I woke up on 6th May at 5:30 am after having my first full night sleep in ages. Little to my surprise as I got up my waters broke. However, I noticed that my waters were a dark brown colour. Instantly I remembered reading and hearing that this could mean the baby had passed their first bowel movement! I called Maternity Antenatal Unit at Basildon hospital to explain what happened and they agreed it was more than likely that but I needed to go in to have it confirmed. I asked how quickly I needed to get there, they advised as long as I could feel the baby to have a shower and some breakfast and be in within the hour. I woke my husband to tell him the news, we both got ready and loaded the car with our bags. I remember sitting on the stairs putting my shoes and feeling a slight twinge in my stomach. Was this a contraction?
As we drove to the hospital at 7am, I knew that I would have to go into Maternity Antenatal Unit by myself while my husband waited in the car for updates. I knew I had to stay calm and relax. My main focus at this point was making sure the baby arrived safely, rather than thinking about having to go alone to begin with. This made me stay focused and strong.
Everyone was so lovely from the moment I stepped inside the hospital. I was assessed and it was confirmed that the baby had his first bowel movement. They hooked me up to a machine to make sure me and baby were okay, all was fine. As I lay on the bed waiting to find out the next stages, my contractions were coming in thick and fast. As I was only going to be assessed I had nothing on me other than my phone. Calming my breathing down with lots of deep breaths I closed my eyes, did my counting and pictured myself in my relaxing place. The midwife came along to explain that the baby would be here today and they could see from the monitor that I was having contractions but they may have to intervene to get the baby out if the baby became distressed. I explained I really didn’t want to have any intervention and give it along as I could to let the baby arrive naturally.
Next thing I was wheeled down to the delivery ward. My midwife came in, who was so lovely. She examined me and to my surprise she said well done you have done the hardest part, you are 4cm. I couldn’t believe it within the space of 1.5 hours in the hospital alone my husband was now able to join me. At this point my contractions were coming in so fast, I was concentrating on my breathing and to be in my relaxing place. The midwife told me I could call my husband to come in, but I just didn’t have the time in-between contractions. The midwife called my husband and directed him where to go. My contractions came on so quickly, I couldn’t quite believe it. I had gas and air to get me through them. I felt in the zone the whole time. I had blocked out everything around me and just concentrated on taking my gas and air, my breathing and picturing myself in my relaxing place. At around 10am I was examined for the 2nd time to be told I was at 10cms, time to start pushing. Then at 11:39 am we welcomed our baby boy! My husband was able to stay with me until 4:30pm, when I was taken down to the labour ward. I had to stay in for the night due to the baby passing his first bowel movements while still in my tummy. A scary thought but I met so many other Mothers. This was my first pregnancy but a lot were already Mothers and were able to give some great advice and tips. Even the midwives said how lovely it was to see all the new Mums curtains drawn back talking to each other!
It was such a surreal and quick process, but the best experience ever. It was the right birth on the day for me and I have my hypno-birthing teacher Eva to thank for that! I started off my classes in person but due the pandemic these switched to online via Zoom. I honestly couldn't tell the difference between sessions and found they both worked just as well as each other. I am so pleased I chose the wise hippo, not only did it help me to birth my baby but given the current circumstances it also helped me get through before and after birth, as well as every day to day life!