Julia’s Breech Baby and Big Baby

Julia and Andrew, first time parents wanted natural birth from the beginning of their pregnancy. But baby turned out to be in breech position around 35 weeks when her doctor suggested a cesarean birth as an option. She was devastated.  Find out how she managed to birth 4.1kg baby and a 37cm head circumference “big head” baby?

Hi, I am Julia, first time mother. I wanted to have a natural birth from the start of my pregnancy. Everything was going quite smoothly for the initial first two trimesters in my pregnancy until about 35 weeks my gynae informed me that my baby was actually in breech position and I had to consider the option of a caesarean birth. I was devastated by the news because I very much wanted a natural birth if possible. I asked around and I was recommended to Yen. Yen came to help me at week 36. She taught me a few positions where I can practice at home to try to turn the baby head down.  We did that everyday a few rounds a day. We went back to the gynae at 37 weeks, baby actually turned head down so we were very happy. That was the first challenged that we had to overcome in the third trimester.

The second challenge we had to overcome was that my gynae was telling me that my baby was big and the head was big so better that he be induced so that baby could be born earlier and baby’s head won’t be so big. I wasn’t prepared to be induced because we went through the HypnoBirthing course and we learned that with induction there was also a possibility of complication if it wasn’t successfully induced and that could lead to emergency caesarean. I was more inclined to wait. Fortunately my gynae was willing to wait till 41 weeks. However by 40 weeks, baby still was not showing sign of coming out. So, Doctor suggested to induce at 41 weeks. So we agreed. But between that one week before the induction week. I again tried my best to induce naturally. I again approached Yen for natural inducement ways possible from drinking raspberry leaf tea, to eating eggplant pamersan to evening primrose oil. Finally I resorted to foot massage on the last 2nd or 3rd day before the induction day. By then there was still no signs of labour. I was well OK I would just go for the induction on the next day. Surprisingly when I was admitted to the hospital they found out that I was already 4cm opened and therefore I didn’t need to be induced initially. Doctor allowed me to wait and I walk around with Yen’s advice, moving around and some other movements. It helped with the dilation but surges were not fast enough, not strong enough. We were admitted at 8am so by about 6pm we agreed to the gynae’s suggestion to help with the process. After that, when surges came along I also put into practice the Hypnobirthing breathing method. What I felt in the birthing process, it’s not exactly pain but discomfort like severe menstrual cramp. I just breathe through the surges. It helped. It wasn’t unmanageable. It was manageable. To a certain extend when I was fully dilated, I didn’t feel 10cm dilated. I was told to push. I was asking them “are you sure? I don’t think I am ready but OK I will just push if you ask me to.” And the baby was born in 30 minutes. It was quite amazing because I didn’t expect myself I could do it without pain relief at all and my baby was 4.1kg. It was a surprise, from the ultrasound scan just one week before that he was just estimation 3.5kg may be, at most 3.8kg. But when he was born he was 4.1kg. So it was actually possible. It was a pleasant birth process for me. I felt a sense of achievement. Although I did have the drip at the end of the day, it was a partially natural because I didn’t need the first part of the pill as induction labour.

Yen asked “How does Andrew feel?”

It was something new to him as has to act as a birth companion. He has to do the admin stuff. Also the room was very cold so he helped to tell the nurse to bring up the room temperature. He was really acting like a birth companion for me. It was really useful as he helped to provide support for me the mother when I went through the surges. During the pushing process, he was there to help and support my neck and also counting 1 2 3. I think it was a good experience for him.

Watch her video sharing her journey how she managed to overcome her challenge after challenge to achieve the birth that she and her husband wanted. If you like what you hear, support her and give her a LIKE and SHARE.

