Helen’s Story, July 2012
Good news! There was a baby in there all along! Her name is Eleanor and she came into the world at 4:55 am on July 16. Our ‘stay at home as long as possible plan’ became a lovely home birth in water, and I think HypnoBirthing was a big piece of that.
I woke up on Saturday morning having surges that were distinct, but not unmanageable. Merlin and I hung out during the day as they got closer together, eventually setting up the birthing ball and the birth tub and calling in my friend Trina to be a support. All three of us tried to sleep that night, but we didn’t have much luck; I was awake because the surges were getting closer together and Merlin and Trina were just excited. Around 3am the surges were in the 4-1-1 pattern so we called the midwives… and were told I was not in active labour, but I had done good work and the baby was definitely coming, just not too soon. So they gave me some gravol and sent us all off to bed.
The next day my surges were getting more and more productive, and closer together, but then they got to 8 minutes apart and hovered there most of the day. I was able to go in and out of hypnosis for all of them. It was so effective that I even won an elaborate board game, and Trina and Merlin promise they were not going easy on me; they would just pause as I went into hypnosis and start again when I came out.
Around 11 pm I transitioned to active labour. We started playing the hypnosis CDs, and I moved in to the water. One part of the birth that I have especially fond memories of was during a time when labour was intensifying, and the tools that had worked for a while stopped working. I went to the bathroom and was having a difficult time with the surges. Merlin came in, held my hand and told me, “Think about those blue satin ribbons, just let them uncurl and fall away.” Suddenly I could manage again, relaxed through that surge, and for the next half hour Merlin knelt with me in the bathroom and when I felt a surge coming I would turn to her and say, “Tell me about the ribbons.” And she would, and it helped.
After 5 hours of active labour, and 45 minutes of stage two Eleanor came into the world and was caught by her mama who put her on my chest. We all cuddled while the placenta came out until we were ready to get out of the tub and have me and Eleanor checked by the midwives.
Thank you for all your help. The birth was an incredible experience and we couldn’t have done it without you.
PS in the hypnosis control room I set the labour to 5 hours.