And here are a few inspiring birth stories….
Hope you’re well and life is good?
I have been meaning to email you my birth story for weeks! ‘A’ is such a (lovely) whirlwind that I don’t seem to have a minute to myself – Darren is taking care of her today, so it’s giving me a chance to catch up with some stuff!
Anyway, I wanted to thank you for your hypnobirthing class that we took. I loved your book and read it so frequently leading up to the birth. I really think knowledge is power! Especially as a first timer!
‘A’ was born on 23rd May at 11.49pm and was a whopping 10 pounds 5 – we had no idea she was going to be so big. I initially thought my waters had broken so went in early morning to be examined, only to be told they hadn’t. It was so disappointing at 41+1 – I was totally ready to have the baby by that point!
I went back home and around 9am, I felt a tightening in my back, but put it down to being examined. 40 minutes later, I felt the same thing, and then the same thing 20 minutes later. I didn’t tell anybody because I was so convinced it was nothing. By the time I got to midday, I wondered if this really could be it, as I’d felt the same feeling both stood up and lying down. I decided to go for a walk and get some lunch, to see if I felt the tightenings when I was walking around. I did feel them when I went out, so around 1pm, I text Darren, but told him not to worry about coming home. A couple of hours later, the contractions were coming every 15 minutes or so, so I casually asked him if he’d got much on – maybe he could leave work early? I know it sounds crazy that I didn’t ask him to come home, but I wasn’t actually 100% sure I was in labour because of the earlier examination, so I phoned the e-midwife service for Lewisham, who told me not to bother getting my husband home, as if I was in labour, a first baby would take hours.
Luckily, I phoned my Mum who insisted I ask Darren to come home. He did, and by 7pm, I felt it was time to go in, as contractions were still a bit irregular, but pretty frequent, and I was starting to feel lots of pain. I phoned the Birth Centre who told me to wait a little longer. 40 minutes later, I couldn’t take anymore, and phoned them to say I would be heading in, as I couldn’t feel baby move quite as much. They asked me to go to the Labour Ward to be checked over, but when we got to the hospital, we were very close to the Birth Centre entrance and I was in quite a lot of discomfort, so we decided to head straight to the Birth Centre.
Anyway, I’ll wrap it up now, as I’m aware I’m rambling on! But we were greeted by a wonderful midwife, and I was told I was 9cm dilated – I couldn’t believe it, though I was pretty happy that I was nearly there (I think I’d have demanded an epidural if I could have) Obviously by then, it was too late for pain relief and I got straight into the birth pool, as I was ready to push.
I was sort of completely out of it and totally with it, if that makes sense. I was pushing for a couple of hours before she finally made an appearance. I even forgot about gas and air because it was such a whirlwind. I found the panting stage the hardest as I really wanted to push, and by the end, I was totally out of energy, but I was so lucky that I didn’t have a cut, tear or stitch.
After ‘A’ had arrived safely, the midwives asked me about the hypnobirthing, and said that they thought it was pretty obvious I’d done something like that as I was so calm and chilled. I didn’t feel overly chilled at the pushing stage! But I think that I’d got so much knowledge about what would happen at each stage of labour, thanks to you, that it calmed me.
If you’d like me to do a review for your website, or anything like that, I would be more than happy to.
Thank you for everything and hope you’re well!
Hope you are well. Thought I would drop you a note to let you know we had a baby girl 3 weeks ago today. Her name is ‘XXX’ and we’re doing really well.
I was induced on my due date in the end, but labour was really pretty quick and not in quite the environment I would have liked as they couldn’t get me to the labour ward on time so was in a room on the Antenatal ward, but the birth itself, positioning and everything, (despite there being no time for a water birth to even be considered!) was just as I would have liked it.
The breathing techniques from the course were particularly helpful in the second stage. The midwife said I just breathed the baby out! (although it certainly didn’t feel that easy!)
Thanks for your help with it all. I think the mental preparation was really helpful in terms of feeling confident and positive because although the room and other elements weren’t ideal, I was able to reconcile it and get in the zone.
Now it’s onto the fun of dealing with 2 at once! Any tips gratefully recieved!
Thanks again and all the best.
So our little baby boy arrived on Wednesday.
Your hypnobirthing mp3s got me through, on repeat, in the early stages and into hospital where I was 6cm dilated with just an hour off delivery 😳.
6 hours in all so completely different to my first and I really do credit that with being in a completely different state of mind due to listening to your relaxations and practising hypnobirthing techniques everyday.
