3:22 AM on April 5 I started having pressure waves (Hypnobabies word for contractions). They lasted for about 3 hours and then tapered off. I listened to Your Birthing Time Begins (Hypnobabies reminder of all tools, track, and cues to use during birth) and Birthing Day Affirmations and Deepening Your Hypnosis (Hypnobabies hypnosis track to deepen the level of hypnosis). I was able to get a few more hours of sleep because the Deepening Your Hypnosis track was so relaxing.
I had mild cramping and mild waves all day. I just knew that my birthing time (Hypnobabies word for labor) was near. At 8 PM April 5th, the waves started to move lower and I could start to feel my cervix opening with each wave. The waves continued and were 11 minutes apart for about an hour and a half. Around 11 they became more sporadic. I had a hard time going to sleep. So, I got up and listened to Hypnobabies Special Safe Place (Hypnobabies hypnosis track that creates a special place for mom and baby) and Deepening Your Hypnosis several times and Birthing Day Affirmations.
I tried to get some sleep and would have 2-3 very strong waves per hour which made it hard to sleep. Finally got a decent sleep between 4-6 am. 6 am the waves really picked up in intensity and were 9 minutes apart. I got out of bed after an hour and the waves continued. I listened to Birthing Day Affirmations and relaxation music. Jeremy, my husband made me breakfast. I took a shower and we went for a walk. Waves were about 10-11 minutes apart. Our dog wouldn’t leave my side and the cat was neurotic. I just knew this was my birthing time.
I ate half of a green chili burrito and then my waves really picked up after that. Jeremy and I went to get coffee at Dutch bros and I kept timing my waves. They were consistently 8-9 minutes apart. I started feeling them a lot in my back and that was causing some discomfort. Our doula Heather had mentioned some Spinning Babies moves that could help with any back waves. We asked her to come over and show us some Spinning Babies and counter pressure techniques. She came and had me lay upside down from the couch. I think that realigned baby and I was much more comfortable after that. She also showed my husband some counter pressure moves that would help with any discomfort during a wave.
After she left I laid down and listened to Deepening track in hopes of getting some sleep. The waves were too strong so I decided to take a bath while listening to Easy First Stage (Hypnobabies main birthing time track). My waves really picked up and I had 5 waves 5 minutes or under. I texted the birth center and let them know. They said to have Heather come to the house and continue my birthing time at home. I texted Heather and asked her to come over. I am so glad she had shown Jeremy the counter pressure because my waves really picked up in intensity and I started to feel like I was going to throw up.
I asked Jeremy to start the counter pressure and I was able to regain my relaxation and started ooooing through my waves. Heather arrived around 5:30 and gave Jeremy a break. She started to press on my hips during a wave and that really helped to open up my hips. It got to the point where I not only had discomfort free waves but I actually looked forward to the next wave. I was able to breathe and oooo through them and picture my cervix Open Open Open.
We had Easy First Stage playing and the Relax (Hypnobabies cue to deepen hypnosis) and Release (Hypnobabies cue to instantly go into hypnosis) cues helped me to further surrender to the waves. I was able to completely relax no tension or fighting the waves. The affirmation “I trust my body knows exactly what to do and I feel good about it” kept running through my mind and I was able to do just that! I started to feel something similar to a runners high. I felt so in control and powerful over the waves as I trusted my body.
My waves were quickly progressing to 2-3 minutes apart. Heather began heat compression with lavender oil. The waves were intense but I had such a deep sense of calm that I was actually enjoying them knowing that “each wave brings me closer to meeting my baby” The cues in the Easy First Stage track made it easy to stay present during each wave and relax into each wave. We called the birth center and let them know where the waves were at. They said since I hadn’t lost my mucous plug/ no bloody show and my water hadn’t broken to wait it out for a few more waves. I went to the bathroom and lost my mucous plug there.
My husband called the birth center back and told them. They said it was up to me but we could head to the Birth Center when I was ready. I was starting to feel the waves changing from opening my cervix to pushing waves. So, we left for the birth center. I put my headphones in and continued to listen to Easy First Stage. I was completely comfortable the entire 20-minute drive to the Birth Center. On the drive, I felt baby move deep into my pelvis. We arrived at the birth center and I had a few waves walking in. I was still able to smile at the nurse who introduced herself to me and showed us our room.
