Podcast Episode #103

Positive Natural Birth Story

On the FitNest Mama Podcast, we have a range of different types of birth stories, including positive natural birth stories. And today I am chatting with a lovely FitNest Mama Member, Kiara about discussing her positive natural birth story and has an 8-week-old daughter Ruby.

Kiara shares her beautiful birth story in this episode. Kiara discusses the positive natural birth story she had in the hospital, the way her partner helped assist her, water injections for pain relief, her fast labor, and strategies to help her stay in control, focussed, and calm.

Every few weeks on the FitNest Mama Podcast we have a birth story from one of the FitNest Mama members. We hear from a range of everyday mamas who have experienced a range of different types of births, and I trust you will enjoy this episode today, in which Kiara wanted to discuss how she found it possible to experience pain at the same time as having an amazing birth experience, and how they can both exist side by side together.

Sit back, relax and enjoy this positive natural birth story podcast episode with Kiara.

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Transcription

DISCLAIMER:

Please note that this transcription was completed with computer voice recognition software. Quite often unanticipated grammatical, syntax, homophones, and other interpretive errors are inadvertently transcribed by the computer software. Please disregard these errors. Please excuse any errors that have escaped final proofreading.

INTRODUCTION

If you are pregnant or you’ve recently had a baby, this podcast is for you. I am your host, Kath Baquie. A physiotherapist working in women’s health and a mum of three. Join me each week as we dive into all things pregnancy care, childbirth and postnatal recovery. Helping you have a wonderful pregnancy and after birth experience. And don’t forget to hit subscribe so you don’t miss any episodes.

KATH BAQUIE

Well, hello there. It’s great to have you here for another episode of the FitNest Mama Podcast. Today I am chatting with the lovely FitNest Mama member, Kiara, who has an eight-week-old daughter, Ruby. Kiara shares her beautiful birth story. In this episode, Kiara discusses her vaginal birth she had on hospital the way her partner helped to assist her. The water injection she used for pain relief, her fast labour and strategies to help her stay in control focused and calm.

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So, every few weeks on the FitNest Mama Podcast, we have a birth story from one of our lovely FitNest Mama members. And we do hear from a range of everyday mothers who have experienced a range of different types of births. And I trust you will enjoy this episode today in which Kiara wanted to discuss how she found it possible to experience pain at the same time as having an amazing birth experience and how they can both exist side by side together. So, sit back, relax and enjoy this birth story podcast episode with Kiara.

Before we do dive in. I do just want to let you know about a free live pregnancy workshop, which Kiara does actually mention in this episode today. So, this is a free one-hour pregnancy workshop available to everyone to help you prepare for your body to help you prepare your body and pelvic floor for birth and beyond. So, this one-hour workshop is designed to really help you feel more confident and empowered about your upcoming birth experience. In this workshop, you will learn about Pelvic Floor Preparation. So, you’ll learn about the benefits of perineal massage and how it might help to reduce your risk of perineal tears and episiotomy. And you’re also going to learn about after birth Recovery Essentials to help you boost that all important after birth recovery period. So as a women’s health physiotherapist, everything I do share in this free pregnancy workshop. The things that I believe every woman deserves to know when pregnant to really help her childbirth and after birth experience. So, to register for this free workshop, head to fitnestmama.com/free and the link is also in the show notes.

So, Kiara, thank you so much for joining me on the FitNest Mama Podcast. It is so brilliant to chat.

KIARA

Thank you for having me back again, Kath.

KATH BAQUIE

Yes. So, for those who don’t know, I should have looked up this episode, but Kiara did one of our very first episodes and we talked about Mindfulness in Pregnancy. Is that right?

KIARA

And Body Confidence.

KATH BAQUIE

Body confidence. That’s what it was.