Thanks and I guess we’ll have to cancel the reflexology now!
Great to hear from you!
We’re all well thanks – Zachary was born on 18 March just past his due date so is now 8 weeks old and growing at a rate of knots! We’re very tired but with lots of awesome moments
The birth went mostly well – I had a long tiring early labour of 3 days but once finally in active labour I had the pool for most of it except the very end when they wanted to see what was going on – turns out the waters hadn’t broken – but he came shortly after that. Care was excellent and hypnobirthing really did help for both early and active labour.
It really did help – it kept me focused and as measured as I could be for most of it, using the breathing and feeling of riding it out with the focus forwards helping give me the birth I had wanted.
Thank you so much it was all really helpful.
Mark is loving being a dad too – and was a great support. He’s also very tired!
I hope you are well?
Katie & Mark
Thanks for getting in touch. We’re very well thank you! Getting used to life with the new addition to the family. ‘E’ was born on 18th October, and we had a near perfect birth.
The breathing techniques were super useful and ‘C’ had a natural water birth – we went in at
midnight and she was born by 6am. The placenta proved a bit more tricky to come out, so ‘C’ had to go into surgery. All very healthy now though, and settling in to a very different life!
Hope you are well
D & C
So sorry for not getting back to you sooner!!!!
All is well here thanks, baby ‘L’ is gorgeous, and ‘P’ is enjoying having a baby to play with!
The birth was very different to ‘P’s’… I managed to get through most of the contractions at home by breathing and focusing on music, as practised. Eventually she was born 20mins after I was measured being at 4cm dilated!! We didn’t even make it to the labour ward! But I feel happy and pleased with how things went, and proud of how I coped – only having gas & air!
Thanks for all your help and support in the preparation.
I am sitting with my beautiful little 4 week old baby daughter sleeping beside me and thought I would take this opportunity to write to you to say a huge thank you. We had such a wonderful birthing experience and couldn’t have done it without the tools you provided us with during our Hypnobirthing course. I gave birth in the water, at home and with no pain relief. The birth we had both wished for!
My first surge was a 6.30pm and actually took place while listening to a hypnobirthing track! My husband came home from work an hour or so later, at which point I was having a surge every 20 minutes or so. He set up a mattress in the living room with candles and calm music. He talked me through every surge, encouraging me to breathe and relax as we had practiced. I used a tens machine which really helped. He called he midwife at about 2am when the surges were longer and more frequent, and by the time she arrived I was 7cm dilated. The pool was now ready in our dining room (it took a long time to fill!) and my husband had used our fairy lights and music to create the same calm atmosphere. I was anxious about removing the tens machine but the warm water felt wonderful.
Again, my husband was a huge support, physically and emotionally. Although I found it challenging to relax as I had done when we’d practiced, I was certainly more relaxed than I would have been without our hypnobirthing mindsets. The music really helped as I associated this with the relaxation sessions I had been doing for the past few weeks.
For the next few hours my waters were being a bit stubborn and I decided to have them broken, after which things moved fairly quickly.
Our little girl was born at 9am and it was by far the best moment of our lives. I held her for 20 minutes in the water before my husband cut the cord and had some skin to skin time with her himself. The midwife stayed with us until lunch time to make sure we were happy with feeding and left us snuggled up as a family to get to know our little baby girl. Four weeks later she still hasn’t been to a hospital!
I would recommend hypnobirthing and if possible home birth so highly. You played such a significant part in our journey to our dream birth. THANK YOU!” – Emily
‘R’arrived very quickly into the world on 17.05.17 weighing a healthy 7.4 lbs.
I ended up being induced around 11pm on Tuesday and they realised things were already happening.
In the early stages I used the hypnobirthing a lot, I made sure I could use a ball throughout the monitoring and the positions you showed us were so useful, I adapted the bed etc and listened to some of the tracks it helped so much and made it a positive experience.
Of course you can feel surges but breathing though them and reminding yourself why you are having them really helped me.
They ended up breaking my waters at around 5am as ‘R’ wasn’t very happy, I was about 4cm so they moved me to the delivery suite at about 6am where things hotted up.
If I had known I was going through transition I would have dealt with the later stage better but because I had only been 4cm at 6am they didn’t examine me, I got stressed and they couldn’t monitor ‘R’. They went to put a clip on his head and realised the reason why I wasn’t in the best place was because I was already 10cm and there was no time to and with that he was out in 2 contractions at 6.58am on Wednesday morning!
