Christian and I attended Hannah’s hypnobirthing classes in Feb 2019 and we truly believe our birth wouldn’t have been the same without it. The most beneficial aspect of hypnobirthing for me was my change in mindset when it came to labour. I had decided halfway through our classes that even if the hypnobirthing techniques ‘failed me’ during labour, I was still grateful to have done the classes simply because it changed my mindset leading up to the day I gave birth – I had become extremely excited and couldn’t wait for the day I would see some early-labour signs! In addition to the group classes, Hannah was supportive during my pregnancy and I was able to contact her with all my silly questions, I had left some of my obstetrician appointments feeling confused and upset about my progress/changes in my plan and Hannah was able to remind me to stay positive. My concerns about a possible c-section, inductions and the position of my baby were all unexpected things that popped up during the final weeks and Hannah helped me stay educated on it all whilst remaining completely unbiased to my decisions. Hypnobirthing reminded Christian and I of our rights and we knew that despite delivering in a private hospital, we could create a space that suited our needs. Christian was able to learn a lot about the female body and what to expect from child birth as well as view some raw and real birth videos which made him more comfortable with what to expect. Prior to giving birth I was exposed to a lot of negative birth stories and I felt so proud telling other females that my labour was empowering and amazing, and is something that should not be feared – thanks to hypnobirthing!
On the 30th of March 2019 I started getting mild contractions which eventually progressed into more intense ones. Without the hypnobirthing education I would have started to panic at these small contractions and we would’ve headed to the hospital much earlier than needed. Instead, Christian and I had the tools we needed to remain calm at home and work through the contractions together for as long as possible. At home we used a tens machine, acupressure (which Christian learnt from his ‘cheat sheet’), the MP3 tracks, essential oils and dimmed lighting. I was afraid that with the pain of a contraction I would ‘block out’ the sounds of my hypnobirthing tracks but instead I began listening to the soothing voice and focusing on my breathing. Christian was completely calm during all of this and felt helpful, he knew which positions to suggest, which tracks to play and little tips to remain supportive. After labouring at home for a few hours my waters broke at 7:30pm, at this point my contractions were 3-4 minutes apart and quite strong. I knew that I wanted to head to the hospital and asked Christian to start getting ready to go. We arrived at the hospital at 8pm and after an internal I was told I was 3cm dilated. I was a little disappointed to be 3cm (as I was 2cm at an appointment that morning) but tried to remember the hypnobirthing philosophy – which teaches that the dilation is not an indication of progress or length of labour and shouldn’t be altering your positive mindset! Thanks to hypnobirthing we knew the benefits of being in water for pain relief, at the hospital I was able to float in a bath tub while breathing through contractions and listening to the MP3’s. Prior to these classes, I didn’t even know labour wards let you sit in bathtubs!
Christian was amazing at making our birth preferences known to the midwives and became my ‘voice’ when necessary. After 3ish hours I was in the bath and had an enormous urge to ‘poo’, Christian knew that this meant I was close as we had learnt in hypnobirthing that it was a sign of ‘bearing down’- I had forgotten and was sure it was just a poo! After another internal we discovered I was fully dilated and my urge to poo was actually the baby. It was time to push! I got myself out of the bath and onto the bed, I remembered to control my breathing and chose to push when I felt the urge, not when the midwives coached the pushing. At 12:08am I had our beautiful Frederick on my chest and the midwives waited 3-4 minutes before clamping the cord as stated in our preferences. I could not be more happy with how my birth went and I am truly grateful to Hannah for helping us through this unforgettable journey.
I absolutely love receiving messages like this! Congratulations Pru and Christian - you absolutely embraced the hypnobirthing philosophy and should be so proud! Birth story and photos shared with permission. Pru and Christian attended a private Hypnobirthing Australia course in 2019.