KIARA

But also, mindfulness, too. That was a big part of it as well.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, it was a great episode. So do check out Kiara’s episode and Kiara since came and joined us inside FitNest Mama, and you’ve had a baby. I’m really honoured to be able to talk to you today about your birth story and your journey so far. For any listeners of the podcast. If you’ve been listening for a while, you’ll know that I Endeavor to get on a whole range of birth stories, no matter if we’ve had a home birth, we’ve had caesarean sections. We’ve had pain relief, no pain relief, we’ve had everything, and I actually have no idea about your birth story Kiara. And that’s why I like it. Because it’s a bit of a surprise. So, thank you. So, let’s start off. Can you please give a little bit of an introduction for those who might not know who you are?

KIARA

Yeah, no problem. So, my name is Kiara, and I am the founder of Inside Out Health Wellness. So, I’m a mindset coach. I work a lot with women. But I’m also an Academic Coordinator as well. So, I have a part time job too. So that was definitely took up a lot of my time while I was pregnant. So, the business kind of took a little bit of a backburner. And yeah, had a great time when we did our podcast episode. I think that was last year. I’m pretty sure we did that. Yeah. And then I joined FitNest Mama when I was pregnant. And that was it has been amazing.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Well, we’re going to dive into all that later. But I would love to know, let’s start at the start. So how was your journey to becoming pregnant?

KIARA

So, like everyone, my plans got put-on hold quite significantly during COVID, I had to put off my wedding four times. So definitely then getting pregnant then obviously got put on hold as well. So, we got married in April last year. And then in August, I found out I was pregnant.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, right. Amazing. So, it was a pretty quick journey for you?

KIARA

Look, to be honest, I had a really good understanding of my body prior, I had been tracking my cycle for two years, not with an app with actually a written tracker, which I find is much better for connection rather than I think if you just on an app, you just kind of ticking and flicking and then you know, might tell you when it thinks you’re ovulating. But I think it’s so important for you to actually understand your body and know the different science. So, I was really very in tune with my body. And I think that certainly helped out with the with the process.

KATH BAQUIE

For those who don’t know what a written tracker is. Can you just describe that a little bit more?

KIARA

Yeah, certainly. So basically, every day of my cycle, I just tracked how my body was feeling just general science and just understanding like the different seasons of my body as well. So, sort of that in a winter phase is that menstruation, then going through the spring summer, which is ovulation and then not in autumn? So, I used to eat differently based on where I was in my cycle. I used to exercise based on where I was, as well. So yeah, I think just having that understanding of your body is really important. So, I think just like writing that down, just helped me really connect. It was almost like a journaling session.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Right. And how long have you been doing that in the lead up to becoming pregnant?

KIARA

For about 18 months?

KATH BAQUIE

Okay.

KIARA

Yeah, really went off the pill that like 18 months ago, and then I started really getting in tune with what my body was doing.

KATH BAQUIE

And after coming off the pill that it take a while for your body to settle down.

KIARA

I would say a couple of months. Yeah.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. You’re very in tune with your body.

KIARA

Yeah. Even my husband was very in tune. Because I used to have my tracker on the fridge. So, he always knew. And he was the one that picked up. I was pregnant before I did. Because he was like, what day of your cycle are you on? And I’m like, Oh, I’m about day 37. But I don’t think I’m pregnant. I think I’m just late, but I was definitely in denial.

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing. So, he knew that. You hadn’t had your period yet?

KIARA

Yeah, he knew I was quite late. And he’s like, you are pregnant. And he just ran out and got a pregnancy test. And I was like, no, I don’t think so. And he’s like, just do it. And sure enough, yeah, it come up. That rewind was very dominant.

KATH BAQUIE

That’s so lovely that he was so excited by it.

KIARA

And I was again in denial. I was like, I think maybe I did it wrong. I don’t know if I did the test right. I was like, Maybe I should do it again.

KATH BAQUIE

How many tests did you do?

KIARA

I did two and they both came up pregnant.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Amazing. So, when you found that you’re pregnant, what was going through your mind? Like, what were the next steps for you?

