6 am - started feeling contraction-like pains in my lower back/buttocks so went for a shower. Whilst in the shower I was able to wash myself as normal and washed my hair because I knew i'd be in the hospital and it needed doing! So semi-normal thoughts still happening. We later found out that during this period I was in the transition stage of labour, I had been dilating for the rest of the time during my sleep. I can only imagine I was so relaxed during this stage (early labour dilation) due to listening to the hypnobirthing tracks before I fell asleep.
Admittedly, I was in the shower for roughly 30 mins before my partner really realised that this might be the real thing because I was so calm. I got out of the shower and things really intensified but I was still relaxed, I wouldn't say I was in pain,just uncomfortable, I think my calmness was due to my preparations beforehand and knowing that my body knew exactly what to do.
When thinking back I remember picturing the flower opening and my birth canal being like a rose, i wasn't consciously thinking about this at the time, I just remembered when reflecting on my birth experience.
6.30am - my partner called the hospital to ask for advice on what we should do next, they suggested I was in early stages of labour so to try to eat, sleep and take paracetamol. I took paracetamol but was not able to do the others.
7am - Still in the bathroom on all fours, I was talking to Callum and suddenly felt the urge to push, I wasn't sure whether this was the urge to poo so asked him to leave the room. When he came back in he realised I was a little less 'with it' so called the hospital again, they thought i was still in early stages but asked Callum to bring me anyway.
7.30am - Callum was helping get me ready whilst telling me to prepare to be sent home. I remember telling him very firmly that if I was sent home the baby would be born in the car park or down the loo! Callum has since said that he didn't think I was very far into the labour due to my behaviour and how I'd coped alone whilst uncomfortable at home.
On the way to the hospital I was convinced that I would give birth to my baby in the car, I had the strongest urge to push and it was uncontrollable, like my body had decided it was time for my baby to arrive so was going ahead with it's own plan! I remember feeling very impressed but a little nervous about the speed of Callum's driving )not fast enough for my liking!!)
8am - arrived at the labour ward and decided I needed the loo, went into the staff loo when a midwife came in to ask me to go with her to find a bed. I remember worrying about not being able to have a room with a pool.. I said as much to the midwife and she assured me that there was a room with a pool free for me but wanted to examine before we got to that point.
The midwife examined me and was very shocked to find that I was fully dilated and my waters had gone, she asked when they went and I couldn't tell her!I must have been so 'in the zone' that I didn't notice.
I then got onto all fours over the back of the bed to begin pushing. The midwife stayed at the back of the room to read my birth plan and trusted that I was able to continue with little interference from her. Callum had parked in the ambulance bay and was concerned about moving it, after I had pushed for about 20 minutes the midwife said it was probably safe for Callum to go and move the car. It wasn't!
During the pushing stage I felt so in control, I remember imagining my calm colour (yellow) and focused on my breathing. I was so happy that my body knew what to do, I just went with the contractions when they came.
The minute Callum left the room to move the car I had another contraction, at this point I knew instinctively that my baby would arrive within the next few pushes, I said as much to the midwife who sent for someone to get him quickly, he hadn't gotten far, only as far as the loo!
When Callum came back into the room I had another contraction and he asked if he could watch. I was very comfortable and felt like I could have birthed on my own so was very happy for him to watch.
Two more pushes and our daughter arrived!!!
Her name is Avaia Elisabeth and weighed a healthy 8lb6! I was 11 days overdue and she arrived the day before I was due to be induced. Even though i was overdue I was happy to wait and even now I am so happy she was late, she's so strong and healthy so those extra days did the world of good (in my opinion)
I had a natural third stage and we had 15 mins delayed cord clamping. My birth went exactly as we wanted (other than the birthing pool - they wouldn't have had the time to fill it!!).
Callum said to me that he had a little chuckle to himself when I was at home in the shower because he thought I was very early stages of labour and didn't feel the hypnobirthing had worked. Little did he know!
We both feel that the techniques learned attributed to a calm and easy birth. Avaia is an incredibly content, well behaved baby. I am still breastfeeding and that journey has been simple and positive since the beginning. We feel so thankful that this has been our experience and feel that without hypnobirthing our experience may not have been this way. Thank you so much!