At Bump Birth and Beyond we have a family centred approach to all our work. We offer a range of classes targeted both mum and dad’s learning needs, and we promote continuity of care, running classes antenatally and postnatally.
About a year ago, we first met a couple called Carla and Brian at a Baby Show in Corby. We have asked them if we could share their story, as a) it is SO inspirational, b) its tells it from both mum and dads point of view, and c) it really shows what we believe makes us different from any other antenatal provider.
Carla and Brian’s Birth Story
Couples antenatal class
I felt nervous on the way to the class, I remember saying to Brian I hope we weren’t going to be panting and practising breathing in a circle (I hadn’t quite understood at that point the way in which Steph and Dean worked) It soon became clear that the class was going to offer us clarity, information and impartial advice. We both got so much from the class and everything made sense. There was no embarrassing breathing circles, just a chilled out informative group that when I left I felt 10 stone lighter. (The anxiety of my birth had been playing on my mind and watching ‘One Born Every Minute’ hadn’t helped me!) However we both left understanding so much more about the process of labour and felt empowered that we would have the labour that we wanted.
Daisy Birthing by Carla
After the couples class, I also started attending Steph’s weekly Daisy Birthing classes. My Friday evening Daisy Birthing was a time I looked forward to all week. I loved Daisy Birthing so much and I still miss it now. Having that time to focus on me and our baby, learning different techniques and positioning that supported me in my pregnancy and my labour, whilst having some time to chill out was so precious. I use to leave feeling really relaxed and another step closer to having a confident birth. I didn’t realise how much I learnt in the class, I would use in my labour and what a huge impact it had on having a positive birthing experience.
DaddyNatal by Brian
From the moment we meet Dean at the baby fair I felt comfortable talking to him and I knew that the classes with him were right for me. I feel extremely fortunate to have attended the DaddyNatal classes. The information given within the classes and the new skills that I learnt not only helped Carla and I through the birth, but also with caring for Alfie in those first few weeks. I remember learning how the swaddle using the doll in the class and then spending time practicing this at home and showing Carla how it was done. This proved invaluable as we found this was a good way to settle Alfie (I think it gave him the comfort he needed). Through the birth I was able the challenge the midwives (when necessary) this was down to the knowledge gained from both the couples class and DaddyNatal. I truly believe if it wasn’t for these classes that we would have had the induction on that first night as the midwife advised. It was only after challenging her that we were informed of all the options and how long we could safely wait before the risks increased.
Our birthing story
Friday- We went into hospital the day before my due date after my waters breaking (not at all as I expected or what you see on the tv. I was expecting a big gush but wasn’t like that at all) I was monitored, sent home and asked to come back the following day for further monitoring.
Saturday- On my due date we went back for monitoring. As my contractions hadn’t started, the midwife told us we would be booked in to be induced that night. Brian asked what our options were as it felt we were being told what was going to happen to us rather than asked. The midwife went onto tell us in more detail what they could do. I could just hear Steph saying ‘trust your baby’. The midwife gave us some time to think about it and we decided we would leave the induction as long as we safely could. She booked us in for further monitoring the next morning followed by an induction the following night.
That night I laid in the bath willing baby to come on his own, induction hadn’t been in my thought process. I went to bed and my contractions started at midnight. I felt really calm, in control and relieved. They weren’t painful just like what Steph had said just dull tightenings.
Sunday- We were monitored in the morning as planned and sent home again. At home I kept mobile, did my rotations and kept my thoughts positive. I said my affirmations over and over to myself – I can do this, I will be in control and stay in control, it’s our baby coming. My contractions became a lot stronger and were regular for an hour so I called the hospital. The midwife asked me if I was having a contraction whilst I was on the phone, I told her I was and she said for me not to come in until they were taking my breath away. I had a bath and I could feel my contractions become a lot stronger. I had a contraction that seemed to knock me, Brian just said to me ‘what would Steph say to you about doing? How about your slowing down position?’ I needed a minute to regain my focus so went in to the resting position. It had been about an hour since ringing the hospital and we both felt it was time to go in.
Maternity ward seemed busy, I lent against Brian as I rotated as we waited to be seen. When she examined me she surprisingly said ‘we need to get you into a delivery room your 7cm, you’ve done so well’
The midwife settled me into a delivery room, I lent against the side of the bed and I had the urge to bear down, I was checked again and now 9cm dilated. She offered me gas and air. My escalator breathing had starting now. The midwife asked if I would like anymore pain relief, I can honestly say I didn’t need any. Nor did I feel throughout my whole labour I needed anything else. I used my breathing techniques, gas and air, my affirmations and the support of Brian to get me through my labour.
3 hours after arriving at hospital baby Alfie was born weighing 8lb.
I felt my labour was very calm and controlled. The breathing techniques learnt in class was my saviour and helped me so much. It’s amazing how I could hear Steph the whole time and felt reassured by the belief she had in me. My labour wasn’t painful but hard work.
Meeting Dean at that baby show was a blessing to us. We have learnt so much through all we have done through Bump, Birth and Beyond and it prepared us for the most important thing we would ever do – bringing our little Alfie into the world. Why wouldn’t you prepare yourself for such a huge life event? Dean and Steph are kind, passionate and inspiring people with their main want is for you both to have an amazing, empowered birth.
Now we join Steph every week with Alfie who is now 8 months for her wrigglers group. Whilst Brian and Alfie do Dad’s developmental baby massage with Dean on a regular basis.
Thank you to Carla and Brian for sharing their story with us, and you all. It has been an absolute pleasure to work with them and get to know their lovely little boy (who looks just like his Daddy!)