KIARA

First of all, denial. I was just I think I was in a bit of shock. Even though we weren’t trying, it was still like, oh, I can’t believe this is actually happening. So, I was like, I won’t believe it until we go to the doctors. So, we went to the doctor’s got the test and everything. And yes, that all confirmed and so and then the morning sickness started. And that came on hard, fast, strong. Every adjective I can think of. So, I was diagnosed. What’s that called? I think it’s hyper…

KATH BAQUIE

Hyperemesis?

KIARA

Yeah, that’s it. I was like, I can’t remember how to say it. Yes. So, I didn’t have the best first trimester. And I remember my husband looking at me like we are one and done. I can’t see you go through this again, like this is just awful. So, it was definitely that time where I didn’t feel grateful every day that I was pregnant. And I know that we actually spoke about that in our previous podcast episode that we did was just talking about how to sometimes it’s okay to be you know, not feeling grateful and it’s okay that if you are really sick or whatever it might be to just feel a bit upset. A bit sad. And but yeah, I got through it. Just took it day by day by just counting down the weeks and by about week 16 I started to feel better.

KATH BAQUIE

It’s a long time. 16 weeks if you’re not feeling well.

KIARA

Yeah, luckily though, it actually coincided with lockdown. So, in Melbourne, we were in that strict lockdown again, a at the sort of random August to October. And then when locked down sort of started to ease that’s when I actually started to feel better. So that worked out really well.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, great. And was there anything that helped you when you were feeling gross? Anything that you ate, or that you did during the day? What was there anything to just help you relieve that feeling of sickness?

KIARA

Hydrolysed bicep pulse. They were absolute key. And Vegemite and avocado toast. For our non-Australian listeners, they’ll probably think about vegemite. That is disgusting. But I think it was the salt in the Vegemite. That really helps. So that was toast was something that sat really well. Everything else just no good. So, I just pretty much survived on toast those first couple of months.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Wow.

KIARA

And hi, July, I suppose. Yup.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay. And then was it literally did you feel it was overnight that you suddenly started feel better?

KIARA

No, it was certainly a gradual approach. I specifically remember the first time we were able to go out to a restaurant again. We went out for lunch. And it was like, oh, I’m so excited because I’m feeling better. And I of course ate a lot. And yeah, it was not very well that night. So, I was like, okay, lesson learned. Just we need to just ease back into this. So, I just slowly started reintroducing things into my diet. I think I just got a bit excited.

KATH BAQUIE

What did you order in your first meal back?

KIARA

We went to a I think it was a Malaysian restaurant. I’m pretty sure. So, we had all different like a curry and rice and yeah, just not good for someone that’s been so sick for months on end.

KATH BAQUIE

Oh dear. Okay, so you started to feel better. You started to eat again, which is amazing. And then I do remember you got COVID, didn’t you?

KIARA

Yes, in January. So, I was about that would have been late 20s I think.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay. And had been pretty smooth running up until that point?

KIARA

Yeah, I actually got to a point where I was really enjoying the pregnancy. And I was moving well, I was coming to the classes. I was walking a lot. Yeah, I was just, I was actually feeling I was like, Oh, this pregnancy thing. This is actually not too bad. And then yeah, January came, I went on holidays for a week. And I got it while I was on holidays on the last day. And yeah, that just absolutely knocked me for six. I was it was a good, I would say 12 days of being bed bound with COVID. Yeah. So that was really, really tough. But the good thing about being a bit later on in my pregnancy is I could feel lots of movement. So that was quite reassuring, as I knew bubs was okay, because she was moving around quite a lot. So, yeah, that was yeah, that felt really good to know that.

KATH BAQUIE

And how were your energy levels after that?

KIARA

I would say probably a good three weeks of just not feeling quite right. And then slowly, like started to get back into it. But then as you know, we had a very hot summer, so the humidity was quite high. So that of course saps your energy as well. So, I think it was that combination of having COVID being pregnant, and the humidity just took maybe a little bit longer to get back into it. But then the last part of the pregnancy was really good.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, that’s good. Finally.

KIARA

Yes. Except for when the stairs sorry, not the stairs, the lifts. I think I don’t know if you remember me telling you but the lift at work broke. So, I had to walk up and down like six flights of stairs, and I’ve got pelvic and quite a lot of pelvic pain as a result of that.

