had a c-section for her first baby...things didn't progress, she tightened up when she had contractions and reported that she just didn't know what to do during her first birth.

Here's her VBAC birth story:

I just wanted to write to tell you we had our baby last night!  Thanks for your strategies, encouragement, and positive thinking.  I had a successful VBAC against some pretty serious odds.  (Water broke first, Group B strep positive, posterior baby through labor, not dropping/engaging for hours,...and cord wrapped around his neck twice in the end) It wasn't easy or pretty and I didn't look like the ladies on the video the whole time...but I used the music, relaxation strategies, scripts, and position strategies...and they really made all the difference. I ended up getting an epidural 8 hours into labor. It was a wonderful part of the process for me but I was glad that it wasn't my only option as I needed every part of the natural birthing techniques to get me to the point where my labor wouldn't stall out as opposed to if I had gotten it right away.  I know I would have had a repeat c-section had I not taken your class.  I am very grateful. 

Our baby's name is Douglas, 8 lb 12 ounces.  21 inches. Born at 39 weeks, 2 days. 

Good luck to all you amazing moms!
Congratulations on your successful VBAC! I'm thrilled to hear that you did it and that you were able to use the HypnoBirthing techniques with success. Like I always say in class, the videos are the complete opposite of what we're conditioned to think birth looks like, but sometimes our births end up looking or sounding different, and that's okay! You had several special circumstances that could have prevented you from having a successful VBAC, but I'm glad that the education you received in my classes, helped you achieve your goal.

Enjoy your babymoon!

If you are interested in taking Carol's HypnoBirthing classes, you can learn more about her class schedule at www.AWellLivedLife.Net. If you are out of the San Diego area, you can go to to find a Practitioner near you.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Kristin & Brian's HypnoBirthing story

Kristin & Brian took Carol's HypnoBirthing classes on Thursday nights in January 2013 in Encinitas, CA (North County San Diego) to prepare for their first baby's arrival. Here is their birth story:

The arrival of our little man began on Monday March 11th at 10am when my mucous plug along with a small amount of fluid spilled out on my kitchen floor. I went straight to the internet and researched if this was a indication of early labor and read that it only means that labor could be over the next week and a small amount of discharge is normal in the last few weeks. After reading this, I continued with my day of grocery shopping (where I bumped into Carol at Trader Joe's), laundry and cleaning the house. I started having minor cramping but just brushed it off as Braxton Hicks.

At seven o'clock that evening, Brian (my husband) came home and said to call the doctor just in case and as soon as I talked to the doctor on call at Scripps La Jolla, he insisted I immediately come to the hospital to get checked to see if the watery discharge was amniotic fluid. To my dismay, I packed my bag and headed for the hospital still only having minor cramping but feeling great overall. After the nurse confirmed that it was indeed amniotic fluid and my water had broken, the 24 hour hospital clock started and they were going to let me go until morning before inducing me if labor hadn't begun.

At around ten o'clock, the cramping started feeling like surges and progressively got stronger and stronger... since my water had broken, I refused to be checked for risk of infection so I never knew how far my labor was progressing. At 3:30ish, I hit a wall and was contemplating the epidural but all of a sudden felt the urge to push. Melissa (my mid-wife) checked me and sure enough I was ten centimeters and it was time to push! After about forty-five minutes of intense pushing, Hudson Patrick entered this world at 4:32am weighing 7 lbs 3oz and measuring 19 inches. 

I'm so grateful to have taken your class and proud to say I was able to give birth at Scripps La Jolla with no hep lock/IV or epidural and was treated with the utmost respect and kindness even though my doctor was on vacation and the mid-wife, whom I never met, delivered our baby. It went better then I could have ever imagined and we were able to leave the hospital the next day with the most handsome little man. Recovery has been great and I can't thank you enough Carol for all you do!!!
Congratulations on your awesome birth experience! I'm so glad that the classes helped you have a wonderful birth experience! Thank you so much for sharing your story! Enjoy your babymoon!

If you are in San Diego and would like to take HypnoBirthing classes with Carol, please visit her website to sign up. If you are outside the San Diego area, please visit and go to the Find a Practitioner section. The HypnoBirthing Institute recommends taking classes sometime between your fifth and seventh month of pregnancy. Carol's late September classes are filling up, so sign up now!