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Sonia's Story

It all started at around midnight on Thursday morning (9th July) when I had my show followed by contractions 2-3 minutes apart. We rang the hospital and they told us to come in. By the time we arrived at the hospital I was already 4cm dilated and well into labour. They were very busy and I was unable to have a water birth - this did not phase me and I went to have a warm bath instead. The midwife said that it was not their policy to offer pain relief and they usually wait until patients ask for it. After being in the bath about an hour I felt the need to push and they wanted me to come out to the delivery room.

I remembered my yoga and kept upright on the birthing ball and then rocking by the bed. Eventually I went to kneel on the bed and when the contractions became too intense I succumbed to gas and air. I was a bit wary of using this as I was feeling incredibly nauseous and had heard that gas and air can exacerbate this feeling. I used the gas and air at the peak of my contractions and then removed the mouthpiece to try my yoga breathing. I kept hearing your voice in my mind telling me to stay in control and that each contraction would end and bring me closer to my baby. I also tried to keep myself calm to allow my natural endorphins to kick in and ease the pain but I'm not sure if they did! Each time the pain returned I kept thinking - stay in control of it.

Just after 8am my waters broke and I knew that my baby was definitely on his / her way. I was moved to a birthing stool and then they put another monitor on me as the baby's heart rate had dropped. They brought in extra machines and a doctor. This obviously worried us both and I knew that I had to do whatever to give birth to my baby before anything happened. The Dr said that I had to have a cut to allow the baby's head to pass through easier and I was told to keep pushing. I was so tired and had tried pushing as hard as I could but it didn't seem to be enough so with all the strength I had I kept trying and suddenly I felt my baby slide out. It was over - I had given birth to a beautiful baby boy. From the moment I looked into his little face I fell in love with him and having him lay on top of me changed my whole life as nothing in the world mattered anymore except him.

We did go to St Mary's and tried breastfeeding but it was a bit hit and miss with him. The midwives tried to reassure me that he was probably feeding more than I thought. We went home 4 days later and he was still having problems feeding so we switched him to bottle feeding instead. Unfortunately he had lost so much weight from not being able to feed properly that we had to take him into the hospital. Luckily he was taking bottle feeding really well and we managed to persuade the hospital to let us take him home. He is now so much more settled and feeding well. We are finally enjoying life as a happy family despite the lack of sleep!

I have to say that the yoga was invaluable along with the support of my husband - I couldn't have done it without him standing next to me for 10 hours, and if we ever have another baby I'll be back at your classes.