Dear Carla & Moran
My husband and I wanted to thank you both so much for the Birth Boot Camp. Our daughter arrived a month early at the end of December last year and the skills and knowledge gained from the workshop were invaluable, not only for the labour and birth, but also during pregnancy and the fourth trimester.
The workshop content is the perfect balance of general birth and physiology information combined with the latest science research, which gave both of us confidence in the knowledge. My husband described it as feeling "empowered", and promotes the class and information to anyone who will listen.
We didn't end up using many of the skills at the time of labour (does it ever go to plan?!) I ended up labouring on my own on the RBWH maternity ward, as they wouldn't believe I was in labour (turns out my contractions aren't felt at the top of the womb). I was told they were Braxton Hicks, to stop monitoring them and rest. I was declined my request for a vaginal exam and wasn't allowed to call my husband in for support (when they did finally do the exam after I began to involuntarily push, I was 8cm. I've since submitted a complaint to the hospital about the experience). Nevertheless, I continued my own practice of relaxation, building oxytocin and meditation with the tapes you provided us during the process. I was able to use the BRAINS approach to make informed decisions about pain relief and antibiotics.
In the end, they estimated I was in active labour for four hours. I had codeine for back pain a few hours before birth and nothing else - I felt comfortable using the skills from the tapes! My husband and mum arrived half an hour before our daughter was born, and he was able to put in to action some of our support techniques. It was a vaginal birth with one graze and no complications (I was initially expecting a C-section based on preexisting fears).
I wholeheartedly attribute the positive process and outcome, despite the challenges with staff, to the skills and knowledge I gained from the workshop. I had more confidence to advocate for myself and trust my body. While it was frustrating with staff, I walked away with the gift of knowing I did it myself - there was more strength there than I realised!
Thank you so much for your knowledge and support through the workshop. I'm so incredibly glad we signed up. My fear of birth turned into excitement, and it was wonderful. I'm so adamant to add to the growing collective of positive discussions about birth rather than the usual negative, especially with my daughter in the future.
You're both doing such wonderful things for the expansive tribe of women. Your work is creating such a wonderful ripple effect, you should both feel so proud - and you're each so wonderful in your different personalities and approaches.
It feels sad to say goodbye, so if you know of any good post-natal groups on the North Side I'd love to know.
Thanks again for everything.