Cesarean or Natural Birth

How I ended up from Cesarean delivery to a normal delivery?
I’m Kia Boon, 26 years old. I was on my 39weeks of pregnancy. I went for my last detailed scanning to check how big and how heavy he was before delivery. According to my doctor, given my height at 1.55cm the most ideal weight to deliver a baby was about 3kg – 3.2kg. However, the detail scan report came out showed that baby was way above the ideal delivery weight. He was estimated  at 3.7kg weight and head size was about 10.2cm in diameter.After the report was given, I went back to my gyane clinic that same morning. Looking through the report, my gyane didn’t give me a chance to go for a normal delivery. Straight to the point my gyane mentioned that baby’s head size and the weight from the scan of 3.7kg makes it very tough for me to have a normal delivery and he suggested that I should go for a c-section. I insisted that I would like to try to go for a normal delivery instead of a c-section. 
What did my gyane told me?Two cases. Firstly, if I couldn’t push the baby out, he would using a forcep and it might cause injury to baby’s face. He asked “Are we ok?”Secondly, shoulder would be the other part to consider. If I couldn’t push, he would have to dislocate the shoulder and fix back once baby was out. 
After hearing those scary information from my gyane, i told him that I would like to reconsider and seek 2nd opinion before going for c-section. I really wanted to have a normal delivery and not a c-section. By that time, I had already broken down into tears, thinking at 39 weeks of pregnancy, which gyane would want to take me in? Did I really need to go for a c-section? 
My husband Yong Sheng was very supportive. He was calming me down, asking me if I was ok for c-section or I really wanted to have a normal delivery. Most importantly, he wanted both Mother and son to be safe. With him having a calm mind beside me, I asked him to call my elder sister Amelia to seek for opinion if she could find any gyane to take me in. 
Amelia was calming me down and was telling me that she would check with Doula Yen. While waiting, lots of thoughts went through my mind. It was unimaginable and stressful at such a junction. 
Finally, a called from Amelia came in. She told Yong Sheng to try second gyane from Thomson Medical Centre. Without hesitation, we called Doctor Pamela Tan to make an appointment on the same day afternoon 4pm for check up. 
Can you imagine all these happening all on the same morning? 
After all those worries and crying, we went to meet Doctor Pamela Tan hoping that she would take me in and would help me on normal delivery. Doctor Pamela Tam gave me hope, she said that I can give it a try as she had once assisted her patient to deliver a 4kg baby with height of 55cm too. 
I was thankful that she took over our case, all left was the big day for baby to arrive. Who knew that on the same day after meeting Dr Pamela, I started experiencing contractions at 10pm. I was ready to admit for labour. With Doctor Pamela’s help, I managed to have a safe vaginal delivery. Baby was healthy and weighed only 3.1Kg at birth. 
All this happened too sudden and quickly. I was beyond words, blessed to have supportive people around me and really thankful that I had signed up for the HypnoBirthing talk by Yen when I was at 37 weeks pregnant. 
Now, thinking back i would have regreted if I had gone for a c-section instead of seeking 2nd opinion. 
Thank you Yen for the seminar and knowledge shared. Without this talk, I could have lived my life with worse regrets! No point in pregnancy was ever too late to take back control. 

Lillian’s Two Breech Babies

I am Lillian. My husband and I wanted natural birth so we took HypnoBirthing course and hire a Doula to prepare for our first birth. During my first pregnancy in 2017, my baby was found in a transverse position around 34 weeks. With my Doula’s guidance, we embarked on breech tilt, forward leaning inversion, side lying release and various other exercises and baby successfully turned head down at 36 weeks. We were relieved. However, by 38 weeks, my baby decided to go back to head up but this time, she was in breech position! My doctor suggested c-section but we were very reluctant to go with that option. We asked if vaginal breech birth was possible. My doctor mentioned that it was possible but he would not recommend due to the risks involved – he mentioned that it was more difficult for first time mom and there may be risk of baby’s head get stuck.

I was worried and confused but at same time, I knew breech tilt was one of the ways to turn baby head down and we continued with the exercises we did when we help YuHui rotate to head down position earlier. This time, I also had a Breech Turn Hypnosis session on 4th March 2017 with my HypnoBirthing Instructor cum Doula. On 6th March, I had chiropractic adjustment just before doctor’s visit, ultrasound scan confirmed baby had successfully turned back to head down position at 39 weeks! I went on to birth Baby Yuhui at 40 weeks 6 days. We were very happy!

During my second pregnancy, my baby was in transverse position again at 36 weeks much like the first pregnancy. This time I was not panic as I had experience in helping my baby to turn head down. I continued the forward leaning inversion and side lying release exercises again and baby indeed turn to head down at 38 weeks. I birthed my second baby past 40 weeks again on 25 October 2018.

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Christopher’s Unwanted Stress

The time I heard from my wife about HypnoBirthing. The first thought which came to my mind was- are you out of your mind? She is a Mother of 3 boys already and all were natural birth as to what I understood then. I thought she had nothing else better to do or had too much free time to go and pay someone to hypnotize her so she could give birth to our 4th child. I eventually agreed to accompany her as she shared that it was 6 sessions and I was too lazy to read the books and I also wanted my Wife to be happy. Remember guys: happy Wife, happy life!

