SUZANNE GARDNER-CUTHBERT'S BIRTH STORY OF BABY HARRY 2005, EAST YORKSHIRE
When I was pregnant with my third child, I decided that I wanted to have a home birth.
I therefore spent my pregnancy preparing for the home birth by self educating myself about natural birth. I learnt a number of relaxation, visualisation and self hypnosis techniques. I also listened to hypno birthing programme CDs to prepare both my mind and body for birth and read a number of books about natural childbirthing.
I had a strong belief during my pregnancy that I would cope perfectly well with the labour at home.
Three weeks before my due date, my waters broke. As I was having my baby at home, I called the midwife to let her know that my waters had broken but the contractions hadn't started. A few hours later, I still had very little contractions. A midwife called around to see how the labour was progressing.My partner decided to get the birthing pool ready and assembled it in the living room. I was still not having contraction, just flutters. I was informed by the midwife that if my contractions hadn't got going by the next day, then I would have to go to hospital and would be given drugs to stimulate the contractions.
The next day came and no contractions. I went to hospital and was given drugs to progress my labour. It wasn't the home birth that I wanted but decided that I was going to make the best out of the situation. I used my relaxation visualisation and self hypnosis techniques to manage the contractions instead of having hospital pain relief. I couldn't walk around , as the drugs to stimulate my contractions where administered via a drip but decided I would be more comfortable sat on a birthing ball instead of lying down and could use the birthing ball to gain some movement by moving in a circular movement whilst sat on the birthing ball.
I continued with no pain relief up until the transition to stage 2 of labour, as at that point I was feeling tired. I had ten minutes of gas and air and then went back to using just the relaxation, visualisation and self hypnosis techniques to manage the contractions.
I felt ready to push and got into the birthing position on the floor, holding on to the bed. After a few pushes my son Harry was born.
The midwives commented on how well I had coped with the labour because when having an artifical labour, the body does not release natural pain relief endorphins in the same way, as the body does during a normal labour.
SARAH AND BABY JOSEPTH BIRTH STORY 2009, EAST YORKSHIRE
I went to see Suzanne for some hypnotherapy/relaxation sessions as I was in my last trimester. I was pregnant with my second child and my first birth had been very long and painful and as I wanted an another natural birth, I wanted to try the hypnotherapy, as I knew the more that I relaxed the less painful it should be.
The hypnobirthing sessions were very relaxing and enjoyable and Suzanne gave me a hypnobirthing relaxation cd and some relaxation exercises to do at home. I did the exercises at home and I feel it helped me focus on how to relax my body. Before the birth Suzanne gave me some reminder notes/prompts for me to use when my contractions started - so I didn't forget! My contractions started at about 5 in the morning, but they didn't start getting uncomfortable until about 9 am.
Everytime I got a contraction, I just focused on the relaxation and visualisation techniques Suzanne had shown me and I felt able to manage well at home - I wanted to stay at home as long as possible.
At about 12 we decided to go to the birthing centre - my contractions were about 4 minutes apart and I think my partner was worried that I might give birth in the car!!!When I got to the birthing centre, the midwife didn't examine me as she said I presented so relaxed that she did'nt think I was so far on in labour. I felt at that point that I already wanted to push, so they decided to examine me, - I was fully dilated and then my waters broke! I was still managing to use the visualisation techniques to cope with the contractions and the midwifes were admazed that I was managing to still laugh between the final contractions!
Josepth was born at 2pm, safe and sound. The birth was alot shorter than my first labour and I really felt I could manage the pain throughout by using the hypno birthing techniques that suzanne had shown me. I didn't need to use any gas and air and the midwifes didn't even chance to fill the birthing pool for me!! I'd definitely this technique for managing pain relief to anyone who wants to try and have a natural labour!