My birth did not go as planned, but that’s okay. My birth was still an amazing experience and I am now holding my beautiful, healthy baby girl in my arms.
I had originally opted for a drug free water birth, but as labour progressed, this became challenging. I was challenged with a long labour. I was also challenged with baby being posterior. Thankfully, I had an amazing partner and doula by my side. I laboured at home for as long as I could before opting to make the transition to the birth suite, to receive sterile water injections and nitrous oxide.
I was already 7cm dilated when I arrived at the birth suite, so I was allowed to get in the birthing pool. Unfortunately, I had to get out of the pool as it had slowed down my labour. This was unexpected but I was content with this change.
I continued to have an active labour, moving around the room and trying different positions whilst tuning into some HypnoBirthing tools. I didn’t utilise as many tools as I thought I would, but that doesn’t mean my HypnoBirthing practice went out the window. I followed my instinct and did what felt right for me at the time. I tuned into my calm breathing and surge breathing and this was what worked best for me.
Labour progressed slowly and I became more and more challenged. The time came when I opted for an epidural to allow my body time to rest. My doula made me promise to try a forward leaning inversion before she would let me get the epidural. I had been resisting the inversion as the pressure was so strong, but hearing my doula say that made me do it. I’m so thankful to her. I’m at ease knowing I tried.
I was 9cm dilated when the anaesthetist arrived and I was given the epidural. This decision was the right one for me and my baby. Minutes after the epidural, my baby was LOA (anterior) and I was able to allow my body to rest.
Due to the epidural, labour continued to progress slowly. We consulted with our healthcare providers and used the BRAIN method to make a conscious decision to start syntocinon. After some much needed rest, it was time for my baby to be birthed. Having an epidural meant that I needed to push. Originally I had planned to avoid forced pushing, but my midwife did an amazing job at guiding me through each surge in a calm and gentle manner. The active pushing phase took only 29 minutes. Prior to pushing, I was informed that intervention with forceps or vacuum might be needed because of the effects of the epidural. I am so happy that my baby entered the world without this intervention.
The key message here is, it doesn’t matter if you opt or drugs. It does not mean you are weak or a sook, which is what I first thought. It means you are in tune with your body and baby, and you are following your instincts to do what feels right for you. Had I not received the epidural, my baby had a high chance of becoming stuck, requiring further intervention and possibly cesarean. I am happy with my decision and I am proud of what I have achieved. I was able to stay calm, meaning my baby remained calm and I was able to deliver my baby vaginally into a calm environment. I had an amazing HypnoBirth.