Is Water Birth Better?

By: Care Messer | Hypnobirthing | December 12, 2019

Is water birth better? Well – this mom thought so. It was accidental but just what she had envisioned when it came to her birth vision. One of the many lessons labor brought this couple was the importance of a sacred, calm laboring environment. Labor slowed as people showed up. Once people left and they got into their quiet interaction, labor picked back up. This little guy came slow and steady and dad had the task of keeping things on track and being more directive with staff when needed. Listening to mom’s visualization techniques and how she never lost track of her goal is inspiring! I cannot stress enough the power of good birth videos in helping you create the experience that you are working towards! See it and believe it!! Special thanks to Nurse Agnieszka and Midwife Pam Ward! @pamelarcnm

– I imagined front doors opening, I imagined cupboards opening, and then when I had the vision and then it would go away, I said, okay, what’s next? Oh okay, car door opening, okay, briefcase opening, microwave opening, everything around the world was just like opening for me and that’s when like my body was opening. We took Hypnobirthing to prepare, that was a big thing for us. I did a lot of listening to podcast, The Birth Hour podcast was one of my favorites and also, the Mama Natural audio book. I listened to the whole thing, that’s amazing

– I tried to download a few podcast for dads, like becoming dads, I don’t remember any names that I could recommend. But I also, I like talking to people and asking about their experience and to get more knowledge about that and then we had the class.

– Yeah, and talking to people who went through natural birth experiences, so just someone that had a positive experience, ’cause there’s a lot of negative stuff out there, so I wanted to make sure I wasn’t just getting horror stories.

– We also talked a lot.

– Yeah.

– You and me. There was something make sure that we are aligned with what we wanted, what she wanted and that I agreed to it also.

– Our due, our guess date was June 20th, and I feel like labor started somewhere around June 24th. So, it was a Monday morning. That weekend we had like gone on our walks and we really kind of found ourselves together as a couple and made sure that we were ready together and I feel like after that weekend, that’s when my body like knew that we were ready. So, Monday morning I woke up and I felt like a twinge in my side, it was my left side. Felt like a sharp twinge and I just remember thinking like, wow, this is different. Like it was the smallest feeling but I felt it and that day I was like, this could be it.

– You wanna say something? And I was at work and she called me.

– Yeah, I called him. Well, no, I started have like kind of having surges that afternoon, I had come back from a midwife appointment and she did do a check on me ’cause I asked her to ’cause it was a few days after, when we were told to expect him. But I knew it was gonna kind of run late anyway. I came home and I took a nap and when I woke up, I was having a surge and it was one that I had to breathe through. I had braxton hicks, like for weeks, like for at least 12 weeks. So, this surge is was a little different. It was something to notice and then you know, few minutes went by then I had another one and then another one, and I was like wow, I think this is go time. So, I called him, even though it was like the first few surges.

– Yeah.

– I called him and we were excited so he came home from work and then that whole day we kind of just.

– We had prepared a few things to do just to make sure that we kept our mind busy and her mind busy. We prepared like cookies to prepare and everything and we didn’t do any of that. We went to Living Spaces let you we were like looking at stuff, furniture.

– We were walking, yeah.

– Walking. We needed you to have breaks sometimes, so you stopped and we called your aunt that was–

– Yeah, it was getting a little bit more intense and my aunt, my doula, who is also my aunt lives about 35 minutes away. So, we just kind of gave her an update and told her to just come whenever she, like not anytime soon ’cause we wanted to just really take our time with everything. And then she got here and we’re all kind of excited and maybe too excited.

– A little bit too excited. We were almost like really, okay this is the day. We’re gonna pop the champagne, this is the day, this is awesome. And we got a little bit too much excitement maybe and the surges actually started to slow down and that’s where I didn’t really see it but you were feeling it and you extract yourself from the little group and you went to the bedroom.

– Well, just ’cause the energy too, with Hypnobirthing, and with the techniques that I was doing to prepare, the meditation, the like, just the really calm energy, that had sort of like took on a different path and it was just a little too much, too soon. And so, I left, I went to the bedroom and I was just like, I needed to get like kind of control of the environment again. So, we just sent my aunt and my sister home for the day and just wanted it to be back to connecting with Hugo and I. So, after they left, the surges continued again, they got back on track, and I was excited again. And so, this time they were getting more and more intense and I think I like lit some candles and we turned the lights down, and evening was starting to come.

– Lit some incenses, and you were on the birthing ball.

– Yeah.

– Just to do some movement, some sexy movement.

– I did have like a, sexy movements.

– Yeah, I love it, I like your hip thing.