I always had this thought in my head that hypnosis is usually done by witches but I went with an open mind to hear and see what this was about. My advise to future parents or first-time parents is to have a really open mind and learn and don’t be afraid to ask questions if you have any doubts at any time.

After the first two sessions, Yen shared real life stories from her experience with countless deliveries and the group we had was very curious as we had mostly mothers who had given birth before attending the sessions. It seems that for first time parents-to-be wouldn’t ask so much as ignorance is bliss and they are there to learn. I was very curious as to why would mothers with experience be wanting to pay for this course so that thought made me want to continue attending to see what all these scam was all about. Yes- it was not a scam and to be honest, I never knew there was such a thing as a Doula.

I am Glad that I didn’t miss any of the sessions as my perception of Hospitals, Doctors, Nurses, parents old wives tales and especially the concept of natural birth totally changed! I felt that I was enlighten and to be made more fully aware of all the medical procedures being practiced. She practically educated us to be more aware of the how, when and the what to do and can be done in any circumstance from the gynae visits to the delivery. By the 3rd or 4th session, I was like a rebellion against the society (something like the Star Wars or Matrix movie)

My main take-away’s post the sessions are as below:

I was shocked to learn that my earlier 3 boys so-called natural birth was nowhere near natural.
I was sad to be made aware of the practices followed by Doctors and Nurses today whereby they follow blindly as to what technology has made them what they are and practice today.
I am Glad to know that BOTH parents have a right and a space to express your requirements. (This is depending on the doctor you choose)
I urge all future parents or parents to educate themselves on HypnoBirthing and not let society and the norm to take over your basic rights as a parent for your own child.
My hope is to have this embedded into the system to overhaul the existing birth methods/practices and to bring humanity back to its beautiful natural way.
My advise to future parents is to stay strong and focus and not let the blind lead the blind. This is your own flesh and blood so this is the least a parent can do for them to start right as this is only the beginning of your parenting journey so I hope you make the best decision.

Fast forwarding to the delivery date. I must comment that we really liked Thomson medical and our Gynae Dr Pamela Tan who was calm and supported us fully in our requests to go for fully natural birth. Whatever I learnt from Yen all came naturally at that moment and I think it’s best for my dear Wife to comment on this. One important point for the Husband during labor is to keep on encouraging and relaxing her so she doesn’t give up especially when the contractions are stronger.

From a realistic point of view, this saved me money, unwanted stress of the unknown and all 3 of us; me, my wife and baby were well prepared.
Our 4th baby boy was welcomed into this world fully natural and he is now 4 months old weighing 8kg, smiling and the journey continues……
Christopher Toh
Father of 4 Boys 😜 written in October 2018

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Disclaimer: This is the view of individual and not represent HypnoBirthing Institute or Childbirth Odyssey. It is purely husband/father sharing his thought that’s why it is called Birth Story.

3-cesarean-or-natural-birth

Yvonne wanted a natural birth despite having certain pre-existing health conditions. Even three of her doctors strongly suggested a cesarean birth. She never gave up and continued to search for a doctor who was pro-natural birth, and she found one who agreed to monitor her condition and gave her the positive affirmation and support she needed to satisfy a natural birth.

Yvonne Tan’s Birth Story

I just have to keep finding someone who aligns with what I want.

When I first received news of my pregnancy, I must admit it was daunting. I was not prepared psychologically or physically to have a baby. My first thought was to associate the entire pregnancy journey and childbirth with pain and suffering. Having dealt with an autoimmune condition for many years, the fear of my child living the same pain as me was immense. I consulted a total of four Gynaecologists who suggested a cesarean option to reduce the risks to mother and child. I was frustrated to think that I was unable to bring my baby to this world in a natural way. Having gone through many doctor’s visits for my condition and suffering from the medicine side effects, I was determined to give the best for my baby. For that reason, I just had to keep looking for someone who felt as strongly as I did about natural birth.

I was sceptical about HypnoBirthing

Through a referral, I met Yen and found out more about pro-natural birth approaches such as HypnoBirthing, one of the best ways to bring a baby to this world safely with little or no intervention. I am a sceptical person at heart. My husband and I, however, went with an open mind and attended Yen’s HypnoBirthing classes diligently. We found the material refreshing and inspiring. It was especially inspiring to hear accounts of beautiful births being made possible by relaxation and self-hypnosis, breathing exercises, rebozo techniques and a host of helpful tips on understanding how we could connect with our mind and body and work towards a natural pain-free birth.

