Birth Story - Sian and baby Jamie

Time to share my story! Saturday 16th June I gave birth to Jamie Stephen Wood. I’m a FTM and I decided to be induced due to high blood pressure and him being on the smaller side of normal in terms of growth.

I was induced with a 24-hr pessary a week earlier than my due date. The midwife asked if I was happy for her to do a sweep before she put it in and I’m proud to say I confidently declined this offer as I wanted as long as possible to allow the pessary to work without the risk of my waters breaking (this is something I never would’ve done without this course!)

I began feeling uncomfortable period pains and lower back pains but never thought this could be contractions. When they monitored baby they confirmed that they were and I was 1cm dilated. They moved me from the delivery suite to another area as I wasn’t progressing that quickly. Within 20 minutes of restlessness trying to sleep my waters broke (on their own!!) with a vengeance and I was transferred back to the delivery suite!

What still felt like period pains were becoming more and more frequent and intense. This is where I cannot thank Siobhan enough. I kept up with my breathing of in for four, out for eight with each contraction and it really really helped. I was listening to a calming playlist throughout and then in between contractions I was drinking lucozade sports drinks and occasionally eating sweets whilst my birth partner scratched my back and gave me reassuring messages! It made this part of labour much easier and I felt really in control of what was going on and felt like I knew what was coming.

Gradually this became more and more intense and closer together which I really struggled with as I didn’t have the time to do what I needed and I struggled to feel comfortable. I decided to ask if I could use a TENs machine and this helped me get through the surges for a bit longer.

I was then examined and to my surprise I was already 5cm dilated. I honestly couldn’t believe I got that far without any pain relief apart from the TENs machine toward the end.

At this point I was very tired and accepted oral morphine, gas and air and eventually pethidine (after asking the right questions and thinking about the effect it could have on baby).

I continued with my breathing using the gas and air which was a great relief and really helpful! At my next examination they were ready to put in a second gel and to think about the possibility of an epidural... however, I was 10cm!! Hurrah!

So I was asked to start ‘pushing’ when I felt surges. I strangely stopped being able to feel the surges at this point but still managed to just know when to go with it. Unfortunately baby’s heart rate was dropping and I was becoming very weak and tired.

I agreed at this point it would best to have assistance as I had no energy left and I was likely to tear naturally. So I had an episiotomy and Jamie was delivered with the assistance of forceps. This part was very difficult but it was over within seconds as I had immediate skin to skin contact with Jamie, my partner told me he was a boy and we managed to have a bit of delayed cord clamping and managed to have a bit more time together whilst I was being stitched up too!

Whilst this wasn’t my ideal birth and I made decisions I didn’t expect to...I feel like I was in complete control of what was happening and at no point did I think ‘I had to have this because that’s what they told me’ which has meant it was a very empowering experience. I absolutely love hypnobirthing and I think you are amazing Siobhan! Thank you for everything!

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