The beautiful birth of Amy

The beautiful birth of Amy

Amy is the younger of my two girls. Her elder sister Emily’s birth was more medicalised and I knew that I wanted a different birth experience with Amy.

I threw myself into practising all the relaxation and breathing techniques I had learnt from Babies in Waiting. My priority was me and my baby, which meant I decided not to have my husband at the birth. He suffers with a great deal of anxiety and I knew that he could not provide the support I would need during labour. (It was a mutual agreement). My birth partners were going to be my cousin and my doula (Jo from Babies in Waiting). I knew they would be able to provide the love and support I would need.

My surges (contractions) started on the Saturday lunchtime at a soft play centre we were attending for a birthday party. I realised that the surges were becoming more rhythmic and regular. On the way back from the party my husband suggested going shopping and I just said it might be better if we went home. At 4.30pm I sent him and my elder daughter off to his parents and texted Jo to say I think this is it!

I spent a relaxing evening on my own enjoying the waves of surges. I had dinner, watched Strictly Come Dancing and had a shower. I took myself to bed around 9pm listening to the relaxation music I had conditioned myself to. The surges started to get stronger around 10.30pm and I asked Jo to come over. I drifted in and out of sleep for the next few hours, with Jo checking on me now and again. Then around 3am my waters broke and the surges really intensified. I was labouring so nicely at home, but I had not booked a home birth, so I had to go into hospital. With hindsight I should have booked a home birth.

On arriving at hospital, I was fortunate a birthing pool was available, and shortly after being admitted I got in. The water felt amazing and really helped with my relaxation and visualisation. I remained there for a few hours, completely oblivious to the time that was passing. Dosing off on occasion, I was also unaware of a shift change in midwives.

Throughout my relaxation conditioning prior to labour, I had used lavender and clary sage as an anchor for relaxation. During labour, one of the midwives placed these oils on cotton wool so that the aroma surrounded me and further aided my relaxation.

I transitioned to the second stage of labour in the pool and my body took over switching my breathing from a surge breath to a birth breath. I felt the need to push up, which was a signal to the midwives that Amy’s delivery was imminent.

My surges had slowed down in the pool, so it was suggested I got out. Changing positions helped with moving Amy further down on her birth path and at 1pm on 7th December, I welcomed her into my arms.

The experience was amazing. I had welcomed my baby into the world calmly, positively and without the need of any pain relief.