the birth of Elliott
A truly inspiring account of birth from first time mum and birthing rockstar!
I received this incredible birth story from Lauren just 6 days after taking part in my July group hypnobirthing course, and it gave me all the feels. This is hypnobirthing. I love how Lauren and Ali worked as a dream team to navigate all the twists and turns their birth path took with knowledge and power. They were in the driving seat throughout the entire experience, it's no wonder they are walking on air post birth. I am so proud of them all!
Our gorgeous son, Elliott, arrived safely into the world on 27th July 2019 - just 6 days after we took your class! I thought you'd like to hear my positive birth story so here it is.
My waters broke in the early hours on 26th July (after that awfully hot day on Thursday I'm inclined to believe there's a link haha!) and my latent phase of labour began about an hour later with mild, infrequent surges. We went to triage at Pembury to be checked over and as expected, were sent home and told to rest and relax as much as possible before active labour began.
I got into the bath after arriving back home and used my lavender essential oils and the positive affirmations MP3 to get myself into a relaxed headspace. This really helped and by the time I had finished my bath, my surges were coming every 5 minutes and lasting around 40 seconds. By 6pm they were coming every 3-4 minutes and lasting 60 seconds, so we went back triage to be assessed. This was, unfortunately, where I had my first wobble which took a lot of positive willpower to get through.
I had only dilated 1cm despite my surges resembling active labour, which caused me to get very upset and I started to lose control. We got sent back home and I really struggled to relax again after this, but knew that I needed all the oxytocin I could get so we watched some funny TV and I felt a little better. By 1am the surges had become very intense and I felt like I needed some help, so back to triage we went. I was still only 1cm despite it being nearly 24 hours since everything began, but due to me struggling we were admitted to the antenatal ward. We later were told that Elliott had turned back to back which explained the intense pressure that the surges were causing in my back and tail bone!
At this point I knew I needed to get back in into the driver's seat, so I took myself into the bathroom and sat on the toilet (thinking about that UFO position which helped with the pain) and recited positive affirmations in my head with every surge - "my surges cannot be stronger than me because they are me" being one of the key statements I needed. A few hours later I had finally reached 4cm - and honestly that was the hardest part of my labour. Things got much easier thereafter!
We were taken up to the delivery suite where I was offered pain relief - using my BRAIN I accepted gas and air and pethidine. We made it known that I wished to avoid an epidural as per my birth plan. And with that, I suddenly became a lot more upbeat as I realised that our baby would be born today! Excitement began to take over and this is the moment that I believe I truly took back control and had the positive birth that I wanted.
Our midwife on the delivery suite was incredible and so supportive of our preferences, she made our entire experience so upbeat and really made us feel like we had every choice available that we had outlined on our birth plan! Using the gas and air, I was able to effectively breathe through each surge and all of that out of control yelling from earlier on in my labour disappeared.
The plan was for the pethidine to get me to 6cm, but upon my next examination I had reached 9cm! I was so elated that I cried tears of joy knowing that we would be meeting our baby very soon! I continued with the gas and air and started to notice the intense pressure pushing down. I knew I had hit the transition phase and was preparing for the second stage of labour and I can't describe just how excited I was - practically willing each surge to come sooner!
I quickly reached 10cm but by this point, unfortunately my surges had really slowed down - they were only coming every 5 minutes, at some points even taking 10 in between. I was offered a hormone drip to speed things up as Elliott had spent a long time with his head in the birth canal and his heart rate was jumping around a lot, and again, using our BRAIN we decided that this was the right thing to do. I wanted to avoid interventions and this was the best chance I had of doing so.
After nearly an hour of pushing the midwife told us that if Elliott wasn't born within another 30 minutes the doctors would want to intervene, and this was the boost that I needed to give the pushing my absolute all. I put down the gas and air and embraced every surge with my entire body, making some of the most primal sounds I've ever heard come out of my mouth! It was the most intense, powerful and incredible thing I have ever felt in my life, and I could feel my baby coming closer and closer to me with every passing minute.
Elliott's head started to crown and I was exhausted, so Ali and another midwife came in to help me direct my strength away from my legs and down into my bottom to make the most of every surge as they were still not coming as quickly as they should have been. They were both fantastic and gave me that final boost that I needed - and with another few pushes, Elliott came into the world at 2:23pm! He came straight up on my chest for skin to skin and he was so relaxed looking up into my eyes, I couldn't believe it - I cried more than he did!
Four days later and despite being sleep deprived, I still feel like I'm running on a high from just how well the birth went and I'm honestly in awe of how incredible my body is, how it created and gave birth to this beautiful human being sleeping peacefully in my arms as I wrote this! It is so true that a positive mindset changes everything - my birth story could have been a whole lot different had I not managed to regain my confidence after having it knocked so early on in the process. Hypnobirthing and your course helped me to achieve that and I cannot thank you enough for all your support!