I’m so pleased we did Hypnobirthing, it meant that ‘M’ and I worked together and when things were more stressful later on he kept reminding me to breathe and helping me get into comfortable positions. I would highly recommend it to any one! So thank you ❤
We are home and adjusting into this new world of mainly lots of cuddles!
Thank you also for the postnatal add on session, we’ve already found so much of it useful in the past 2 days!!
Looking forward to you meeting him and I think I will book in for some more reflexology soon!
Thank you again. You’ve been an amazing help ❤
I thought I’d email to let you know that I gave birth to my daughter last Wednesday, and the hypnobirthing techniques were very successful.
In the end I had to be induced at 40+12. I was warned that the pessary could cause pain, and to expect it to take at least 24 hours, so even though I started having contractions after a few hours, I was managing it so well with the breathing and visualisations that I didn’t realise that I was actually in labour. As the contractions intensified I was so ‘in the zone’ that none of the staff realised I was in labour either, until my waters suddenly broke. Unfortunately with all the fussing about what to do with me as the birthing centre and labour ward were full, not to mention a very intense and fast labour, I lost the flow in the final stage, so it wasn’t a super calm birth, but it wasn’t a nightmare ordeal like my first one and I didn’t need any pain relief apart from my TENS machine and gas and air. After my waters broke it only took about an hour until my daughter was born – I didn’t even leave the antenatal ward, though they did manage to wheel me into a private room at the last minute so I didn’t have to give birth in a corridor.
Something very strange happened when I went ‘into the zone’ that you might find interesting. I spontaneously had a visualisation that the contractions were waves going over me, and I was swimming in the sea. As I felt a wave approaching, I knew I had to swim down below the surface so the wave would just pass over me, and so not be painful, so in my mind this is what I was doing. It felt very real at the time. In retrospect I think I was in some kind of hypnotic state, and I feel that the visualisation was inspired by the MP3s, the part where she talks about a wave of relaxation surging down through your body.
Incidentally, I think that one of the most useful things in the course for me was when you demonstrated to us how time passes much more quickly when you take slow breaths, in that exercise where we counted how many breaths we took in one minute, or something similar – knowing that to be the case, it really helped make the contractions more bearable in early labour.
So, thank you for your help, the course and materials were clearly very effective and worthwhile 🙂
Hi Jackie. I have been meaning to email you,
He came 3 weeks early and oh my did the hypnobirthing help! I think it really preserved my energy for when I needed it, I also think the midwifes underestimated my progress as I was so silent. My actual labour was about an hour!
Not just the birth but also think it helped with me calming down as an individual. I started to cramp and saw my mucus plug 3 weeks early but still managed to present to the CEO, go Boots and M&S to get baby bits, pack up my desk and go home to pack, all done with whilst calm, happy and no panic at all!
Thank you so much, I’m a very very happy mum and really enjoyed the newborn phase this time round.
Also thanks for empowering me to take off and throw away the belts they put around you which totally restricted my thoughts and movements!* 🙂
*during we classes we talk about requesting intermittent monitoring, if appropriate
What a week!!
As you know my waters broke last Tuesday and then my contractions began around 6pm on the Wednesday evening- I went into hospital and was already 5cms dilated! Unfortunately I had to stay on labour ward rather than go to the birthing centre as my waters had gone over 24hrs previous so the baby had to be monitored throughout. I laboured without any pain relief and just used the breathing techniques we had learned until 6.30am on Thursday when it became apparent baby was unable to make her way out alone! Baby was born with the help of a kiwi cap (and a spinal block!) at 7.53am 30th April!!
All of the staff commented on the relaxed nature of the labour and how I coped with the contractions and baby was born with fantastic apgar scores despite the long labour. Alex helped massively during the more intense contractions by reading out some of the scripts we had practised and it really focused me.
Thank you for all of your help and support it was so appreciated. Although we had to deviate from our birth plan I believe the Hypnobirthing techniques we used were hugely beneficial when it came to making important decisions about the direction of the birth.” Sarah
‘Just want to say ‘thank you’ again for the course! After the course we decided on a home birth as it just felt so right. We had the most peaceful birth and it was amazing to welcome our daughter into our home! Her name is still to be decided. She is so calm and I am sure in part it is to do with how she arrived into the world. Thanks again for all your support, Paula xx’
‘R’ is doing really well. It’s so surreal being parents, we’re loving it despite total sleep deprivation.
My active labour ended up being 1 hour 25 minutes and I had her in the pool at the birth centre – only just. She came out in her sac so her head appeared like a little astronaut. She was 10 days overdue and was 7 pounds 3 oz and it was a totally natural birth.
