“Theodore Barry”

At 32 weeks pregnant I completed my Hypnobirthing course with Steph. We found the course incredibly informative, with the perfect balance of how to hypnobirth within the medical system, which all of the participants like myself had planned to do.

I felt prepared in the weeks leading to my birth. I printed my affirmation cards and stuck them to the wall in my living room. I listened to the recordings, I gave myself time every day to visualise the birth I wanted. As my due date drew closer I felt calm and ready and enjoyed getting ready for bub to arrive – I drank raspberry leaf tea, walked up and down my steps and bounced on my exercise ball.

I didn’t think bub was on the way at this point because I could feel that his head wasn’t in my pelvis. This is something my obstetrician has mentioned to me as my baby was sitting quite high. I wasn’t worried as babies can engage at the last point and during labour. To my surprise, two days before my due date, I started getting slight cramping, and knew things were on the way. My waters broke in the middle of the night, it was quite a gush over the bathroom floor, however we noticed some bleeding. This wasn’t the same as the mucus plug I was expecting, so we called the hospital for advice. They recommended coming to the hospital to get their opinion.

The hospital staff were fantastic (John Flynn, Tugun) and I was sent to the water birth suite, where we set up all my things. I was ready to have a water birth which is what I wanted. My obstetrician came soon after and did an examination. I was aware I did not have to agree to this but I was happy to let him check things out. He let me know the baby’s head still wasn’t engaged, and he recommended I deliver via Caesarean section. My partner and I took a moment to discuss.

We asked the staff to leave the room while we had an in depth discussion. The way we saw it is that opting for a vaginal labour and hoping bubs head would engage still left a small element of risk. This was not a risk at this time we felt willing to take and agreed that the Caesarean was the best course of action.

Within twenty minutes I’d met the nurse and paediatrician who would be joining the birth and was wheeled down the theatre. Every staff member was so kind and helpful and we were feeling confident and relaxed. I was told what would happen every step of the way. I was asked if I’d like to put some music on, and while we couldn’t get my playlist to connect, I asked for Ed Sheeran to be played. I focused on my breathing and affirmations, I felt relaxed, happy and was smiling.

As the procedure started, I squeezed my partner’s hand, knowing we were going to meet our baby soon. My obstetrician soon asked, ‘are you ready?’ and lifted our beautiful baby boy over the sheet. I immediately had tears in my eyes and remember the feeling of relief mixed with so much joy.

I was never made to feel in my Hypnobirthing course with Steph that having a Caesarean was ‘taking the easy way out’. It certainly isn’t, that’s what I quickly learnt. The recovery is tough, the pain is ongoing and as much as I didn’t want to take a lot of painkillers, I needed to so that I could care for my baby.

Theodore Barry was born on the 28th of August and I am so happy that even things did not pan out the way I had visioned, I had a calm and peaceful birth that I can look back on with positive and warm feelings.

Thanks to Steph for giving me the confidence to prepare for my birth and the knowledge to make the right decisions for myself and my baby.

Shared with permission – Thank you so much Kate and Jonny ❤️