Birth Stories

Physical Exercises, Visual And Breathing Techniques Helped Jackie During Her Birth Center Water Birth

  • Video Interview With Jackie

  • When did you realize you were really in labor?

    I lost my mucus plug early in the morning and had some more mucus and blood come out in the early afternoon, so that was my first sign things were moving in the right direction (I was past my due date again and my husband was getting antsy.) I then started experiencing contractions at around 4 P.M., but they weren't very strong at that time. I wasn't hungry for dinner, which was unusual for me. After dinner, my contractions grew stronger. That's when I knew things were getting serious!

  • What was the most challenging thing about going natural?

    My previous birth experience was very arduous, so I had that experience in the back of mind. I was worried that I may not complete the birth at the birth center and get transferred to the hospital again. The most challenging thing was changing my mindset and knowing that I was better prepared this time around.

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

    I was more consistent in doing physical exercises, such as Spinning Babies and skipping a step when taking the stairs to get Baby into a better position. I also used an exercise ball instead of a desk chair throughout my entire pregnancy. To better prepare mentally, I incorporated visual and breathing techniques that I learned from the book "Holistic Hypnobirthing: Mindful Practices for a Positive Pregnancy and Birth." I had a positive mindset and would say affirmations that Baby and I were going to work together to have a smooth delivery.

  • What surprised you about your birth?

    I was surprised how long I was able to labor at home and how quick the delivery was at the birth center! I labored at home for over five hours before going to the birth center. When I arrived at the birth center, I was 9 centimeters dilated! My son was born within an hour of arriving at the birth center.

  • Educate yourself, have a great support team, and have confidence that you and your baby will work together to make it happen!
  • What pain relief strategies worked best?

    Surprisingly, aromatherapy worked really well for me, even though I had been experiencing significant sinus congestion the last couple of weeks of pregnancy. I breathed in cypress essential oil with every contraction and it helped to relax me through all of them! Other pain relief strategies that were very beneficial were counter pressure on my low back, leaning on a birthing ball, and using visualization techniques.

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

    Intense, amazing, and empowering! This birth was a water birth; I felt a great sense of joy and closeness delivering my baby this way. My little boy and I worked together to have a great birth experience. After waiting 40 weeks and 5 days, my little buddy arrived!

  • What did you name your baby, and why?

    Jack Michael Thomas. The first name Jack is to honor my husband's paternal grandfather. Our boy has two middle names; Michael is my dad's name and Thomas is my father-in-law's name.

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

    Educate yourself, have a great support team, and have confidence that you and your baby will work together to make it happen! It was so important for me to have my midwife, doula, and husband to support me throughout my pregnancy and birth experience. Because this was my second time giving birth, I had a better idea of what I wanted to do differently, sought out that information, and consistently implemented physical exercises, mental strategies, and affirmations.

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