Lisa Baker is a childbirth educator and mother of two in Calgary, Alberta. You can reach her by email at email@example.com.
My Husband and I were so excited to find out we were pregnant after a year of trying to conceive. The pregnancy was fairly easy with minimal nausea and back pain starting only near the last few months. I enjoyed my pregnancy and was able to be reasonably active until the last month or so.
On Monday January 14th I woke up at 10:30 am after an uncomfortable night. My pressure waves had amplified in strength and I called my husband to come home from work. When he arrived from work at 11:45 am, my pressure waves had increased even more in intensity and I had begun vocalizing with each powerful onset. I climbed into bed and put my Hypnobabies self-hypnosis tracks on and put myself into a deep state of relaxation. I felt at this stage that I had to make a conscious decision to relax because I was beginning to become anxious and I knew that my birthing time could either go really well or really terribly if I were to continue to be restless. Climbing into bed and deciding to relax was the best decision I made and I believe that this choice helped me to have a pain free child birth.
By 2:30 pm our Doula had arrived. I was very sensitive to any sensory input-sounds, touch, and light bothered me so my doula and my husband-Mathews, were not able to touch me during pressure waves. In between pressure waves, my doula would massage my lower back and help me place a heating pad on my back. The onset of a pressure wave brought an overwhelming sensation of heat and sweats that took over my body and as the pressure wave subsided my body would relax deeper into hypnosis and relaxation and then began to cool again.
I describe my birth experience as very animalistic because I was so inside of myself and needed very little help from my husband or my doula. Part of me felt like I was in another world, completely focused on what my body needed to do.
I was able to communicate with short bursts of directions for my doula and my husband-Mathews, telling them to please be quiet, or to get me a drink or lip balm. When I laid in bed, I wondered how much stronger the pressure waves could possibly get, since I felt that it was nearly impossible for my body to release any more energy than it had already done. As I lay in bed, the sensation to push overcame me. I pushed twice on the bed and asked my doula and my husband to fill the bath tub since our mid-wife was still on her way. Each time a pressure wave came, I transferred all of the energy that was working inside of my body and openly vocalized it all out. I felt a gush when my water broke as we transfe
rred to the bath tub. Our mid-wife arrived just in time; exactly 4 minutes prior to Saul being born! As a first time Mom, I was expecting a longer birthing time and so my husband and I we’re surprised that ‘active labour’ was barely four hours. At 3:40 pm my midwife had me stretch like a cat and within three and half pushes I lifted my beautiful baby boy out of the water. We were so happy to meet him. He weighed 5 lbs 8 oz and was 18 ¾ in. long. We switched on the bathroom lights and after the placenta birthed we were given privacy to get to know our little one. After about forty-five minutes, we decided to cut the umbilical cord and have me get out of the tub. My husband had skin-on-skin contact with the baby against his chest, while I took a shower and then I was able to climb into bed with my family.
Our homebirth was fast, perfect, pain free and empowering. I felt as if I had climbed Mount Everest for the first three days after I gave birth. The exhilaration and adrenaline was better than bungee jumping off a cliff into the ocean and by the third day, the adrenaline had faded and I felt every aching muscle that was used in my birthing time. Looking back at my birth experience, I still feel the joy and exhilaration that I felt in the moment after giving birth. I can honestly say it was one of the best experiences I have ever had.
Saul was brought into this world at home, without any interventions, and with so much love. I could not have been happier with my birth experience and my birth team- they did an amazing job, especially my husband-Mathews who remained calm, cool and collected for the whole time. Thank you and thank you to my birth team.
Aradhna Abraham, Edmonton Alberta