CONNECT: Learning to bond with your partner and baby as you grow your family
Module 1 – CONNECT
To help our clients CONNECT we teach them The B.E.S.T. Start Solution™. Would you agree that along with happiness and excitement pregnancy can bring with it some fears too?
Unfortunately, though many mums-to-be don’t always share their concerns because they are afraid that they are going to sound silly for worrying too much.
Their partners often don’t share their deepest concerns either, as they don’t want to cause worry.
Some also feel that it is not their place to have fears – after all, they are not the ones having to carry and give birth to the baby.
A lot of mums-to-be are also worried, about whether any ‘upsets’ that they might encounter during pregnancy could impact on their baby, and it doesn’t help that there is a lot of conflicting information out there about whether that is true.
And here’s the thing…
This means that at a time when a woman and her partner want to feel the most connected to each other and their baby, that, unfortunately, there may be some things inadvertently causing a disconnect emotionally instead.
Which is why The Wise Hippo Bump, Birth and Baby Blueprint programme starts much earlier than traditional antenatal education.
And the focus of module one is how pregnant parents-to-be CONNECT with their own feelings, and each other, about their bump, birth and baby journey.
Wise Hippo clients who have already experienced this session, are sharing that what they learnt has helped them to CONNECT much more closely with each other, about what they want for their pregnancy, birth and early parenting journey.
Mum’s have shared that they feel connected to their baby at a deeper level, and their partners have shared that they feel much more a part of the pregnancy having attended this session.
This is a four-step solution that I have created for our clients, to help them understand the bonding process, and how their emotional well-being can support their baby’s long-term emotional growth.
This session provides the space for couples to think about their individual feelings about their pregnancy, the birth, and becoming parents whether that is for the first time or of a growing family.
They are then able to share those feelings openly with each other. Something that some couples have shared that they are not always able to do, for fear of worrying their partner or looking silly.
Women and their partners learn about emotions in a way that for most they have not come across before, and they find it both interesting in relation to their pregnancy and incredibly useful for their everyday lives.
During this session, they also learn some great tools for ensuring that they consistently replenish their cup in order to be the best for their family, and some lovely ways to connect with their unborn baby.
The B.E.S.T. Start Solution™ is a wonderful foundation, for ensuring that our Wise Hippo clients feel confident and empowered to make decisions that are right for them, through their connection with themselves, each other and their baby.
New Year New Life Part 2
So after the great feedback from part 1 and reflection I am going to continue to write as Me (Bex) rather than in the third person.
So our first meeting with our Supervisor of Midwives (SoM) was highly productive. Home birth has not been ruled out as an option and other options were discussed. Since I laboured my first and second stages with ease, there is no reason for me not to aim for a natural labor for this birth.
Birth Choices open to us for my Wise Hippo Baby Number 2;
- Home water birth in my bath the same way I had my first. (This is what I am visualising daily)
- Water birth on the Midwife Led Unit
- Water birth on the Labour Suite which is Obstetric Consultant led
- Natural Caesarean Section
- Caesarean Section\Hysterectomy – this could be the case if my condition is at its most severe.
As you can see there are so many options open to me to make my birth choices. At present I am remaining positive and focusing on this amazing gift of the chance to have another birth that is right for me and my baby on the day.
I have fully accepted that if history has repeated itself then option 4 would truly be the safest option for me. But until later in this pregnancy that cannot be confirmed or ruled out, so why stress about it! Option 5 will be the safest for me and my baby’s health if the most severe case is confirmed. I am at peace with Option 5 as sometimes you have to go with the medical expertise and be able to get into the correct emotional place to still have an amazing birth experience.
My 16 week appointment (November) was in the hospital where I was lucky enough to be seen by both an Obstetric doctor who was excited to read my notes and talk to me about my postpartum condition. My trusted Consultant, who supported and trusted my body to correct my condition without needing irreversible surgery, was also there.
My Consultant booked me in for an MRI Scan at 32 weeks. She would then see me back in clinic at 33 weeks to discuss the results. I am otherwise very fit and healthy, with no other reason to see her before then such that the remainder of my appointments would be back with my Community Midwife. She asked me if I had any questions, I didn’t as I had done extensive research and knew I could contact her through her secretary if I needed to see her before 33 weeks.