I seek the right people to help me stay at my optimal health

Yen was a most inspiring, authentic and caring coach. My husband and I decided that she would be the perfect doula for us. She showed huge empathy, patience, and reassurance. Yen was there with me throughout this amazing journey, and never for a minute was she upset with 1000 never-ending questions from me as a first time nervous mommy. She was able to direct me to the right people to help me stay at my optimal level.  I visited an Ayurvedic doctor as recommended by her, took a healthier diet, had prenatal yoga, and on a daily basis, did my rebozo and prepared myself mentally with nightly meditation tracks from the CD she gave us.

Surprisingly short labour without chemical drugs used

When I approached my critical period of “breathing down” the baby at 39 weeks and 2 days, Yen rushed to my side in the wee hours of the morning. She kept reinforcing the techniques learned in class, continued to encourage me and her advice led to a surprisingly short labour period without interruption or chemical intervention. It was a magical labour, almost perfect, in fact! I owe a great debt to Yen who was there at my side with her constant reassuring voice when our angel Charlotte was born.

Charlotte was able to recognise Yen’s voice even in my tummy with her excited kicks and always happy to see Yen since her arrival on Earth.

Yen is not just any doula, but a superb, dedicated, resourceful and deeply passionate family friend. She became very dear to us. Thanks Yen, you are truly a gift from heaven!

Overlook Birth Trauma – How Were We Born

Recently I had encountered a spiritual talk on Spiritual Rebirther called Minood. A very interesting topic as it relates to birth. Though I did not sign up for the workshop. Later found out from a lady who attended the rebirth session. She shared her experience, remembered vividly her feelings during her journey into this world, her birth. She definitely made me realised what had I missed out. Not long after that, this lady invited me to attend a breathwork rebirth session. Immediately I signed up, not to miss this chance a gain.

Although I did not experience the Rebirth, I was amazed by how breath can connect to our brain and retrieve memory. The breathworker John Stamoulos lead me into searching just how birth trauma happens and how does it affect our life. He suggested that I ask my mother how was I born, same time, recommended a book called Birth Without Violence by Dr. Frederick Leboyer. This book gave me the inspiration to replay “the scene”.

Pretend You are the Baby – How does it feel “being inside”?

Let’s imagine that you are the baby resting in the comfort of your mother’s womb. Warm, surrounded by the buoyancy of the amniotic fluid, squashing against the wall of the uterus, relatively dark and quiet inside, at least not so loud.

So much as we think you, the unborn baby cannot feel, hear or see.

You feel everything through vibration, rhythm, light and even your mom’s emotion through the placenta.

Now you are physically ready to experience the transition into an unfamiliar world.

You are Moving Slowly Through the Birth Path

Now you’re ready to meet your mom and dad.

The wave or surge, contraction is the medical term for it, moves you down to the squeezy narrow tunnel, the birth path.

The constant pushes and pulls move your body, most of the time it’s your head closer to the birth path.

Now you feel the fear and the tension that passes through the umbilical cord from your mom’s emotion.

The fear of childbirth, your mother and father’s own birth present in the room that causes more tension in your mom’s body, hence pain.

At this time, your mom is overwhelmed by the surges (contraction), the fear of pain and she tensed up resisting it.

You too sensed the fear and resisting moving along but you can not.

The muscles of the uterus work against each other, the outer muscle is trying to pull the inner muscles up prepare for your descend.

But her tension causes resistance, freezes the inner muscles making it more difficult for you to move pass the narrow tunnel.

Labor prolonged, mom is stressed and exhausted.

So are you being squeezed and pressed against the wall of the cervix. Can’t move!

Your First Feeling in this World

Finally, you have made it to crowning, feel the air for the first time through your head, your mom screams with every surge.

The more you move, the more she screams, so loud that you are shocked and scared. Finally your head is out, sudden bright light, too bright that you shut your eyes very tight.

Feel the cold air, very frightening, you want to breathe but your chest is still in the birth path, so tight that it makes the breathing impossible.

The Scream that Nobody Cares

Finally, your body is out, you are born. Immediately someone put a tube in your nose and mouth for suction, very uncomfortable.

What is going on? Panicking, you scream.

Being carried without hands or legs touching anything feels like you are hanging in the air and that you are going to drop any time.

