Dear Katherine,

Just thought I’d let you know how we went. Damien and I saw you on the Mother’s Day weekend, and I know a long time has passed but we had a baby girl on Sunday 9th September at 8.39pm.

She was spot-on her due date, but did not quite have the smooth transition into this world that I had hoped for.

Her name is Makenna Elizabeth. Makenna is a form of the African name ‘Makena’ which means ‘happy one’ which is our wish for her.

We had religiously listened to our rainbow relaxation and affirmations every night since we saw you. I’m sure she heard it whilst inside me because whenever she is upset I say to her in the same voice as the HypnoBirthing CD…’relax’ and she looks at me wide eyed and does just that.

My little possum had spent the last three months in the perfect position for a smooth and easy birth. I was confident, and excited about the whole birth experience ahead of me, and had Damien ready for his role as my spokesperson when we went to hospital.

I’m sure Hypnobirthing gave me confidence that I had previously lacked. Unfortunately, I felt unempowered by my birth experience, but I have the inner serenity to realise that the process was something that was between my body and my baby, and although my personal choices went by the wayside, I know that the outcome of a beautiful, healthy and serene little girl was always the ultimate outcome that we wanted and we got that. I learned that ‘going with the flow’ was just as important.

My membranes ruptured on the Friday night whilst cooking dinner. I called the hospital and they requested we come in to monitor the baby. All through this entire process, anyone who put a monitor on Makenna was pleased to report, ‘you have a very happy baby here’. Her heart rate was constant…and she was in total control. As my surges were not established at that stage, we were sent home to get through the night and return the next morning.

I had a terrible night. The feelings in my body were not like anyone had described but they were more than I could handle, and I struggled breathing, and panicking, and trying to time the frequency. As they did not come like in any book I had, and I had read that if you have to ask ‘is this it?’ then it is not, I was sure that I was not in Typical labour, but wondered how much worse it could possibly get.

I made it until the morning, and when I got into the car to go back to hospital, the surges stopped altogether like a car with a problem that goes away when you get to the mechanics.

I was given two options at the hospital, take antibiotics because of the ruptured membranes and wait until the next day, or stay for induction.

I was still holding onto my dreams of a natural birth so I opted to wait another day seeing her due date was not until Sunday anyway.

Saturday night was terrible, and bearing in mind I had only slept one hour since Thursday, and my surges were still erratic, I called the hospital once more but this time to beg them to let me stay, and at least help me sleep.

We were admitted at 2am Sunday morning. The midwife took us to a birthing suite, put Damien and I to bed with warmed blankets and I got some pain-killers and a sleeping pill.

At 6am the midwife woke us and brought in some breakfast. I showered and got ready. Induction started at 8am due to the time my membranes had been ruptured. As I was attached to the induction drip and antibiotics, my dream of using the shower, birthing stool, and the bath were out the window. We had attempted to use an internal monitor for bubs but the electrode kept falling out of her head due to hair and bubby glug.

So on my back, on a bed…. the induction brought my discomfort to a level that I decided I needed to stay calm, and not be a hero, and ask for the big guns…I started on gas whilst waiting for the epidural. The epidural was not effective in a masked spot in my back, and eventually I had numb feet but my entire middle front and back was feeling the lot. A second anaesthetist was called who pumped up the volume on the epidural, and I felt temporarily paralysed from the waist down, but it too started to wear off in the same spot. I was back on the gas, and Damien says I was thrashing like a mad woman.

My poor mum by this stage was at the hospital crying, absolutely sick with worry and I was desperate for anyone to come and help me. Damien was beside himself and asked if I would let mum come in and see me. I did not care by then, and was happy to see anyone, and then my Obstetrician arrived.

He looked at mum and asked if she was likely to faint, and she looked at me and said no.

The next minute he was on the job and we had the end off the bed and two more midwives in and a big lamp. He told me he would like to try forceps, and if we had no joy, we were off to theatre. I had asked if vacuum was an option but Makenna already had a large fluid lump on her little head from pressing on my cervix for so long, and he would not put suction onto her lump.

So my baby arrived calm, quiet and blue, facing the sky with the cord around her neck, and my mum got to see the whole thing.

No wonder my labour would not establish properly, she had turned and was not in a position she could get through on her own.

So I had a drug assisted, bed bound, episiotomy, forceps birth experience, but I have a beautiful baby girl, and I’m busting to have another one… cause I reckon it really couldn’t get any worse.

Hypnobirthing gave me the focus to realise that the health and safety of my baby was more important than me getting freaked-out over not adhering to a birth plan. It also helped my husband realise that he has a very important role in the birth process. Had he not been at the classes, I don’t think he would have had the confidence to be so hands on with my labour, even though it was not like we expected.

So, thank you for everything.
Kind Regards,
Carly, Damien and Makenna

13 months later

Hi Katherine

I know it has been a while, but I had promised you a picture of Makenna in her tummy tub. She is 13 months old now and the time has flown. Things are going great with us now, and we are ready to let Nature bless us with another baby, should we be worthy.

The pictures are about 2 months old. I didn’t use the tummy tub so much in the beginning because when Makenna was really small, I found it hard to keep her head up out of the water because she would slip around a heap. However, now she is older, it is fantastic!

We use very little water compared to running a big bath, she gets to have a play with the face washer and clean her teeth and, I feel she really loves having the water up around her shoulders because it is warm and relaxing. It really is the best bucket I ever had (laughs)… if you remember back two mother’s days ago when I bought the tub, my husband Damien had given me a ribbing for wanting an expensive bucket. (Boys sometimes just don’t get it!)

I hope the pictures come through OK.

Love and Light,
Carly.

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