LORDEN'S BIRTH ...with thanks to Sam & John

I have a son!!

Lorden Grove Mullane arrived on the 10 July at 8.09am safe & well. This was John & I 2nd pregnancy, after having our beautiful daughter Harper in 2012. My birthing experience with Harper was not all that I had hoped for, it was fairly medicalised and one that left me with slight anxiety on the prospect of giving birth again. This caused me to try and seek some positive guidance, looking at various articles & blogs on how to create a better birth experience, I thankfully stumbled upon London Hypnobirthing. Initially I was sceptical on the claims that my labour could be so so different to before. But I emailed Hollie who was so understanding, encouraging and clearly so passionate about her job and we booked on the course...

So 2 July was my due date, and it came and it passed and so did 7 more days!!! I started to wonder if this was ever going to happen...Beginning to feel mega deflated I agreed to a membrane sweep at my 41 week appointment, 5 hours later at 8.00pm just as I sat down for some naughty fish & chips (a treat for having the sweep) I started to recognise dull twinges coming and going, although quickly & manageable they were regular. John lit some candles and we put some funny tv on, whilst I bounced on the ball and tucked into some ice cream (also a treat for the sweep, haha!). The surges continued to come and were getting stronger so John did the deepening script with me. We started timing the surges and contacted the hospital. It was now 3.00am and I was really having to focus through the surges using visualisations and up breathing. We decided it was time to transfer to hospital. John put classical music on the radio and we slowly and 'bump free' as poss made our way. We were welcomed by the triage nurse who blankly turned to me and said "so what's going on here?" I think my face must of said it all as I looked at her then to John and back to her and calmly but assertively replied I'm in labour! After a few checks it was announced I was 6cm and we were shown to our room. John quickly made the room more to suit us. Lights off, London Grammar album on and lavender wafted under my nose as we prepared for what was ahead. I was feeling uncomfortable but unphased by the physical aspect of what was going on. The light touch massage was my saviour (which surprised me massively as I imagined touch would annoy me.) At the beginning of each surge I would simply grunt "touch me" to John, directing him to stroke my leg or arm! This was so relaxing, comforting and really did ease the surge.

Prior to labour I had written all positive affirmations on post it notes which I had placed in our booklet, I stuck my favourite ones to my thigh to help maintain focus during the surges. I visualised a gradual opening rose flower and ocean waves through a lot of the surges and was surprised to be nodding off in between many of them! At about 7.30am my waters broke with what felt like an almighty pop and a gush, an amazing feeling of relief but then almost instantly I got the urge to push a feeling I hadn't experienced with birthing my daughter. The pain and pressure of the surges had gone – it was just this strong wave that took over and directed my body with what to do next. I found this the most amazing & empowering feeling, I was then – and still am – amazed at the female body or more so my body! I got myself up on my knees leaning over the back of the bed. With each pushing down feeling I concentrated on doing the down breathing, I found this much more natural than I expected. The crowning wasn't as painful as I anticipated although I would describe it as a stretching and a burning sensation. This wasn't unbearable and was an indicator that the baby was nearly here. I felt the baby's head with my hand in between a pushing surge & this was when the midwife stated "the baby's back to back – completely back to back – not often you see them coming out looking at you, you're amazing to be doing this with just gas & air!" With an overwhelming feeling of self pride I breathed our boy out...a head full of hair and huge eyes starring up at me in just 23 minutes! The placenta followed fairly quickly after with the support of the midwife. I couldn't believe I had done it, and we had a boy!

I am still amazed at how different it was compared to my first birth, this proves how amazing hypnobirthing is, actually proving how amazing Hollie is!! Thank you Hollie!