Terrifying you scream with helplessness.

No body cares. The adults are so ignorant that they think how amazing you little person can scream so loud but ignoring the helpless scream.

Then another shock, your skin, your body is being rubbed by a dry rough towel, discomfort and even painful with all the rubbings.

The Sudden Cut Off of Oxygen Supply

Feeling the cold air in the throat is like burning sensation.

While you’re still adjusting to breathing the cold air through your lung, and suddenly your normal oxygen supply being cut off, your umbilical cord is being clamped.

Deprived from oxygen, startles and overwhelms by the sudden rush, you gulp for air, Roughly about 30% of your blood and nutrient is left in the cord.

Feeling weak with the rest of the blood supposedly in your body not being transported fully.

Nothing Familiar in This World

More, you are being taken away to the cold hard surface for weighing, follows by being wrap tightly in a dry cloth and finally you get to meet your mom and dad.

At last you feel the familiar rhythm, your mommy’s heartbeat, lastly by her side.

If your mother is not too exhausted, you may want to breastfeed you.

What Do You Sense?

Now how do you feel about this new world that welcomes you? Did you feel your connection with your mom and dad? Did you sense love and welcome from them.

The Journey into This World Can Be Traumatized

Although I portray this scene of natural birth without medical intervention that alone is enough for your baby perceives this new environment as threat. Let alone other medical intervention. Any changes in the years to come create fear, nervousness, anxiety and stress. The effect on the well being of this little fragile human being is immeasurable and can be life long.

Babies are Highly Sensitive

Babies are highly sensitive and communicable. They see, hear and feel their surrounding even in the womb. They remember although they may seem to forget as they grow up. The memory is imprinted in the memory bank.

What is Birth Trauma?

Often being overlooked from the babies’ perspective, birth trauma refers to the shocking experience that the babies feel during their journey into this world and the first hour after birth. This includes the environment and how the babies are being handled immediately after birth. Often shockingly struggling in facing the uncertainly in life, feeling loss, helpless, fear and no sense of security.

Major Kinds of Birth Trauma for The Babies

The major kinds of birth trauma result from forceps, Caesarean delivery, prolonged labour, a sudden switch to a strange environment and the handling of babies immediately after birth can frighten the babies. An assisted birth such as forceps, suction and forced pulling baby out can cause distress, pain and make them feel vulnerable. This can shape their belief lifelong that they often need assistance and lack confidence.

Side Effect of Early Cord Clamping

Early cord clamping deprived the supply of oxygen to the infant’s brain and cut off about 1/3 of the total blood volume to the baby that is used mainly to establish circulation through the child’s lung’s to start them functioning, the loss is a huge blow to the baby’s immune system and other complications.

According to Dr. Frederick Leboyer, author of Birth without Violence, when cord is clamp too early while the umbilical cord is still pulsating, the sudden cuts off of infant brain’s oxygen supply from the placenta before lungs begin to function causes sudden shock, hence panic to the baby to gulp for air. This oxygen deprivation making birth itself an extremely painful, confusing, and frightening experience for babies. The nature and length of birth can determine the state of a baby’s cranium (skull), and consequently influence the way his/her personality, intelligence and memory develop.

Even The Royal College of Cranio-Sacral Therapy says a common cause of colic in newborns is birth trauma. Never thought of that huh?

Babies Have Memory Even Before Birth

Babies have feelings even before they are born. Babies remember all the events after birth unconsciously even though they do not seem to remember when they grow up. Evidence showed during a hypnotherapy session, human can replay the scene during the time that the person was born.

“Who gets Birth Trauma?

The babies, mothers and even the father

In the medical term, birth trauma refers to women’s childbirth experience that causes the after effect.

An abstract from The Birth Trauma Association, UK as below:

“Birth trauma is in the eye of the beholder’
Cheryl Beck (Nursing Research January/February 2004 Vol 53, No.1)

It is clear that some women experience events during childbirth (as well as in pregnancy or immediately after birth) that would traumatise any normal person.
For other women, it is not always the sensational or dramatic events that trigger childbirth trauma but other factors such as loss of control, loss of dignity, the hostile or difficult attitudes of the people around them, feelings of not being heard or the absence of informed consent to medical procedures.