KATH BAQUIE

Yes. I forgot about the pelvic girdle pain.

KIARA

Yeah, that went away with rest. So that was fine. Yeah, that wasn’t something I dealt with. for very long. Okay. Yeah.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, so let’s start to think about birth. How did you like what were your thoughts around preparing for birth?

KIARA

Prior?

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, because I think sometimes before we’re pregnant, when we’re pregnant, we always have these sorts of ideals and what we want to do. Like how, what were they and how did that change and evolve as you are getting closer to your due date?

KIARA

Yeah, my thoughts certainly evolved. I will say a huge 180, I completely switched. Beforehand, all I had heard were these horror stories. So, for me in my head, I just assumed labour was just going to be painful, traumatic, and it’s just something that you just need to quickly get out of the way. And it’s just, you don’t do anything to prepare, you just kind of get in, just get it done. And that’s the end of it. So that’s what I had coming in, because that’s all I had ever heard. And that’s why I really enjoyed listening to these episodes when I when I was pregnant, because it really helped turned my mindset around about okay, it can be, of course, labour is painful, but it can also be a really positive experience.

And when I did the master class, because I did the master class with you back in December, and just helping just that little bit of information to help me understand how my body is actually working during labour, I was like, okay, I think I can do this, you know, and then I did a hypnobirthing course. So that information along with being in FitNest Mama just really coincided. And just, I absolutely loved learning about the labour process, I got so excited. And I suddenly felt really empowered to be I had in my mind like, yes, it can be painful, but it can also be a positive experience. Like those two things can coexist. It doesn’t have to be this. Yeah. Horrible experience.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Isn’t that interesting that that sort of mindset shift that occurred within the space of your pregnancy?

KIARA

Yeah, absolutely. Because I distinctly remember thinking it was almost like I was burying my head in the sand like, oh, no, I don’t want to learn it. What, why would I learn anything about labour, I just go in, the doctors tell me what I need to do, or the midwives told me what I need to do. And that’s just it. Like that that was honestly the mentality that I had. So, I am so grateful that I empowered myself with that knowledge, because as a result, I had a really positive birth experience.

KATH BAQUIE

Oh, that’s great to hear. So, let’s fast forward then. To your birth. I’d love to hear how did you know you’re in? Or did you go into labour naturally?

KIARA

I did. Yes.

KATH BAQUIE

What happened?

KIARA

And I think the word denial was in my head ago. I think that’s a common thread with my journey. But it was Easter Sunday; I woke up and suddenly went into this mad nesting mode. I was like, everything in the house suddenly just needs to be cleaned. I did like three loads of washing. I was I cleaned out the whole kitchen pantry. I was scrubbing. I was inside the bathtub, scrubbing the bath. My husband came upstairs and he’s like, what are you doing? Get out. And he was googling, and he said to me, come over here, come to the computer. And he brought up signs of being in labour, nesting. And I was like, no, no, no, I just want everything to be clean. I’m not in labour. And yeah, so that whole day, I was just clear, just frantically cleaning. And then…

KATH BAQUIE

So, you did have any other signs of labour? In hindsight?

KIARA

Yes, but I was ignoring them. Yeah, I felt I was cramping. I felt pelvic heaviness. I was also spotting quite a lot. But again, I was sort of ignoring that side of it. I was just so focused on my cleaning. And I’ve never been like that. I’ve never cleaned the hours like that before.

KATH BAQUIE

Isn’t that amazing? So, what stage did you have to face your denial?

