Love reading positive birth stories? You’re in the right place! This birth story is with first time mum Abby delivered her little boy Theodore on Father’s Day on a delivery suite following her waters breaking prematurely.

After my water broke I called the Midwife Led Unit who suggested I go in to check my waters had gone. I started to have my show too. After a night’s sleep and only mild aches we went in and they informed me that my waters had gone, to go home and continue trying to bring on my contractions. Due to my waters breaking I was to be booked in for an induction 24hrs later. That Friday we walked, relaxed, bounced on the ball, ate and went about our normal day. I used the bath to help me relax. I had naps when I could the preserve energy.Much later into the evening the pains were getting stronger.

Early Saturday morning I took 2 paracetamol. I used my breathing techniques and the ball to help me. I wasn’t getting sleep by this point. At 5am Saturday morning I started using my TENS machine-this was my favourite thing to use throughout as a form of pain relief.

Later into Saturday I hadn’t had a call for my induction and the pains were worsening so I called the MLU back. They asked me to call triage. Triage asked that I go in again to get checked over. Just in case, we took our bags and car seat. I felt relieved at this point as I felt hospital was the place I needed to be (never thought I’d say that having a slight fear of hospitals).This was my first internal check, I was 2-3 cm. Both baby and I were monitored and all well. Due to being over the 24 hour period from my waters breaking I was asked to stay in on the maternity ward to have the induction process started through the pessary initially. I didn’t need the secondary drip as the pessary did the job luckily. 

I was on this ward, labouring from around Saturday midday to 2000. My contractions really started to ramp up as a result of the pessary. I continued to use my breathing, and remained mobile, where I could (when not being monitored). However they were cautious of monitoring baby in case of infection due to waters breaking over 24 hours ago. Upon an internal examination my cervix was favourable, fully effaced and was 3/4 cm. At this point I was told my fore waters were still present so the midwife was keen to get me onto delivery suite as I was close to active labour and if I had my waters broken, she felt I would progress quicker. I had paracetamol and diahydracodiene and offered pethidine which I refused as I just wanted water.

They ran me a bath which was nice, although I realised at this point I’d have to take my TENS machine off!! From here our lovely midwife Alice came and took us to our delivery suite room. All staff to this point were so lovely, supportive and helpful. Alice relaxed me straight away saying she had a nice room all set up for us, with relaxing music on and low lights. I felt a little better at this point as I was a little disheartened that I couldn’t go to the MLU. It was a lovely room, however noted there wasn’t a birthing pool. I asked about this but there wasn’t one available. I was also told because of the risk of infection I would be less likely to be in the pool. This panicked me a bit as being in water was something that I knew would have really helped. By this point the pains were getting stronger so I didn’t dwell too much. 

Alice suggested I use my aromatherapy diffuser but I was out of it a little by this point so asked that I have a tissue with a choice of oils to help relax me: I had lavender, frankincense and maybe one other that Alice picked for me. I loved this!! It smelt beautiful and took me to my ‘spa like experience’. I had another examination and had my fore waters broken. This really ramped up my contractions and I reached active labour. At this point I started to struggle. Afterward Alice informed me from active labour to birth was very quick at 4 hours 48 minutes. I was really impressed as the midwives were encouraging my breathing, clearly having read my birth preferences. She was such a support, as was my husband. He was providing me with sweets/water/orange juice in between contractions and coaching my breathing.

I felt I lost control a little and breathing went out the window. I was monitored a lot so less mobile than I wanted. Whilst I asked for an epidural, and received one, this failed. It didn’t matter though because I was informed I had reached 9.5cms so I would soon be pushing. I had already had urges to push but the body really does take over and start doing it (I’m still in awe of how amazing our body is!) After an hour and a half pushing, baby’s heart rate accelerating and the possibility of an episiotomy and an instrumental delivery, I really tried to focus and managed to delivery our baby with no intervention and only a small second degree tear and grazes. I actually reached down to deliver our baby. At 1.50am baby Theodore Beard, a total surprise baby boy landed on my chest, eyes wide and crying. What a feeling!! I cut his cord too (which has been wrapped around his neck and legs!) 

Whilst I planned for a natural water birth, this appeared to not be possible. But I had my relaxed atmosphere and also was lucky enough to use gas and air and the TENS machine for pain relief. One regret is remaining so much on my back. This was due to being monitored a lot for risk of infection. I knew that being upright, forward and open would help. At one point during pushing I felt the need to change position. This was encouraged however due to losing trace of the baby’s heartbeat I was asked to remain on my back. 

Overall my experience was amazing, whilst I wasn’t always able to vocalise my preferences at certain points I understood the reasons for decisions made. This course really provided me with the knowledge of labour and the processes. This really is powerful! Thankyou to Beth for this fantastic course I’d recommend it to all expectant parents.

Click the link for more information about The Bump to Baby Chapter’s Hypnobirthing and Antenatal Online Course. Know what you can do to stack the odds in your favour for the birth that you want. Videos, checklists, audios & a support group all created by a midwife to get you feeling excited, prepared and confident for birth.