Research into the area is limited and, to date, it has largely focused on the importance of the type of delivery. It is clear however, that there are risk factors for Post Natal (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) PTSD which include a very complicated mix of objective (e.g. the type of delivery) and subjective (e.g. feelings of loss of control) factors. They include:

  • Lengthy labour or short and very painful labour
  • Induction
  • Poor pain relief
  • Feelings of loss of control
  • High levels of medical intervention
  • Traumatic or emergency deliveries, e.g. emergency caesarean section
  • Impersonal treatment or problems with the staff attitudes
  • Not being listened to
  • Lack of information or explanation
  • Lack of privacy and dignity
  • Fear for baby’s safety
  • Stillbirth
  • Birth of a damaged baby (a disability resulting from birth trauma)
  • Baby’s stay in SCBU/NICU
  • Poor postnatal care
  • Previous trauma (for example, in childhood, with a previous birth or domestic violence)

Finally, men who witness their partner’s traumatic childbirth experience may also feel traumatised as a result.”

Gentle Birth Provides a Smooth Transition for the Babies

Whether the transition from womb to birth is made slowly or brutally in panic and terror can make a difference between a gentle birth and a traumatized one.

Birth trauma is stored in the memory bank of each baby who is born, including our own. How we were born affect how we give birth. This includes the father as well.

Preconception Planning, Childbirth Education and Preparation are the keys to prevent birth trauma. Why not plan a harmonious beginning and a beautiful birth for your little one? Create a lifelong memorable birth story for your love ones.Learn

Learn more about HypnoBirthing Here

I Avoided a C-section by Helping My Baby Turn from Breech to Vertex

A Determined Mom Who Avoided a C-section by Helping Her Baby Turn from Breech to a Vertex Position for Birth

Baby Turned from Breech to Head Down at 38 Weeks

“Thank you Yen and Fauziah for all your help!  We are very thankful for this little miracle birth and hope this birth story will be an inspiration to others.”~ Esme, mother of 3 daughters

Hi, my name is Esme and I am a mother of 3 daughters.  When I got pregnant with my third child, I thought that the pregnancy would be a breeze since I’d be a “seasoned” mother.  On hindsight, it was actually the toughest of all my pregnancies.

It first started with 6 weeks of severe morning sickness.  It was so severe that I had to lie in bed for the entire period, getting up to only have morsels of food.  The nausea continued throughout the pregnancy.

The pregnancy was further complicated by the baby being in a breech position.  I had tried all sorts of methods on my own (ranging from homeopathy to yoga to moxibustion) to turn the baby, but to no avail.  When I was about 35 weeks pregnant, my doctor advised me to set a date for an elective cesarean surgery as it would be risky to deliver a breech baby naturally.  I was very disappointed at such a prospect.  As I managed to birth my older daughters naturally and without epidural, I was hoping that I would be able to do the same for my third pregnancy but I was also not willing to subject my baby to unnecessary risks.

I suffered from insomnia and panic attacks for the next 2 weeks as I was fearful of “being cut up” in surgery and I agonized over the type of anesthesia I should use for the surgery.  My doctor suggested going under general anesthesia (GA) as around 10% of his patients who used the epidural developed chronic back aches.  However, going under GA meant that my husband and I would not be able to welcome the baby into the world as my husband would not be allowed into the operation theatre and I would be completely knocked out for 2-3 hours.  Neither the epidural nor GA seemed satisfactory.

Just as I was giving up hope on having a natural birth, a friend asked if I was interested in engaging a doula and passed me her doula Yen’s contact details.  I got in touch with Yen on 17 July 2016 and met her the same day.

Yen showed me a series of physical exercises (such as the forward leaning inversion) to help create room in my body for the baby to turn.  She also mentioned that 85% of breech babies are a result of an emotional hang-up, mainly fear.  I shared with Yen that I had been very stressed during my pregnancy as I was busy preparing for the family’s relocation back to the UK.  I was also very traumatized by the labour pains of my previous two births, even though I tried preparing for the births by going for yoga and natural birth classes.  To help me emotionally, Yen recommended that I see a hypnotherapist and a Cranio-Sacral therapist.

When I made an appointment to see Fauziah the hypnotherapist (and also doula), I was almost 38 weeks pregnant.  Fauziah said that because I was so advance in my pregnancy and that the baby’s bottom was already engaged in my pelvis, I only had a 50-50 chance in turning the baby around.  Nonetheless, we did not give up hope.  She devised an intensive programme comprising of physical exercises, massage, moxibustion and hypnotherapy for me to follow for 7-10 days.  As my doctor was very conservative, I had to negotiate with him to push back my cesarean date (which was due in 7 days) so as to give the programme a chance to work.

