Birth story - Grace and baby Ava

My first baby was born from a positive hypnobirthing induction due to being ‘overdue’ so I knew I could have another positive experience but still got so disappointed when the time came that I didn’t go into spontaneous labour. My first was induced at 40+10 but I accepted induction at 40+12 this time knowing it can take a couple of days to get going.

They started by inserting a pessary on Wednesday morning, the consultant wanted to keep me on the induction ward from the start, due to me having a large bleed in my first birth, even though you normally go home with the pessary. I used BRAIN and discharged myself knowing I needed to be at home to relax and rest. I would never have done this first time round, I did everything they said without questioning it so I’m so glad for just that part of this online course! Nothing happened all day apart from very mild period type aches but I got plenty of rest and ate lovely food in prep for labour.

My pessary fell out at 2am when going for a wee but the hospital told me to get a few more hours rest, so I got a really good nights sleep which I wouldn’t have done if I had stayed in hospital. I went back to induction ward at 6am the next morning. At this point I was having very mild tightenings but cervix still not quite ready so they decided to put some gel in and left me for 6 hours.

They told me their aim was to break my waters to get labour going but I was really keen to avoid being put on the drip so was worrying about having to ‘progress’ quickly if they broke my waters. After 6 hours of me listening to hypnobirthing tracks and music, eating and drinking lots, and more mild surges they examined me to say I was only 2cm, my cervix was still very thick and not anywhere near labour. But they didn’t want to put more gel in because I was having surges already, but knowing I was really wanting to avoid the drip they left me alone for another 2 hours.

In those 2 hours the surges really ramped up a gear, they felt so powerful and I was sure they were really opening my cervix, they were powerful enough for me not to be able to do anything but breathe through them. The up breathing was AMAZING here, having the counting made all the difference for flowing through them. My husband then went to get a midwife because I was keen to move to the labour ward asap so I could get settled there. They examined me again to be told still only 2cm, cervix much thinner but still not time for labour ward yet. At this point I had a major wobble, the surges were so powerful I was disappointed to be told I was ‘only 2cm’, I got tearful, got the shakes and had major adrenaline self doubt. I now know this was transition but I just didn’t think it could be because I was told I was so far off from labour. My amazing husband recognised transition and insisted I needed to go to labour ward, they eventually listened and I was taken through after another 30 mins.

We turned the lights off in the room, turned on the electric tea lights, sprayed room spray and I carried on listening to hypnobirthing tracks on headphones on the birthing ball while my husband rubbed my back. At this point the surges were so so powerful, I asked for gas and air and was told after I’m examined in 2 hours time they will reassess but they didn’t want me to have gas and air because I ‘wasn’t even in active labour yet’.

I had another major wobble and felt I wasn’t coping very well if not even in active labour yet. If it wasn’t for the up breathing technique I would have really panicked but having that to focus on made all the difference. My surges were then coming straight after each other with no gaps, very powerful and nothing like my first labour. I then felt the pressure to push and got up on all fours on the bed and started really moaning through the surges. At this point the midwife recognised I was actually fully dilated and ready to go so finally gave me gas and air!

My body then completely took over, I could feel it pushing the baby down all by itself during the surges, I didn’t do anything, it was absolutely amazing. After about 30 mins of my body doing that I was then told by midwife to push. I did put some pressure on this time but my body still did most of the work and in a few pushes my baby was born in her amniotic sac! (Which obviously would never have happened if they had broken my waters!)

I had gone from 2 to 10cm in a couple of hours, hence why the surges were so powerful, and why I had a couple of wobbles, my body was working very quickly!

We went home just a few hours later. What an incredible experience, I thought my first birth was positive but after doing this online course I realise where things had gone wrong in a lot of places, and the course gave me the opportunity to have the most amazing birth while still in the induction environment so I will be forever grateful.

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