Welcoming Ethan

A lot of my recent posts have focussed on how hypnobirthing can support us when pregnancy, labour and birth isn’t the perfect journey we’ve dreamt of.

Sometimes, when the practice and commitment comes together with a sprinkling of good luck, that dream birth occurs.

Thanks so much to Jemma for sharing her story of welcoming Ethan…

It was NYE so being heavily pregnant we decided to stay in and ate homemade popcorn and watched TV then we went to bed about 1am.

I woke up at 3.30 am with a funny feeling but tried to get back to sleep then I realised I was waking up every 8 minutes ! So I woke my husband and we called the hospital, they said they would send a midwife when I felt I needed one and in the meantime to have a bath.

We also had decided to have a Doula at the birth as it was our first baby and keen to have a home birth with as much support as pissible, so we called her to let her know that today was going to be the day ( 9 days before our due date).

I went back to sleep till 6 am then decided I wanted to get up and wash my hair to make me feel a little more normal. At this point I was feeling ok and just pacing the lounge and stopping and breathing when each surge came, which was every 5 minutes.

The midwife and Doula both came at 8 am and after reading my birth plan that stated I wanted as little interruption as possible the midwife asked if I wanted to know how far I was, which I did and delighted to be told I was 7cm already.

Over the coming hours we (my husband and doula ) spent the time filling the pool with pans as the tube didn’t fit ( check yours first ) and offering me words of encouragement. We had our candles on, our dog was sitting on the midwifes lap the entire time and we had our yoga music playing so it was all very relaxed.

I had got my healthy birth snacks ready ( dates, coconut water etc) and our Doula also had her 16 week old baby with her for the entire labour, which was a great distraction too.

I got into the pool about 1.30 pm as the midwife said she didn’t think it would be long, so suddenly getting my hair wet wasn’t at the top of my mind !!!

The midwife was saying that I was too calm and we needed to get things going, so after moving around a little things then moved on quite quickly. I am bit of a control freak so I kept asking how many more surges they thought it would take, which of course nobody knew but they all put my mind at ease and said ” just a few more”

It did get to a point about 3 pm where I thought OMG I need something but they all agreed I had come so far and didn’t need gas and air and that I could do it. The best way i can describe it is, that you can either hold back and fear the pain or you can just push on through each one and let yourself go with it. I remember thinking how am i even making these deep loud groans but it helped that i just went with it.

Our beautiful baby Ethan Finley Sedgwick was born in the pool at 3.22 pm on New Years Day and I can honestly say it was a truly amazing and empowering experience. The doula had suggested that I felt his head which felt totally weird but it made things seem incredibly real and with one last push he was out in the water. We left the cord attached for 30 minutes and had skin to skin straight after with the breast crawl.

It really was how we had envisioned it, people kept telling me to be open in case things went differently but I never believed it. I always knew deep down that it would be a natural home birth.

For me who is a super competitive person and kept thinking to myself ” if other women can do it without pain relief than so can I” and it actually made me more determined than ever.

We had avoided all drugs during my pregnancy and i really didn’t want my baby to have any drugs in order to try and make it as calm birth for him as possible. Everybody has their own wishes for birth but for me this was the most important thing to focus on.

I believe that Hypnobirthing really gave my husband the confidence he needed during the birth as he felt more in control and informed after the course. It turned out that we actually didn’t use the massage in the birth as went quite quickly but we had practised it every week which definitely contributed to us feeling more relaxed.

All I needed from him was to tell Me ” I got this”. It was just enough to know he really believed in me and I wasn’t going to let him down. All of the Hypnobirthing practice over the months of the pregnancy really does make you feel like you are doing it together and i am absolutely blessed to have such a beautiful birth.

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