A friend of mine gave birth to her baby through hypno-water birth two years back. It’s the first time I’ve heard anyone I know going through this method of birthing and I was so curious that I asked her about it. She was more than happy to share her pregnancy and birthing journey with me and everyone!
This is Maira’s hypno water birth story…
Maira and her baby girl, who turns two today!
I was intrigued by the beautiful birth videos I saw online. I did my research (on different birthing methods), hoping to find a method that could help me with my delivery. That’s when I discovered there were many choices – Lamaze technique, Bradly method, Alexander technique and, lastly, Hypno-birthing.
I took the goodness of all the different technique and decided on Hypno-birthing, which really helped with my mental preparation. I learnt that we can choose not to use laughing gas, pitocin, episiotamy and many other procedures as well.
In the end, I chose water as my source of pain-relieve. Water helps to prepare the body for birthing by softening the tissues. It’s also a better transition medium for the baby upon their arrival.
Like a lot of new mothers, I waned to know more about the birthing scene. Hence, my research, especially after my ordeal with a slipped disc and pinched nerves. I would not want my trauma to impede our hopes of having a baby.
We came across Doula Jannah and we learnt a lot from her class which re-affirmed our believes in a stress-free natural birth – that is, no forced pushing, induction, medication or synthetic aids.
While there are many hospitals offering the hypno-birthing service, not many allow babies to be born into water. Our previous doctor, at a different hospital, did not support our choice of water birth and birth plan. Sadly, we could not engage Doula Jannah as a result (she was fully booked too!). Despite all that, Doula Jannah and I still kept in contact and she even helped me by reading through my birth plan.
Fortunately, we managed to find a doctor who is supportive of water birthing and our birth plan. We decided to transfer to National University Hospital (NUH) as she only works with Emmacare. The bright side to all of this is that I was born in NUH too!
Throughout the pregnancy, we used positive words and imagine our own beautiful birth by watching videos of gentle water and natural births. Good eating habits and exercising are important too, from walking up and down the stairs to having long walks.
We did practices such as husband-aided perennial massages, breathing techniques, imagining the mechanism of the womb, as well as fear release by thanking our bodies. For me, it was my submission to God, thanking him for the conception. I also believe that the movements experienced through labour will give me a rush of feel-good hormones that will neutralize the pain.
During labour, my husband acted as my birthing coach, cheering me on and providing support – from doing lunges, bouncing on the birthing ball, walking around the hospital to dancing and swaying vigorously when the contractions, which I refer to as surges, were too great.
On top of that, I used words of affirmation as I had practiced and listened to affirmations from the hypno-birthing CD. Whenever I had surges, my husband will ask me how I am feeling and my replies to him will be “Sedap!” (delicious!)
Lavender and peppermint essential oils were also prepared and they gave me a sense of calm, strength and clarity of mind when it was time.
We had an amazing birth! My baby weighed 3.8kg and I had no injuries or tears. Praises to God! It was beautiful as we had the birth we wanted. It was really satisfying.
We were well-prepared and felt adequately equipped with all the knowledge we have gathered to make our birthing choices. I felt empowered as we went through the course of labour. I have never felt this certain sense of achievement before!
And the immense euphoria upon feeling my newborn on my warm bosom is indescribable! The first touch, the first embrace, the first suckle… Well, most mothers would feel this way. However, the keyword here is: empowered. I am glad we stayed true to our birth plan!
Always be in control of your own birth. It’s your body so it’s your choice and your right. Do not rush as it is a sacred moment for you, your baby and your partner. Do not let others spoil that moment!
Also, take loads of pictures to capture all the priceless moments. If possible, try to get a photographer into the delivery suite with you. I wish I had thought of that instead of having my husband fumble with his digital and video cameras.
Most importantly, knowledge is power! Do as much research as you can, if not, get a reputable doula to guide you. Write a solid and good birth plan and stick to it!
At the end of the day, always be grateful with the results of the birth, whether or not the birth follows through the birth plan and choices you have made.