I had done yoga for years prior to my first child, but never took it back up properly afterwards. So I was thrilled to see Tessa had set up her own yoga business, especially pregnancy yoga! I went to my first class at 13 weeks pregnant and felt like I couldn’t wait to have some time to myself, given I spend most of my time running after a wild three year old. The classes were so gentle and calming, but more so a great way to converse with other pregnant women and hear most of them were going through the same things as you! My last birth was pretty good, and I already knew the power of breathing and the power of focusing the mind. And Tessa’s class really helped me build on both of these things which without doubt gave me the most wonderful labour.
I started with contractions on Friday morning 8th May. Straight away, from the very first one, I began my breathing - building the breathing up with each contraction. This was about 8am. I had a bath, got ready and felt like I just needed to be on my own to get in the zone. By lunchtime they were much stronger and I dropped my little girl at her grandparents and went home for another bath.
By 2pm I knew I needed to go to hospital, and after practicing the breathing and remembering the focus of all those yoga classes, plus recalling the story of Tessa’s own birth, I felt really strong and prepared.
I was almost 4cm dilated and was allowed to stay. My midwife pretty much said to me when she saw me squatting and breathing through the contraction when I got there that I had control of my breath. We practiced breathing at yoga, breathing right into our tummies and breathing out all the negativity, imagining a thread of breath leaving through our mouths. I focused on that and breathed the pain out.
I spent most of my time either squatting into each contraction or in the pool. In the pool I was on all fours and definitely used cat position as my position of choice! And moving my hips from side to side like in class. It seemed to ease the pain!
I didn’t plan to give birth in the pool but I just went with what happened! By 5ish I had my first bit of gas and air and knew he was coming. I remembered how strong yoga made me feel about my body and it’s ability, so when time came, I was able to stay calm and tell myself just let my body do what it’s telling me. Henry was born at 5:51pm....in his sac in the pool! My midwife, Michelle was also amazing and seemed to get me from the start. I didn’t know I wanted to be in the pool but it was like she did! And just from watching me and how I was breathing and acting, she just understood. I tell every pregnant person I meet to try Tessa’s yoga! Even if it’s just for the breathing and the confidence it puts in your body.
I can’t wait to get back to yoga and can’t thank Tessa enough for being a wonderful teacher and allowing us all to experience what yoga can do for us.