I asked them to fill up the tub right away. I got in and was so relaxed that my waves slowed way down. I started to worry but told myself “I trust my body knows exactly what to do and if it needs to rest for a minute I will surrender to the rest.” After about 20 minutes my waves picked up and were definitely pushing waves. During one wave the pressure popped my waters. That was the most amazing experience. That gave me a burst of energy to know that we were so close to meeting our baby girl. I then pushed for 40 minutes and my husband caught her as she came out.
He put her on my chest and we had the sweetest first moments of a family of three. We then slowly moved out of the water and into the bed. As soon as we were dry and on the bed, she immediately latched and started breastfeeding! My midwife and nurse said that was one of the most peaceful births they had seen for a first-time mom. I am thankful for Hypnobabies for helping me to not only have a peaceful, pain free, empowering birth. I look forward to my next birthing time with eager anticipation!
I also appreciated how Hypnobabies prepared my husband as a birth partner. He was there every step of the way and felt confident in how to support me. He even made a Hypno-bear to remind me of my orange glowing hypno-anesthesia. Thanks, Hypnobabies!
Growing and birthing this little boy was such a special experience. Up until 35 weeks I filled my time teaching other expectant couples Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis Classes and attending births as a doula. Being close to 42 weeks with my first son, I was mentally preparing to patiently wait a little extra time to meet this little one too. Unlike my experience with Kuba, I never got to the point where I was “over” being pregnant. I loved feeling him kick, loved watching my body grow and change and loved dedicating myself to my Hypnobabies program and preparing for our special day.
(Preface on Hypnobabies: Hypnobabies is a complete childbirth education program combined with powerful SELF-hypnosis techniques, famous for living up to it’s slogan in providing birthing women with “easier, more comfortable births”, and in some cases like mine, pain-free. The course stresses complete dedication, practicing techniques for around an hour every day, avoiding sources of negativity about birth, and maintaining focus on creating the type of birth you want to have. And, it worked! Throughout my birth story I will use Hypno-language which helps us re-frame how we expect to experience childbirth. (I.e. birthing time is used in replacement of labor, pressure/birthing wave for contraction and transformation instead on transition)
At about 5:45am on April 1st (41+2 weeks) I woke up to some different feeling waves than I had been having the weeks before with pre-birth waves (braxton hicks). I was still unsure it was the start of my birthing time or not, so I played my “Easy, Comfortable Childbirth” Hypnobabies track and went back to bed, waking just slightly during a wave, then falling back to sleep.
Around 7am I was feeling sure that it was my birthing time as the waves were coming in a predictable pattern about 6-7 min apart. So, I notified my doula, Candace, birth photographer, Brezi, and midwife, Jolene, that baby was probably coming sometime today. From there, I listened to “Your Birthing Day Begins” which reminded me of all the Hypno-tools I could use throughout the day. I then put on my Relaxation music and just snuggled in bed with my husband having a lazy morning.
~9am We finally rolled out of bed, I made my family breakfast while listening to “Birthing Day Affirmations”, and my mother-in-law came by to pick up our 3 year old son. My waves began to come closer as I made breakfast, but were still short. With prompting from my doula, I did some belly mapping and figured baby was ROP and she reminded me to do a few forward leaning inversions during the day to give him space to move if needed. After the inversion, waves spaced a bit, so I went and took a nap while listening to my "Birthing Day Affirmations" and actually slept for a couple hours more. During my nap, my sweet husband and mother-in-law cleaned the house, and soon after my 3 year old son left with Abuela.
~1:30pm For the afternoon, my husband and I just lounged around the house, did some laundry, snuggled and watched Sweet Home Alabama. My waves were coming about 5-6 minutes apart and lasting about 30-40 seconds, so every few minutes during our movie I would use my "finger drop" hypnosis technique while laying on my husband's lap to completely shut all voluntary muscles off, relax completely and focus on sending hypno-anesthesia throughout my body. Toward the end of the movie, I could tell things were progressing and wanted to shower and pack some last minute items, but also wanted to finish the movie! Once the credits rolled around my waves were about 4 minutes apart and 40-45 seconds long and beginning to get stronger. I remember I could tell my waves were becoming strong, but thinking “This is really quite easy, I could handle so much more than this.”
