Julie’s Birth Story: Last Minute Preparations

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Heidi Woodgate

Normally, I advise my customers to start practising the techniques we teach as early as possible, so that by the time labour starts, everything falls into place automatically. So when Julie sent me this email after having seen me quoted in the Times, I wasn’t sure if we’d be able to help:

I am interested in the technique, although wondering if I may be too late… I have been having regular contractions last night, they faded away and started again this morning, I think baby might be coming today or tonight. Do you have material that I could listen to at this stage, with no time left for preparation? I have started relaxation and mindfulness exercises (a bit separate from specific birth preparation but still helpful) and had my second baby all natural (thankfully quickly). This is my third and it just occurred to me a bit late that hypno-birthing might be useful this time. Many thanks

Never one to shirk a challenge, and (as always) happy to offer our cast iron guarantee so that customers can decide how valuable the material we teach is for themselves, I replied:

Thanks for your email. At this stage, you would probably find the latter part of our workbook (tips/words to avoid etc) and birth rehearsal track of our programme useful.

Even though you’ve given yourself very little time to prepare mentally, the early stages of labour can often make the suggestions in the mp3s “sink in” better so you may still be able to get some benefit.

Staying relaxed and active is the key, and the good news is that if you had a quick and natural second, you’ve already got a positive experience to help you keep stress at bay.

I’ve never had someone start the programme this late, but am happy to just refund you if you go for it and find you were too late to get anything positive from it .

Good luck and best wishes

To be honest, I fully expected to get my first refund request of 2013 in this case… so you can imagine how thrilled I was when I received this email 10 days later:

I would like to let you know that my son Camille was born on Tuesday 18th.

This gave me 5 days to prepare by listening to the tapes, reading and relaxing, whilst I was hoping everyday for the birth, each extra day of waiting has been a gift to help me relax and accept my baby’s own timing.

He weighs 10lb 2 (!!). He was born in the water and everything went very well. I will certainly not want a refund as your tapes and advice helped a lot. Despite a very quick birth at my second baby, this one took its time: there was a 13h latent phase during which I listened to the birth visualisation tape a few times as well as the music I had prepared. It helped me so much. I was able to “go to the special place” every time there was pain. My husband was with me all along and quietly helping (in between continuing his work to try to keep his mind busy!). Eventually the 2nd and 3rd phase were very quick (2h together) and I was able to give birth to my son in the pool. It was so nice. It was at the birth centre of St Mary’s hospital in Paddington in London. The midwives were amazing and very discreet whilst present. I am very grateful for this birth and thank you again for the material.

I hope many more women can enjoy this type of experience. Like you say in your booklet, birth is often presented as a horror story but really doesn’t need to be. Among my friend whilst many girlfriends respect my choice I read disbelief on their faces, why choose to go through all this pain? But the pain goes away and all that stays is the memory of a relaxed and intense time bringing this new little life and I would not have liked it any other way.

Sincere thanks to Julie for giving me permission to share her story, and for diving into the Blissful Birth programme. Her story just goes to show that it’s never too late to use Blissful Birth – even though I usually recommend starting as early as possible!

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