I had contractions from 1am at home, was in hospital at 4.30 and told I was 1 cm. My contractions were regular and 3/4 a minute from the get go so they told us to go for a walk for an hour. When I went back at about 6am, I was still one centimetre dilated, so was sent across to the labour ward. Things must have progressed rapidly there, because pretty soon I was feeling an incredibly strong urge to push. A midwife measured me and said I was fully dilated and ready to push, so they whizzed me back to the birth unit, where I had to get into the pool straight away. Two pushes later she was born.
R was brilliant reminding me of the breathing techniques and remaining calm when the surges were at their most intense. The visualisations kept me very focused and confirmed to me the power of the mind body connection. We were the talk of the birth unit as to how quickly everything happened.
So delighted to have had such a positive experience and R is such content little baby.
Thanks so much Jackie.”
Thank you sooo much for your advice on Monday. We went to see the obstetrician who was lovely and really optimistic that things would move now and happy for us to have the homebirth up until Friday (today).
However, labour kept progressing…slowly but surely and our little baby girl Juno was born on our bedroom floor yesterday afternoon!
It was the most intense experience, mainly because of the heat and the length. However, I am in no doubt that we would not have coped without your course. It really made the world if difference, especially having ‘I’ knowledgeable and supportive of the Hypnobirthing process, so when I had moments of doubt or coming out of my body he brought me back to it all.
Thank you so much for all of your help and support. We really appreciate it and look forward to seeing you and the others from the course soon. X
We are writing to thank you for the invaluable information you provided to us in the hypnobirthing course we attended in December.
Our son, was born on February 1st weighing 7lb 8oz in the XXX midwife led unit. The techniques you taught us for breathing and relaxation along with the use of water and counter pressure all allowed me to stick to our birth plan and have a drug free delivery. I definitely couldn’t have done it without P’s support and hypnobirthing had absolutely prepared him for every stage of the labour- he was my advocate, cheerleader and guide throughout.
Thank you for arming us with the information we needed to make choices that helped us bring our son safely and naturally into the world. Attached is a picture of our sweet boy just hours after his birth and a family shot taken earlier this week.
Thank you again X
” It’s a bit of a roller coaster, but we have a little baby boy (no name yet!) weighing in at 5lb 4oz.
Whilst it wasn’t the text book hypnobirth, Nat used the techniques to great effect in the circumstances using only two parecetamol as pain relief and the Hypnobirthing CD on loop (with what we thought was 5 weeks to go we hadn’t done our playlist yet)
After we emailed you, we stayed in hospital overnight on Monday ready to be induced on Tuesday morning. On Tuesday morning a new consultant who had the results of Nat’s infection tests that were good and the fact the special care unit was busy recommended we wait another week to be induced and allowed us to go home with Nat taking antibiotics and steroids for baby’s lungs. On Thursday Nat was going back for the second steroid jab and felt like she was having mild tightening for the first time. When she got to hospital she started to bleed too, so was taken to the labor ward for continuous monitoring at about 3pm. The first midwife said Hypnobirthing wasn’t her thing and she was more of a push push midwife :). Fortunately she was only on till 8pm when a new midwife came on and we darkened the room and put the music on. At 9pm the consultants came round and recommended inducing due to level of bloods loss, when they came back at 10pm to assess Nat in advance of the drip she discovered Nat was at 8cm already much to everyone’s surprise.
At 2.45am, after a busy last 10 minutes due to baby’s heart beat dropping, he was born.
So our advice to other parents to be is that even though the baby will lead the plan, you can still use your Hypnobirthing techniques to keep in control of as much of it as possible. Nic and Nat
Jackie, better late than never, my birth story:
S was born 13 days late. From day 1 post my due date inductions were proposed to me. I declined to have a sweep at day 1 past my due date but after a week I did have a sweep as I had been experiencing Braxton Hicks and also on examination I had begun to dilate, therefore things were already on the move. I had a 2nd sweep at 10 days past my due date and at 12 days past D Day went to discuss my options with a consultant.
The consultant examined me and I was 2.5 cm dilated by this point and I could feel S was much lower down, I was also experiencing stronger Braxton Hicks. Incidentally they found my fluid levels were slightly low and so the doctor advised I was admitted there and then to have my waters broken in theatre. I sought a 2nd opinion about this and spoke with 2 senior midwives, I was advised that my fluid levels could have been low for a while and they weren’t dangerously low.
