Very anxious about birth. how to change my mindset

(13 Posts)
fedupofpeppa Tue 08-Mar-16 17:04:17

As the title says, due in 4 weeks with my second baby. With my first I had a bad experience although nothing compared to a lot of you on here. Basically back to back baby got stuck ending in ventouse delivery. Very painful contractions. Had several failed epidurals so was lying in a bed for ten hours at the most painful stage.

Recently been given the news that the baby is big and in the wrong position and that epidurals are unlikely to work on me and also there is a high risk that the spinal they give you for c section would also not work. Means most likely would need a general anaesthetic if it came to it and the thought of my baby being comforted initially by midwifes and not me or my husband makes me feel sad.

Feel a bit like my worries are coming true again but I also totally get that being anxious and tearful is not going to help anyone.

So, fingers crossed for a nice easy natural birth. In the meantime, did anyone manage to effectively fight the nerves both before labour and in labour and how? Feel like I need to take some positive actions to feel I have a bit of control.

DangerMouth Tue 08-Mar-16 17:08:30

Hypno birthing cd. I had a very bad time with dd1 and listened to cd and read book with dd2 and managed a nice natural birth that was quite frankly amazing.

Can't help you with the size issue but fingers crossed for you

fedupofpeppa Tue 08-Mar-16 17:12:01

Which ones are good? I will look on amazon in a bit.

Pollaidh Tue 08-Mar-16 17:18:04

Hypnobirthing - I can thoroughly recommend the Natal Hypnotherapy ones. Really helped with the, er, 'strong sensations', and also though I had a traumatic birth actually I was completely calm (I yelled twice, at pushing, no other complaint over 3 days - it did hurt, but I didn't mind). I also looked back on it very positively, even though the midwives etc were expecting me to have had a traumatic experience, given what happened.

Dixiechick17 Tue 08-Mar-16 19:54:24

I can recommend the Maggie Howell hypnobirthing cd, I got it on Amazon and it really helped me to relax in the lead up and during labour.

Bringiton2016 Tue 08-Mar-16 20:09:41

If you have a GA it will be your husband holding your baby not a midwife. You've got the rest of your life to hold your baby. Try not to worry about that aspect, if you need a GA then you won't have much choice so no point worrying.

fedupofpeppa Tue 08-Mar-16 20:29:51

The midwife said my husband wasn't allowed in until I was in recovery and awake so he wouldn't meet the baby until I did. Like you say though, having a ga is a last resort and at that point, safe delivery of my baby will be all that matters

Bringiton2016 Tue 08-Mar-16 20:39:15

Oh, my dh held the baby in a side room for a good 20 mins until I came round. It was a dire emergency situation and I know they did take pity on him. Good luck.

powertotheparslaii Tue 08-Mar-16 21:36:59

Remember that every birth is different.

If it makes you feel better try check out spinning babies to see if there's anything you can do to try to help baby into a better position.

go on long walks listening to relaxing music and visualise your ideal birth and focus on relaxing during those walks.

If you're really anxious about who your baby spends time with first can you arrange for a family member to be with you after surgery so baby is straight to dad for first cuddles?

rainbowontheway Wed 09-Mar-16 10:26:42

OP I can relate and was about to post my own similar query. I'm 30 weeks pregnant. With DC1 3 years ago I fully prepped for an intervention-free birth. I did a hypnobirthing course, Daisy birthing (natural birth focused ante natal class) and the usual NCT and NHS classes. I hoped to use the water pool for pain relief and maybe birth. I had a prolonged labour, first and second stages were very long, and labour also didn't progress, which turned out to be due to baby being back-to-back, so I needed the syntocin drip eventually. I was unable to use the pool due to a small bleed and did my entire labour on gas and air, including pushing, resisting the epidural for fear of it leading to further interventions and difficulties breastfeeding (as per the NCT class script). I used my hypnobirthing / Daisy breathing techniques to use the gas and air effectively. I bounced and rotated on a birthing ball for hours, maybe days... But my baby stayed badly positioned, facing the side, and ultimately I couldn't deliver him myself and had to transfer to theatre for spinal and forceps. I haemmorhaged after delivery and had a retained placenta that needed manual removal. I had a blood transfusion before leaving hospital. I had real pelvic floor issues for months afterwards which needed regular physio and also major problems breastfeeding.

Initally, I was keen on an elective c-section this time, not least to protect my pelvic floor, but then started considering natural birth, as people keep telling me it's bound to be easier this time. But I just can't believe them. My consultant supports me either way and feels there's a good chance I could have a straightforward vaginal birth this time, but cautions against having an epidural if I want to avoid forceps again, which I really do, but equally, the prospect of another labour like my first with only gas and air fills me with fear. My consultant says that due to my pelvic floor issues last time, she'd approve a c-section if that's what I want but also cautions about the risks attached to c-section.... I just cannot decide what to do! I've joined a few natural / positive birth / doula-led groups on FB and while I want to believe the positive birth stories, I just can't believe they could be mine. I also get frustrated with lots of the advice given on them e.g. a back-to-back baby is not a problem in and of itslef so you really shouldn't worry about it and midwives shouldn't tell you if baby is back-to-back as it'll just scare you... ??!!

I feel I fully bought into all that stuff last time (your body knows what do to, trust your baby and your body,you should resist a cascade of interventions, an epidural will mean you'll struglle to breastfeed etc) and yet it didn't work out as it should have then, so why would it now, when I'm much less on board psychologically?! The various complications I had are statistically very unlikely to happen individually, let alone more than one at a time, so I feel very unlucky and let down and can't see why my luck will be any different this time.

I started the same ante-natal course that I did before DC1 last week and have decided not to go again as I found it so difficult to sit through and a bit triggering (I think that's the right term). It's mainly first time mums who go and, like me last time, they all lap up the positive birth stories that are read out and the mantras that your labour will only stall if you don't 'rotate to dilate' enough. I just wanted to scream at various points! I've also joined some planned c-section groups to get the other perspective too. Thing is, everyone I've spoken to or asked in real life or online who had an elective c-section has only good things to say about it, especially if they had a difficult vaginal birth before it. Emergency c-sections seem not to get such good reviews and I think tend to skew the overall perception of c-sections.

Sorry to hijack your thread but wanted to explain that you're not alone! Also, hypnobirthing might not be the magic bullet suggested, unless you're really really open to it.

CoteDAzur Wed 09-Mar-16 10:29:03

I dabbled in a bit of hypnotherapy while pregnant after horrendous 1st birth what ended up calming my nerves was dr agreeing to an elCS.

fedupofpeppa Wed 09-Mar-16 17:41:58

Oh rainbowontheway that is such a sad story. Sounds like you had a horrendous time. I really hope things work better for you this time. I was definitely not a hypnobirthing / natural birth person first time around. I figured I couldn't plan and to let whatever happened happen and have drugs if I needed them did okay on that until it went wrong so this time I just want a few more ideas to help. To be honest it's more calming me down in advance that I need as I get that it's pointless to worry and be so anxious. It's tricky though.

ohlittlepea Wed 09-Mar-16 17:45:51

Read this..birth skills by juju sundin

Amazing practical book smile

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