Luke’s Two Cents
Because the birth of our first child was, in hindsight (perhaps) a preventable emergency caesarean section, my wife and I were taking every stance and precaution to prevent a repeat scenario with our second child’s birth. I was determined to staunchly oppose any unnecessary medical intervention and to vigilantly question every procedure offered by hospital staff when it came time to birth. Our preparation also included planning for a doula’s presence during the active labour and birth, and to attend Hypnobirthing training (with Carrie from Joymamma). Throughout the classes and meetings with the doula, I became increasingly confident about remaining in control of the impending birth. Part of my struggle – particularly considering my experience with our first child – was the fact that I simply did not know, and as the quote goes, ‘knowledge is power’. Previously, I was unsure and unaware of my rights as a father, and what I/we could and could not request or reject in the birthing suite. Spending time with our doula gave me the knowledge I needed to soften toward hospitals and their procedures. I dropped my intense opposition toward medical institutions and my fear of once again being out of control of our birth was quenched. I felt prepared and excited to experience the surprises awaiting us in the birth of our second child.
My experience with our second birth with Bronwyn as our doula was an empowering one; I was given enough information and felt prepared and assisted enough to know how to effectively assert my wife and my wishes for the birth of our daughter. During the labouring process, I did felt a little uncertain at times, however I was able to take the lead of Bronwyn. I observed and added to the support she demonstrated. Although Bronwyn never got in the way, she was active in the birthing process, moving around me respectfully and helping when needed. When I was engaged with my wife, Bronwyn offered assistance to the midwife, which eased her workload and potential stress level. In all, the presence of a doula at our birth, namely Bronwyn, enabled us to have as peaceful and uninterrupted birth as possible. I was given support to support and care for my wife and also forged a positive relationship with the midwife at the same time. My wife birthed a successful VBAC, as uninterrupted as possible.
On January 27th, 2016 our precious baby girl, Suki Fyrin, was born smoothly and easily. We had the privilege of undertaking a 5-week Hypnobirthing workshop ( Carrie from Joymamma) and having Bronwyn attend our birth as our Doula. Bron played an invaluable role in the success of our VBAC- Vaginal Birth After Caesarean, offering tremendous support to both Luke and me. Bron worked seamlessly with Luke to support me throughout my active labour and the actual birth.
They were my strength when I felt weak and tired, the reassuring voice when I started to doubt, and the comfort I needed when things were intense. Bron was calm, confident and advocated our preferences while building rapport with hospital staff. Together, Bron and Luke created an environment where I felt safe and could focus on my breathing so I could give myself over completely to the birth journey; allowing my body and baby to do what they were designed. 6 hours after arriving at the birth suite Suki was born; no drugs, no vaginal exams and no constant monitoring. Suki’s entrance into the world was marked with peace, strength, synergy and loads of love. Thank you, Bron. We will always remember you and the important role you have played in our family.
Ps. The hospital staff discussed sending us to the maternity ward – or even home – as they thought I didn’t look in enough ‘pain’ and therefore not as far along as hoped. Bron explained to the midwife that Hypnobirthing mothers often are further along than they appear. She was right.
Bron is also a birth photographer and surprised us with amazing, beautiful and touching images of our daughter’s birth.