While everything is still fresh in my mind I thought I’d write a little bit about my experiences with pregnancy and birth, and a few of the useful things and services we discovered throughout this special time.
I loved most things about being pregnant, I loved how healthy and sparkly I felt, I loved my big belly, I loved feeling this little miracle growing inside of me, wriggling and hiccuping away, I loved wondering what my baby would look like, be like … So many things really!
Both my pregnancy experiences have been super special times for me …. apart from the morning sickness which left me at 12 weeks. But you soon forget that part.
I’ve also been incredibly lucky to discover some fantastic services that helped immensely with our pregnancy and birth experiences, and I really want to share them… or even shout about them really, as I feel all pregnant people should know of these things.
‘Where will you give birth?’
When pregnant with Rosie I thought the above question had an obvious answer .. ‘hospital’ of course. The sheer thought of home birth terrified me. I had no knowledge about anything birth related and thought that giving birth was just a hospital procedure that you had to endure whilst shouting profanities and gripping on to the hubby’s hand. I thought it was the safest place to have a baby.
So you can imagine how surprised I was when I looked in to the birth options available in more detail and discovered that home birth was actually the way I wanted to go. I wont go in to all the details, I’m no expert but I found home birth to be the safest and best option for us in the end. When I discovered that giving birth could actually be a good experience I was surprised and relieved. I actually started to look forward to the birth rather than dread it.
The most common thing people say to me when they find out I’ve had a home birth (if they haven’t looked in to the facts about hospital versus home birth etc) is ‘ooh you are so brave!’ ‘I wouldn’t risk anything going wrong’ etc … actually they are the kinds of things I would have said before I learnt more about it all!
All I know is I wanted do what was best for my children, I wanted the safest delivery for them and of course I would have gone in to hospital if it was medically necessary.
I know home birth isn’t for everyone but it worked for us.
Rosie and Ruby both had natural home water births and all went well with both.
Here is a list of some of the services and people I feel greatly contributed to us having such positive birth experiences.
I learnt early on in my first pregnancy about Hypno birthing. We had some home classes and I found it a great relaxing tool with my first pregnancy. I enjoyed listening to the Marie Mongan Rainbow relaxation – especially when struggling to sleep. The Marie Mongan book was great too.
But the best thing I learnt from it was the breathing techniques – I used these throughout both births and my husband actually uses some of the breathing techniques when competing in mountain bike races too! (Not sure he’d want me to share that .. But I have!)
Hiring a Doula
I think the best advice I had whilst pregnant was ‘hire a doula’. I must say a huge thank you to my good friend Lori for this, Lori has helped us with many things related to pregnancy and birth and I can’t really thank her enough. Lori is also a councillor and psychotherapist who has helped many women with all sorts of birth and postnatal issues – lori’s website is http://lifeboost-uk.com please check it out and pass on to your pregnant friends.
I won’t go in to too much detail about what doulas are, as the list is long! – but to quote from the Doula UK website ‘ Doulas support women and their families during pregnancy, childbirth and early parenthood. This support is practical and emotional but non-medical in nature.’ Check out the doula uk website for detailed information and to find doulas in your areas.
We chose the fabulous Lisa Sykes to be our doula for both pregnancies (www.lisasykes.com) Lisa is a wonderful doula, she helped us so much in so many ways. Her support and care was outstanding throughout both my pregnancies. She’s now a great friend too and will always have a special place in our hearts.
Lisa is also a lady with many talents. Her Reiki skills are amazing! I had a reiki session whilst pregnant and it was bliss. I highly recommend it.
Lisa is kindly offering readers of my blog a £10 discount off her Reiki massage price! Making it just £25 instead of £35. (Please check you are within Lisa’s area as travel expenses my apply on longer distances) This is a bargain, and I’ll be booking her reiki magic again very soon too. (lisasykes.com/reiki)
Lisa also teaches Birth positively classes with another special lady to us Lindsay Gale. (Check out the Birth positive website … You can also receive a £10 discount for this service by mentioning this blog!) Thanks ladies xx
The lovely Lindsay became our standby doula for Ruby’s birth ( we went two weeks over the guess date, which meant Lisa handed over the role to Lindsay ).
She was amazing too. Such a fantastic support. Keeping us calm and reassured throughout the birth. She was awesome.
Lindsay is a reflexology goddess and has kindly offered to do a £5 discount off her £35 session fee for the readers of this blog (again distance restrictions apply)
Lindsay did some reflexology for me a few weeks before Ruby was born. It was just what I needed at the time (in fact I think I’d like it all the time!) I felt super relaxed and refreshed after the treatment and found it amazing how many of my little ailments were detected through the process.
I will be booking again!
Lindsay also teaches pregnancy Yoga. I haven’t tried this myself but I’ve heard it’s pretty great. You can have 6 classes for the price of 5 if you mention this blog too. Another fab deal to be had for any pregnant lady. (See mama-toto.co.uk For more information on all of Lindsay’s services)
One to one midwives
During my second pregnancy I discovered the fab, personal and free service offered by one to one midwives (onetoonemidwives.org) They provided us with a fantastic midwife called Amanda who did all our pre-natal appointments at our home, attended the birth and is still in close contact with us now doing all the checks for us at our convenience at home. She is always there for us by text or phone call if we need anything. Such a great supportive service. It’s been brilliant having Amanda working with us. She really goes out of her way to help, reassure and make people feel safe, informed and positive. I highly recommend this service and feel super lucky to have been able to have a one to one midwife.
I think that’s enough of my ramblings for now! I’d love to hear what helped you throughout your pregnancies and birth journeys. Did you discover any fantastic services or people that you want to tell everyone about? Please feel free to share in the comments below.
Thanks for taking the time to read this post xxx