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“When you change the way you view birth, the way you birth will change.”  ~ Marie F. Mongan

Birth. Arguably, the most natural, inspiring, amazing, emotional and life altering event we can experience as people. The Rose Diaries were created by a hypnobirthing mum simply to capture and share other beautiful births, whether you are expecting, have recently experienced a hypnobirth or simply want to read the birth stories of other mothers.

Within these pages we hope to enlighten and most importantly prove that birth does not have to be the frightening, painful and terrible experience the media likes to portray. Instead it can be a beautiful, empowering, fantastic experience that women were perfectly designed to undergo and even enjoy.

Let us prove it to you, browse the diary and be inspired

 

Hypnobirthing Hospital Birth – Second Child

They say that no two children are ever the same and you can say the same thing about labour and birth. With the help of hypnobirthing and determination, here is Vicky’s story …..

My first experience of childbirth was 4 years ago which resulted in me going 2 weeks over due, induced (2 pessaries did nothing), waters broken and then a 20 hour labour with, epidural, ventouse and stitches. This was frustrating as I had sailed through my pregnancy, worked full time in a pressured sales job and carried on training at the gym 3 mornings a week. I was convinced my easy pregnancy would result in an easy labour. Err no.

Well it never put me off doing it again as 2nd time around I was sure my baby would come flying out definitely no later than my due date and without me being induced. I was actually so determined not to be induced I booked acupuncture in advance and told my midwife I was holding out if I had to as long as my baby was safe.

2nd pregnancy was harder this time as I had a 4 year old to run around after and some really hot summer days but the fact I was having Braxton hicks really early on kept me focused and positive that baby number 2 would be on time.

As I got closer to my due date people were shocked at how big I was. I was a totally different shape than when I had my daughter so was convinced I was having a boy. I was actually so convinced that I would only look at boys clothes and at home even referred to my baby bump by the boy name we had chosen. I just thought it was because I had indulged on food and wasn’t going to the gym like I had done during my first pregnancy.

Well my due date came… and then went. So 3 sweeps and 12 days later I’m arriving at the hospital to be induced. I was remaining positive but inside I wanted to cry as this wasn’t the way I was supposed to be having my second baby. I was supposed to have gone into labour naturally, got into a birthing pool and a couple of hours later calmly welcomed my baby into the world.

My first pessary and sweep was at 3pm. The midwife said I was about 2cm dilated and having slight contractions but nothing to get excited about. 6 hours later I had the 2nd pessary and was still only 2cms dilated so my husband went home. The pessaries had to now be given by a consultant so at 4am a consultant gave me another sweep and told me he would break my waters at 8am. He advised me to try and get some sleep. Great I thought. Here comes another 20 hour labour but at least I can have some rest and breakfast.

At 5am I was taken off the monitor and lay down to sleep still not feeling a thing. At 5.30am I jumped off the bed with a pain that took my breath away and my show came away. 10 minutes later I could feel contractions. I called the midwife and asked if I could call my husband back up to the hospital but as I was on a ward he wasn’t allowed. At least things were happening now but it all felt so quick and intense and much faster than last time. I got on the ball and listened to by hypnobirthing music.

10 minutes later I was drenched in sweat and having constant contractions. The midwife took one look at me and told me they were taking me to delivery. I text my husband to come to delivery and then unable to sit in the wheel chair I walked along a long corridor and into a lift trying to breathe through the contractions. It was nearly 6.30am which meant I had been having them for about 45 minutes that I then panicked thinking how will I get through 20 hours of this!!

I got into the delivery room and was given gas and air which helped me control my breathing and relax. At 6.45am my husband walked in, looked at me and said ‘pull yourself together’. I cant write what I said to him but you can imagine. He thought (as did I) that I was in early labour. At 6.50am the midwife said she needed to examine me and break my waters. What I didn’t expect to be told was that I was 10cm dilated. I was in absolute shock as it was only an hour ago my contractions had started. My husband who had been in the room for 5 minutes was so excited by this he shouted out ‘we are having a baby’. Like I needed reminding.

I carried on with the gas and air for a few more minutes and then stopped as I was ready to push and the midwife thought I needed to focus. To keep me focused I kept thinking about my 4 year old daughter and how I couldn’t wait to hold this baby. At 7.33am my baby was born. To my surprise I had given birth to a beautiful baby girl not a boy as I was so convinced. I could hear everyone in the room having a guess at her weight and remember thinking ‘gosh she is big’. Well she was a healthy 10lb 2oz  and the image of her big sister.

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So after all my fretting about being induced the labour was so quick I would say that second time around even if you do end up being induced it’s a totally different experience. I really enjoyed it and felt so much more in control.

And yes, I have become one of those slightly annoying women who love to tell people they had a natural birth on just gas and air, pushed out a 10lb 2oz baby with a 2 hour labour because I am proud and totally in love with my chunky monkey Autumn Lily.

 

Can Perineal Massage Really Help with Birth?

Preparing to give birth is a big thing whether it is your first or any other number.  Your body will automatically make several changes to get ready for the birth but there are also things you can do to help the process.  One of these is called perineal massage – but what is it and what are the benefits?