I followed Fauziah’s programme diligently on the first day.  On the second day, as I was feeling under the weather, I had to take things a little easier, but still managed to do a 20 minute supported shoulder stand.  Later that night, I was woken up by a sharp pain at my left hip.  The baby was in a transverse position and was trying to turn.  I then used my hands to guide her head downwards, and as I felt her head moving towards my pelvis, the baby disappeared into my womb.  I could not tell whether the baby had successfully turned.

The next morning, my mucous plug was dislodged, but I did not think much about it.  Later that day, I had a sensation of menstrual back ache and had the show.  I was in a dilemma.  On one hand, I wanted to see my doctor to make sure that the baby was safe and well and that I was not in labour.  On the other hand, I was worried that my doctor would send me for an emergency cesarean if baby had not turned and I had gone into labour.  My husband was in China then, and I was hoping that he would be there for the baby’s birth.  I went to see my doctor with a heavy heart and even brought my hospital bag in case I got admitted to hospital.  When I saw my doctor, the first thing he did was an internal examination.  I braced myself for the worst case scenario and prepared to get an earful from my doctor for putting myself in such a position.  Instead, I was ecstatic when he told me that he felt the baby’s head.  The ultra-sound scan on 22 July 2016 confirmed that baby had turned!  It was a miracle.

I worked with Fauziah for the next two weeks to prepare for a natural birth without epidural or artificial induction.  It was another series of yoga, walking and hypnotherapy.  Fauziah also taught me techniques (such as the labour positions, breathing and hypnotherapy) to better cope with the labour pain and to expedite the birth process.  Towards the end, I also took homeopathic remedies for a natural birth induction as my doctor was getting anxious and proposed to artificially induce the baby if she was not out by the due date.

On the baby’s due date, I went into labour naturally.  I was woken up by a strong contraction at 2am.  I labored at home till around 4.30am before we made our way to the hospital.  I was admitted to the hospital at 5am.  At this point, the pain was so intense that it felt like I was at least 8cm dilated.  However, when the nurse checked me, I was only 4cm dilated.  I was very flustered as I did not know whether I could hold out the pain much longer.  Thankfully, Fauziah was still awake and told me not to be discouraged as progression in labour was not based on dilation alone.  Instead, she told me to go into my zone and focus on my breathing.  I heeded her advice and labored in the hospital shower room.  Within 30 minutes (or 5 rounds of extremely intense contractions), I felt the baby’s head about to come out.  The nurses rushed me back to the bed and held my legs down to prevent me from giving birth before my doctor arrived.  The wait was agonizing.  It was as though I was having explosive diarrhea and was told not to go to the toilet.  Thankfully, my doctor arrived within the next 10 minutes.

At 5.48am on 4 August 2016, I gave birth to a healthy baby girl of 3.5kg naturally without epidural or artificial induction.

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Fear of Childbirth and Elective Cesarean

Why Women Choose Cesarean?

Cesarean birth is major abdominal surgery with or without a medical condition. Elective cesarean is the choice of the mother/couple to have their baby at specific date and time of delivery. This question has disturbed me for quite some times. I realised that people choose delivery through cesarean have lots of Fear. These fears are due to fear of childbirth pain, fear of not being able to give birth due to carrying a “big size baby”, fear of the unknown-uncertainly of how birth will turn out to be, the fear of jeopardising the safety of the baby and that of the mother puts woman to think of a definitely outcome. i.e. elective cesarean birth.  There are other fears that are not mentioned here which not everyone can accept.

Milli Hill, the Founder of The Positive Birth Movement, in her post Should We Be So Very Scared of Giving Birth? is based on research finding that as many as one in 10 women suffered from tocophobia, leading to more women elect for cesarean birth due to extreme anxiety and fear of giving birth regardless of how joyful her pregnancy had been. Such fears can turn their birth upside down. Normal birth can turn out to be much with medical intervention such as birth augmentation, taking pain relief medication, forceps, vacuum extraction and cesarean birth when the woman in labour is too anxious, fearful of their birth and not willing to take charge of their birth due to lack of knowledge in childbirth. Much of the fear is developed due to myths of childbirth. 

