Saturday, October 2, 2010

My Birth Story

I was hoping to write this sooner so I didn't forget any details so I'm gonna try and do my best. I'm going to make this as detailed as possible so if you don't wanna hear about my vagina, poop, pee, or anything else gross don't read any further. I'm a terrible story teller so it will be all over the place but I'm gonna do my best. This is mostly for me to remember years down the road and share if anyone is interested in how I used my hypnobabies. So here we go.....

Wednesday was a totally normal night, I actually felt really good considering my midwife had told me I needed to really take it easy. My mom was here spending the night because she had taken me to appt that day. We all went out to dinner and came home to watch tv. I don't remember feeling any different until I got into bed. I think it was probably around 11:30pm that I started to feel what I thought were birthing waves. It was a feeling that I had never felt. Nothing like Braxton Hicks or period cramps. It was different. I assumed it was all in my head because my midwife had told me she felt a birthing wave when I was in her office. Obviously I couldn't sleep and I think at that point I started timing them just to see if I was going nuts. They were all over the place and pretty spaced out. I remember they started at about 30 plus min apart maybe more, its hard to remember. Blake told me to try and go back to sleep and that wasn't going to happen. I got up to go to the bathroom and found that I had lost my plug. Of course I went online and got out all my books to confirm that it was indeed my plug. Of course that meant nothing since they say that can happen weeks or days before you go into your birthing time. So again no confirmation that I was actually going to have a baby. So back to bed and kept timing the waves. Finally maybe around 2am I got up and sat on the couch. My mom was there and all I can remember is watching Top Chef. At this point I was still timing my waves and they seemed to be getting closer together, maybe 15 to 20 min. At this point every single time I would have a birthing wave I would have to go to the bathroom to poop. No joke I went about 20 times. I have no idea how that is even possible but it happened. Then as it got earlier in the morning I started to get nauseous. I'm not sure what time it was but I threw up which looking back was good cause it made that gross feeling go away. At this point I was also peeing myself every time I would have a birthing wave. I got smart and put a pad on but there was no way to control my bladder. I wish I had been better at doing my Kegal exercises. Not sure if that would of helped. I also kept thinking it was my water breaking but it wasn't (that comes later)

I remember the sun coming up and really being in my zone. I kept waiting for my waves to have some sort of pattern and get to 5-1-1 (birthing wave for 1 min, 5 min apart, for an hour) but I never got there. My waves were all over the place and some would last 20 min, others were 3 min, and some would just merge into each other. I wasn't getting a break and it was quite frusterating. I remember the later it got the more intense they would become. At some point Blake called my doula and I think she came over around 10am ish. This part was a total blur. I remember hearing my mother in law come in but I couldn't quite process it. When my doula arrived I was curled up on the couch. I remember her coming up behind me and talking. It was so comforting to hear her voice. I think we only sat there for a few min. I'm pretty sure at this point I was actually making loud groaning noises and really breathing through the waves. I heard her say something to Blake about it being time to go to the birthing center. Getting up was so hard. I had to grab on to Blake a few times. I remember telling my mom to grab things here and there but it was like I was on drugs. The car ride there seemed to last forever. I never pictured driving to the birthing center in the morning so that was a little surreal. Once we got there I just remember sitting on a birth ball and holding on to the bed while my doula filled up the tub. At this point I realized my midwife and her assistants were not there. Everyone kept telling me they were on their way (my midwife was teaching a class in Fullerton)
I want to say I sat on the birth ball for about 20 min then got into the bath tub. That was really relaxing. It was nice and dark and I finally felt really comfortable (besides having super intense birthing waves) I felt my body drop down and I was feeling like I had to push. Only problem no midwife. This was the first time I got scared. Unless you've been in this position you can't describe the feeling of having to push. I had no idea what to expect and I wanted that extra comfort of my midwife there. Finally after what seemed like forever she walked in and said she was going to change. I don't really remember what happened then but I know when she walked in she asked me to get out of the tub so she could check me. I don't know if I told her no way or gave her a look because she then reached in and checked me in the tub and without hesitating she said ok start pushing. Guess I was ready to go! Now the thing about pushing is you can't really practice it, I mean you can and we did in class but its just something that your body totally does but also takes a little while to get a rhythm going. It was actually quite complicated since I had to hold back my legs (although I think at some point the moms helped me on this one) The pushing is probably the hardest thing about birth. Again something you can't really describe unless you've been there. I wouldn't so much as call it pain as it is pressure but its one of the craziest feelings ever. I think during this point my water broke, no idea how far into pushing but I remember feeling the water move in the bathtub and it was like a mini explosion, and then I heard one of the nurses say something about my water breaking. You really are in a zone at this point and to be honest I can't imagine being on any drugs since your body pretty much provides everything for you. I felt so focused on pushing that I don't really remember much going on around me except for a washcloth on my head and drinking water in between waves. Anyways I guess I only pushed for about 30 min but it seemed like much longer. There was a point where her head was sticking out and my midwife told me to reach down and touch my baby. I wouldn't at first cause I was totally freaked out but then as she got further along I did reach down. Again a feeling I will never ever forget. A slimy little head hanging half way out of me, if that isn't crazy I have no idea what is. I knew she was getting close cause I think my midwife was asking if me or Blake wanted to grab her. At this point I didn't want to, I just wanted her out and in my arms. The last push was amazing and there she was, put right on my chest with her eyes wide open. My midwife suctioned her mouth and she made a few noises but never cried just sat there and looked at us. She was perfect. My first words were "is she a girl, quick someone check her." She just sat up on my chest while they let the umbilical cord pump out the last of the goods and then Blake got to cut the cord. Then they got me out of the bath and put her skin to skin with Blake while I got all cleaned up. I did end up tearing in two places but they were super small. I am going to give credit to the perinal massages and also while I was pushing my midwife did massage the area which I think helped a a lot. After I got stitched I sat on the bed and immediately started breastfeeding. Olive was a pro. We stayed there for 3 more hours or so while family came in and out and then we went home.

