Heather’s Birth

We had our little girl two weeks early on April 18th!

The day before, I felt slightly “off”.” I don’t really know how else to describe it. I felt like I needed to check my blood pressure, even though I’d had absolutely no issues with my blood pressure during pregnancy. It was high: 160/110. I sat on the couch for a while, and rechecked it after about 30 min, and it was 170/110. I decided to lie down in bed for an hour and a half, and when I got up it was 180/110. Lauren Hood was our wonderful doula and she said to definitely call Parkside; I did, and they sent me into Patewood. Before I knew it, we were on the way to the hospital and we were admitted and induced around midnight.

I was always so against inductions and while it was not at all what I’d hoped for, I still managed to use all of my Hypnobabies techniques. The staff was really supportive of my requests related to Hypnobabies, and after 2 rounds of Cytotec, my water broke on its own. (The nurse did say that “Dr. Brooks will come in and break your water soon,” to which I wanted to say, “Not if I have anything to say about it,” but my body had other ideas anyway!) After a while, they started Pitocin, which I’d consented to, but was so in the zone I had no idea the nurse had finally come into to start it. By the time I realized I was on it, they decided to turn it off because I was doing so well.

I used my Peace cue* consistently; John and I laugh now about me saying “PEEEAAAAAACCCCCEEEEEEE” about 5,000 times in a low voice! I thought my birthing time would go a lot faster than my first, but it ended up being about the same length; I think the thing that made for a longer was that I was on a magnesium sulfate drip the entire time due to extremely high blood pressure. It made me feel awful. My headache was worse than a lot of my pressure waves, and I had one bout of vomiting.

After they turned off the Pitocin, no one was in the room except John and Lauren, and I started pushing. Lauren looked down and saw me crowning, and pointed it out to John very calmly; they pressed the button to call the nurses in. The crazy thing is, I was so in the zone that I heard commotion but had no idea how many people came in the room, and didn’t even see the doctor.

The main nurse (who I did really like) told me to try to wait for Dr. Brooks to come (I wanted to say, “I WAIT FOR NO ONE!” but just pushed when I needed to). Apparently, Dr. Brooks got there just in time, and in under 5 pushes, my girl was out and on my chest. (I pushed for 3 hrs with my first, using a squat bar–it was excruciating. This pushing felt satisfying and I honestly think I could have pushed her out even faster, though probably would have torn more than I did if I’d shot her out.)

I am so proud of myself for managing an induction on magnesium sulfate with no pain meds, only Hypnobabies. It was an incredible birthing experience, even with the mag drip. I fully credit Hypnobabies with allowing me to manage birthing this way. I can’t say it was painless…but it was manageable. I did beg for an epidural at one point, and Lauren reminded me that I didn’t want one and told me I was in transformation*. Indeed, I was–I pushed her out shortly after. (Also, apparently my transformation “tell” is having bubbles in my throat/little burps–haha! Good to know for next time!)

Talking to Dr. White the next day, he said my blood pressure was pushing 200/110 when I arrived. I cannot believe I had zero symptoms with blood pressure that high! He also said he’s never seen anyone do an unmedicated induction on magnesium, so…can I get a gold star?! The nurse told me that in her 18 years of labor and delivery, she’s never seen someone so relaxed during labor and able to push with such control.

All that to say: I’m so so grateful for Hypnobabies and Lauren–she was such a great doula, and I loved that we already knew her and had some history!!!! I will FOR SURE use this technique when we have another baby. I already have baby fever, HAHAHA. My husband–and my body–request 9-12 months of sleep…

* Editor Note: “Transformation” is what we call Transition in Hypnobabies. And the Peace cue is a technique to direct your hypnoanesthesia to the parts of your body that you need it most.