Sara was one of those women who came into class already sure of herself and of the birth that she wanted. Some women simply have this sort of internal determination from the beginning…and others gain it over the course of the Hypnobirthing Australia program. But even those who seem innately confident need the reassurance of additional information and additional tools!
Sara and her husband Mike took everything they learned in hypnobirthing and put it into practice.
They fully committed to the birth that they wanted and took they steps they needed to ensure they were supported, prepared, and feeling positive!
Here is Helena’s amazing birth story, as written by her superstar mother, Sara.
Helena the “unremarkable” miracle.
‘Unremarkable’ is not always a word looked upon favourably, however when it comes to pregnancy and birth, there is nothing you would rather hear. I had a smooth pregnancy which I feel very fortunate and thankful for. I attribute this experience to remaining active during my pregnancy. I exercised daily and felt strong. I believe this translated well into labour and delivery and aided my recovery from labour.
Myself and my husband attended Caitlin’s hypnobirthing classes early on in our pregnancy. We learnt so much about the natural process of labour and coping methods for labour. This was enough to convince me that my body was inherently capable of nature’s most natural process and as long as I relaxed, let go, and gave the process over to my body and my baby then my labour could be an enjoyable experience! I was excited to meet my baby and had no fear. I think is the main factor in my amazing natural birth experience.
My contractions started the morning of 12 October. I was confused about the mild twinges I was experiencing. I was only four days past my due date and had not had a ‘show’ or any Braxton Hicks leading up to that day. I had made plans to watch a movie in the morning with a friend. I felt good and assumed the twinges were my first experience of Braxton Hicks. We walked 3km along the Brisbane river to the cinema and laughed about the possibility that today could be the day. By 3:00pm the surges had become stronger and I became more focused on them. I had a gut feeling this was it and I needed to be at home. I said goodbye to my friend, called my husband at work, and told him to start heading home. I was still very unsure of my surges as they were very inconsistent at this stage.
We called the midwife around 5:00pm for advice and she agreed home was a good place to stay. She advised me to try and eat and get some rest. I ate a small meal then lay on the bed where I listened to my Hypnobirthing Australia “Surge of the Sea” track. I’d spent time listening to this track through my pregnancy and each time I would fall asleep. This time was no different. I managed to sleep even through the surges.
When I awoke the surges had become more intense and by 7:00pm they were getting much closer together. I was pacing up and down the hall stopping before contractions to get on my hands and knees. It was not that they were crippling but stopping meant I could shut my eyes and really focus on them.
At 7:30pm my husband called the midwife again. She asked about the timing of contractions which were still inconsistent (and didn’t become regular until I went into transition) I told her that I had been sick a couple of times and couldn’t stand up during contraction so this time she suggested we make our way to the hospital.
We arrived just after 8:00pm.
The midwife asked if I would like her to do a vaginal check. I had said throughout my pregnancy that I wanted intervention kept to a minimum and I would have no vaginal checks, but on the day I felt it was good for the midwife to know how I was progressing and because this was my first birth I wanted reassurance that everything was ok. I asked her not to tell me how “dilated” I was because I didn’t want to get hung up on a number! (Later I found out that I was 4cm dilated when she checked me but went to 10cm in less than an hour).
As soon as the midwife examined me I felt like she had shaken things up a bit. I could not find a comfortable position on the bed so asked if they could get the bath ready. The warm water was a huge relief. I quickly entered the transitional phase of labour. I knew to expect this so it came as no surprise that the surges intensified. It became like an out-of-body experience. My conscious mind watching like an onlooker as immense pressure swept in and out of my body like a flowing tide. Between these surges I was so relaxed I could barely talk or lift my head. I became very aware of the feeling in my hands. It was an unusual tingling sensation almost like when the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. This gave my something to focus on and stay within my body.
Only a few contractions in, the midwife (a wonderfully calm woman named Elaine) sat on the edge of the pool and said, “If you want to start pushing, you can… your baby will be here soon, the head is right there.” I had to get her to repeat herself! I thought it would take so much longer. I was so happy and excited. The pushing stage was nothing like I thought it would be. I had no pain just an overwhelmingly intense pressure like an eruption throughout my entire body. It came with some incredibly primal roaring noises but the noises weren’t due to any pain, it was just a reIease I think. I had to tell my husband not to panic as I wasn’t in any pain at all, I just needed to scream! I can remember thinking I hope there was no one outside who could hear me and think that labour was awful. I wanted to shout to them that it’s not that bad, it just sounds it!
Between pushes I would rest and the room was totally peaceful. At 9:15pm, with only a few pushes, Helena arrived. I felt a little burning because I tore (she came out very quickly). Overall I cannot believe how painless the whole process was. I can see how many of the feelings could be perceived as pain but I just felt it was an intense, strong convulsion like sensation. The relief and joy I felt as I birthed Helena was amazing. I was so proud and full of love for her.
I also wanted to thank you and praise the work you do. Your course had so much influence over our entire pregnancy and birth experience. We can’t thank you enough.
If you are interested in learning more about the Hypnobirthing Australia program and booking into a class, you can find more information here!