This was my third Hypno-baby! My first Hypno-baby was born 9 years ago, my second Hypno-baby 7 years ago and I had amazing experiences both times. I used the home study program for my first two children but this time I decided to actually take a class. I highly recommend taking a class if you can. I feel that I listened to my tracks and practiced a lot more when held accountable. I also learned a lot of new things that I didn’t know before.
My instructor, Carrie Cesario Mendes was also my hypno doula and it made a world of a difference having a doula who truly understood and was passionate about Hypnobabies! Although I had positive experiences with birthing my first two children, this time I had my dream birth! “Visualize your birth” was my favorite track and I listened to it daily in the last few weeks. It is truly amazing what we can manifest through visualization because everything went almost exactly as I had envisioned. Birthing my daughter was the most empowering and spiritual experience of my life!
From the beginning, I knew that I wanted a natural water birth for my daughter. I was very disappointed to find out that according to my hospital’s policy I was only allowed to “labor” in the tub but not actually give birth in the tub. My midwife told me that they would have to get me out of the tub before I started pushing. A home birth was not really an option for me because I personally feel more comfortable birthing in a hospital setting. Still, I continued to visualize a water birth at the hospital while listening to my Hypnobabies tracks. During one of my weekly Hypnobabies classes the topic of catching your own baby came up and it really stuck with me. So, I also started to visualize pushing my baby out and pulling her up to my chest myself.
During the last month of my pregnancy, I was experiencing prodromal birthing time (Hypnobabies word for labor). Lots of inconsistent pressure waves (Hypnobabies word for contractions) starting in the evening and dying off by the morning. It was getting to be really physically and emotionally exhausting because I would have lots of sleepless nights with waves that didn’t result in going into my birthing time. At week 40 I was tired, cranky, anxious, and not feeling quite myself anymore. I was listening to Hypnobabies tracks every single day and “Come out Baby” was played several times a day for the last two weeks because I was feeling desperate for my baby girl to make her debut. On Sunday, July 14th I met with my hypno doula, Carrie for a hypnosis session. After our session, I felt my anxieties fade away.
My husband started his paternity leave that following day so we dropped off our kids at summer camp and decided to spend the day at the beach walking down the pier. It was such a nice moment for us to relax and connect. After the hypnotherapy session and therapeutic beach walk, I felt that I was finally mentally in a good place for baby girl to make her debut.
That afternoon I had a little bit of bloody show and I started getting some stronger waves but they were not coming consistently so I rode the waves all night listening to the Hypnobabies tracks. I decided to go into the midwife’s office the next morning, July 16th. I was feeling waves every 10 minutes or so. The midwife did a vaginal exam and told me that I was about 3cm dilated 50% effaced. After my appointment, we decided to go to the mall to have lunch and do some walking to move things along.
Once at home the waves were coming every 4-6 minutes so I took a shower, got all of our stuff ready and headed over to the hospital. Once I got in the car and put my headphones on I was totally in the zone. My waves were coming every five minutes at this point. There was a bit of traffic so it was about 5:00 pm when we arrived at the hospital.
We had prepared snacks and drinks to bring to the nurses and they really seemed to appreciate the gesture. I was also really glad that I did the registration and paperwork before I went into the hospital since I didn’t have to bother with any of that once I arrived. When we were admitted, the nurse immediately asked us “What would you like us to call contractions?” and my husband asked her to call them “waves.” The nurses and staff at the hospital were amazing and very considerate of our Hypno-birth and birthing plan! The nurse did a vaginal exam and I was 4cm dilated and 60% effaced and -2 station. They gave me the option to go home but I preferred to stay at the hospital at that point.
I was very focused and in the hypnosis zone until my midwife walked in. She was so warm and friendly and wanted to chit chat with me. Although I appreciated her friendliness I was completely pulled out of the zone and switched over to my “thinking brain!” My waves seemed to come to a complete stop and the midwife again recommended that I go home which I really did not want to do. At about 6 pm Carrie (my hypno doula) arrived to save the day. She came with a suitcase full of her tools, a peanut ball, a birthing tool, and most importantly her presence. As soon as Carrie arrived she set a different tone in the room and helped me get right back into the zone. I was listening to Hypnobabies tracks on my headphones while she was reciting affirmations to me. I liked having both voices speaking to me since it gave me a continuous stream of suggestions and affirmations.
Carrie had me do some Spinning Babies moves to get the baby to come down further. We did the side-lying releases, shaking the apple tree and the abdominal lift and tucks. I’m not going to lie; the abdominal lift and tucks were quite intense and I felt some pain when we did these. Once the nurses blew up and filled the birthing tub I stepped inside and felt such a relief! The warm water was really soothing and felt so relaxing. Carrie poured warm water on my back while my husband held my hand and I was able to completely focus on my birthing time. My midwife and nurse sat on the bed just observing for about an hour when they decided to step out. They must have figured that I had quite a bit of time left until I started pushing.
Soon after the midwives stepped out, I started feeling the urge to push. I decided to just listen to my body and let it do what it wanted to. I wasn’t making any loud sounds or looking like I was in distress so even my husband and my doula didn’t realize right away that I was pushing. I wasn’t feeling any pain. It just felt like intense pressure.
After pushing for about 10 minutes (or less) I felt the baby’s head bulging out. I put my right hand below and felt her face. Her tiny nose and mouth! I was so excited to meet her! I pushed about two more times and felt her coming! I reached with both hands and pulled her right up to my chest saying, “Hi Sweetie!” I was just so happy she was finally here! I was blissed out with her on my chest when my husband said, “Her cord!” and I noticed that the cord was wrapped around her neck twice. I knew from my Hypnobabies class that a cord around the neck was very common and that it’s unlikely to cause any problems so I didn’t panic. Just then the nurse and midwife rushed in to find me with a baby on my chest. She quickly came over and unraveled the cord from around Remi’s neck. Right after she was untangled she let out a cry and my heart just melted.
We waited for the cord to stop pulsating and my husband cut the cord. Remi was alert and latched on right away. Carrie massaged my legs with Cypress essential oils while I birthed the placenta. The midwife said I had a minor first-degree tear. I think having a water birth really helped with the tearing and recovery.
Remi was a perfect 7lbs. 3oz. despite my gestational diabetes. She was born at 10:32 pm. It was less than 6 hours since we arrived at the hospital and everything went so quickly and smoothly! Remi’s birth was everything I had ever dreamed of. I ended up having that waterbirth that I wanted so badly and even got to “catch” her myself!
My older children are over the moon to have a baby sister and our family finally feels complete.
Thank you Hypnobabies and Carrie Cesario Mendes!