Our second baby girl was born on 8 May 2021 in the Lucina Birth Centre at Croydon University Hospital. We had had our first daughter there and had such a positive experience that it was an easy decision to plan for the same the second time round. We had also used Sakina’s hypnobirthing course for our first baby and were so pleased to be able to refresh ourselves with it again!
After completing the course, practising my breathing and listening to the audios I felt ready for the baby to arrive. My first was born at 39 weeks so I had never played “the waiting game” before, but luckily baby#2 didn’t keep us waiting long and came into the world via the birth pool on a rainy Saturday night. My waters started going around 6am on the Saturday morning and continued to leak throughout the day with nothing else really happening. With our toddler being looked after by my parents and the wind and rain lashing outside, I stayed in bed and watched Netflix while my husband brought me toast! I got up and had a shower before watching a film, then decided to go for a walk to try and get things moving. I kept remembering what Sakina had said about the importance of keeping oxytocin levels high so when we got back we made sure the sitting room was warm and cosy, burning candles and using lavender oil in the diffuser. Eventually, around 4.30pm, I felt my first surge. I used the breathing techniques that Sakina had suggested – breathing in for five and out for seven. That breathing got me through the birth of my first so I was determined to use it again! When the surges became too intense my husband did the counting for me, counting in and out on every single surge until our daughter was born! He really was amazing and there is no way I could have done it without him. I know he found the course incredibly helpful too, especially the section on birth partners! He had everything sorted without me having to think about or question anything, so when it was time to go to the birth centre, all I did was get into the car. We had called the birth centre to say how far apart the surges were, and that we would like to use the pool. They told us to go in and that they’d be ready for us! But then the surges slowed down and the gaps between them increased, so we decided to wait at home a bit longer. I’m so so glad we did as I was 7cm by the time we got there (we had been sent home when I went in with my first daughter so really didn’t want that to happen again). Eventually I was able to get into the pool and it was heaven! The water was so soothing and I felt really protected and “covered up”, despite being totally naked! After being in the pool for about an hour, our daughter arrived. She was so slippery and perfect, and it was all very emotional. I felt so strong throughout the entire process and am so grateful to the wonderful midwives in the birth centre who left us to it and respected that we were using hypnobirthing. They used all the right terminology, kept the lights low and I wasn’t told to push once! I feel so lucky to have had two positive birth stories resulting in healthy girls, simply using breathing, water and a couple of paracetamol! I don’t often feel proud of myself but I did both of these times, and so proud of my husband for being so amazingly supportive too.