Birth story - Ashley and baby Amelie

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I want to start by saying I had a really positive birth experience with my first daughter, I was just very unprepared and just listened and did what the nurses told me without thinking to question anything. I had an epidural with my first and even though I had a great experience, I knew with this one I wanted to see what my body could do on it’s own! I should also say that I’m British but live in Houston, Texas, so the way things are done here are completely different to the UK!!

My pregnancy was going great but at 33 weeks had a small little set back. I had a really minor fall that triggered surges and they discovered I had a bacterial infection and was dehydrated. Although that sounds scary, I was so calm the whole time and used my up breathing throughout the whole thing. The doctors kept offering me pain relief and I kept declining. They were all so surprised I was able to remain so calm, despite my surges being quite strong. Having gone through this really helped me believe in the hypnobirthing and I found I was actually really excited to go into labour.

Fast forward to 36 weeks, here in America they check you for dilation from this point until you deliver. I personally didn’t mind this so was happy to accept. I was already 2cm which was to be expected due to the pre-term labour. My doctor kept telling me she didn’t think it would be long. My last appointment was at 39 weeks and I was 4cm and super thin. Despite losing my mucus plug, having my bloody show and lots of cramping, it was just looking as though baby was not quite ready!

My first daughters birthday is 3rd October and because of the group B strep, I knew I would have to stay in hospital for 48 hours once baby was born so they could monitor her so I was quite tense in the days leading up to her birthday because I would have been gutted if it missed her 2nd birthday. I think being so tense helped her stay in because the next day, once I was more relaxed, I started having twinges and lots of strong Braxton Hicks.

Throughout the day, the twinges were coming and going and by evening they were becoming more frequent and stronger and I knew that this was the start. They were super manageable but because of the strep, I needed antibiotics through labour so I was anxious to get to the hospital.

We arrived at the hospital and were checked in straight away. I was all ready in my room, antibiotics and IV were in by 8:30pm and surges were really starting to pick up. Just after 9pm my waters broke and that’s when things really started to pick up. Surges were coming roughly every 2-3 minutes and I admit at this point I did have a wobble and asked for an epidural. The nurse told me that I have to finish a whole bag of IV fluid before I could get one and that would be in about an hour. This wasn’t what I wanted to hear but I was using my up breathing to get me through the surges and trying to be as upright snd forward as possible!

Then my body started pushing on its own and, through what I’ve learnt with this course, I knew it was my body pushing the baby out. The nurse examined me and told me I was only at a 5cm which I just could not believe. She came back 10 minutes later and I had to tell her again that my body was pushing and there was nothing I could do to stop it. She checked me again and sure enough I was 10cm. (I really had to fight the urge to say ‘I told you so’ at this point).

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Once I fully gave in to the pushing, 5 minutes later, Amelie was born weighing 6lbs 11oz. Her big sister, Rosie, is so in love with her, as are we. I am still in shock that my labour was so quick. Despite the fast delivery, I had no tears or grazes and so far my postpartum recovery has been great. Placenta came out straight after baby and we had instant skin to skin and she went straight to the boob!

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I am so thankful to have found this course, and I am so excited for all you expectant mums and wish you all the luck in the world for the arrival of your little ones! 💛

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