I went against the doctor’s advice, this was quite scary as I had to sign a consent form to self discharge. I went into labour naturally that night and gave birth naturally to S in the midwife led unit. I used the birthing pool and shower along with relaxation techniques and breathing control throughout the 2nd stage of labour.
Hypnobirthing gave me the confidence and the knowledge to question the health professionals’ advice & plans to induce me. I’m so glad I did as I managed a natural birth, and during monitoring S’s heart rate was always normal so I feel that she entered the world in the best way possible and was not distressed. – Elizabeth
A snippet of a birth story from a first time mum who I saw in the UK, but who had her baby in Turkey.
…I went for their education class as well to learn other breathing techniques etc so together with your lessons i felt very prepared. Theirs was similar, very practical so my hubby and I could practice together (her hubby was unable to attend the UK classes).
With yours I felt it completely changed my entire perspective on birth – and gave me a good understanding of how the body works so I could think differently about pain etc.
Been meaning to email you! Well basically my waters went on Thursday as I was walking up the stairs in the hospital to go have a blood pressure check! I wasn’t having contractions so they booked me in for an induction the next morning.
So I went home and walked loads went and had labour reflexology and then thought I best just sleep! The next morning I was having gentle period like cramps but they told me to come in anyway. I went in and at about 10.30am they put me in the induction ward.
The midwife came to give me the pessary and then said she couldn’t as I was already 3cm. I said to her I was getting period pains so she decided to leave me to it for a while.
Anyway out of nowhere it felt like they went from period pains to full on contractions. They seemed to last minimum 90 seconds and then the gap between them was getting shorter and shorter.
I wasn’t being checked on as I think as a first time mum they thought I’d be there for ages. Suddenly there was no let up between contractions and I thought if that wasn’t transition I really needed drugs!! (I did have gas and air but made me feel sick I couldn’t use it) so I literally screamed the place down for a midwife — she came and examined me and I was 9cm.
I just knew I had to get out of the ward and into a delivery room’ (poor people who were in there with me! I think I panicked as nobody was around to check on me hence the screaming for a midwife!)
I am laughing now because they kept on about being high risk and constant monitoring!
So anyway at 5.35pm our little boy made an appearance! He weighed 6pound 2 oz was 53cm long. Midwives in delivery suite were amazing! I think I’d lost the plot by time I got into the delivery suite and was being a bit of a nightmare then! But once I got in I didn’t panic at all during the pushing stage even when he got a little stuck and it took a bit longer – I think all the hypnobirthing helped with that – no tears or episiotomy thank goodness!
Funny thing is I so wanted to be able to move around and all I could do to get comfortable was lie down in the end!! I tried kneeling and standing for birth but I found lying down the best!
Funny how you think one thing but another thing actually happens!
Glad to be home and working out a newborn! He’s so cute! Thanks for all your help and advice it definitely worked!
We had our baby on Saturday 21 February at 5.39 pm and weighing in at 7 lb 5 oz and with no complications. He arrived one day before his due date.
We think the hypnobirthing really helped us. I started having mild contractions around 8pm on the Friday night but I managed to sleep through parts of the night, we spent the morning and early afternoon at home as the contractions had not reached a regular pattern, but by early afternoon they started getting quicker albeit I would have a couple of contractions 2-3 minutes apart and then might have a gap of 8-10 minutes and they were varying in length from 30 seconds to around a minute. By the time we reached the hospital at 4 pm I was 7-8 cm dilated. We had half an hour on the labour ward (for an unknown reason the birth centre was closed) using some gas and air, by which point I was fully dilated and baby was born naturally 40 minutes later.
We credit the short time in hospital to the preparation we did with the hypnobirthing. Thank you for your assistance.
‘Our birth story – the short version! Della arrived 3 days ago and we are smitten! Sara was amazing, just super relaxed throughout. We were so undecided re the home birth side of things but in the end we went with it and our daughter was born upstairs in our bedroom despite me filling the pool! More info later, but just to say thanks again. Best, Mike & Sara
‘Hi Jackie 🙂 Just a quick update in between feeds and sleep! Our son Devon arrived safely and calmly despite my needing an induction. We felt happy with our choice of accepting the induction knowing that we’d asked all the right questions & that it was right for us, which really helped to get both our heads around it to be honest. The labour was not as I had imagined in terms of using the birthing centre (we needed to be on the main labour ward), but the techniques we learned were invaluable and the whole thing was just so positive. Devon is a joy and we look forward to you meeting him soon! Dan & Jen