Hypnobirthing is a complete birth education programme, that teaches simple but specific self hypnosis, relaxation and breathing techniques for a better birth.
I sat with my husband, whilst at a funeral actually, discussing children and birth and generally discussing the circle of life. Opposite us, sat a proud father who was describing the joy of child birth. I immediately listened in – intrigued. Joy of child birth? Exactly my thoughts. He described in detail how his wife slept through a majority of her contractions, how she went to hospital without realising she was 8cm dilated and had no pain relief what so ever and easily pushed this little squashy being into the world.
“She slept through contractions? How did she do that?” (I found braxton hicks unpleasant – I thought they were labour every time).
I actually looked over to my husband and rolled my eyes and received a smirk in response.
“She had a hypnobirth.”
If I could, I would have rolled my eyes right up into my head. Cynical it may be, but I actually thought this was a load of rubbish. Yes, when you see your beautiful baby it is magical, but the actual labour has never been described to me as, ‘wonderful and painless.’ Those people are crazy, people who live in ‘la la land.’ Those stories obviously aren’t real. I am the first person to say, ‘.. It’s horrible, birth is horrible…’ even though I have been told that this is the worst way to speak to pregnant ladies.
Now, you have to understand that that day we had had our dating scan. We were pregnant again, so it explains my cynicism. I hadn’t forgotten labour – I had only given birth 18 months ago and was not going to listen to this ‘Mans tale of Birth’ (Sorry men!)
Later that night something came over me…I had a complete change of heart. I do not know if it was amount of lemonade I had been drinking, or I was light headed from the million trips to the toilet that day but, I messaged the Dad I had sniggered at earlier. My hormones had rushed into my head and I suddenly I wanted to be a part of this magical, ‘pain free birth.’ I had decided that I bloody wanted one; I wanted to overcome and change my notion of birth.
Why? Because in my opinion I had had a shitty birth, pulled the short straw, had the emergency C-section, felt the guilt, got the scar and this time I would like to get the baby out naturally. The issue being – I can’t go past 40 weeks because of the complications with my first… So I want to do what I can to make the recovery as easy as possible, because I can not face the aftermath with a toddler crying, laughing, wrestling, jumping after me, after another c-section.
After a number of messages back and forth and an exchange of numbers from his wife, I had decided that I was going to try this! I was going to have hypno birth! I researched hundreds of courses and looked at all these experts online but, basically, I would have to sell my child to attend courses so I have started doing it the cheap way – I’ve bought books, downloaded music and you tubed a lot vlogs online.
I am going into this with a completely open mind and a small part of me is still cynical, but according to my books I just need to change my mindset. It is that simple. So, as a novice at this business I want to blog about my hypno birthing experience – If I go through with it!
So far, it has mainly been research, reading and listening to hypno tracks weekly. These have given me a great sense of music I can listen to to calm me down and places to imagine when I am feeling stressed. I have so many places to go to in my head that are a great comfort to me, and most of them allow me to escape. One that recurs, is one that isn’t even real – me and my mum just sitting in a field where we used to walk the dog- but its gives me a great sense of calm and tranquility.
I’ve also read unbelievable accounts of women having orgasms during a hypno- birth, which still seems on the verge of crazy to me – I just cannot see that happening; opposite ends of the scale for me at the moment.
But, honestly, I really so feel much more positive about it and I definitely do not feel ‘ brainwashed.’ I cannot do much more than this and just have to persevere and eventually my thought process with change!
At 14 weeks I had this epiphany and now at nearly 24 weeks I am still going with it!
10 things that have helped me understand Hypnobirthing (without all the science language)
So how I interpret hypno birthing…. People may believe I have got it all wrong so far, but this is what I take from it:
- I need to think positively about birth and let all the negative emotions and words leave my brain during my whole pregnancy ( Do not use negative words like pain).
- If I moan about aches and pains I must tell myself or get my partner to tell me that this is what is meant to be happening and my body is making space.
- If I panic during birth my body with close up and cause pain.
- If I am calm and allow my body to relax then my body will open and give the baby room (apparently looking at pictures of flowers opening helps but I am just not there yet).
- I need to be in the most calming environment possible ( if think about my senses, I need to have calming smells, calming sounds and images that keep me feeling chilled)
- I’m not a scientist but its all about releasing oxytocin, which speeds up birth and this can be triggered by loving and nice feelings.
- BREATHING! This is vital. I have been practising breathing exercises everyday to stay calm and breathing right into my stomach to give my baby room.
- You have to be in the, ‘birthing zone.’
- This is not being hynotised at all – it is about being mindful regarding your body’s motions and feelings during birth; being aware of how your body is reacting to birth and staying in control.
- Doing what is best for myself and being 100 percent comfortable in labour.
Oh and most importantly, having your partner on board, which, for me is the barrier…
…. Now I am the crazy person that people roll their eyes at, but I just have to shake it off – positive thoughts only allowed!