Frankie’s Quick Hospital Birth

Frankie's Birth
“To this day, I’ll be honest, I don’t really know when my labour started. In the days leading up to Frankie’s birth I’d been feeling what I supposed was the sensation of him moving further down into position. It wasn’t super comfortable but it wasn’t painful. Was it practise labour/’Braxton Hicks’? I couldn’t say but I definitely had a sense that things would happen soon. On Saturday 9th May, I was at 40.3 weeks and still feeling okay though very tired. Looking back, I think early labour might have started in the late afternoon when I was experiencing an intensified version of things I’d been feeling already, like a sore back and something like mild period pain. I just didn’t think anything of it.


“Anyway, by about 8:30pm things got a little stronger. After going to the loo I noticed I had lost my mucus plug so I thought it was probably happening. I did some stretching with my fitball and then decided to go to bed to try and rest. Sandy asked if I wanted him to run the bath but I thought we should save that for later. I called the hospital to let them know what was happening and they, like me, were pretty calm thinking it could be several hours or even a day before I’d be coming in. I listened to the birthing affirmation and Rainbow Relaxation tracks to relax and try to sleep. This really helped but it was also the first time I had ever made it through the rainbow track without falling asleep . . . a sign of things to come perhaps? Sandy soon came to bed and read some of the HypnoBirthing scripts to me, too. At some point after this I fell asleep and apparently kept sleeping between my contractions. To this day, I have no idea how far apart they were, thankfully Sandy was monitoring them – and me! – I had no idea that I was sleeping. He kept me calm and helped me breathe through every surge.

After a while, I think around midnight, the contractions became a lot more intense. The uterine contractions were okay, they faded between surges but I was getting a lot of tension in my hips and glutes, which wasn’t releasing in between – that was tough! I also had to keep getting up to ‘go to the loo’, which I should have realized was a sign that I was transitioning. I also got a bit shivery and was finding the contractions much harder to breathe through. How could I have missed these signs?!

By about 1am I went to the bathroom again and lost a lot of blood. I think this was when my waters broke as it was quite an explosive sensation. I felt okay but it was a lot of blood so I asked Sandy to call the hospital. The midwife on the phone wanted to speak with me but I could hardly talk through the contractions by this stage. She told Sandy I should come in but still seemed to think I might be a long way off. Sandy got everything into the car. By the time I got out to the porch I just felt like I couldn’t do it. I refused to get in the car (yes, that would be another sign of how advanced I was!). This was where Sandy really saved the day. He reminded me that we had everything under control. He was calm but firm and encouraged me to get up and go.

Cue the most uncomfortable car ride of my life! I had to hold myself in a hover above the seat, the pressure was awful. I know now that I was more than likely sitting on Frankie’s head! Thankfully, we were only a 15min drive from the hospital. Halfway there we realized we had forgotten our HypnoBirthing books! ‘Should we go back?’ asked Sandy. I actually considered it but thankfully we remembered the recordings on my phone so we kept going.

As we arrived at the hospital, we realized the entrance we’d been shown to get to the birthing suites was now the entrance to the COVID fever clinic. Two people in hazmat suits greeted us and we had to ask for directions. They seemed a little confused, umming and ahhing about the directions. I felt like I was in a nightmare but we found our way eventually. Sandy got our things together and I slowly made my way to reception, having to crouch down every now and again with another surge. It felt like miles. I got to reception and the lovely women kindly (and slowly!) asked for my hospital number, confirmed my details and went through some COVID questions. They were so kind and calm but it drove me nuts – I could hardly breathe as I responded and just wanted them to let me through.

I was finally allowed into the suites and met the wonderful midwife who would be with us for the birth (and as it happened for the birth of my niece two weeks later). At first she too thought I was not very far along, greeting me calmly with, ‘Hello, tell me what’s been happening’ like a sweet, mild kindergarten teacher. I was trying to explain but honestly can’t remember what I said. Once we were in the room, I went straight to lean on the side of the bed and felt what I knew I could feel. ‘I think I can feel the head’ I told her and without much urgency the midwife asked me to get on the bed so that she could have a look.

I really didn’t want to get on my back but I lay down and in a flash I heard, ‘Oh yes, that’s a head!’. Suddenly I knew exactly what I needed to do. I jumped up on all fours, leaning up against the head of the bed and felt no pain from this point. I think that the bulk of my discomfort was coming from the fact that I couldn’t release, that I was holding and resisting. I asked Sandy to put on one of the playlists I’d made and I just felt ready. The midwife was wonderful and coached me on how to breathe between surges and slow things down so that I wouldn’t tear. I had a quick moment of panic that I couldn’t possibly have dilated enough yet but the midwife assured me it would be fine. To this day, I don’t know any of my measurements.

I focused on breathing my baby down and with what I’m sure was just two ‘pushes’ Frankie was born (12 minutes after we got to the hospital!). It was so quick and honestly such a relief but I was in a bit of shock, it was all so much faster than I had imagined. I remember asking ‘Is this my baby?’.

From here everything was just magical. I had to bend down to hold Frankie as the cord wasn’t stretching far enough to let me pull him right up to my chest. I’d told them I wanted to delay the oxytocin injection and the midwives helped me to gently lie back and bring Frankie to my chest. I birthed the placenta in about five minutes and Sandy was able to cut the cord. He also reminded the midwives that we wanted our golden hour and we just sat there marvelling at our beautiful little boy. It’s all a happy blur of skin to skin cuddles and leaving Frankie the freedom to do the breast crawl, which he did and fed like a champion for about an hour. I felt so incredibly lucky that this happened so seamlessly. I did have one small tear and needed two stitches but that felt like nothing, despite it being something I was terrified of beforehand.

We are so grateful to you Bec. I do honestly think that HypnoBirthing made a huge difference to our experience – even though in the moment I forgot some (all?) of the signs of transition! I think that was just because everything was so quick. But I felt confident, informed and knew I could trust Sandy completely to advocate for us. In fact sometimes I wonder if it’s even more important that Sandy did the course than me. He was so calm when I couldn’t think straight and was just totally in control the whole time, helping me with breathing and guiding me. We had an incredible experience. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and for your guidance and support.

– As told by mum Vilija

Learn more about my upcoming HypnoBirthing classes here.