I was due to be induced on Wednesday 6th April. After finally getting the call to go into hospital that evening, I was examined and told that I could not be induced in the usual way as I was already a bit dilated. Apparently I was having some contractions but wasn't feeling anything (just a bit of tightness, no pain). My next option was to have my waters broken which could only be done on the labour ward, but due to a lack of staff they couldn't take me down. I then spent two agonising, sleepless nights in the induction suite, not able to be induced and surrounded by women coming in, getting induced and going into labour. It was very frustrating and upsetting. All the while I was trying everything to bring it on naturally!
Finally, on the third day (and after a few strong words and many tears) we were told that they had room for us in the labour ward and we went down on the Friday afternoon. My waters were broken at 4.15pm and from there things went VERY quickly. Nefeli arrived at 10.15pm after 6 hours of practically constant contractions. It happened so quickly I had no time in between to catch my breath and no chance to put into practice any of my birth preferences (water, my playlist, my snacks and treats that I had taken!).
Despite the intensity, from a physical point of view things were amazing. I managed to stay relaxed using the techniques learnt at the hypnobirthing course and thanks to my amazing partner who kept reminding me to relax every time he felt me tense up. Whilst we didn't get to listen to my playlist, I had found a sea relaxation track in the days leading up to the birth which we had playing. I chose this as I had been particularly fond of the ocean relaxation track we had access to via the course which I listened to regularly before going into hospital and during those stressful two nights on the induction suite. It really helped me to get into a deep relaxed state, and during the birth this made everything so much easier. My body did what it needed to do, I had no pain relief other than gas and air, and I did not have any tears or stitches (much to my relief!).
After the birth, I had to spend another two nights in hospital which was incredibly difficult. I was exhausted from so many sleepless nights and from the birth and just wanted to get home. Finally on Sunday 10th we got to bring our baby home. Although my experience in hospital was really hard, I am very pleased with how the birth went. It might not have been 'ideal' in that I didn't get to use the pool and had no time between contractions to appreciate what was going on or even enjoy it a bit (which I was hoping to do), but the way I was able to relax thanks to the hypnobirthing techniques was amazing. Actually knowing what was happening to my body during labour was also a great help, and I remember thinking during various stages 'oh yes, this is what we learnt about and if feels exactly as I think it should feel'.
Thank you so much for the course and the useful information and tips you shared. Everything we learnt made me excited about the birth experience beforehand. I genuinely feel that I was better prepared than others who didn't do hypnobirthing and came off far better from a physical point of view from the birth itself.
Rachel and John