Both Lee and myself were very happy with the outcome of this meeting. We had both gone into this meeting wearing our ‘Cloak of Protection’ a tool that we had learned in our first pregnancy journey. It is true the more you use your cloak the stronger it becomes. I also listened to my ‘Cove of Confidence’ Mp3 the night before this appointment to help me prepare emotionally for such an important first meeting with our consultant since finding out I was with child again.
It’s at this point it dawned on me that we have had a positive experience or confirmation that this pregnancy is heading on its own path. What this path will be, who knows, but what I do know is that I will have the birth that is right for me and my baby on the day. There is no such thing as the perfect birth, it is all about the mother’s perception of what happens on the day. So with this in mind, I will go with the safest option with all the information that is available to me as life does throw us curve balls and sometimes we need to accept these and take them as the gift they are.
My Anomaly Scan at 21 weeks (December) could not have gone any better. Lee and I dropped our son off at Nan and Grandad’s, had lunch and prepared ourselves for the scan. Every parent goes into this scan with some nerves as every parents wishes for a healthy baby. For me there was the added worry of was my placenta going to look healthy and in a position which would be favorable to avoid my medical condition.
The Sonographer was amazing. So thorough and talked us through every single part of the anatomy that she was checking. We were both amazed by how clear the scan was and the report summary of ultrasound findings was what we had hoped for “No obvious signs of fetal anomaly were observed”. Even more importantly another tick in the ‘home birth can happen’ box as it was also reported that the Placenta is “posterior high, structure normal”. So this gives us hope but as the placenta reported normal last pregnancy and the condition was undiagnosed we are not going to put our eggs all in one basket and will make our final decision when we have all the facts.
In the mean time we are interviewing Doulas to be able to give us extra emotional support and also be there with us on our journey and attend the next meeting at the hospital with the Consultant.
Part 3 to continue the story will be available soon. Thank you for sharing our journey with us.
New Year New Life Mama’s Instinct
Mama’s Instinct has some amazing news for the New Year
Bex Hough is Expecting Wise Hippo Baby Number 2. Due Spring April 2015 and maybe around the same time as the Duchess of Cambridge.
Bex Medical conditions and using The Wise Hippo Birthing Programme
Bex successfully used The Wise Hippo Birthing Programme for the birth of her first born in October 2013. Although she had an amazing home water birth in her own bath with her two chosen birth partners and amazing NHS midwives. There were some unplanned complications when an undetected rare medical condition presented itself with her 3rd stage.
With the use of the tools and techniques Bex happily with baby in arms transferred to Darent Valley Hospital where the ‘Cove of Confidence’ and ‘Relax with Nature’ Mp3 became her lifeline to be able to get any form of rest and sleep. After three days and some medical interventions that did not work Bex was discharged home. Bex’s complications led to her medical condition correcting itself in January 2014 where she finally completed her home birth in her bathroom with the placenta finally spontaneously releasing. Bex had 100% trust in her body and knew it would be able to naturally resolve the condition itself with time and patience without further medical intervention.
April 2014 Bex had her final scan and her Uterus had totally healed itself with no evidence of the medical condition ever having taken place. Bex had seen her consultant who had agreed to the conservative treatment of her condition in March 2014 and had been given the all-clear to start her next journey into Motherhood.
16th August 2014 Bex and Lee were delighted to find out this journey had began and that Bex was indeed expecting her second baby.
How is Bex preparing for the birth?
As soon as Bex found out she was pregnant she started listening to her ‘Relax with nature’ Mp3 when going to bed. Using the ‘Affirmations’ to help her think the most positive about her journey into motherhood for the second time.
Due to the previous medical condition this pregnancy is Consultant Lead. Knowing this would be the case Bex made contact with the Supervisor of Midwives (SoM) who helped empower her and facilitate her last birth using her own bath.
13th October 2014 was such and amazing and special day in the family. Not only was this her first born’s 1st Birthday but was also the first scan for baby hippo number 2.
After the scan Bex and Lee both met up with her SoM to discuss the scans findings and to start discussing the options open to them this pregnancy. Using what they had remembered from their classes they decided before the meeting they would use the tool Lee had learned as the Advocate and Protector of the birth experience. This tool is the Acyrnim BRAINS as it an be daunting when talking to medical professionals about your options and this helps keep you focused.
- B – Benefits
- R – Risks
- A – Alternatives
- I – Instincts
- N – Nothing
- S – Smile
Later that evening Bex decided to have some bonding time with both her birthday boy and bump. Where better to do that than in the bath in which he was born! Part 2 will follow soon.