After the movie ended, I went upstairs to shower, and my husband went to the corner store to get some Dayquil as he had a cold. In the shower with my affirmations playing, I could tell my waves were getting close, and I focused intently on my PEACE cue for instant comfort during a wave. As one would begin I would reach my arm up to lean against the tile and rhythmically circle my hips while saying Peeeace quietly to myself. Then, continued washing my hair and shaving my legs! In the shower I remembered my doula-brain kicking in and thinking “If I was with myself as a doula right now, I would probably be encouraging her to get to her place of birth” - but the waves were still so easy, I was sure I had some time to finish last-minute tasks.
I got out of the shower and my husband was home. My waves were very strong, but my PEACE cue was keeping me very calm and comfortable. I asked him to time my waves as I proceeded to actually put on some makeup, because... birth photographer, right!? My husband told me the waves were coming about 2.5 minutes apart and lasting 45-50 seconds. This is the funniest part of my birth story to me, because in hindsight I was literally shaving my legs and putting makeup on while in transformation (HB word for transition).
~7pm I asked him to message my birth team and tell them how close the waves were, and at that time I began to feel a slight sensation to hold my breath during my waves (like the feeling of getting in cold water). I remembered the same sensation moments before pushing my 1st son out, so at that time I told my husband we needed to leave birth center.
~7:15pm As we got in the car I put my “Deepening” track on my headphones and relaxed the entire way to the birth center, imagining my hypno-anesthesia and making low, quiet ahhh-ing sounds during a wave. (Still saving my most powerful hypnosis track, "Easy First Stage", in case things were to get stronger). My waves spaced a little during this point and again, being a doula, knew that probably meant I was about to start pushing soon. However, despite our 20ish minute drive to the birth center, I never felt worried or panicked. I said little prayer in my head that baby would wait until we arrived to the birth center to be born and then continued listening to my track.
~7:30pm We arrived to the birth center, and my photographer and Doula greeted us, with my midwife just seconds away. I walked into our beautiful birth center room, and went to the restroom for one wave, asking my doula if she would begin filling the tub for me and hang some support handles, then told everyone I believed I had a slight cervical lip, which was maybe producing that breath-holding sensation.
I came out of the bathroom, and had another powerful wave leaning on Mike. This time I felt the need to hold my perineum, and right then with a pop, my bag of waters released and following the waters I could feel a little head and tuft of hair beginning to emerge! "Okay, I guess I don't have a lip!" I said. At this point my wave was bringing him down quickly, and I began to breathe through it as to not push him out too fast. I don’t know if I said it or just thought it, but I remember telling my baby we needed to slow down just a little bit. My wave ended and my midwife offered me the tub before the next pushing wave. I waddled into the tub with just enough water for him to be born in. With another wave I focused on my breathing, allowing my perineum to stretch. As it finished, I took a short break, then finished pushing my baby’s head out between waves so I could control the speed at which he emerged and prevent any tearing from happening (it worked! Not even a slight tear!).
7:43pm His head was born with guidance of my hands, and then the rest of his body. My midwife instructed me to wait a moment before lifting him as she removed a nuchal cord and then we brought my sweet, healthy, baby boy up into my arms. Welcome Earth-side baby Trey! I told him what a beautiful job he did and thanked him for helping mama.
My immediate postpartum stay was nothing short of perfect. All of my birth attendants (midwife, nurse, doula and photographer), were also dear friends I’d had long-time relationships with from my first pregnancy and from working in the birth field. The Beginnings Birth Center was beautiful and quiet and intimate. I was spoiled with fresh-baked bread, kisses from my husband, and loving praise and congratulations from everyone in the room. Family came by with a hot meal and flowers and our 3 year old son as he finally got to meet his long-anticipated baby brother. Thank you to all of those who gave so much love and support through this journey and thank you Hypnobabies for providing me with the tools to have an easier, more comfortable, and yes, pain-free birth.
Info on Hypnobabies: https://www.hypnobabies.com/
My talented birth photographer: http://loveisaphoto.com/
My Incredible Birth Center and Midwifery team: http://beginningsbirthcenter.com/
My wonderful Doula: http://westsidebirthconnection.com/