Abi giving birth

Abi and Thea

We gave birth to Thea on 24th Feb at home and it was such an amazing experience!

As I was slightly overdue, I had a sweep in the morning, which found I was 2cm dilated and already. I felt like my body was very ready to give birth.

At about 1.30pm I started feeling waves of period pains, low down in my tummy. I monitored these for about 45min and they settled pretty regularly into a pattern of 30-45seconds of a wave and then about 5-10min of nothing. Each one was of a manageable pressure.

I told Ben (my husband) I was pretty sure I was in labour, called my mum and my midwife (mum would be looking after Effie, my toddler, when it came to it) . My midwife said it may be Braxton Hicks following the morning sweep or could be the real thing, so just to relax, take a walk and keep an eye on things.

Following a beautiful family walk in the sunshine with my husband, toddler and our dog, the contractions ramped up, so I called the midwife again at about 3.30pm to let her know and she said she would pop over to see how I was doing and start some paperwork.

By this point I was having to actively concentrate on relaxing throughout each ‘surge’. When my midwife checked me over at about 3.50pm I was 4-5cm dilated and warned me that once our toddler and dog were collected (mum and mother in law knew the plan so were coming to whisk them away) that my body would probably take note and things would happen more quickly. My midwife was not wrong!!

My husband was set to work filling the birthing pool and 2 other midwives joined us I think at about 4.30pm. My midwife and husband were both taking it in turns to rub my back as I was standing leaning over a table, waiting for the birthing pool to fill. As the surges built in power both my midwife and husband were reminding me to breathe through each surge and let the muscles relax and to breathe the baby down. I got into the pool as soon as it was full enough to cover my bump, with me lying down in the pool. Leaning into my husbands arms I let my body take more control and tried to allow my brain to let go, let everything relax so the surges could do the job they needed to do. At this point it was so helpful being able to picture what the muscles of my uterus were doing.

As my baby’s head began to crown, my waters broke which felt like a huge release of pressure and then in the next surge, my baby’s head was right there. Guided amazingly by midwife, just listening to her voice and allowing my body to be consumed and my brain to let go, I breathed (and swore) through my next 3 surges, actively thinking about letting the lower half of my body relax and stretch with Thea joining us in very quickly, at 6.15pm.

I felt so safe and well supported in the care of my midwives and husband. I felt safe in my environment and in control the entire time.

Wow, is the only way I can express giving birth to my second child. It was an incredible experience and so empowering. It was intense for sure, but I wouldn’t necessarily describe it as painful. With such a great experience of giving birth, I’d highly recommend hypnobirthing and a home birth.

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