Chloe & the Colour Green


At 5:31pm on the 29th April 2020 our darling daughter Chloe was born into the world via induction amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
When I think about my pregnancy, I am filled with amazement about how well we as a family coped with the challenges we faced along the way. I know that without the help and support of so many it would have been such a difficult journey.
It took 2 years to conceive our baby girl. I had a very healthy early pregnancy, everything was progressing well and we were just so excited.
We had family and friends recommend looking into engaging a Doula to assist us in the pregnancy and birth. Karen came with high praise so we arranged to see her and discuss what she would be able to help us with. When we met, she instantly made us feel comfortable and implored us to ask her any little question we had about pregnancy and birth. We were comforted to have her by our side on our pregnancy journey.
The first change in circumstance arrived at 28 weeks. I was told that I had Gestational Diabetes and would need to start injecting insulin 3 times a day. We were also informed that we would likely have to birth via induction. We were shocked and felt lost at receiving the news as our choice of a birth with little intervention was taken away.
Luckily for us we found out in the same week that we were doing our Hypnobirthing Course where we would see Karen again, and I am so thankful that it was. The course focused on birthing with as little assistance as possible, and while my husband Lee and I knew I would need to be induced, Karen allowed me to open up, cry, and gave me great advice and information. Both Lee and I came away with tools to help us deal with change and prepare my mind and body for what was to come.
I practiced breathing techniques every day to begin training my body to calm and surrender to birth. We listened to Rainbow Mist and Surge of the Sea each night a bedtime and Lee would read me the Lotus Flower Script and practice the light touch and massage regularly.
I chose the colour green from the Rainbow Mist track as it focused on being healthy for my baby. When I think about my pregnancy now I feel a soft, shimmering, mint green wash over me and it calms my mind and body. The colour green was key in keeping me relaxed during my pregnancy and Chloe’s birth despite the challenges and changes of circumstance I encountered along the way. When I relaxed I surrounded myself with dim green lights and a soft green blanket (thank you Aldi!) and I used these every day for 10 weeks while watching TV, reading and sleeping. I also created affirmation cards and Lee placed them in various positions around the house so I was always surrounded by positivity as we headed towards Chloe’s induction date.
Then COVID-19 arrived.
As the virus progressed and lockdown was initiated, Karen always kept in touch. She would no longer be able to be our Doula as only one support person would be allowed in the birthing suite but she still went above and beyond to adapt her serviced and make sure we felt prepared. We had multiple zoom sessions and endless text messages as changes came and went – lack of information on the effect of the virus on pregnant women and babies, no visitors allowed in the hospital, temperature checks at entry and exit, increases in insulin and no support people allowed in antenatal appointments. Karen’s contact and care teamed with Hypnobirthing tools got us through.
When we arrived at the hospital to have Chloe we were relieved to find that Lee was able to participate fully in the birth and stay in the hospital with me afterwards.
At 4pm on the 28th April I had Cervidil tape inserted, we moved to a hospital room to go to bed and waited. At 7:30am the next day we were in the birthing suite where the tape was removed. We dimmed the lights, put on quiet music on our Bluetooth speaker and I hugged my green blanket, bathed in green light.
At 8:30am my waters were manually broken and in a flood we were away. The Oxytocin drip was put up and the surges started. My body began to do what it was born to do and I automatically started to breathe through the surges.
Through each surge I pictured either a cresting wave or the idea of riding a bicycle uphill and coasting down the other side. These techniques allowed me to focus on the birthing and time just slipped by until 4PM. My lack of complaint and overall calm demeanour had the midwives convinced that my full contractions had not yet begun. Up until this point I had been breathing analgesic gas to sooth the peaks of pain and I had attempted to have a warm shower. Now the surges became so intense that I enquired about stronger pain relief and an epidural was agreed upon.
The anaesthetist was called out and the obstetrician informed of the changes. Before the anaesthetist came to the ward the midwives checked my progression and dilation had been achieved, and they were surprised that our baby was already on her way and that it was time to push.
We had been warned by Karen that Hypno mums are often too quiet for the midwives to guess how far along they actually are, we just never imagined that it would happen to us.
The anaesthetist and the obstetrician arrived in quick succession, but it was too late for pain relief now as it was too close to the birth to take effect.
After 45 minutes and four or five big pushes Chloe had arrived, and Lee being so calm and informed about his role allowed him the confidence to hold onto Chloe as she was delivered. It was a proud moment for him to bring her up onto my chest for my first glimpse of our baby girl. Lee also cut the cord once it was time.
The placenta was delivered easily, which was an amazing relief and a few stitches were placed on my perineum to assist healing.
The birth was over and we basked in the joy of hugging our baby girl and smiling to each other as a new family.
The next few days in hospital were spent learning how to look after our baby Chloe and informing our family of the joyous news via numerous Facetime sessions and phone calls. We also spoke with Karen about our birthing journey and marvelled at how much the Hypnobirthing techniques had helped.
I still keep in touch with the mothers and beautiful girls birthed from our Hypnobirthing class and it has been amazing to see them all grow and change together.