Just Breathe!

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It takes 9 months for a baby to grow in utero and once the baby is born our job as a mum lasts forever, but the one thing that takes the shortest amount of time, but causes us the most grief, is child birth! The idea of me writing a blog about child birth is certainly not to boast about my experience, as everyone’s stories are different and the way each baby is born into this world is unique! The idea of this blog is to get the message out there on the importance of deep BREATHING when giving birth!!!

It took me to give birth three times and a heart condition for me to experience the power of breathing (and a great midwife) when birthing your baby! When I was in labour for the first time I thought I was going to pass out from the pain and breathe – how could I think of anything other than the pain I was in! You’ll never know what to expect the first time nor can anyone really explain it, it’s one of those you have to experience it to believe it moments…..in my opinion – keep an open mind! The clearest memory of giving birth to my first born was pushing, pushing and more pushing!!!!! This left me with the sorest bottom and my pelvic floor muscles were ruined….didn’t help that he was 9 pound 5 at 38 weeks!

I couldn’t sit down properly for days and felt like I had very little control over my bladder. I worked with a physio on building my pelvic floor muscles again but they took months and months to strengthen. I remember doing a body combat class with my sister feeling like I was going to wet myself every time I jumped in the air….not my finest hour lol! Then when I was pregnant with my second baby I thought about labour a lot! You have a better understanding the second time round and my plan was to not push so much but to breathe more! It took me one hour and 15 mins to push my first baby out, so when my second baby came out in 20 mins, I thought for sure that my downstairs would be better off….I was wrong! Again I was left with a terribly sore bottom and the usual poor bladder control and once again I remember doing a lot of pushing to get that baby out!!!! Again giving birth to a 10 pound 2 baby was never going to help the situation:/

When I fell pregnant for the third time, my second child was 2 so a couple of years of healing and my body was back to normal, only for me to go and destroy it again lol! Once again I thought a lot about the labour and had a plan to let my breathing do the work, but it sounds good in theory, putting it into practice is a whole different story! I just kept thinking my second labour was so much quicker than my first this has to be quicker again! It would have been if things went to plan….but they didn’t:( At 37 weeks pregnant I was diagnosed with a heart condition. Because of this, I had to be induced and have my labour monitored carefully! The conditions of me having a natural birth and not a c-section, was that I have an epidural and an assisted delivery! I was determined not to have either!

I know most of you would be thinking what a silly choice when my life was potentially at risk! I had faith in my body, who had already birthed two babies, that it wasn’t going to let me down and thank goodness it didn’t! Being induced ruined any plans for the quick labour I envisioned, but once I finally hit established labour things progressed pretty quickly! I was under strict instructions NOT TO PUSH, so of course when I was completely dilated and had the feeling of pressure, what’s the bodies natural reaction….to push! Thankfully I had the most beautiful midwife who took charge of the situation and was very firm with her instructions….”Natalie you are going to have your baby and you are not going to push her out, your breathing is going to do all the work!” It took so much of my energy not to push and so much of my concentration to listen to the breathing cues from my midwife, but I did it! After half an hour of wanting to push until my little poppet was born, I did NOT push her out like I did her brother and sister, I listened to my midwife and used the technique of deep breathing!

I was amazed at how it all panned out and was so grateful that my pelvic floor muscles and bladder control were pretty close to normal. For the first time ever after having a baby, I didn’t even feel like I’d given birth…I was also grateful she was my smallest at 8 pound 13! I knew my body wouldn’t let me down and thankfully neither did my heart! I still remember my midwife and what she said to get me through it…she even had my support people breathing too which encouraged me not to give up! God love them, if only we all knew how silly we looked and sounded lol!

When I started my plan to get fit 8 months after my daughter was born, I was worried how my pelvic floor muscles would go when I ran, but all is great! I’m living proof that a baby can be born through the power of breathing and that we can walk away from giving birth, without having to experience too much difficulty with one of the most delicate parts of a female’s body!

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