A second-time family's beautiful birth story...
I just wanted to thank you...
When I had my daughter in 2020, I looked at my husband and told him I was going to die - If pain could kill me, it was going to. I later realized that was transition. I ended up having her in the hospital instead of the birth center because my blood pressure was high.
Fast forward to this June... I did my hypnobirthing track religiously, every day. At least once a day, usually 2-4 times a day. I made affirmation cards and truly believed that birth could be beautiful. I went in with confidence and calm.
I made it to 41 weeks with no signs of labor. After having baby engaged in my pelvis for 3 weeks, I was ready to meet this tiny human. I decided to induce (with the blessing of my midwife) with castor oil at 41+1. I spent time with my (older) daughter and rested. I started having surges about 4 hours later, long and strong. We headed to the birth center shortly there after.
My blood pressure was over 91; 89 is the cut off (for transfer of care). The bath was filled, and my birth plan was on the wall. I was having that baby there. I spent 30 minutes on a fear release track. They let me get in the tub. My bp had dropped to 110/80... I could stay. I rode my surges with the affirmations and some fear release tracks. After each one, something made me smile: The fact I was going to meet my baby soon; my midwife was there; my straw had my daughters bite marks all over it; saying 'ready' like my daughter does to my husband; my baby 'mandala' visualization that I colored with sparkly rainbow markers; I forgot the champagne; making sure everyone had cake (we brought 'nothing bunt cakes' to the birthday party). I felt a little crazy. It was so instinctual. I moved when I needed, my team was so supportive. My affirmations came true before my eyes. It was really incredible. When midwife had to leave, she instilled confidence that the one on call would take excellent care of me.
We switched over to my carefully curated playlist and I really got into the groove.
My husband asked when I thought they would be born. I told him my first instinct was 'Good Morning' by the Dandy Warhol's, but I knew it wasn't for an hour. I thought I was in transition 3 times. The last time, I wanted to escape for the first time. I looked at Anthony, yearning for him to remove me from myself... Then realizing it was really almost time. I felt pressure, heard the song end, and 'Good Morning' came on. I lost my confidence for the first time, but my midwife gave me hers. I wanted to catch baby, but at that moment, I told her I needed help. She told me that's why she was there. Her eyes told me it was okay. At some point, the head was out to their forehead, and the surge stopped. I reached down and felt it. After a moment of panic, I allowed my pelvic floor to relax around his head and reminded myself that I am doing it. I am right where I need to be. He was born by the end of the song, and I helped bring him to the surface. I just held him to my chest. I didn't even look to see he was a boy until they helped me move to the bed.
We got a golden hour+plus before they did anything. They kept the placenta attached for most of that time, and I pushed it out after about 25 minutes. Anthony got to hold him before they weighed and measure him. I had them wait to assess the blood before we decided on Pitocin; it was not necessary.
I realized after I never had a cervical check; not one time did they question my body's ability to do what it was clearly doing.
I showed my husband and my doula the drawing of my 'ideal birth' after, he said, "Whoa. That is just like what happened."
My memories from his birth are magical. I feel so empowered and confident. Unpacking my bag, I discovered tools I had completely forgotten about; I had them, but didn't need them. I never once thought about using nitrous. I had no interventions.
I will tell anyone who asks you made the difference. Hypnobirthing changed my whole perspective. My postpartum period has been totally different, so much better. So, thank you from the depths of my soul.
Flutterby is located in the Twin Cities, and provides Hypnobirthing as well as other classes and services for expectant families. Erin Stertz-Follett, Flutterby's Owner, is a Certified Consulting Hypnotist, Certified Hypnobirthing Educator, and Certified Birth Doula who has taught and assisted hundreds of families. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. Sharing is caring!
Erin Stertz-Follett, Owner