baby charlotteHi Anne,

I hope you are well! I just wanted to give you the latest news on the story of the huge giant baby that wasn’t allowed in the birthing centre!!

My waters broke at 1am on Sunday night and so I stayed in bed until 8am when I phoned Queens triage and was told off for not ringing and going in at 1am to be assessed- but what good would that have done! Anyway they assessed me at 9am to confirm that yes my waters had broken and to come back when either labour had started naturally or to be induced later that night.

I carried on as normal and even went to my nail appointment! I only felt the braxton hicks type cramps I’d had in the weeks leading up to the due date so was happily carrying on as normal. When I got home at 3 I could feel that it was starting to get uncomfortable to sit down so I sent my mum and dad home as they had been round decorating. I told them I needed to feel safe and have a quiet relaxed place to prepare and I only wanted M with me. My mum thought I was mad but I managed to get rid of them!! By 4 I was in the bath listening to my sea of serenity MP3.

By 5 I’d started to feel like things were definitely starting so asked M to start timing on his phone. According to the log he kept they were 4 minutes apart and I’d logged them as mild. I thought this was the early stage of labour as they were just like cramps so I asked him to prepare the tens machine by the time he’d done that they were 3 minutes but I’ve still logged them as mild!

After an hour of that he suggested we go to the hospital as I couldn’t talk through them and thank God we did. By the time I got to triage at 7 I was 8cm dilated, contractions were a minute apart and I was ready to give birth on the floor of the lift if necessary!

Obviously because I didn’t realise how far I’d got I hadn’t phoned ahead to ask for the one pool they have in the labour ward so they were reluctant to put me in it but I refused to get on a bed and so they quickly filled it up and I practically dived in!

Within what seemed like minutes of getting in the pool at 19:56 our baby had been born! We didn’t have time to discuss our birth preferences ahead of time but we delayed the cord clamping and I delivered the placenta naturally- exactly one hour after the baby which was the deadline they gave me!

We enjoyed skin to skin in the pool and M took her while I delivered the placenta. She weighed 9lb- not that big at all!!! And had it not been for the fact she decided to come out fist first the midwife said I wouldn’t have torn because I was managing my breathing perfectly.

The two midwives who were with me were so surprised at how quickly I’d progressed without any pain relief and I’d only got to the medium level on my tens machine before getting in the pool!

I didn’t have time to play any of my MP3s while at the hospital- it was over far too quickly and as we were in the labour ward everyone was very monitor heavy.

Which actually didn’t bother me- I just went into myself told M to dim the lights and ignored all the fuss and words of push going on around me.

I had a trainee midwife in the room with me and I was her 40th birth before she could be passed off to the next stage. She said it was an absolute pleasure to witness and she couldn’t have wished for a nicer birth for her last one! Probably because it was so quick!

I am so convinced that hypnobirthing helped me remain calm, even though I couldn’t listen to the MP3s. The fact I was able to carry on as normal through the early part of labour and only use the Tens machine at the end rather than from the beginning is testament to how painless labour can be if you know how to breathe through it. I know that listening to the MP3s leading up to the birth will have helped my subconscious to relax me even without the music playing.

Thank you so much for all your guidance and support, it gave me the confidence to push for the birth I wanted when all around me people wanted me to give in to inducements, epidurals and cesareans.

On the day it allowed me to be tough and argue my case for a water birth even when not being able to speak though contractions! I can’t thank you enough for providing me with the tools to have the right birth for me and my baby.

I’ll be promoting the benefits of hypnobirthing to anyone who will listen and everyone who knows me is astounded at how I went through labour without any pain relief as everyone thought I was a wuss!

With lots of love and appreciation, baby Charlotte, M and M xxx

P.s. I’ve read through my notes and it said my labour started at 19:20 with delivery at 19:56, so that must be the time I was admitted to triage and the time I actually gave birth! We cut it quite fine

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