17 different women, 36 crazy children, 0 babies in utero
Adventures, Advice and Questions from a group of Mormon women who met in Queens, NY and have now scattered all over the place.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

A Birth Story

Quincy's Birth was amazing. I was so nervous about it at the begining of the pregnancy, but I decided to really practice hypnobirthing and I was thrilled with the results. My first two births were good but this birth was great. The theory behind hypnobirthing is that fear causes tension which causes pain. If you can keep your body relaxed and work with your contractions then they shouldn't hurt. I didn't go to a hypnobirth class, but I listened to a hypnobirth relaxation tape every day for 5 months and really practiced completely relaxing my body. I knew it was working because after I heard the intro to the tape, I became so relaxed, I could never remember what was on the other 20 minutes of the tape. With practice, I could get into a total relaxed state in a minute or so.

As I neared my due date, I was having frequent Braxton Hicks contractions. On her due date, my husband came home for lunch to watch our two kids and I took a nap. I noticed that the Braxton Hicks were comming more regularly. I slept from 1:00-2:00 and then timed the contractions from 2:00-3:00. They were coming every five minutes for the entire hour. I called my midwife and husband and said we were coming in. I felt just pressure in my low back but no pain. We finally left for the hospital at 4:00 after dropping off the older kids. The whole ride there, I listened to my tape and stayed relaxed and breathed through the contractions. They were coming every couple of minutes but I still only felt pressure. DH kept asking if I was having them, which was a big change from child #1 where I practically ripped off his arm for the whole ride from Queens to Manhattan.

We got to the hospital at 4:40 and my midwife was waiting outside for us. We went to check in and she asked if I thought I was really in labor, since I wasn't sure when I had called her. I told her I had had three contractions from the car to the front door, so we went right upstairs. She checked my progress and I was a contraction away from 8 cm dialated!

I continued to listen to my tape, had the lights dimmed, asked everyone to whisper, and stayed limp. By the time I was in transition with baby #2 I was curled up in a ball gripping DH's hand through the contractions--even though I was trying to stay relaxed. But this time since I had practiced so much and had the tape to cue me, I stayed limp, breathed through them, and they still only felt like pressure and tightness. No pain in my belly.

I got in the tub which helped me stay relaxed and after an hour I was dialated to a 10. When I got out of the water, gravity intensified the contractions and the pressure was quite overwhelming. The only postition that I felt comfortable in was squatting. I made it to the bed and pushed for 15 minutes or so--that did involve yelling and squeezing DH's hand really hard (relaxing can only do so much, I suppose) My water broke with a rush and with the next contraction she was born all at once at 6:18pm--1 1/2 hours after getting to the hospital. As my third natural birth, this was by far the best. Same amount of time but much more comfortable for much longer. I am looking forward to birth #4--but not anytime soon.

She is beautiful.


  • Congrats Brando!

    Oh, and Joe says hi!
    posted by Blogger Rusty at 9/27/2006 11:05:00 PM  

  • thanks Rusty! I havn't gotten around to sending out announcements yet. Its tricky with three.
    posted by Blogger Brandolyn at 9/28/2006 07:39:00 AM  

  • This is amazing to me. It's good to know that people can have such great birth experiences! I'm really glad that all of your preparation paid off. Do you think that hypnobirthing was just a really good match for you, or would you recommend it to anyone/everyone?
    posted by Blogger marian at 9/28/2006 11:02:00 AM  

  • Marian, I would definantly recomend it for everyone. I have read a lot of other women's experiences with hypnobirth and it seems to be generally positive. Some had long labors, some short but it seems to help everyone. You have to really take it seriously though and practice with a tape. A class would probablly be even more helpful.
    posted by Blogger Brandolyn at 9/28/2006 12:37:00 PM  

  • Your story gives me hope that maybe my third can be different from the first two. Hynobirthing sounds very intriguing. I think I will have to try it next time around. Did you get your tape off the website you linked to?
    posted by Blogger TftCarrie at 9/28/2006 01:21:00 PM  

  • Wow! What a wonderful story! Thanks for sharing, and congratulations on your new daughter.
    posted by Anonymous tracy m at 9/28/2006 02:10:00 PM  

  • I just don't know if I have the discipline to practice so much, but it does sound cool.
    posted by Blogger Kage at 9/29/2006 09:54:00 AM  

  • you've got my full attention!
    I delivered my third last week, and I am so envious of beautiful, relaxed birth experiences like that.
    My 1st was traumatic and natural. My 2nd and 3rd therefore used epidurals, but I am WAY dissatisfied with the hospital noise/beurocracy/policies and if there was a way to avoid pain at home or a birth center, I'd be SO there! (sigh) I'm tearing up now :( Darn hormones!
    posted by Blogger cchrissyy at 9/29/2006 11:20:00 AM  

  • The person speaking on my hypnobirth tape is Marie Mongan who is the founder of The Hypnobirthing Institute. You can get a CD from the web site I linked to. I would also suggest taking a class if there is one in your area. As for work Kage, it really isn't that time consuming. It is a nice excuse to totally rest and relax for 20 minutes a day, and who doesn't need that when pregnant? I listened to it in bed before going to sleep for the night. I recommend it even if you aren't pregnant. We can all benefit from learning to release and relax . . .
    posted by Blogger Brandolyn at 9/29/2006 04:00:00 PM  

  • Congratulations, Brandolyn. I remember how nervous you were this time around, so this is a huge accomplishment. Congrats.
    posted by Blogger sunny at 10/02/2006 11:37:00 AM  

  • I've done the Bradley method with my two kids and this sounds similar. Mainly, the goal is to completely relax and let your uterus do its work of contracting and opening up your cervix. I didn't practice my relaxation too well before my births, so I ended up making lots of loud moans instead to help me deal with the pain. Preparing yourself to manage the pain is a great way to up your odds of having a satisfying birth experience (just as long as you recognize that it's not guaranteed -- the best laid plans have a way of going awry if you count on them too much!).
    posted by Anonymous Erin at 11/17/2006 09:39:00 AM  

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