PLANNING MY BIRTH…
When I found out I was expecting, I found myself feeling clueless about the whole process of giving birth. I had plenty of colleagues and close family members with little ones, so my knowledge of what the lead up to the big day would be like was mixed with the emotions of others. Highs, lows, surprises, excitement and cynicism. Many of these stories and experiences were projected onto me and my pregnancy.
When I found Aimee’s course, I knew it was the one for my husband and I to attend together. We enjoyed her sessions, did the work to apply what was shared with us and made sure to create a space where we could plan for THE day.
Yes I use the word plan.
Many people had tried to put me off the idea of planing. But plan I did.
I ended work two weeks before my due date at the end of June. During the sunny days of waiting for the little one to show up, I wrote down three birth plans: natural birth, natural + assisted, c-section.
These focused on personal decisions I felt was most important to me. Mainly with the idea that should the time come, my husband would be my advocate.
In the run up to my due date, I was told by the consultant that they would book me in for an induction if baby did not arrive on the date as it was measuring big. I was also strongly told that I would not be able to give birth at the birth centre. I was quite upset by this news initially.
However, using the hypnobirthing shared with us, I was able to feel in control of my birthing journey. I questioned where appropriate and stood my ground in the options I wanted available to me on the day. I also booked myself in for multiple sweeps with various midwives to try and trigger labour.
THE DAY OF MY BIRTH… 40 weeks and 3 days
I still remember it clearly- it was a sunny June morning, I had been out gardening, bouncing on my ball, doing gentle stretches and watching Brooklyn99. All the activities that I enjoyed and filled me with oxytocin.
By the evening, I started to feel like as if my Braxton Hicks had transitioned into proper contractions. I was told to call triage as soon as I felt contractions because the baby was measuring big and I had more amniotic fluid than usual.
I was hesitant to do this as I wanted to remain at home a long as possible if it was truly contractions. I held on tightly, wanting to remain in my safe oxytocin filled home.
However my husband convinced me to call triage and they asked us to go in for a quick checkup. We got to the hospital without our car seat and hospital bag. I was so sure it would be a routine check and they would send us home.
Whilst I was being monitored, there was a sudden drop in the baby’s heartbeat. The midwife calmly asked my husband to pull in the red emergency button. All of a sudden we were being rushed into theatre and I was told that it was a life threatening situation and they had to get the baby out within the next 15-20 minutes. My calm demeanour was out the window and I remember crying so hard. What a difference from my morning. They got me changed and prepped quickly and did one last check on the baby before proceeding with the emergency section.
Thankfully, everything had resolved. The heartbeat had return to normal and it seemed as if the baby might have just been playing with the cord. However I was advised to still go ahead with a section.
We were given some time to consider our options in the labour ward and spoke in length to our assigned midwife. Throughout the process we used our hypnobirthing tools and asked questions to ensure we understood the process. At the end of the day, we realised we were so ready to meet our little one. We shared our c section birth plan with our midwife and waited for when we could be transferred back to theatre for my section.
The second time in theatre was much better and incredibly calm. Recalling it now, I would confidently say I had the most beautiful c section process. We had our Spotify playlist playing and the medical team were absolutely brilliant. I hadn’t even realised they had begun the section until they held up our little one to my husband letting him be the one to tell me we had a baby girl!
Everything had not gone to plan, but it had at the same time. I couldn’t be happier!
MY FAVOURITE MOMENT...
Our little one was born to the song together in electric dreams. Nothing more prefect to encapsulate how we will always be together, together in electric dreams.
Hannah, Sam and baby Isabelle 2023.