– Yeah, I was getting loose. I had a felt board, and it was really important for me to use my affirmation, so I spelt out an affirmation that at that point, I felt like I needed. I don’t remember what exactly the affirmation was but as time went on, it was getting more intense, and I took a bath. Did I take bath?

– Mhmm.

– Yeah–

– No, not at this point, just shower.

– Got in the shower and.

– And be cold because you were reaching 411.

– He was staying close and even though we didn’t wanna time our contractions, I remember being in the shower like, I’m having another one. Like I’m having a surge.

– And I was using the app, and I was just monitoring everything. And sometimes when she give me the signal, it’s the surge or the surge stops. And I remember, do you remember when I said, oh, that was a short and easy one.

– Oh, my God.

– I shouldn’t have said that.

– No, that was like, are you, like what? What did you say? Made my head started spinning. I was like you’re not in my body, you don’t know what I’m feeling, it was not easy but yes, it was less intense. So, they were kind of like, it was kind of like a wave. And then that night, like two in the morning,

– So we yeah, we called, they told us, okay, get ready, we can pack. Hugo, you’re not coming back to work tomorrow because this gonna be it and so, few hours later.

– Midwife phone call.

– Yeah, at 1:00 a.m, 1:00, 2:00 a.m. We went there.

– Yeah we went to the–

– The car right was fun.

– I hated being in the car. That’s one thing that I wish we could’ve just stayed home but since our hospital was like a 25 minute drive, we packed in and got going. And I knew I wasn’t ready because I think I was even like trying to pretend like it was more intense than it was. You know, just ’cause, I don’t know. I think we should’ve stayed home. We weren’t dilated enough, so, they did send us home. And I was just like, oh no, I should’ve stayed home longer. So, we got home and we slept through the night.

– So, you tried to sleep, you let me sleep for an hour or so, and then they asked us to come back at like three, four hours later but we came back four hours later. Or even six, I don’t remember.

– Because yeah, because I was vomiting at this point at home, and it was just like so intense. I thought I had to go to the bathroom but when I sat on the toilet it came out the other way and I couldn’t stop and it was just like projectile and it was just like, okay, think we should go. And–

– Pretty graphic.

– Just everywhere.

– Yeah, so that’s where I kind of panicked. Said, oh this is, I just couldn’t really talk to you and engage in conversation with you. You just vomited, I was like, okay, we need to go. Not even time for cleaning, okay, we just go. And so, the car ride, 45 miles per hour on the freeway and she asked me to slow down.

– Yeah, I was, it was intense, the bumps and just the noises and everything, so I wanted him to go as slow as possible. ‘Cause I didn’t want, I didn’t, for some reason I thought being in the car, bless you, being in the car, and getting, like going there would slow down my contract, my surges again and I would kind of regress. So, I was really trying to stay in the same meditative like energy and stuff.

– And when we got to the hospital, this time, I still wasn’t dilated enough. But the midwife that was there was the one I wanted the whole time. I never got the chance to meet her but by reading her profile and everything, I just knew that, like everything was happening the way it was suppose to. So, once we saw her, once I saw her, I was like yeah, yeah, go time. But I still wasn’t ready but they did let us stay in triage for a few hours.

– That’s the thing, that’s where I had to step in and that’s, because they wouldn’t accept us. They didn’t accept us still. So, we needed to, it was kind of negotiation. Hey, what can we do now to make her stay because she wouldn’t get back to the car. So, we’re thinking about options like, getting a hotel room nearby for you to be able to take a bath or something. And as she vomited before and she wouldn’t eat, wouldn’t accept any food. So, we were scared that she wouldn’t have enough energy to go through it, so, said okay. So, she helped by giving fluids, therefore, you to get the vitamins and the you needed and to get back some energy and you and something again, what I’m saying.

– Yeah.

– And I gave you a little bit of drowsiness or something and you fell asleep for two hours.

– I think the peanut was there and I was like, up until this point, I was allowing him to give back pressure and all of this good things that we learned from Hypnobirthing and then when I fell asleep, I think I was on the peanut kind of like leaning over it. So, it was allowing my belly to just hang and then I think I fell asleep on my side or something. So, it was just like taking my body into all of these different positions as I was transitioning and progressing, I wasn’t even really thinking, maybe I should try this. It was just like instinctual just to let my body get into all of these different positions.

– And you finally got to sleep.

– Finally got to sleep.

– With a ant and sort of when she finally went asleep, we’re like, yes, yes! We had so much, we were scared about you not having enough energy to go through it. So, when you fell asleep, we’re like, okay, that’s my time to fall asleep.

