frankie's birth story
I had a fairly traumatic emergency section with my first birth, so when I became pregnant again only 4 months later I was determined to have a better experience. I decided I wanted to try for a vbac and a homebirth. I did a lot of courses and reading up on birth education and hypnobirthing throughout my pregnancy in preparation. I had actually qualified as a hypnobirthing teacher not long before finding out I was pregnant.
Throughout my pregnancy I really had to advocate for myself as the consultants I saw were not keen on me having a homebirth, some didn't want me to try for a vaginal birth. However I knew the risks and knew what was best for me and my baby. All of the midwives I saw were very respectful and supportive of my wishes. When I reached 41 weeks I decided to have a sweep and the midwife told me I was 3cm.
That evening I went to bed early, I woke up at 1am with the first contraction. They were coming around 5 minutes apart and only lasting around 30 seconds, they were strong though. The only position I felt comfortable in. was in my hands and knees. We called the midwife and they told us to call again when they were coming 3 minutes apart for an hour. My mum also came over to watch my oldest daughter (she was sleeping). By 3am the contractions were coming every 3 minutes and lasting for a minute. We called the midwife again and she said she was on her way. My husband set up the birth pool down stairs and I laboured in my bedroom with my tens machine on and my mum rubbing my back. I used lots of hypnobirthing techniques and stayed on my hands a knees. At 4.30am the lovely midwife arrived, she came upstairs and asked to check me. I agreed and was shocked to find out I was 9cm! I went down stairs and got in the pool. It felt amazing!
We got the gas and air out and not long after getting in I started to feel 'pushy'. My waters still hadn't gone and I could feel them bulging. We decided the midwife would break them for me. After that the natural urge to push became stronger. Using the gas and air, I breathed through each surge barely making a sound. Just as I birthed my baby's head my mum went and got my daughter and sat on the top step of the stairs and watched through the banister. We had a 3 and a half minute wait between the head and the body being born. In that time I held my husbands hand and he told me we were about to meet our baby and how proud he was of me. At 7.45am the next surge came and so did my baby. I turned around and lifted her out of the water. She was tiny and all wrapped up in her extremely long cord. We untangled her and put her on my chest.
I looked up and saw my daughter and mum watching through the banister. It was the proudest moment of my life. We didn't know the sex so I held her up for my husband to announce we had another little lady. It took a little while for her to catch her breath, so we cut the cord and she was given a puff of oxygen. She made her first cry and was given back to me. We spent an hour in the water having skin to skin waiting for the placenta to come. It didn't want to come on it's own so I got out and had the hormone injection, which did the trick. After being checked we decided to transfer in to hospital as I needed a couple of stitches and the lighting wasn't great at home. We were only in hospital for an hour or so and then back home to enjoy our new baby bubble.
I am so grateful of the amazingly supprtive midwives I saw throughout my pregnancy and during the birth.
*birth story and pictures kindly shared with consent*