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Explaining perineal massage

Perineal massage is the process of massaging the perineum, the area between the vagina and the anus.  The aim of the massage is to loosen the muscles in this area to allow the vagina to stretch and for the baby to pass through without causing tearing.

The process has been shown to help reduce the risk of requiring an episiotomy, especially in first time mums.  An episiotomy is a process where the perineum is cut to help the baby to be born due to the vagina not stretching sufficiently.  The process is only used if the midwife or obstetrician thinks it is necessary and is not a routine part of labour.  It is typically used if the baby is distressed and needs to be born quickly or if you have been pushing for a long time with no success.  It may also be used if the baby is breech or you are at risk of a serious tear without the procedure.

Preparing for massage

Perineal massage can be something done yourself with the help of a mirror or with someone else if you are comfortable with them touching you in that area.  A large mirror will help you ensure you are massaging the right area though after a few times, you will probably know by the feel of it if you are succeeding in your aim.

Some women find it is a benefit to have a bath before the massage.  This softens the skin and makes it more elastic as well as relaxing the body.  Those in the late stage of pregnancy often find the massage itself is relaxing!

One key ingredient to the massage is the use of a natural oil.  This makes the process easier and also there are benefits from the oils themselves as well as smelling pleasant.  You can use oils such as sweet almond or jojoba as well as olive or wheatgerm oil as well as natural products such as coconut butter.  Avoid anything petroleum based as they may cause irritation.

Benefits of perineal massage

In all honesty, perineal massage may not be for everyone but there are benefits to it if you can manage or can manage your partner performing it on you.  By relaxing the muscles and making the passage for your baby a little easier, you reduce the risk of having to have a painful episiotomy or that your perineum area may tear during delivery.

Experts recommend performing perineal massage until you are around 34 weeks pregnant and try to do it once or twice a week.  Don’t do it any more than this as you may lose the potential benefits.  The process shouldn’t hurt but may feel a bit uncomfortable – this is worth enduring if it can make your baby’s entrance into the world a little easier on you both!

Should Parents Take a Babymoon Before the Birth of Their Baby?

Becoming a parent is an exciting time, whether it is your first, second or fifth.  It is also a lot of work and can come to dominate your life with great rewards.  The idea of the babymoon is to have a break together, before the two years of baby-dominated chaos sets in.  At first glance, it may seem like a gimmick from travel agents to get pending parents to grab one last holiday – but are there good reasons to take a babymoon?

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Reasons to consider a babymoon

Family vacations are something that most parents look forward to, going somewhere with your kids and experiencing something different.  But there’s something unique about a child-free break that parents come to appreciate after the opportunity has passed.  That is why many couples are having a babymoon, a holiday taken before the baby comes along that allows you both a break before the busy times begin.

Having a baby also puts a lot of strain on a relationship, with the demands of the baby, of work and all those other factors leaving little time for each other.  By spending some quality time together, without kids, before the baby arrives, you enter this busy time with a strong bond and good memories to work with.

Of course, the relaxation factor is another huge reason to take a babymoon.  With all the preparations and the physical stress of carrying a baby, both of you are likely tired.  If you have other kids, this is even more the case.  So, a dedicated holiday where you relax and release all that stress acts as a kind of refresher for the good chaos to come.

Where to go?

For a lot of people, a beach holiday is the perfect babymoon.  Relaxing on the sands, swimming in the pool or the sea, enjoying good food without needing to travel far, all of these factors point towards this kind of holiday.  The buoyancy of the sea is a very therapeutic thing for pregnant ladies so this is another reason to vote for the beach.

However, where you go doesn’t matter too much.  What you should do is check out the availability of medical care in your desired location.  While you wouldn’t travel if you thought there was a problem, it never hurts to make sure help is on hand if you did need it.

Comfort is another factor in your choice.  For example, some pregnant ladies find high temperatures don’t agree with them so consider the temperature of the location when you make your choice.  Or you may be finding that eating is tricky so what kind of food is going to be on offer?  With all the medical advice, this can be a minefield to start with and if your body is making things more complicated then choosing somewhere that has a good range of simple, well-made meals is crucial.

Conclusion

Getting away from it all before the big baby day is an idea many parents are adopting.  It creates a break between the time before and the time of the new baby and allows the two of you to spend some time together, as well as away from all the well-meaning advice of others.

UK Dads : First Time Fathers Fears

 

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We talk a lot about mums and how they feel during pregnancy but what about the Dad-to-Be. There isn’t a huge amount of information about how Dad’s feel so we were really interested to learn that Natural Baby Shower recently conducted a study into new and expectant first time dads in the UK and what their biggest thoughts and fears are.

They surveyed 1000 expectant and new dads from around the UK asking 4 questions:

How they feel before the birth.

What they worry about the most.

What they expect to miss the most.

How they intend to prepare for their baby’s arrival.

The findings are interesting …….

dad-infographic-6 dad-infographic-5 dad-infographic-4 dad-infographic-3 dad-infographic-2 dad-infographic-1Let’s hope that every expectant Dad finds The Rose Diaries and helps his partner to feel empowered and prepared too.

 

If you want more handy information like this, have a look at the Natural Baby Showers New Dads Survival Guide