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Brooke’s Birth Story

Birth Stories

Story by Brooke

We were fortunate to access MGP care through our local hospital. We were supported by our midwife and student midwife and felt confident in the care they provided. We chose to progress with an induction at 41/2. I had spent my whole pregnancy hoping for a spontaneous vaginal delivery and was reluctant to ask for intervention. I was worried it would be more painful and about the cascade of interventions. Knowing I needed to change my mind set before we commenced, Tom and I spent the days before the induction practicing breathing techniques learned at Calmbirth. We also focused on boosting oxytocin, enjoying walks, swimming in the ocean, long baths, and spending time with our dogs.

Our induction started on Monday evening and progressed slowly and calmly. Tom stayed in the hospital with me, and we got a good night’s sleep. I spent the night with light cramps, using heat packs to relax. I had my waters broken at 0630 on Tuesday and motivated to progress my labour without further intervention, we spent two hours climbing the stairs at the hospital. This didn’t progress my labour but did make me feel that I had tried everything to get things going. We started the syntocinon drip at 0900 and my contractions started quickly.

We watched our wedding video and then listened to a comedian we enjoyed, taking Karen’s advice to ignore labour for as long as possible. By 12:00 the contractions were hard to ignore so we started trying different strategies; shower, fit-ball, counter pressure, massage, and TENs. When my contractions became more intense, I used the calm breath technique learned during the course. I found counting my breaths to be a very useful distraction. It kept me focused on my breathing and not my contractions. We practiced this breath throughout my third trimester and am glad we did. Tom breathed with me to help me focus. At 17:00 I was offered gas/air to assist with pain management. I found this really useful as it helped me concentrate on my breathing. I stayed active while using the gas, using the fit ball as support. This combined with the TENs and combs enabled me to manage the pain.

At 17:45 my midwife advised that my cervix was bleeding, and our baby was likely posterior. At 18:15 I consented to a VE which identified that I was 7 cms dilated. I was involuntarily pushing and couldn’t stop. My midwife recommended we get an epidural to stop the involuntary pushing and give me more time to dilate. I asked for some more time as this was the cascading intervention, I was worried about. Tom held space for me, communicating our wishes to the midwives and anaesthesiologists.

At 18.30 my midwife assisted me into a side-lying position with a peanut ball to give the baby space to turn. This worked quickly and I transitioned soon after. I pushed for 7 minutes, and our baby Fergus was born at 19:04. He was placed straight onto my chest where he stayed and fed for the next few hours. I was surprised how much I was able to enjoy our birth and how present I was able to be. I am so grateful that Tom and I had the Calmbirth techniques to support us through labour. Tom was able to offer helpful suggestions to me in moments when I couldn’t think.

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