Updated: Jul 22
B I R T H S T O R Y
(names have been changed to maintain confidentiality)
I taught this couple privately on a one to one basis. It was Lily and Johns first baby and Lily had been told many horror birth stories and was clearly very anxious. It was wonderful to watch her confidence grow and by the end of the course, she was actually excited for the birth of her beautiful baby. Lily and John made an excellent team, John was her absolute rock and it was wonderful showing him how to help, support and protect Lily.
Her birth story is wonderful and with permission, I’m sharing it with you all.
The arrival of baby 'O'
So I woke around 1 am with stomach pains and I just knew it was labour. I’d been having the pains for a few days off and on but I just knew this time it was the real thing. I woke John up and he got me a hot water bottle, but we just stayed in bed and tried to sleep.
Needless to say, I didn’t sleep at all, but felt really relaxed and cosy in bed and almost was enjoying those first few hours, all wrapped up and cosy! I breathed through every contraction which was just the best because it kept me calm and kept my focus away from anything but breathing. I almost felt a weird kind of elation.
I finally got up around 6 am and John ran me a bath. He even filled the bathroom with fairy lights and put on relaxing music. It so happened that my midwife was visiting that morning anyway, so I rang to tell her and she came earlier. It was good to have someone to check everything was going as it should be! She asked if she could examine me and I knew I’d have to have it done at least once to see how far I was. It was painful but I was 3 cm dilated. We rang triage who advised us to stay at home longer (this was around 9 am). I stayed at home and carried on with the same, breathing through each contraction.
Around midday things definitely stepped up a gear, so we headed to the hospital. When we arrived a midwife could see that I was in active labour and moved us to a private room. The room wasn’t great, very bright, clinical, with a strip light but I was just glad to be out of the waiting room. A really lovely midwife came and asked if she could examine me. I told her it really hurt me last time and that I was reluctant to have another. After discussing things with her she said she would be really gentle - she was. I was 4 cm and felt a little disheartened as I thought I would have been further than that.
I stayed in that room for what felt like ages, breathing through my contractions, listened to music, and read my affirmations. John was great at keeping me relaxed feeding me blueberries. I was just on gas and air at this point.
They finally said that I could change rooms and put me in a much nicer one with a bath. No pool though as they said they were not currently available. After a short time in the room, my contractions got really intense and I got upset and lost it a bit. I finally caved and asked for something stronger. The midwife gave us all of our options and John asked for privacy for us to decide. I remained firm on the no needle in my back, so opted for the diamorphine. So glad I did! As the midwife said “it won’t stop the pain but you just won’t care about it” and she was very right!
As I was pretty out of it I couldn’t stay standing up obviously so was lying on the bed. During this time the midwives changed, the new midwife was less personable and supportive. She left the room a lot. Anyway, at some point a different midwife came in just looking for something and happened to look at my birth plan. She said “ooh why are you in here if you want a pool! I’m sure there is one free!” So she went to check. The midwife rushed back in and said that there was a pool free and that she was filling it for me. She wrapped me in a towel and pushed me to the pool room in a wheelchair. I probably wouldn’t have got a pool if it wasn't for her - she was amazing.
So, I got my pool! It was 7 pm by now and I also got a new midwife, who was an angel. The pool was so lovely and I was so happy to get into it. I floated on my back in it, and I was still feeling fuzzy from the diamorphine. John put the fairy lights and music back on. I remember every midwife that came in and out of the room commenting on how relaxing it was. After about an hour I felt the urge to push and it built very naturally. At no point did the midwife tell me to push, I just listened to my body and my body took over. Obviously, you know that this part is the most intense! I could feel baby O moving down and then at the end of each contraction I could feel her going back up. I kept shouting shes going back in!! Then it dawned on me that I needed to change position and go on all fours. With the next contraction and lots of screaming baby Os head was birthed. Everyone was telling me how much hair she had! I needed a break at this point and it felt like ages I was crouching there with her head out. The midwife wasn’t worried and sat there patiently there with me and all was very calm. Then suddenly the urge came over me and I think this part was the craziest, intense part of labour I roared her out into the water, the feeling was like nothing else I could even attempt to describe. John caught her and I remember everyone congratulating me. I eventually sat back in the water and baby O was placed into my arms. I stayed there for about 20 minutes and when the cord stopped pulsating John cut the cord.
So that is it, I’m really proud of it and don’t think I could have done any better. We are settling into being a family of 3, it is a roller coaster but we are all so in love