Getting in a ‘bath’ filled with hot water was one of the best decisions I have ever made during labour giving birth to my second child.
I was lucky enough to be in the hands of a local midwife unit and that of two sincerely caring women.
After my first Son’s entrance to the world I knew I had to do things differently bringing my next in so I opted out of conventional hospital care and went to something on a more personal level. A home birth was not a safe option for me at the time although if I ever do have another child I should very much love that.
The care I was shown at The Grange Community Hospital in Petersfield, Hampshire was exceptional and I would highly recommend it to everyone expecting a baby.
I hadn’t really considered the birthing pool (bath) as an option prior to being in labour but luckily enough for me I had the entire midwife unit to myself and the room I was in had one already in.
This time around I truly wanted a natural birth but even after you’ve done it once it is still scary and still really hurts so I did accept the gas and air offered. When the contractions over rid the help from the pain relief and I began to really ‘feel it’ the midwives offered me the option of the birthing pool. I had always been put off by the idea of a water birth as it didn’t seem natural to me as my baby would not be able to breathe under the water or swim! The women explained to me I didn’t have to actually give birth in the bath and could get in and out as I pleased and that is certainly exactly what I did.
(It is best to have the water as hot as you can.)
Upon first entering and sitting down in the water I honestly instantly felt a major relief, it was amazing, it was almost as if the pain totally stopped. When the contractions did become noticeable again the pain had decreased back to how it was when they first started, easily 10x less than before i got in, I could not believe how much it truly helped. Seriously.
After a while of being in there I did start to feel uncomfortable (mainly due to the thought of my baby being underwater) and decided to hop out for a bit, realising the difference in the pain it was not long before I re-entered! Again, submerging into the heated water instantly helped and i stayed in there until my baby was ready to be born.
It was so beautiful compared to my first birth, I could feel everything and could sense when he was going to come. I knew he was coming, alerted the nurses and they suggested I allow him to be born in the water…no way was that happening, I jumped straight out, got water everywhere and before I knew it I was holding my second child in my arms after less than 6 hours of very hard labour. It was the most beautiful experience of my life and I cannot thank the midwives enough for the true loving dedication they showed me. The personal care was astounding, they helped me through every breath, every push and guided me so well as to avoid tearing as previously I’d had to have around 20 stitches after a traumatizing 36 hour labour with my first Son.
The aftercare given was precisely what I needed and shortly after I got to go home which was a huge relief!
I’m so glad I took the advice from the midwives to get in the water and I will forever recommend it for everyone.