I think there were a lot of people that were skeptical, curious, and excited about hypnobaies and how it would be part of the birth. I didn't really talk about it during my story, I figured I would explain it after. Anyways during each birthing wave Blake was right there with me giving me all the cues to get me to calm down and really just focus on my breathing and sending anesthesia to my belly. I would immediately focus on his voice and really get into my zone. He was able to breathe with me and help the waves go by much faster. Ya they hurt, I didn't have a painless birth in anyway but it was absolutely everything I wanted. I think the most important part of hypnobabies was the fact I was never scared and I knew just what to expect. (Ok except when my midwife wasn't there but that was temporary) but I truly knew that Blake, my doula, and the moms were right there supporting me so I felt safe and secure. Everything out of everyone's mouth was only good, there were no words of fear, it was all encouraging me and making me feel like everything was going great and I was doing amazing.

During the last few weeks before the birth I was listening to 1-2 of my cd's per day and really really getting focused. I'm not a relaxed person, I'm super high strung and this was the only time (when I listened to my cd's) that I was able to relax and let go and totally be at peace. So when I applied all these cues to my birth I believe this is why I was able to have the type of birth I wanted. I also think that having Blake be 100% supportive of my plan and practice with me every night was helpful. I also had my mother in law and mom who where in on the plan and knew just how I wanted things to be so they were able to know what to say and do for me. I could go on and on but at this point I'm just rambling. I'm a terrible writer so I hope I was able to get it all out there.
I feel so lucky that I had the birth I wanted and was able to share it with so many people that supported me! Most important I got the most beautiful baby out of all of this and I feel she was born into this world in the most peaceful way possible.

I will never give birth without a doula or hypnobabies, I feel it was most supportive and beautiful way to give birth.

This is Blake's version which is probably a lot easier to read.

Also some photos I stole from Blake.

Not sure what time this was but I was getting ready...

I didn't want photos of this stuff at first but there are actually some beautiful shots. Of course if Olive finds them as a teenager I'm sure she will be horrified but I think they are pretty amazing. These are the internet friendly ones...


  1. Thanks for sharing Jenn! Your story was so interesting and it sounds like such a beautiful birth. I'm so happy for you!

  2. Amazing and beautiful story!! I'm so happy that you enjoyed your Hypnobabies. =)

  3. Hi Jennifer!

    I loved reading your Hypnobabies birth story, from your perspective and your hubby's and your pictures are just gorgeous! You look very serene and I'm so proud of you for learning, practicing using Hypnobabies so well! I just love to hear how our moms have used their Hypnobabies cues, techniques, scripts, "hypno-tools" and CDs. Sounds like you didn't want to listen to any of your Hypnobabies CD tracks but your hubby was so sweet to give you some hypno-cues to help keep you more comfortable, and you had a lovely birth. :-)

    All the best to you and your family!

    Kerry, Founder/Director of Hypnobabies

  4. Aww what a beautiful story. Thank you for sharing! I'm really looking forward to teaching Hypnobabies classes :)