– But I was still having my surges while I was sleeping.

– Exactly, you slept through it and I took a little bit of time myself to fall asleep later. And when you woke up.

– When I woke up, I remember my midwife saying okay, like, we, we’re ready to go, you’re right at that door. It worked. And she was just staring at me like this close, looking into my eyes, like it worked and I just remember like am I dreaming? This can’t be real. And like, I’m just staring at her. Like, I don’t know. You know, like, how is it time ’cause I don’t know. But the time was right, everything happened how it was suppose to and so, I still was in disbelief, like there’s no way. Just after being told, like you’re not ready, you’re not ready, you’re not ready for hours and then like okay, you’re ready. I’m like, what?

So, I just stared at her and I wasn’t talking to anyone at this point, I couldn’t formulate words. It was just like, I want to talk but I couldn’t. And so, we got up and we were making our way from the triage to actually go to the birthing center and I could’ve kept walking, I think that was an option, like you can keep walking or we can just go to the birth center. And so, I just remember walking, I don’t even know if I knew where I was going but I was walking somewhere. And then I had to stop because I had to vomit again. And it’s was all in the hallway and.

– I remember the rest.

– And I was like okay, think I’m just gonna go to the birthing center. So, we walked to the birthing center and as soon as we got in, it was just like, ah, yes, like this is the room I’ve been waiting to get into and the nurse–

– I’m sorry to interrupt you but you’re missing a part. When you vomited.

– What happened?

– You don’t remember?

– What?

– When you touched him?

– Okay, so, yeah, I do remember. I still don’t know if this was real or not, I know it was real but when I was vomiting, ’cause it was so intense that, that strong push, that I did feel him coming out. But I remember her saying you’re ready, you’re to-go, but it wasn’t like you’re ready to push. So, I’m thinking like how did that just happen? Like, I just felt him. And I just remember kind of maybe saying that, like I think I felt his head, I think I felt his head and like.

– You said it, yeah.

– Yeah, and so, I was like whoa. And so, we get into the room and I was like I wanna go in the tub right now. I think I did say that too, to the nurse. And she’s like okay, it’s gonna take like 35 minutes to fill up the tub, so, you know, just try to get comfortable or do–

– You stay on the birthing ball, we kept massaging you. Different massaging techniques.

– I snapped at you at this, or maybe–

– You snapped at me the whole way. Nah, that’s not true, that’s not true but some techniques, some massages that you like beginning.

– I remember ’cause I couldn’t talk and I was just like , and you’re like what, what? And you’re like pushing on me harder no, and then I snapped your arm. I was like don’t touch me. So, I was just, I need to get in the tub. I got up, it wasn’t ready yet but I just jumped in. I just got in there. It wasn’t as hot as I wanted, it was like 74. I was like can you make it hotter and she’s like, well, we have to keep it at this temp because of the baby and stuff but I kept asking can you make it hotter and she would like kind of turn it up like one degree. So, we get in the tub and I think we put the meditations on from Hypnobirthing and we were like really getting in sync again. I don’t think you were touching me anymore but you were pouring water on me and that felt really good. And we were just like head to head in the tub.

– Yeah, you kept changing positions but then one moment you really had the urge to push. And that was pretty quick, when, starting from when you entered the bath.

– Really, the surges were getting so intense that I was starting to kind of tense up before the surge would come and my nurse was saying just open, just breathe and that was something that really resonated with me. So, in the tub, when I had the first urge to push, I think I was sitting in the tub and after that urge, which I was shocked, I was like, wow, this was everyone was talking about. Like, you don’t have to have someone tell you to push, like your body is gonna push and after that I was like whoa, and I flipped over, just instincts. I flipped over on my hands and knees, on my knees and I just waited and I don’t even think I told anyone like what was happening.

– The nurse and the staff also helped you a lot. Because I don’t know if you wanna talk through that part but every time you had this urge to push, you were, your body were kind of like closing, instead of opening, which is what would help, right? So–

– So, when she said those words open, and I remember, that was part of my mantra during the pregnancy. Open, open, open. And I was like, that was like my word that she said, that really kicked it into gear. ‘Cause at this point, it was like no more massages on my back, no more pouring water over me, none of that was gonna help. That was the word that really got me into my mind and from that point on, I just imagined doors opening, I imagined front doors opening, I imagined cupboards opening and then when I had that vision and then it would go away, I said okay, what’s next? Okay, car door opening, okay, brief case opening, microwave opening, everything around the world was just like opening for me. And that’s when like my body was opening.

