After a recommendation from a friend I give my views on our Hypnobirthing experience, I affectionately refer to it as #Hypno #Hypno as it makes me think of Calvin Harris dropping some beats on the decks in Hakkasan in a #Techno #Techno fashion.
As much as Calvin and Swifty might decide to attend *if/when they decide to have what will surely be the best looking kids known to man* it actually has nothing to do with DJ’s or Vegas nightclubs but is a course designed to help mum’s get in a state of relaxation and support them through childbirth.
Now I will admit I went in to it a little skeptical, with Derren Brown/dodgy shows on holiday being my only real experience of hypnosis. I had visions of joss sticks and Buddhist bells (*tip don’t mentioned joss sticks, it did not go down well….), but trusting the friends who recommended it and knowing they had an excellent birth the attitude was it can’t hurt to try it. We did some research and found a course locally to us via Wessex Hypnobirthing.
The course was split over 4 evening sessions, so we rocked up to a business centre in Royal Wotton Bassett, with an open mind and an eagerness to learn. The course follows the Katherine Graves model and has an accompanying book and MP3 to help practice at home. Caroline, the tutor was great, made us and the other couple very relaxed and explained things slowly and logically.
We started off exploring the world of #hypno #hypno, and the power of words. It also looked at the physical responses that occur during labour and birthing options which i wasn’t really expecting to be included, but makes absolute sense looking back logically.
The second session focused on the relaxation birthing techniques, of Up-breathing to help with ‘thinning and opening’ and Down-breathing to help breathe the baby down. Both brought on a feeling of calmness (obviously aimed at Mrs R, but even I found it useful, mainly when I shout at other drivers on my commute…)
The third week explored the world of ‘soft-touch’ massage, gentle stroking to assist with ‘getting in the zone’. We explored different methods and positions for this but we soon found our favourite.
The fourth week brought everything together and provided a good opportunity to ask questions about the course and make sure we were comfortable.
We were told to practice both breathing and the massage at home. 1 minute for each of the breathing techniques and 5 minutes massage. Cue practice 1, Mrs R does the breathing, now the massage, I stick on the mp3 and off we go. At this point I realised I had put the 15min track on…. boooosch 3 days practice in one go. 😉
The aim is to practice everyday but we certainly haven’t achieved that and probably average out on 3 times a week. This might not be sufficient but real life does just get in the way sometimes. We are doing as much as we can and Mrs R is feeling good and positive so I am happy!
Hypnobirthing also helped to bring a real positive outlook to our pregnancy, if you have visited my previous post you will see how we found people are quick to focus on the negatives, we wanted to wrestle this control back into our positive mind-state. The accompany book is an excellent ‘go-back-to’ type of resource.
I also saw some brilliant cards online from London Hypnobirthing and Hollie De Cruz on Instagram, which I bought to supplement the course. Mrs R has picked her faves and are now in the hospital bag for when she needs that extra bit of motivation during birth. (an example is in the header photo).
Ultimately Hypnobirthing gave Mrs R a real confidence and positive outlook on her birth, if things do not go to ‘plan’ then we feel we are now in a better position to cope with this.
She described birth as ’empowering’ at our first NCT which I thought was simply brilliant!!
Whether it works or not we will find out in July, but anything that makes you feel more positive and relaxed has to be a good thing. I am sure I will re-visit the subject on this blog following birth.
Having gone in skeptical I would now feel like I would recommend it to parents-to-be (some turn around). I am definitely not an ‘hippy/air-fairly’ type of a guy so if I found it useful, you might just too….
Have you used Hypnobirthing? What was your experience? Any other tips to support the process (we have 6 weeks to learn them!!)
*Calvin Harris did not endorse this post, and his tuuuuuuuuuunes are not recommended for Hypnobirthing, go for relaxing piano tunes instead.