In my previous blog we explored Carly and Tony’s experience of doing The Wise Hippo Birthing Programme with me. Now, my heart is filled with joy to announce that Carly and Tony have birthed a beautiful daughter, who they have called Lucy Rose Dicks. Lucy transitioned into this world on the 9th of March 2017 at 10.20am, weighing 9lbs.
One of the exercises I get my couples to do in the very first class is writing out their perfect birth story and spending time in the subsequent weeks leading up to their birth, daydreaming about this perfect birth.
“Writing our birth story was so beautiful and it helped me wipe the slate clean for this baba.” Carly
An important aspect of attracting what you want is focusing on what you want. By doing this, we retrain the subconscious mind to know that birth can be a positive experience. Whenever my couples think about the labour and birth, I always encourage them to imagine the most positive outcome because our thoughts shape our experiences. If we spend time daydreaming about a calm, gentle birth as if it has already happened, it evokes positive emotions that in turn teaches our subconscious mind that birth is something that can be positive. We learn that we are truly deserving of a positive birth experience.
This is Carly’s perfect birth story, which she wrote during class one of The Wise Hippo Birthing Programme:
“My waters broke and a few hours later I began to feel a surge which I recognised as being much more powerful than I remember. They were coming regularly and I breathed through each one, feeling like I was completely in control of each moment. I was ready to go into the labour suite. The drive was bearable and we left when Muriel arrived to take Bradley for us. I had a surge in the lift and it made us laugh. I was blessed to be able to use the water birthing pool and once we got in and organised, I got into the water wearing nothing. As I felt the baby’s head make an appearance, I knew I was going to meet baby very soon. I felt excited and overwhelmed that I had been so lucky to be able to feel each process and sensation so far. The midwife stayed in touch but let Tony and I have privacy and eventually the baby was ready to come out. I felt an urge to bear down a little more than previous surges. The next surge allowed the head to appear, I could feel it with my fingers and next one I helped the head out. I put my hands down and guided baby’s body down and out. Tony brought our baby up to my chest and I cried with the upmost gratitude and so did Daddy to see our wet baby lying on Mummy’s breasts. I put baby straight to milk where they latched on and knew exactly what to do, just like Bradley did. Then Daddy took his little bundle in a warm towel ready to be weighed. We fed and baba was sleeping in our arms while we waited to introduce our new baby to their big brother, Bradley. It was all perfect.”
Below is was happened in reality, and I feel so grateful for the opportunity to share this.
Carly’s water broke at 3.30am and she was filled with excitement knowing that she would soon meet her baby, that her journey from bump to birth to baby had begun. Carly was laughing telling me that she had been shouting at Tony to stop snoring all night, but he reassures me that he was just breathing loudly. Sound familiar?
Carly’s surges began straight away. By 9am she was having regular surges every 5 minutes and they decided it was time to go to the hospital. They had chosen to birth in The Western Isles Hospital in Stornoway. As previously arranged, Carly met with her close friend Muriel in the hospital car park, where she dropped off her adorable son Bradley (who is 2) to go with Muriel and play with her girls for the day whilst Mummy and Daddy had the baby.
Before going into the hospital, Carly had surge in Muriel’s car and then another surge in her own car. Carly and Tony were laughing in the lift up to the maternity unit as she had another surge, just as she had written in her perfect birth story.
Noticing how Carly was, the midwife, Margaret asked Carly if she was feeling pressure or the need to bear down and she was. Carly was asked if she would like to try the water birthing pool and responded saying that ‘we are going to have to hurry up because I know she is coming’. Carly was wheeled through to the birthing pool and stripped off quickly before kneeling down in the water, which was still filling.
Carly began making loud, instinctive, primal noises as she breathed her baby down. She felt baby’s head and said ‘I just remember looking into Tony’s eyes and Tony kept saying ‘the Sea of Serenity’. He reminded Carly of the lotus flower and they both laughed recalling that Tony didn’t have to rub her back as much as he did in their first labour – he got off lightly!
Tony said to Carly, ‘breathe through it’ and she replied ‘no, there’s her head!’ With one final surge, their beautiful daughter was born gently into the water and lifted on to Mummy’s chest. Lucy Rose Dicks arrived into the world just as they had been imagining!
“If you read my birth plan now – it’s like that – it’s amazing! I was feeling it all the way through. I got my perfect birth!” Carly
“Catherine [the midwife] just went to change her heels and by the time she came back, I’d had her. I am very, very, very happy with that!”
Carly had laminated a piece of paper with her favourite parts of The Wise Hippo course, including her favourite affirmations and some tips for her to remember during the birth and she said she found this really helpful. Carly and Tony then had the delight in introducing their son Bradley to his little sister, Lucy.
“We brought Bradley in and I gave him a cuddle. He was looking at me and said, ‘baby’ and I said ‘the baby came out Bradley’ and he was looking at my tummy. Tony said, ‘what’s in here Bradley?’ – pointing to the cot. He had a beautiful pink bunny in his hands that he’d chosen for her. It was brilliant. He was brilliant!” Carly
Whilst not all couples will have their perfect birth experience and some simply have the ‘right birth on the day’ which may be different to their perfect birth story, Carly and Tony did experience their perfect birth. They put in all the practice beforehand and fully embraced the tools and techniques that I taught them during the course. They retrained their subconscious mind to know that birth can be a positive experience and they well and truly experienced that and have such gratitude for this.
My heart was filled with utter joy hearing this couple replaying their perfect birth experience to me. I watched as Lucy was cuddled in close, breastfeeding in Carly’s arms, with Carly’s eyes full of wonder, full of love, and full of gratitude. My heart was filled with pride watching how settled Lucy was lying in Tony’s arms, familiar with his voice and settled by his touch.
Pregnancy, birth and parenthood are such beautiful privileges, such incredible journeys and such intimate moments to share. It is an absolute privilege to have supported Carly, Tony and Lucy with this journey and I’m truly blessed to work as a Wise Hippo Birthing Instructor and to support couples to have positive, empowered birth experiences, and in this case, to experience their perfect birth!