Harriet Hancock 

Natal Hypnotherapy mother

Harriet Hancock Natal Hypnotherapist

Photo of my son meeting his sister soon after her home water birth



My daughter, Rosie, was born on a snowy morning at home in South Oxfordshire in water following a 3 hour labour, so quick the midwives had not arrived.  That's not the best bit! Calm and instinctive births like my daughter's are increasingly common.  What is less common about Rosie's birth is that I had this kind of birth despite being initially categorised high risk and being recommended a planned caesarian birth following the emotional and physical trauma of my first baby's birth.  What made the difference is Natal Hypnotherapy.   It enabled me to connect with the confidence I needed to consider birthing another way and to discuss choices and risk  with my Consultant Obstetrician.  He was very supportive and helped me to research and understand the risks I faced and helped me set out to reduce these risks.  I did my research, a lot of it!  Natal Hypnotherapy, having the support of a doula and giving birth at home came up time and again as the top three ways to reduce risk.  I decided to opt for all 3 and they all worked for me!

 

After my son, William's birth in hospital I was left with a lasting sense of failure and disempowerment and some physical damage.   When I became pregnant with Rosie I was quite honestly petrified.  I was frightened and tearful whenever I thought about the forthcoming birth.   A friend recommended we attend a Natal Hypnotherapy workshop.  I managed to persuade my supportive but reluctant husband that a workshop might be helpful.  We opted for a private workshop because I wanted to be able to talk about William's birth without worrying what other people thought or felt.  Our practitioner was really knowledgeable, experienced and incredibly supportive.  At the start of the workshop I knew that a calm birth was possible for women in general but not necessarily for me.  By the end of the workshop I was confident that a calm and instinctive birth was not only a possibility for me but that if I practiced the techniques I learnt, I was highly likely to have the kind of birth I wanted.  

 

Together with my husband I practiced the techniques we'd learnt on the workshop and I listened to the Natal Hypnotherapy CD's we were given.  My confidence rocketed!  I connected with so much trust in my body's natural ability to give birth that I began to consider a homebirth and discussed this with my Consultant Obstetrician who recognized and supported my need to be in a birthing environment where I felt in control and relaxed.  For me, this environment was at home.

 

On the morning of Rosie's birth, I woke up at around 4.30am and saw that during the night it had snowed.  It felt magical somehow and seemed to help me to enter the quietness of my birthing mind, the "zone".  My contractions started coming thick and fast within minutes of waking but were at all times easily manageable.  I went on to have a beautiful home water birth with a labour that lasteda brief three hours supported skillfully by my husband and our doula. Rosie arrived so quickly and easily the midwife was still on her way.  I never pushed or even knew it was time to push because there was noone examining me to tell me how far along I was.  When the time came, I just felt an enormous, powerful opening sensation and Rosie was born.   I had a physiological third stage (delivery of placenta). I had no sensation of pain and I have lasting sense of empowerment!  During the difficult times of mothering, sleep deprivation etc I can always summon up the sense of triumph I felt when my daughter was born.

 

And I owe it all to Natal Hypotherapy!  I can't believe what an amazing job it did for me.  It got me from serious terror to calm, instinctive, empowering birth.  I am deeply grateful for this amazing experience.  Now when I hear of friends' pregnancies I get a pang - I so want to give birth again and again! 

 

And so, my son's birth inspired my daughter's birth and my daughter's birth has inspired me to qualify as a Natal Hypnotherapy practitioner so that I can spread the word!  This stuff works!  It really does.


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