Birth of Petra
I would like to take a moment to share my HypnoBirthing experience after taking the course with Sandra according to the Marie Mongan method. I was interested in having a natural childbirth and it was a Dutch friend who told me about HypnoBirthing for the first time. I read Marie Mongan's book, and I decided that I would like to take the course.
During the months before my daughter's birth, I practiced 30 minutes of deep meditation or self-hypnosis almost every day. I learned special breathing techniques to relax and to take long breaths to support the waves (contractions). When the due day arrived, I knew what to do, and that helped me to maintain a greater sense of control. On week 41 + 1 I had an appointment with my gynecologist for monitoring. That morning I got up with soft contractions that did not stop when I changed positions. I tried to relax, watched a tv show and I took long breathings during the waves. When it was time for my appointment, I got into the car with my birth companion and during the journey I heard the relaxation audios accompanied by the special breathing that I had practiced so much - the practice is fundamental.
At 11am the midwife examined me, the waves were every 5 minutes and I was 3cm dilated - I was very relaxed and focused. The people that came into the room were surprised to listen to the HypnoBirthing audios and they stayed very quiet - that seemed phenomenal to me as they did not interrupt my relaxation. We were assigned a room. My birth companion asked for a ball, turned off the lights and stayed with me, respecting my silence and my concentration. The time passed very quickly, two hours seemed to me like 20 minutes and at 2pm I was already 5cm dilated and I entered into the bathtub. My gynecologist came to say hi, but I did not respond and he did not insist. He left and left me with two wonderful midwives. I spent 2 hours in silence in the water, breathing and listening to relaxing music. My birth companion practiced anchoring techniques to help me deepen my hypnosis as the waves became more intense. The midwife suggested that I leave the bathtub so my tension would not drop, but I told her that I could not get out. I told her I wanted to get an epidural, she just said "with epidural it will take longer, you're almost at the end" and that convinced me to go on. She stayed very calm and made a check: I was already 8 cm dilated and my baby was in correct position, however the membranes did not break. I stayed in the hot water another hour - it really helps a lot to relax between waves - and when I decided to let the midwife help me break the membranes, I suddenly heard a sound like "pop" , finally the membranes broke alone. The intensity of the waves became stronger and the descent of my baby began. I felt the urge to push, I tried to breathe and not to push but I found it impossible. I used the voice a lot to make very long j-shaped expirations to help the baby come out. I was still in the water in a horizontal position with one leg hanging inside a cloth hanging from the ceiling. The expulsive was not fast, the head came out in 6 or 7 waves and that allowed the perineal skin to gradually relax and to not tear. I birthed my baby alone in the water while the midwives and the gynecologist watched from the outside in silence. Her body came out in the water at 6 o'clock and the midwife placed her on my chest while my birth companion cut the umbilical cord. They emptied the tub and I left the water to light the placenta and check that everything was fine on the stretcher.
My baby and I stayed 2 hours skin on skin in the birth room. 15 minutes after birth my daugther found the breast and began to breastfeed naturally. All the medical staff gave me the congratulations for a very good and "beautiful" delivery. My recovery was immediate. The next morning I could walk and sit quite naturally. I would definitely repeat the experience the same way! Thank you Sandra and thank you to all who have supported me along the way to have a natural childbirth in a positive and relaxed way.
Primrose Ivy's Birth Story
My daughter Primrose Ivy was born on 24th January 2017 after just 5h 41min. Her birth was ever so different from the birth of my son William who was born with an emergency c-section after 12h in labour. With my first born, I experienced a very long, painful and traumatic labour. The pain was unbearable, as expected, and even after loads of pain relief (gas&air, 2x pethidine injections, and epidural) I was still in a lot of pain and ended up having a c-section. It was a traumatic experience and it took me a long time to recover (mentally more than physically).
I have never heard of HypnoBirthing before, but a good friend of mine introduced me to it and I was curious and wanted to give it a go. Before I learned about hypnobirthing, my view about birth was very different to what it is now. I was angry that women had to go through this ordeal of child birth in the 21st century. All the negative stories from friends and relatives plus my own experience proved to me that there is no other option but painful child birth.
OMG how wrong I was!! Hypnobirthing completely changed my view about child birth and gave me courage and confidence in my own capability and body. I was actually looking forward to the birth this time and I wanted to prove to myself that I could do this.
I started getting minor surges at 9pm which felt more like menstrual pain. At about 11pm I took a bath to try and relax as the surges were stronger and really painful. I doubted myself and I wasn't sure if I could go without pain relief. But I didn't concentrate on myself, I was worried as we didn't have anyone to look after my 2 year old son. But within half an hour we found a friend who took him in for the night and I started to relax. I was able to breath through every single surge and I just concentrated on breathing the oxygen through my body down to the baby and womb. I was comfortable and relaxed on the bed when my waters broke. We left for the hospital shortly after and arrived at about 0.30am. I agreed to be examined and was about 8cm dilated. I was thrilled that after just 3 1/2 h I was already that far along. I knew I could do this. I managed to go into the birthing pool but had to get out after a while as my temperature and blood pressure rose. No major issue I just had to cool down. I then stayed in bed as it was actually the most comfortable position for me, on my side with one leg raised. I just let my body do the work and breathed deeply in and out. All of a sudden I had the feeling to push and I couldn't resist this urge. I just let my body carry on. The mid wives did not interfere at all just worked with me until the head of the baby was born. My surge was over and the midwife told me to push to get the baby out but I didn't feel like pushing, my body didn't tell me to push. So I ignored her and kept on breathing. With the next surge I felt the urge to push again and my daughter popped out at 2:41am!! I can still remember that moment as if it was yesterday. I felt excited, proud, relieved and absolute total joy. I couldn't believe what I had achieved.
Hypnobirthing changed my life and I am ever so grateful that I was able to have this wonderful experience. If someone had told me 2 years ago after the birth of my son that it is possible to have a positive and amazing birth experience I would have declared them crazy. But now, after having such an amazing experience, I know it's achievable. It wasn't totally pain free but it was absolutely bearable and doable and nothing compared to my first birthing experience. I went from having all the pain relief that was on offer to having none at all!! I didn't even need any stitches.
I can't recommend hypnobirthing enough!! It is fantastic and great and even if you are a pessimist like I was, it will change your view about child birth forever! Thank you Sandra, you have been an amazing teacher!!!
Birth of Paula
My name is Xisca and I am currently the mother of two magnificent children: Julià (3 years) and Paula (1,5 month). I want to take advantage of the opportunity to thank Sandra for her professionalism and the great human quality, with which she treated me and my family.
We met in the last trimester of pregnancy and, although I would have liked to meet her before, it was enough time to learn and internalize the different techniques of HypnoBirthing. Sandra showed us how to turn our perception of childbirth into a wonderful experience. Our traumatic experience of the first birth left fear and mistrust behind. However, the different tools that Sandra taught us, allowed us to change those thoughts and let us looking forward to the birth of our second child in a much more constructive and positive way with calm and trust.
During the sessions, apart from working with relaxation and visualization techniques, she gives the couple a more active role in the whole process. We learned to bear responsibility which gave us more confidence in what you have to do at all times. Sandra always mentions the flexibility with which she recommends parents to enter into this experience and this helped us enormously in our case. Even if you have visualized your birth, you always have to remain open and flexible to any unforeseen events that may arise and being able not to see it as a failure as it happened in our first childbirth.
Without doubt, HypnoBirthing has helped us to live the birth of our second child from another perspective and much more positive and satisfactory.
Finally, I can only thank Sandra for all her interest and help in the days after the birth. It was a sign of her generosity and care, not only as a professional but as a person.