KIARA

I had a good sleep around three o’clock. I had a nice nap on the couch. We had dinner at about 6:30, feeling good. I was like, oh, I think maybe I’m starting to feel some contractions. And then my husband said, well, look, let’s call your mum to come and pick up because we’ve got a puppy Lucy. So, with Steve, my husband said let’s call your mom just to get her to come and pick up Lucy in case we need to go to the hospital at 4am. You know, we don’t want to leave the puppy. I was like no, no, no, I am definitely not going to have to go to the hospital tonight. I’ll just probably be in mild contractions, is like no, I’d prefer that the dog was taken care of, so we don’t have to be worried. I was like, okay, okay. No worries. So, we call my mum about seven. Her partner came about 45 minutes later and by the time he got there, I could barely speak. So, I had gone from seven o’clock having a chat to my mum just having dinner, thinking oh yeah. Have I’ve maybe got mild contractions and then suddenly, he just looked at me and he’s like, Oh my goodness? Yeah, I could just barely speak by then.

KATH BAQUIE

And why couldn’t, it might sound like a silly question, but why? Why do you think he couldn’t speak? Was it discomfort? Or was that? Like the sensations? What was making the speaking hard?

KIARA

Yeah, good question. I suddenly felt extremely overwhelmed with this sudden rush, because it seemed like it went from zero to 100. All in such a short space of time. Yeah. Yeah. So, we got Lucy got taken away. So that was good. And then Steve said, okay, I’m going to time your contractions. And I think I had about three within the space of 15 minutes, but they felt like really, really sporadic. And he’s like, right, I’m calling the hospital and they said, no, no, no, we don’t need to call the hospital. They it’s way too early. I’ve only just started contractions. Is that right? We’ll get your TENS machine out. I said, No, no, it’s even too early for that.

KATH BAQUIE

Can I just pause for a minute and say how amazing is Steve? He’s things so proactive.

KIARA

He’s amazing. He was so good.

KATH BAQUIE

How, what did he do to prepare?

KIARA

Yeah, we did the course together, which was extremely helpful. Because he knew, yeah, all the signs. And I think he just knew that there was something that wasn’t right. It was like, this isn’t normal that you’ve gone from eating your dinner, happily chatting to suddenly, you can barely speak. So, he’s like, no, no, there’s something not quite right here. We need to get you to the hospital.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, so three contractions in 15 minutes, he suddenly thinks let’s get into the hospital.

KIARA

Yeah. So, he called the Assessment Centre. And they said, I’ll have your waters broke. And I said, ah, well, actually, I didn’t want to say anything. But at 3am, so, obviously, the morning before, I did feel something, but I was again, I think I was just in a bit of denial. I was like, no, I don’t think it was my waters breaking. I thought maybe it was just like the mucus plugs starting to release. But because I was GBS positive, they wanted me to come in to double check that my waters hadn’t broken because I think you have about an 18-hour window of if you’re GBS positive, and waters break, they need to get you on the antibiotics. Okay. So that’s why they said, bring her in, there’s no rush, take your time. And bring her in, we need to check her out. And then we’ll probably send you back home. But we need to know if a water is broken or not. So, is that right? Okay, great. Well, we’ll get in the car now and come. And yeah, so we got in the car that was about nine o’clock. We got to the hospital; they were asking me all these questions. And again, I could, I couldn’t really speak that. Well. So, Steve was answering for me, which was incredible. And yeah, then we got taken up to the assessment centre. And they did an examination. And the midwife said to me, you know, you look like you’re really worried about something like what, tell me what specifically is worrying you. And I said, I’m worried that I’m not coping. Like I can feel myself just not coping well. And I know it’s really early on in the labour. And I know that you’re probably going to send me home. And I’m already not coping well, like there could be another 20 hours of this. And she says, well, I’ve got some news for you. You’re actually five centimetres dilated, and in very active labour, so you’re not going anywhere. And so that was a kind of a relief, because, again, in my head I had, it’s my first pregnancy. So, it’s going to be a long labour. But I think I was probably in mild contractions that whole Sunday, but I was just essentially ignoring them. So, I think really, that labour did start quite early. But so, for me, I thought that the labour had started at sort of eight o’clock. And I was like, it’s only 10 o’clock. I’m only two hours into my labour. And I feel like I’m not coping very well.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. So, you’re five centimetres, you’re well and truly at the hospital, you’re not moving.

KIARA

Yeah. They were like you’re not going anywhere. I said, are you sure you’re not going to send me home?