Women’s natural birthing inhibited by fear. These fear are mainly due to the following factors:

  • Media portraits childbirth as traumatic and dramatic
  • Birth stories of other women’s experience with much medical intervention
  • Women approach birth with negative expectations
  • Women do not believe they can do it
  • Childbirth becomes a medical event in many developed countries

Below is the Cycle of Fear becomes Fact leads to Negative Birth

Fear is the enemy of the birthing room. If pain is the main reason you choose cesarean birth, then understand that Pain is due to Fear. During labour, when fear kicks in, it creates tension and thus, the tension in the body creates pain. Childbirth pain is no longer an issue as fear can be eliminated with a deep level of relaxation using techniques such as breathing, relaxation, visualisation and self-hypnosis. A woman can give birth in a calm and relax manner. HypnoBirthing’s relaxation methods increase the body’s natural relaxant, endorphins which inhibit the stress hormone catecholamine that causes pain, reduces much discomfort. Hence, a woman is capable of birthing in a calm and comfortable way to bring the little baby into this world.  

Marie Mongan the Founder of HypnoBirthing®-The Mongan Method has been teaching HypnoBirthing Childbirth Education since 1989 to women who seek drug-free birth. She believes that birth is natural, normal and healthy.  When the mind is relaxed, body is relaxed. Mind and body are free to function in harmony in the absence of fear. The HypnoBirthing® philosophy is that a healthy woman carrying a healthy baby, experiencing a healthy labor, trusting birth and is free of fear, is appropriately relaxed, her body will function normally without pain or incident. Therefore, women who are not in the high risk group does not need medical assistance but rather the patience of the birthing attendance and proper emotional support. 

You can break this Cycle of Birthing Negativity by attending a proper Natural Childbirth Education. Knowledge is power, the power to be in control. Replacing these old negative beliefs with positive beliefs and releasing the fear of giving birth with the help of Hypnosis.  What woman needs is to prepare their mind and body for birth. With the right kind of support, she can achieve the birth she desires and become stronger.

Stephen Nightly Practiced HypnoBirthing

Stephen Tjoa Father’s Story

As a first-time dad, I had no idea of the enormous body of knowledge out there on birthing. Like Yvonne, I greeted the news of her pregnancy with profound happiness. At the same time, however, I knew the journey would be daunting. My first instinct was to provide Yvonne with all the support necessary. I was committed to doing what she had wanted. She was focused on having a natural birth. Based on my knowledge back then, I thought that this decision meant having to endure pain. Like Yvonne, I attended Yen’s HypnoBirthing classes with an open mind and I was determined to be the A+ student and to learn whatever I could despite a small voice of doubt which said that there could never be a pain-free delivery. I took the lessons seriously, and every night before we went to sleep, I encouraged Yvonne to practice what we learned in class. My favourite time of the night was when we held hands listening to the calm and soothing HypnoBirthing CD and connecting with our unborn baby. When the time came, Yen was there at the wee hours encouraging Yvonne and reinforcing the positive messages we learned at HypnoBirthing class. It was nothing short of a miracle when I witnessed my wife giving birth to our beautiful daughter, Charlotte, naturally. Yen never stopped whispering the words of encouragement throughout the entire process with genuine love and care. I am grateful for Yen’s guidance and patience, and most of all, her dedication to mothers and fathers everywhere that birthing should be natural and painless.

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Jane’s Unplanned Cesarean Yet Wonderful

Labouring in the delivery suite for 32 hours without an epidural, ironically, wasn’t too laborious, thanks to hypnobirthing. Doctors and nurses were constantly amazed that I kept declining the offer of analgesia even when I was on maximum dose of oxytocin (induction medication) and my surges (contractions) were all frequent and strong. While I had initially desired a natural vaginal birth, I eventually had a Caesarean birth as Josiah was borderline preterm and the labour was considered prolonged. Intraoperatively, doctors discovered that the umbilical cord was wrapped around Josiah in 3 different locations (neck, trunk and leg), which would explain why the birthing was not progressing earlier on. Everyone was surprised that Josiah did not show any signs of distress throughout his cardiotocography monitoring and the operating team labelled him a “fighter” as he thrived well beyond expectation. I believe that Josiah’s calmness during all those 32 hours leading up to his birth is a testament to the relaxing effect of HypnoBirthing, not just on the mother but also on the baby. I was also able to utilize the techniques learnt to recover well postnatally and again, the team was amazed that I could manage the post-op pain with only simple paracetamol and no other analgesics. Thanks to HypnoBirthing, both Josiah and I had a wonderful birthing experience even when things did not go as planned.

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