Birth Stories

Breathing Calmly And Having Positive Thoughts Helped Amanda During Her Birth Center Birth

  • Video Interview With Amanda

  • When did you realize you were really in labor?

    I didn’t realize it until I was already about 5 hours in. It had started right before midnight but I kept on putting it off and thinking, that it was Braxton Hicks anyway. So I got home from a dinner with friends and, got ready for bed and went sound asleep. At around 4 am, close to 5 am it really started to make me wonder. I kept on waking because my belly got so hard it wasn’t laying on the mattress anymore, it was hanging up in the air as I was laying on my side. So I started to time them. And by that time my contractions were already 2 min or less apart. I told my husband that I thought this might be it. He was so tired he didn't think it could be the time already and went back to sleep. Understandably in a way, since this, all happened 6 days before the estimated due date. My emotions got ahold of me and I felt it, thinking to myself ‚no, this is different, this has to be labor.‘. I rushed out of the bedroom and called my midwife. It was a Sunday, so I got connected to the on-call midwife of our birth center in Savannah, GA. She told me to stay calm, it did sound like we would see each other today. I should take an hour and relax, sit down in the tub, eat something, and after all of this, call her back. So I did. My husband and my mother-in-law, who stayed with us to be here when the time came, loaded up the car, while I sat in the tub and relaxed as well as I could, breathing calmly through each contraction. The contractions were definitely intensifying. By the time I called my midwife back, it was hard to speak when one had started. She knew it was getting time, so she told us to meet her at the birth center.

  • What was the most challenging thing about going natural?

    Not letting the bad stories people like to tell you all the time affect you and control you. I knew I wanted a natural birth so badly. So I just learned to shut out all the negativity and didn’t let it get into my head.

  • What was the most helpful thing you did to prepare for childbirth?

    I didn't know much about the whole process. So while I was pregnant I borrowed a book called ‚Ina May‘s Guide to Childbirth and a Hypnobirthing book. Reading the first had completely taken any worries or fears. It empowered me beyond anything I could’ve imagined and prepared me in a beautiful way, making me believe in my body and the process at birth. The second book gave me great ideas as to how to think and breathe through even the most intense contractions and to keep positive no matter what. I felt ready and just good about it all. Not one negative thought I let into my head. It helped me stay absolutely relaxed and focused when labor finally did happen. And I believe this helped make it easier, my body just did the work and I had let it. Everything went smoothly and progressed rather fast.

  • What surprised you about your birth?

    How smooth it went and how beautiful it was to just follow along with what my body told me to do. I had never felt so connected to myself! After transitioning and 10 minutes of pushing, when the midwife and her assistant had laid down my beautiful daughter onto my chest, there was just this amount of love and happiness rushing through. I looked up to my husband who had been by my side through it all, empowering me through every step. He smiled and I saw tears of happiness, pride, and joy coming into his eyes. At the same moment, I teared up too. We smiled at each other as if we had almost told each other mentally, ‚we had done it. There she is!‘. The most precious moment in both of our lives!

  • If you get the chance, do it! Trust your body, trust the process. You and your body were made for this! It is the most amazing and empowering experience one as a woman could feel.
  • What pain relief strategies worked best?

    Breathing calmly through each contraction. Having positive thoughts. I tried imagining it open like a flower. And I kept reminding myself of what we called the bliss between each contraction. My husband also held my hand and talked calmly and positively to me.

  • How did it feel to hold your baby for the first time?

    There is nothing that could describe it. It felt like nothing I had ever felt before! Pure Joy, happiness, so much love! And I felt like I could move mountains!

  • What did you name your baby, and why?

    Kayla is the name we chose. We decided on it when we found out we were having a girl. The reasoning behind it was, that my mother-in-law had always wanted a girl but had ended up having two boys. This was the name she had picked and so we thought it would be very meaningful for us all to name her Kayla.

  • What advice can you give to other mamas who want to go natural?

    If you get the chance, do it! Trust your body, trust the process. You and your body were made for this! It is the most amazing and empowering experience one as a woman could feel. And it is astonishing to see what we are capable of doing. Not just creating and growing a new life inside of our bodies. But to have this raw, primal power in our bodies to go through something so phenomenal, just by letting nature do what is intended.

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