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Jean's birth story - Tips for an easy natural birth in Singapore

Updated: Aug 5, 2023

Jean reminded me of a soft, dainty Mandarin maiden. Like she said "Women can be both graceful and strong."

Read on to learn what she did to achieve her beautiful birth and prevent post partum blues.


Here is her story in her words.


Hypnobirthing Singapore worked beautifully. Calm, no tears.
First breast feed at Thomson Medical Singapore


The Birth Story - Hypnobirthing worked for me


That morning, (exactly 38 weeks pregnant) I started to have surges on and off, 15 to 20 minutes apart. They didn’t hurt at all! It just felt like my abdomen tightening.


The next day was the same - walking around made the surges more frequent but were less whenever I lay down. Took a hot bath at 8pm and the surges sped up a bit to 3-10 minutes apart, but slowed down again after.


The surges increased to around 6-10mins apart at 11pm and became stronger but still painless.


I was trying to sleep when I felt a tiny explosion in my pelvis at 12:40am, which turned out to be my water breaking. After this, the surges immediately became super strong and intense. I just knew I was about to give birth already, like pronto! So I called Lorraine to tell her to come to the hospital immediately. We sped to the hospital in the car, the surges were already 2-3 mins apart, lasting 2-3 minutes each time. And they hurt!


We reached the hospital at almost 2am. I was feeling a lot of super intense and painful surges every 2 minutes but could manage and relax into them. I started to feel scared because it was pretty intense/ painful but I continued to tell myself to trust my body.


I started to feel scared because it was pretty intense/ painful but I continued to tell myself to trust my body.

I was wheeled in and the nurse checked me, I was 6-7cm dilated already.


Lorraine came in and soon I felt like I needed to poop.

The surges stopped. I felt baby’s head coming down, and I kept focusing on the pooping feeling. Lorraine and nurses helped to hold my legs, they were very patient.


Whenever I felt like pooping/ pushing, I just tried to breathe deep and use my abdominals to push down gently. The gynae advised me to use my abdominals to push down slowly and sometimes to breathe instead. But I also tried to feel the perineal muscles/skin unfold slowly so I didn’t overdo it. It felt like forever that my baby’s head was stuck at the opening of my pelvis. But I waited for the pooping feeling to push with my breath and abdominals, I and rested in between the poop feelings.


I kept telling myself to trust my body and relax into it. I could feel my baby’s head moving down and started to feel the ring of fire, it burned and was pretty painful but I told myself to be patient and trust my body’s pace. I kept telling myself to trust the Natural Ejection Reflex. But I also pushed when I thought it was necessary.



Then I thought I felt the head was out and with the next surge I pushed longer and continued breathing down, and my baby was breathed out with that! It was uncomfortable and felt weird but still manageable. I felt like it took 30 minutes that baby’s head was stuck there but Lorraine said it took only 10 minutes! Also I lay on my side the entire time 😂 just no strength to move or think of another position.


Baby was born at about 3am! So in total, 1 hour from the time I reached hospital. Immediate skin to skin for an hour. She was alert and calm! I birthed my placenta quickly and painlessly. No pain immediately after apart from some mild soreness. Nurses massaged to get more blood out but no pain.


An unmanaged 3rd stage: Placenta birth

So anyway, my placenta was birthed within minutes of giving birth to my baby, and it was painless, just a little uncomfortable. No excess bleeding. I was offered oxytocin to shrink my uterus but I refused. I was told that oxytocin would quicken the release of the placenta from my womb. However, I chose not to utilise it as I remember Lorraine mentioned that the hormonal boost might then crash and contribute to postnatal blues. (Disclaimer: Its her theory!) I also wanted everything natural and I wanted to trust in my body after following a good diet and believing that my body was healthy. I just put an ice pack and no more soreness after 1 ice pack!


And I was ecstatic post-birth, didn’t have any postnatal blues at all! I was full of energy from the minute I gave birth and didn’t feel inexplicably sad or “blue” as I did with my firstborn (which was a very medicated birth). It’s been 2 months and I cried mildly like maybe once or twice only. So I am very certain this decision contributed positively to my overall postpartum well-being (especially mental).


No epidural, no pain meds or laughing gas.. no oxytocin. No tear! Uterus shrunk back on its own. 2 hours later I walked to the toilet myself and peed when back in the ward and zero pain! So redeeming!


Empowered

I felt like I finally had control of how I wanted to experience my life, a milestone conquered - something unthinkable, denying and uprooting all expectations. Something that 99% of people in current society have the wrong idea about (that birth is excruciating and horrendous). I conquered something that even the so-called “strongest” women shudder to think about. And yet it was empowering and exhilarating because I chose to trust my body and my intuition, and was rewarded for it.


Birth has taught me that as women, we can be both graceful yet strong at the same time. I always felt that everyone has the wrong impression of me, that I appear fragile or superficial; like a flower vase. But now I can proudly say that I CHOSE to go through this process(after some researching), and that I did it with grace, courage, grit, and strength.

I had this “knowing” feeling throughout my second pregnancy that it would and had to be a healing birth - healing for my mind, body, and soul.


I didn’t even consider not doing epidural at the start of my pregnancy because I didn’t think I could do it.

But I stumbled on hypnobirthing in Lorraine’s website and decided to try it out regardless of my eventual decision (I decided on no epidural and no interventions midway through my pregnancy only). I listened to the hypnobirthing soundtracks and affirmations diligently, and enjoyed Lorraine’s hypnobirthing classes. I found the hypnobirthing meditations that she went through with us personally like the “fear release” etc very effective and helpful in altering my mindset towards birthing.





After this experience, I truly believe that hypnobirthing is an effective aid that can help us access the innate knowledge our bodies have passed down through thousands of generations.


I see the difference between my babies!

We bonded well from the start - my baby was awake, alert, and active from the minute I held her. She remains alert and active, and is exceeding milestones faster than my firstborn (that I had an epidural and was very medicated). At less than 2 months old she could prop herself on her elbows and hold her head up like a champ! She is extremely responsive and curious about her environment and she doesn’t cry during diaper changes at all (my firstborn always cried).


Doctors did comment that she was quite a calm baby. She is also very smiley as compared to my firstborn. We didn’t let her cry for extended periods of time from the beginning and there was no “manhandling” to make her cry when she was born. Immediate skin to skin until I was ready, delayed weighing and measuring etc. Plus I did not receive any medication (not even a single injection or intervention) and I think it contributed to my uplifted mood post-birth! I only cried once and didn’t have postnatal blues at all.

Compared to my firstborn where I cried everyday for more than a month and felt terrible in every way. So I believe all this has made a substantial difference.

What I did to achieve this birth and prevent post partum blues

After doing the exercises Lorraine recommended, my baby turned from posterior to anterior at 37 weeks. I was also listening to the soundtracks often and especially on the days leading up to/ before my birth. They relaxed me and helped me to trust and feel calm.


I believe researching, trusting my intuition and Lorraine's fear release really helped make a shift.


As mentioned before, I refused the routine oxytocin jab after my placenta was born and I believe that made a difference in my mood post birth. I was ECSTATIC.





Doula Lorraine

Hypnobirthing (Mongan Method)




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