Story by Danielle
We welcomed a baby girl Lena Soleil on the 2nd of December at 1:55pm. I laboured for 12 hours and birthed within the same hour that her 6 year old brother Finn was born at (1:03pm).
Both births were very alike, contractions began at a very similar time of night, and I laboured for almost the same amount of time as my first birth. I attended the Calmbirth course with Regina back in 2016 for the birth of my son. The breathing, relaxation and visualisation techniques contributed so much to how I birthed Finn. Before the Calmbirth course I attended one antenatal session at the Birth Centre and the focus was very much centred around the term ‘pain’. I walked away feeling quite fearful. I was then recommended the Calmbirth course by a friend and booked a session immediately. By the end of the weekend, Regina had completely reshaped our view of birthing and parenting. We were excited for birth, and we felt so empowered now that we had the tools to bring this babe into the world. We were so grateful to Regina for guiding us on how to trust the process and surrender to the beauty that is birthing.
Upon falling pregnant with our second baby, I reached for my Calmbirth booklet and revised the techniques as I knew how much it contributed to such a calm and joyful birth with my son.
Lena’s birth was somewhat even more intense as there was a lot of pressure and labouring through my lower back. During the more intense surges, my homebirth midwife would remind me to return to the calm breathing technique, which helped my body relax and surrender. Whenever I would have a negative thought about whether I could birth this baby, I would return to the breath, and I would use the visualisations and affirmations that I had prepared in the lead up to my birth.
The general consensus is that a woman’s second birth is always faster and easier, and I feel as though this seed was planted in my mind during my second pregnancy. I could definitely sense at times during my labour that Lena was not arriving faster, and it certainly did not feel easier. If anything, the surges were more intense and my response to each wave was louder and required more movement to ride through them when compared to my first birth, which was a little quieter and more internal. I felt so grateful that I was able to use the calmbirth techniques to move me through some very intense waves during my second labour as it helped to melt away any fear or tension and allowed me to move through each surge believing that I was always one step closer to meeting my baby.
I birthed Lena into the water and caught her into my arms.
It was primal, it was thrilling, it was tough, it was gentle, it was blissful, it was so many things at once. I talked about the birth for days; I recorded it on paper as soon as I could as I didn’t want to forget a single moment of the journey. My partner made sure to capture it on video which one of my dear friends who is a trained midwife sat and watched with me and we wept together. It was pure magic birthing at home.
The calm breathing, the visuals, the mantras, all these tools that you taught me in Calmbirth kept me grounded through both my first and second birth. Interestingly, I found Lena’s birth to be more intense/tiring compared to the first and the contractions required more hip movement and more vocal release to move through each wave, so if anything, I had to call even more on these tools to keep me going. And it is to you that I owe so much to how I have birthed.
Lena is now 4 months, and she is absolute joy personified. We all adore her, and she is one of those babies that makes me feel as though you could have 5 more! So smiley and so content. Finn is very smitten which is so beautiful to see.
The moment I stepped foot into the calmbirthing space, was the moment my view of birthing and parenting took a more conscious path, returning me to my roots and the knowledge that women are designed to birth, and our bodies have always carried this wisdom. I couldn’t recommend highly enough inviting the Calmbith course into your world, as it will undoubtedly change it.