Birth Story from a Midwife & having Hyperemesis.
Alby’s Birth Story
I wanted to share my amazing birth story of our little Alby. Sorry for the long read!
I had a very rough pregnancy with Hyperemesis Gravidarum and some issues with my adrenal gland so I chose to go down the route of a private obstetrician. As a midwife I never thought I would go down that pathway but I couldn’t be more grateful of this decision.
In the lead up to birth I was still vomiting everyday and needing IV fluids a few times a week. I also had really bad hip and pelvic pain so my mobility was terrible and I was so worried I wouldn’t be able to move in labour like I wanted.
We did our course with Shari around 28 weeks and to be honest we didn’t get too much practice in being so sick but what I really focused on was the breathing techniques and framing my mindset. I had a very posterior baby from around 36 weeks so I enlisted the help of a chiropractor and acupuncturist and was able to turn him into a perfect position where he stayed. I wasn’t able to really walk in the lead up and sitting on the ball made my pain worse so my main preparation was just resting and a ton of raspberry leaf capsules!
Being a midwife and wanting some control I actually asked for a stretch and sweep at 39 weeks and my cervix was looking promising, as much as I was avoiding intervention; it really helped my mindset knowing my body was doing the right things.
I had an induction booked at 40+5 and was really set on moving this back and giving myself every opportunity however at 40+3 I saw my obstetrician who felt like my nausea and vomiting was really draining me and it was just time to get to the end. Again not at all what I anticipated but my midwife brain and needing some control I felt a massive sense of relief with this decision and had all the trust that my body would allow the induction process to run smoothly.
At 40+4 we had such a nice relaxing night and I had such a great sleep for once and was super excited for the next day. I woke up the next morning at 4am with regular intense period type cramping. Got up to the toilet and had ruptured my membranes. Thinking we would be in for a long day I tried to get myself set up with my fairy lights and put the TV on to distract me. By 4:30 these cramps were extremely intense and back to back. I couldn’t sit down or stop moving and I honestly couldn’t believe how intense they were and I really just didn’t want to be at home or deal with the car ride so I told my partner to get everything ready for us to go. The car ride was horrendous my surges were so regular I felt like I wasn’t getting a break. In my mind I was only in extremely early labour and my plan was to just get an epidural and be done with it. This was the beginning of the self doubt I had throughout my labour.
We got into birth suite at around 6:45am and I was just a wreck and honestly not coping. I demanded every pain relief under the sun but was given some gas and got in the shower. I couldn’t figure out why the midwife wouldn’t just examine me because I was so sure of being 2cm and then I would get the epidural. In my mind that was the only possible scenario. I was begging for some pain relief so at around 8:15am the midwife agreed to examine me. She finished the examination and left the room immediately and I started getting really frustrated that she didn’t tell me what the result was (even though in my birth plan I had said I didn’t want to know!). She came back in and told me I was around 8cm and so I couldn’t really have any pain relief. Instead of a sense of relief I felt angry and frustrated at the thought of having no pain relief options. I got back in the shower and we got our playlist of music going.
My partner and midwife were saying affirmations to me - my midwife was assigned to me because she had some hypnobirthing experience. She just kept reminding me that that my body was doing everything it needed to do. We never actually got a chance to give the midwives our birth preferences but they just knew what I wanted to achieve. I stayed in the shower standing for most of my labour and my partner just used the shower head and I would rock back and forth with the water on my back and belly. I was so vocal in the shower and felt like I was just not coping. Looking back now I was in full transition (and denial). I asked for a cesarean, I asked to go home, I asked if I could just go to sleep and every time the midwife and my partner told me that I was doing all the right things I would just tell them I didn’t want to do it anymore. My obstetrician arrived not long after, she sat with me in the shower, she held my hand and was just the most incredible support. I remember wondering why she was even there so early but again in hindsight I was probably fully dilated at this point. They were all encouraging me to go with my body and breath him down. I kept saying I wasn’t ready and that I couldn’t possibly be fully dilated. At this stage I refused to push because I just could not get it into my head that this was actually happening. My obstetrician agreed to examine me again and turns out his head was right there ready. I then asked for someone to just pull him out which everyone thought was hilarious.
I then had this amazing ‘rest and be thankful phase’. I ended up on my back in bed surprisingly - I just needed to lay down and have the bed support me.
My surges slowed and I just got into a much more positive mindset and breathed down my baby. I used the gas and relaxation breaths in between surges and we just listened to our playlist. Everyone in the room was so relaxed. At 9:52am after such a wild and fast labour our little Alby was born and I got to pull him onto my chest. It was just incredible and bewildering all at the same time. My obstetrician throughout this was phenomenal, she advocated and supported the absolute definition of physiological birth. We then had the most beautiful golden two hours of time just the three of us. I had a tiny first degree tear which I opted to have a suture in.
I’m still in shock of how our story went. I wish we had more of an opportunity to use all of our planned and prepared birth tools but there was just honestly no time. But the breath work was key and was really the only thing that got me through. I was initially a bit disappointed with my self doubt but in hindsight everything progressed so quickly it was hard for my mind to catch up. I now just feel so proud that after everything we went through in the pregnancy and doubting my bodies ability - it did exactly what it needed to do.
We can’t thank Shari enough for her guidance and giving us all the tools we could need to have the most amazing birthing experience And I can’t thank my partner Pat enough. He stayed calm, he encouraged me at every stage and made me feel safe and strong. We are now loved up in complete newborn bliss with our little boy. As a side note my nausea settled immediately post birth and I have felt absolutely amazing since!
To book into a Hypnobirthing Course or Birth Course on the Gold Coast CLICK HERE
To book into a Live Online Hypnobirthing Course through Zoom CLICK HERE