Just a quick email to let you know that Alan and I had our baby boy in the wee hours of Saturday morning (today is day 5 – first day home).
I had a fully natural birth, utilising various active birth techniques. It was a surprise posterior(!), so a fairly challenging labour, but an amazing experience for us. Alan was an absolutely amazing support and my doula, Briony Howland, provided just the right things that I needed.
You might recall I was concerned about pressure to induce at 40 weeks (because I am 40yo) – I changed OBs at 38 weeks. Bubs came on his own at 40+4 (I chose not have a stretch and sweep either). Just to toot my own horn – my (new) obstetrician told me that he considered it a privilege to be at the birth and that he learnt something from it – he seemed impressed that I reached down to receive the baby and with the dialogue I had with the baby (the ob has a 90% epidural rate and, the hospital has an 80% epidural rate – I am not sure how many posteriors he has seen pushed out without intervention before?). While I did have a minor tear, this was probably only because he was posterior and it is likely there would have been no tear if he was in normal position.
Unfortunately, POWP hospital did not allow me to use gel heat packs! (I brought my own). I found their stick on heat packs useless; so the only relief for the back labour was the shower (with only a single shower head, not double – although I was aware of this prior. The bath they had was also too small to provide relief, as expected). Although that hospital was my choice, they really need to improve their facilities to support natural birth …
As the birth was getting close, and I was a bit rattled by the issues with the previous obstetrician, I continued with your visualisations and also looked at the positive She Births birth videos. I had done other courses/read books that supported natural birth and I was very vocal, and used a lot of repetitive mantras.
I have had some early issues with feeding (probably not assisted by the hospital midwives unfortunately), but am receiving support from the hospital LCs, so am turning the corner.