– And you flipped into a position like, you flipped and I was like right with you and the nurse she knew this was coming, so she kind of like, okay, I need to prepare some stuff, ’cause everything went very fast.

– Yeah.

– So fast–

– That was the magic word, I feel like within.

– And from that, like everything triggered I mean, you told me after, I didn’t know, but and then you did like a lot of work yourself. Like, you kind of almost did it yourself.

– It was really just mind, ’cause I didn’t care who was around me, I was just like, I can do this. Like, there were so many videos that we watched of women doing it and I just felt like okay, I know I can do it, I know I have the power in me, so, I didn’t call anyone to help me. The midwife wasn’t even in the room, I just went into my mind and just let my body do all the work and then, after a few cycles of surges, his head was in my hand. His whole head and I could feel all of his hair and just holding it in my hand, and then I was like okay, the hard work is done, like now I can just relaxed, and I just relaxed, and then his body just kind of tumbled out. And I just like just looking like, just seeing his body for the first time, seeing how big he was, like, and just absorbing everything. And then he was just floating there, just very, just floating.

– No, nothing in your body or any specific movement or sound that you would make that would indicate that he was already out. So, I didn’t know that he was in the process of getting out. And suddenly I see his body in, like in the water and I was ah, he’s here, he’s here. And I was like, I went, personally, I went through so many different emotions, and that was like the relief part on my side. And I saw him, I was like . And then–

– And then he started to have his little swim reflex and that’s what I was waiting for. Just trying to be patient, saw it, and then I pulled him up onto my chest and you were there behind me and we were just there in our moment, the three of us for the first time and maybe within a few minutes, like I just think a swarm of nurses and midwives, whoever was on staff, swarmed into the room but I was still just in this trance of this, of us, and it felt complete. And that was, that was it.

– And the midwife wasn’t in the room when you giving birth. Because everything went so fast that like she wasn’t even ready to come and then she came after the fact.

– And plus I wasn’t even being communicated with anyone and I was, I wasn’t talking, I just was in the tub. Like, making my noises and.

– We had the nurse like looking with our iPhone, with the lights, like is he coming out? Is he coming out?

– Yeah, and I thought everyone could see him coming, so I figured if I need to get up, then I’ll get up and I feel so good right now, I feel good here, I trust my body, I trust that he’s healthy and everything’s gonna be how it should. So, I just stayed there and that’s how he was born. All Hypnobirthing. I mean, I know every couple and mother is gonna have something that resonates with you but whatever you feel like you need to do to be prepared, and the education, like don’t think twice about it. If you feel like there’s a class that you wanna do, whether it’s Hypnobirthing or something else, like just take it because you’re only gonna be that much more prepared. You can never be too prepared, I think, and even post-partum, I think be prepared for that part, ’cause in my experience, after he was here, it was just like okay, I’m done but then there were certain things that I wish I would have been more prepared for after and just taking those first few weeks to really get that connection as family first, as your three person family.

– And to be very tactic about it, how do you get prepared? Is through getting educated, like education is really important, communication, like to be really, really, talk about anything that is coming in our mind. And anticipation, how it’s, like visualizing how it’s going to be, that’s these three things a load had to be to be prepared. For the partner, something that was a really aha moment and that was only possible because I was educated enough, was that when you were in the middle of like telling me and all your surges and were not able to communicate, I needed to step out and take decision for the family. Because you couldn’t make any decision. And sometimes that’s comfortable for like having you make a decision for us. And now that was the time that was okay, I’m the dad of the family and I need to take the decision for the family.

– But even hearing you kind of whispering out away from where I was and just knowing how confident you were and how you were really just guiding the whole experience, put me in a really like at ease. You know, I could hear him, like okay, we’re safe, like me and him, we’re good, we’re in good hands and that was helping me relax more. ‘Cause if it was stressful out there and like maybe if nurse was saying something to you that I know I didn’t want but I can’t even talk at this point, like that’s just gonna make things, you know.

– So, because we were completely aligned with the birth plan, and we didn’t even have to talk to know what we wanted. And the decision we will have to take, then it was easy, it was easy to know and to guide through it.

– Yeah, just knowing that you were on my team.

– Yeah, we’re a team.

– Captain.

– Yeah, there’s nothing new, it’s me. Yeah.

About the author:
Care is the founder of the Birth Education Center, San Diego HypnoBirthing and Cuddle Sanctuary San Diego. She is a Birth Educator, Hypnotherapist, Birth and Postpartum Doula, INNATE Care Provider, Erotic Blueprint Coach and also professional Cuddler. She specializes in connection work between people and increasing self boundaries for a more balanced life together.


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