Calmbirth- Thank you for the tools you gave us, and for the reassurance that we were on the right path – despite what the hospitals, media and many friends lead you to believe.
It has taken me a few weeks to finally email you, and I am SO excited to share our birth experience with you.
On the 29th of September at 12:51am our beautiful boy Jude Alexander Holm was born. It was an absolutely incredible and such a positive experience from start to finish, and still is such a dream now (Jude will be 7 weeks old on Saturday).
When we attended Calmbirth with you and discussed our intention for the birth, we had said that we would like a 6 1/2 hour labour, and I wanted to be at home for as long as possible. We had also discussed having a water birth, but I kept saying to Mike that it was strange – while I wanted to have a water birth, I couldn’t quite imagine myself doing it, and felt like I would have our baby standing up…
So then the birth itself! I went into labour at 6pm on Friday the 28th of September. We both had a feeling that morning that my labour would start that day, but hadn’t really had any signs, other than mild period like cramping that had started on the Sunday.
The contractions started and continued very consistently – about 2-3 minutes apart and lasting for 30-45 seconds. That pattern continued until Jude was born, just with increasing intensity!
I have to confess, I hadn’t really done the meditations consistently after the course, but right from when I conceived (or even before!) just had such an inherent trust in my body, and belief that this was the most natural thing for me to experience. I had no fear around pregnancy, birth or motherhood, despite hearing many horror stories through my work (I’m a naturopath and work a lot with women’s health, fertility and kids), as well as through my friends.
When the contractions started, despite not having practiced, I slipped straight into the breathing that we learned at Calmbirth. I found it very easy to go to a place inside myself where I could really be with the sensations, as well as with my baby. I really felt we did it together.
Things intensified, and by 11:30pm we went to the hospital. On the phone to the midwife, she had said that I probably had a while to go, and that she could tell by my voice because I could still hold a conversation and was breathing easily through the contractions. Inside, I felt like I wanted to be at the place where Jude would be born, because he didn’t feel too far away to me. I remember walking through the hospital corridor and smiling to the staff.I really felt completely normal in between contractions, and felt really focused when they occurred.
The midwife checked me when we got to the room and I was 7cm dilated!!! That was the magic number I had been hoping for. I was so happy. At that point I lost my mucous plug, but my waters hadn’t yet broken.
We ran the bath (I was at Royal North Shore Hospital), and I almost reluctantly hopped in. I had been using a TENS machine, which I found really helped me to focus and breathe, and I wasn’t sure that I wanted to take it off!
Because I was 7cm and a first time mum, the midwife that checked me thought it would still be a while before my baby was born, so didn’t feel it necessary to call my midwife in (I was in the group midwife program). However, before long my body started pushing – it was completely involuntary!!! My partner and I were alone in the room at the time, so he buzzed for the midwife to come back. I have no concept of how much time passed, I was completely in the zone. I remember my midwife arrived JUST as Jude’s head was about to come out. I had my eyes closed, but could smell her perfume and heard her voice. She checked his heart rate with the doppler, and the other midwife commented that his descent was very fast and his heart rate had dropped. Intuitively I knew everything was fine, but they asked if I could get out of the bath so they could reach me and him more easily. I stood up to get out, but with one contraction (and involuntary push) his head came out. One more contraction and he was here.
Now I know why I felt conflicted when trying to visualise my birth… I ended up in the bath AND standing up!
Jude was a perfect 3.355kg, and so healthy, happy and calm. He came out with his hand next to his face, so there was a small labial tear on that side, but otherwise everything was fine. We stayed in the hospital for 4 hours before coming home… a total whirlwind! From 6pm when my labour started, to 6am when we were at home with a new baby.
At nearly 7 weeks, Jude is a very healthy 5.8kg. He is exclusively breastfed, and has always fed amazingly well – we have had no troubles :)Everyone comments on how placid and content he is. He didn’t lose any weight after he was born, he sleeps well – only waking for 10 mins 1-2 x per night to feed. We are all so happy and in love, and I really feel that the mindset that we have now, and what we created through the pregnancy is to thank for that. Calmbirth really supported us to get there 🙂
I could talk forever about my experience – I look back on it so fondly, and I can’t wait to experience it again! Thank you for the tools you gave us, and for the reassurance that we were on the right path – despite what the hospitals, media and many friends lead you to believe.
I hope everything is well with you. I will continue to recommend Calmbirth SO highly to my patients.
Take good care and thank you so much again,