Steph's incredibly therapeutic second time birth story. Baby Oscar was born in the water on his due date! I love how Steph demonstrates just how useful the Hypnobirthing techniques were and how she really took back complete control of this birth following her tricky first birth. After I fell pregnant with my second baby I noticed birth anxiety creeping in after a tricky birth with my first. It had been very long with a lot of medical intervention resulting in a forceps delivery and both me and baby being quite heavily medicated. I had heard really positive things about hypnobirthing and thought I would give it a go to change my mind set and take back control. I saw Wild Embers on Facebook and I took Elle's online sessions which really helped me carve out some time to work on my feelings towards birth and challenge the negative ideas I had after my first. I found breathing techniques and visualisations really helpful to get into the relaxed mindset, practising these gave me my confidence back that I could go into this second birth with calm control and not feel overwhelmed with the idea of my first birth repeating itself. When I went into labour I really believed my body knew what it needed to do and felt able to trust it which was exactly what I needed after feeling like it had somehow failed the first time around. I started having contractions around 8pm on 26th October and used the birthing ball and breathing throughout the night. Contractions were about 15 minutes apart, dropping and rising here and there. The morning was calm, I was using my birthing ball and organising childcare and food for my little boy. I kept my success images in my mind of giving birth in the water with my husband by my side and coming home to cuddle on the sofa with my little boy and our new baby. When my sister arrived to look after my little boy my contractions got closer together - using the hypnobirthing techniques and trusting my body made me feel like my body knew to do everything at just the right time. We arrived at the hospital 3cm dilated with contractions 3 minutes apart. Stayed active and went for an hour walk around the hospital with my husband then when I arrived back to DAU I was 6cm. I was examined only to see if I could be admitted to labour ward - as requested in my birth plan I was not examined again past this point. After all of the information I received in my ZenMuma classes I had the confidence to ask for no more examinations, gas and air (with a mask to keep relaxed) and to follow my body. I asked for the pool to be filled so it was ready for when I needed it and I was given a birthing ball to work through my contractions. The midwife was so respectful of all of this and took the time to read my birth plan (I had used the guide from ZenMuma and highlighted the advice that I would like to take on). The midwife was totally respectful of my birth plan and allowed me to follow my body through the entire labour. I wasn't asked to push at any point and was encouraged to use my breathing techniques through the whole labour. I was able to birth my baby boy in the pool and fulfil my success image that I had practised prior to birth using hypnobirthing. After a very long and difficult labour with my eldest that involved a lot of medical intervention from the beginning I was very anxious about going through birth again. As much as I knew that these things can happen and it can be out of our control sometimes - I was able to go into labour with the confidence in my body that this labour could be different.