I wanted to update you with how life has progressed for us since we attended your hypnobirthing session in April.
Not long after I was diagnosed with obstetric cholestasis (a liver condition caused by pregnancy). As a result I had weekly visits to the hospital for tests and monitoring. I was informed by the medical team that they advise delivery of baby by 38 weeks to reduce the risk of still birth.
This obviously all put a very different slant on what we had anticipated our birth experience to be! We discussed with the medical team what that would look like and they were very knowledgeable and informed us that I would continue to be monitored, but the 1st June would be the last date I should have in my mind to deliver baby. They explained that the process would involve being induced and I would need to be in the high dependency unit of the delivery suite. A far cry from the water birth and birthing suite I had hoped to use at the Carmen suite of St Georges.
We listened to everything they had to say, and ultimately agreed that the proposals being made were the best and safest for our baby and me.
We used your MP3s almost daily to help with the anxiety and concern caused by this which was a huge help. Friends and colleagues couldn't believe how calm I was being about everything. It also meant bringing my maternity leave forwards by two weeks which in itself creates pressure with work, as it meant I finished up pretty quickly. I felt this was important though as it still gave me just under two weeks to mentally prepare for what was ahead of me.
So, there were a few bumps in the road with advice of being induced immediately due to blood results, which got overturned by a consultant last minute. But, all in all, we were able to take every moment in our stride and focus on the safe arrival of our daughter. With the medical situation, it also meant that I could mentally prepare more for what was going to happen, rather than have any surprises on the day! I wrote my birth plan which was much more focussed because some of it had almost been written for me.
When the 1st June came, we calmly arrived at the hospital for the time that we had been informed to. The care I received was incredible and the knowledge and expertise of the midwife teams were like no other. They were so kind and kept me informed of everything they were doing. They attempted to induce my labour with a pessary for 24 hours. On inspection the next day, the pessary had not made any difference to my cervix so we tried round 2.
Again, 24 hours later, minimal change. So, by this time we could tell that my body was just not having it and not going into labour. I listened to the MP3s several times during the 2.5 days which were great at keeping me calm.
We had an honest conversation with the consultant and we agreed that the safest option for all would be for a c-section.
So, on the 4th June, we calmly walked into theatre where I was given a spinal block. Three minutes into the procedure (the doctor saying "knife to skin") our beautiful, healthy baby girl, Beatrice Agnes was born weighing 6.7lbs.
Although there was far more medical intervention than we hoped. The whole experience was very positive and without a doubt, the hypnobirthing helped. Iain and I used relaxing breathing techniques and methods we had learnt with you to keep me calm throughout my time in hospital but also in the theatre.
Thank you for all your guidance and support to enable this to happen for us.