Thank-you for sharing your calm, confident approach Nikki, and congratulations to all three of you!
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I wanted to write to tell you about the birth of our son Arlo, who arrived in September.
The kindness and support you showed to Mark and I throughout my pregnancy meant such a lot and we’ll always be grateful for the start you helped us give Arlo and the positive experience we had in preparation for and during his birth.
I went overdue, which I was ok with as I wanted a September baby, but I was keen to avoid an induction. The tools you gave us during the Active Birth Weekend and through my yoga practice helped me manage my expectations but to be honest, initially, I was fairly set on having a “natural” birth. I found it helpful to spend some time thinking about the most important outcome, which for me was a healthy baby rather than a “natural birth”.
After a sweep on Monday (a week after my due date), I went into labour on Tuesday morning and progressed at home with a TENS machine and breathing until around 5pm when we went to the birth centre. I was 4cm dilated and initially disappointed not to be further along, but with some gas and air and more breathing, I got to 6cm and got into the birth pool. To everyone in class right now, do listen to Janet when she makes you practice the aaaaahhhhh / ooooooooo / oooooommm noises, they came out all by themselves and really helped me!
I laboured for another couple of hours in the water and then pushing felt better than breathing through the contractions, so I went with it.
My midwife asked if the noise I was making when I pushed was helping and I said I didn’t know, it was just what I was doing. She encouraged me to internalise the noise and use my energy to push… Not long after, Arlo’s head appeared.
His body followed with the next contraction and I delivered our baby myself in the birth pool.
Later the midwife told me she was surprised by Arlo’s arrival as I’d been so calm and in control. She also noted that the noise I was making when I pushed clearly worked!
I wasn’t sure I’d done enough preparation for labour but my body and mind used what it needed to. The calmness I felt in the days leading up to it meant I could focus on breathing and I was very accepting of what was happening – I didn’t feel scared. So don’t worry if you feel under-prepared, just being in a class and doing some yoga will help!
Thanks again Janet, here’s a picture of the three of us.
Nikki, Mark and Arlo
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