Alice- 1st Birth. I never knew about Angela’s classes with my 1st pregnancy, I met Angela via her baby massage classes that I attended with Alice and found out that she also taught pregnancy classes too. My waters broke at 4am, no contractions yet. Was told to stay at home and come in around 8 to be checked over on the monitor. Contractions were very mild, so tried to get a bit more sleep then went in, all was good and was sent home to try and be comfortable until the contractions became more regular. By about 4pm my contractions were around 2 mins apart and becoming quite intense so rang delivery and was told to get sorted and head in. On arrival and examination I was told I’d made it to 5cm and the midwife said, I quote “that’s a bum I can feel”. Alice was breech! My first baby and all of a sudden she was breech?! I had no idea what was going on to be honest. But we had a breech birth specialist midwife come and chat to us and after a convo with my mum we decided to try for a breech natural birth. My contractions were all in my bank so found standing up and leaving on something helped me. I laboured on for about 6 hours with paracetamol and has and air where we saw no progression and baby had moved to a sideways position and doctor wasn’t able to intervene to move baby etc. So after some thought we opted for a section and Alice was born safely by section at 11:52pm weighing a healthy 8pounds 13 oz! I was awake for the whole thing so was able to have skin to skin immediately with her and she wriggled for her first breastfeed. My partner cut the cord and also had a little cuddle before we returned back to the ward. Benny – 2nd Birth – I wanted to try for VBAC after my first baby was breech and ended via c section. This time I attended Angela’s active birth antenatal classes to help prepare and relax. My First contractions started coming on around 5am.i managed to get a bit more rest before it got to about 7:30am and my contractions were getting more intense but we’re still a bit irregular. I called the hospital and they asked me to come in to be checked. On arrival we were shown to the room on delivery suite where there was wireless monitor and birth pool. Even though my contractions were pretty intense and close together I was only 2cm. I decided to stay at the hospital as I wanted to keep the room on delivery suite. By about lunchtime my waters broke and that’s when things started to move a little faster and even more intense. I was at 5cm.I had paracetamol and used gas and air which really helped me regulate my breathing techniques Angela had taught me in the birth classes along with the knowledge of active birth and upright positions as this really helped me through my contractions. By about 4pm I was around 7cm. And I’d found a comfy position on my knees lent over the top part of the bed, I was tired out. By 6pm I was examined to be around 8cm but I was really starting to feel the urge to push. I asked for pain relief but my midwife helped me to put it off as she didn’t want anything to slow down. By about half 6 I really knew I was ready to push and my body I felt did the rest. I really believed my body knew what it was doing and Benny was born at 7:30pm weighing 8pounds12oz. Benny breast fed upon first skin to skin and my partner cut the cord. I had 3 tears so was taken to theatre to have stitches. Benny came with me and just had an anesthetic from the waist down so was awake the whole time and held Benny skin to skin.
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As women we undergo key challenges in life: trying to conceive, pregnancy, motherhood, pregnancy loss, menstruation, and menopause. All of these can be emotional and physically demanding times and can sometimes leave us feeling disjointed. As a full spectrum doula there is nothing that brings me more joy than working with women and their families helping them to feel empowered, supported, and informed as you embrace each new stage.