Here is Alexandra and Joe’s story. Another inspiring one all round and Joe is such a fantastic role model for the hypnodads. Another hypnohero discovers his amazing strengths and skills!
“From my point of view I wasn’t as quiet as ‘Daisy’s birth’ but my husband Joe says that he knew that all the breathing I did contributed to making my labour what it was.
I was about to be 10 days overdue and I had tried all of the old wives tale techniques – and I mean ALL of them. I’d also had 2 lots of reflexology and had walked home after one of the treatments, which I think, really helped to get things going. At about 1:30am on day 10 of being overdue I was contemplating getting my first sweep, as I didn’t want to be medically induced 2 days later. As I was drifting off to sleep I started to feel slightly uncomfortable and this discomfort came and went periodically. I thought that this could be ‘it’ but didn’t want to get too excited. I kept my eyes closed and tried to relax and use my breathing techniques.
2 hours passed pretty quickly and it was at 3:30am that I decided to wake up Joe to tell him what I thought was happening. Joe immediately sprung into action – getting my massage oils, birthing ball, scented lavender candle all ready and set up so we could go through this journey together. The contractions were getting stronger and at 4:00am we called the hospital – they told us to come in so we could be assessed. Needless to say I was only 1-2cm and was sent home.
We then spent 4 hours at home, breathing through the pain – using different positions – walking around – all with Joe giving me encouragement and breathing with me to help keep me focused. After having a bath it was 9:00am and I told Joe that it was time to go back to the hospital. It was now a busier time of day and I drew a bit of attention on the walk into the maternity ward as I had around 4 contractions in a short space of time – I was not a quiet labourer.
We made it into the hospital and were immediately seen by the midwives in triage who said I was 4-5cm and they would find us a room. Unfortunately they were short staffed and finding a room was proving difficult (we realised after we’d spent 3 hours in triage) but Joe kept me focused and the time we spent went very quickly as we kept up our breathing techniques. Just before we were moved, they assessed me and I was 8-9cm and soon enough, we were being wheeled through to a delivery room. (I knew that this would be the case as I was told previously that I would need the intravenous drug after my birth to help my womb contract).
Once we were in the room our midwives introduced themselves to us and put a heart monitor on just to make sure everything was ok. As we’d just been assessed they said they would leave us to it for a short while – however I told them not to leave as I really felt the need to push. They checked me again and sure enough I was 10cm. My water hadn’t broken so now was the time for them to do this. The midwives put the monitor back on to check the baby was ok before allowing us to breathe the baby out. Unfortunately the baby’s heart rate had dropped and now the baby needed to be out as quickly as possible.
I’d done a lot of work before this point as they could already see the baby’s head; I put that down to the breathing techniques we learnt. Before we knew it we were surrounded by lots of doctors and midwives all with one goal – to get the baby out. With in a minute baby Thomas was born – the cord was round his neck – but he was fine. From the first pain to delivery was less than 12 hours. I know that while we were learning about hypnobirthing we imagined how long we thought the labour would last – I always positively imagined that my labour would be 5 hours or less – it was wishful thinking at the time – but in the end, once we were in established labour – it took under 4 hours – we were in the delivery room for just 15 minutes before Thomas’ arrival.
The midwives praised us both – especially Joe my husband – who they said was the best birth partner they’d seen – he’d given me such great support to keep me focused and positive that they could concentrate on other things – without the course I’m sure Joe would have felt like a spare part. Joe also says that without the breathing techniques I could have easily become tired. The calm breathing meant that while I wasn’t having surges I was able to relax fully, meaning I could reserve my energy for when the action really began.
Thank you to Jo, you made such a difference to our birth and for that we will forever be grateful.”