KATH BAQUIE

That must have been such a relief to know, your five centimetres, you’re an active labour. This is it.

KIARA

So, I was like, Oh, okay. That’s why. And when I say not coping, I sort of say that term very loosely. I just again, I had in my head that it could have been another 10 to 20 hours of this. So, when I say not coping, I didn’t think that I could keep that up for another, you know, however long but it turns out I didn’t need to keep that up because the birth was only a couple of hours away.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, right. So, it’s 10 o’clock at night time.

KIARA

Yeah.

KATH BAQUIE

You make theory and what starts to happen then?

KIARA

I started to have some very intense back pain. So, they weren’t sure if maybe she was posterior. And I ended up getting the water injections, which was the most painful thing that I have ever experienced in my life. But it only lasted for about 30 seconds. And then the back pain was completely gone.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, right. So, you had a good experience from the water injections?

KIARA

Yes, yeah.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Okay.

KIARA

It was a good experience.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, interesting. So, we’ve had a recent, if you’re interested in learning more about water injections, we’ve had a nice little talk about them. So, check out that pain relief episode. And then one of our first birth stories with Pamela early on in a podcast, or she had quite a different experience. So that’s really good to know, to hear about your experience with the water injections.

KIARA

Yeah, the midwives were absolutely fantastic. And it’s they have to do it together. I think they need two people doing it at the same time. So, you really need them to be very well experienced to do them. And as I said, it was horrendous pain, but it was over within about 30 seconds.

KATH BAQUIE

30 seconds can be a long time.

KIARA

It was Yeah, absolutely.

KATH BAQUIE

What did you do during those 30 seconds?

KIARA

I can’t remember. But they said to me, they’re like, wow, you handled that really well. And I thought, are you serious? I didn’t think I did. But okay.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, so the back pain was relieved afterwards, you felt a lot better. Was it a posterior baby?

KIARA

It wasn’t. They don’t know if maybe she turned. So, they weren’t sure why I had the back pain. It could have been because I had that real sudden labour, or that she was posterior and then turned. Yeah, because there were no signs of it afterwards. And they were monitoring me quite heavily. I had the…

KATH BAQUIE

So, you had the belt monitoring?

KIARA

Yeah. And because I had quite a lot of blood loss during the labour. So, they wanted to monitor me quite heavily. So yeah, had the water injections then suddenly felt everything in the abdomen area.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Right.

KIARA

So, whereas I felt like my pain was quite distributed between my back and the front. But yeah, then suddenly, I felt everything.

KATH BAQUIE

And did you were you still using the TENS up until that point?

KIARA

I never actually put the TENS machine on. Because in, I said to Steve, that it was too early to put it on, when really, it would have been a perfect time to put it on when I was at home. But yeah, yeah, again, I thought, we’re just going to be going like this all night at home with me being in and out of contractions. So, I was like, I’ve got plenty of time to put the TENS machine on.

KATH BAQUIE

Too funny. So, ladies, if you are interested in hearing more about tennis machine, I’ve also got a podcast episode on that. And that would be one tip where put it on before you think you do it. Because there’s a lot of people just like Kiara, who think they’ll use it later. And then they never get around to using it.

KIARA

I was really sad that I didn’t use it, because I would have been really interested to see what it would have been like, because I did the master classes with you and learn all about it. And yeah, I was quite excited to actually use it. But it just all happened too quickly. That to happen.

KATH BAQUIE

These things happen.

KIARA

Yeah, definitely.

KATH BAQUIE

Okay, so talk us through when did you start to notice? Like, did you feel sensations changed to? Like, did you get the urge to push?

KIARA

I certainly did. Because I clearly remember saying that to the midwife. I was like, I need to push. I was just all of a sudden, like, I feel so much heaviness in, in my pelvis. And I was like, I think she’s coming. I think she’s coming. So, I said I need to get on the floor. I don’t know what’s telling me that I need to get on the floor. But I just suddenly needed to do that. So, I was on all force. I just put a pillow underneath my knees. And then I had my hands over the bed. And then Steve was on the other side of the bed. So, he was holding my hands from the other side. Which was really helpful. So, yeah, birthed in that sort of upright position, which, of course was very beneficial.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. And so, you only tried that’s really interesting. So, you just got into that position. And that was your position. You just wanted to stay there.

