Story by Laura
“Out of curiosity, I asked my midwife how dilated I had been when she did the internal check, and she told me that I was only 5cm at the time – so I went from 5cm dilated to giving birth in half an hour!
“Luca did end up being a “big baby” (4.8kg/10lb 9oz) but I was able to trust my body and baby to labour and birth in their own time, without being medically induced purely based on size. Calmbirth helped so much with providing the knowledge and the tools to be confident in my body’s abilities with both my second and third birth experiences.”
We did our first Calmbirth class at the beginning of 2018 before our second son was born, after having quite a traumatic and intervention-filled birth with our first. We ended up having an incredibly healing, positive birth experience with our second son after doing our Calmbirth course, so when we fell pregnant with our third, we knew we wanted to take a Calmbirth refresher course to bring all of that information and knowledge back to us.
I’d been told that this baby was measuring “big” throughout my pregnancy, and was encouraged to induce at 38 weeks – or if not, to “at least have a stretch and sweep”. However, after already birthing two big babies, I trusted my body and declined any forms of induction (including stretch and sweeps). We instead just did all of the standard things to prepare and encourage labour, and practiced regular acupressure from 38 weeks. We also did lots of visualisation/meditation while listening to the Calmbirth meditations throughout the pregnancy.
On Halloween evening (2 days before EDD), Tim and I went for a big walk while we took our older boys trick-or-treating. Five minutes after we finished trick-or-treating, my waters began leaking, and mild contractions began every ten minutes.
Contractions slowly began building, so we went into hospital a bit later at our midwife’s request just to monitor bub and to confirm that my waters were leaking. This was unfortunate as I really wanted to use this time to rest and possibly get an hour or two of sleep, because I felt like things were probably going to intensify that night.
We returned back home from hospital around midnight, and Tim went to bed while I laboured using Calmbirth breathing techniques and rocking and swaying. I then had a long hot shower before using the TENs machine. At 3am I felt like the contractions were ramping up, so I called my mum and asked her to come out to look after our older boys since we had a 30 minute drive into hospital. I then called our midwife and our birth photographer to get them to meet us at the hospital.
I’d been fortunate enough to get into the MGP program during pregnancy, and although I hadn’t had the chance to meet the midwife who ended up being with me during labour, she knew all of my birth wishes and was very hands-off, allowing me to labour as I wanted, which was wonderful.
Baby was briefly monitored again after getting to hospital, then after monitoring I hopped straight into the bath to continue labouring. After being in there for over 2 hours, I hopped out to walk around and labour in the shower, before hopping back into the bath. In the bath I would drift off to sleep in between contractions as I had now been awake for over 24 hours and was feeling exhausted.
During contractions I would consistently use the Calmbirth breathing techniques. Tim would count slowly from one to five over and over while I matched his counting with my breathing.
Just before 7:30am, my midwife asked if I would be happy to have a quick internal check, which I agreed to, but I asked her not to tell me how dilated I was. She did the check, and let me know that my waters were bulging, so offered to break my waters – after discussing it with Tim, we agreed to this as I was SO tired, and breaking my waters would most likely intensify things and speed up labour quite a bit.
After my waters were broken, I hopped back into the bath and had a few very strong contractions, before feeling the urge to push at 7:50am. After only a couple of contractions while pushing, bub’s head was out. I then turned from being on my knees, over into a reclining position in the bath, and with one last contraction his body was born as I reached down and caught him myself – it was such an incredible moment!
At 8:02am on 1/11/22 (one day before EDD), I lifted him onto my chest and we discovered that we had our third little boy! I then birthed his placenta 20 minutes later.
Out of curiosity, I asked my midwife how dilated I had been when she did the internal check, and she told me that I was only 5cm at the time – so I went from 5cm dilated to giving birth in half an hour!
Luca did end up being a “big baby” (4.8kg/10lb 9oz) but I was able to trust my body and baby to labour and birth in their own time, without being medically induced purely based on size. Calmbirth helped so much with providing the knowledge and the tools to be confident in my body’s abilities with both my second and third birth experiences.
Thanks so much for our beautiful Calmbirth refresher course Cherie, it really helped to prepare us for birth again this time, and after 4 and a half years since our last baby, our brains really needed refreshing haha.