KIARA

Instinctly, yeah, yeah, just instinctively. Yeah. Cause I was on the bed like laying on my side. And then when I suddenly felt the need to push, I just said to the midwife I need to be on the floor.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, right.

KIARA

And I hadn’t planned tom it’s not like I had planned to do that before I knew that I wanted to be. I didn’t want to be laying down for the pushing phase. I knew that much but I thought maybe I might be kneeling on the bed or yeah, something like that. But it was just amazing how your body just tells you what It needs to do.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. So, you got into all fours, you’re on the floor. And talk us through what did the, what happened?

KIARA

30 minutes later she was born.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. Wow.

KIARA

Yeah. So, 30 minutes of pushing. And so yeah, I felt, because I remember, like I had practiced that sort of coffee plunger techniques are really pushing from the diaphragm. So, I was trying to hone that in as much as I could. And then really resting in between. So, it was like, I thought of it, you know, in exercise sessions, where you’re doing interval training. So, I was like, intense, and then I was completely resting. So, I remember being over the bed and just resting like that, and then getting up again to push in and resting.

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing. And what was going through your mind when you’re pushing?

KIARA

This baby is coming. It’s, it was a lot faster than what I thought. It was like, I didn’t have time to kind of catch up with my thought process. But I certainly went into that survival, instinctive mode of I need to get this baby out.

KATH BAQUIE

And what was Steve? How was Steve helping at this stage?

KIARA

Yeah, he was reminding me to relax my shoulders. Because we had spoken about that. I said, look, if I look like I’m tensing up, that means I’m not pushing effectively. So, I said, just remind me to relax, because it’s easy to forget those things when your, your body is just taken over. And I sort of went into that adrenaline rush as well. Because beforehand, my body had gone into a few, almost like convulsions like I was shaking quite a lot. And they said that was really common for such a quick, quick labour and a quick birth. So, I didn’t find myself sort of relaxing into it as much as I thought I would. So yeah, he was just helping me, reminding me about the breath and to use my voice if I needed to use my voice to sort of yell it out, I guess.

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing.

KIARA

But I felt myself going really quiet. I just felt I don’t know, for some reason, I just needed to almost retreat inwards. And that’s how I coped.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, wow. And then little Ruby was born.

KIARA

She was, yeah, I remember just, oh, they asked me if I wanted to see, like, look at the mirror. And I was like, no, I don’t want to see that. And then they asked me if I wanted to touch your head. And I was like, no, like because I was so focused. And I was like, no, no, I feel like it’s going to break my, almost my concentration. So, I said, no, I just need to keep Yeah, keep focus on what I’m doing. So yeah, and then I just remember seeing her down and they sort of helped me get on the bed because I was still attached to obviously because we did the delayed cord clamping, so we tried to leave it on for as long as possible.

KATH BAQUIE

And so, you went to bed they popped through they popped Ruby on your chest?

KIARA

Yes. Yeah. Which was really and it was it’s such a surreal feeling. Because you know that you’ve just had a baby, but it just didn’t feel Yeah, it didn’t feel real. I feel like it all happened so quickly. That yeah, when she was actually on my chest, and they were doing the third stage, which I found more uncomfortable actually than giving birth.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, you found it uncomfortable. Like the painful?

KIARA

Uncomfortable. Yeah, they said I could have the gas. And it was funny, because the whole time. I never actually used the gas. But I was actually holding on to it as if that was almost like my stressful. So, I held it. And I tried to, I remember like almost putting it near my mouth. And I was like, no, it’s just doesn’t Right. Like I actually feel better. Yeah, just holding on to it. So that turned out to be my only pain relief.

KATH BAQUIE

Wow. Okay, so plus end was delivered. Got your beautiful Ruby, you’ve done it. How’s your body feeling at this stage? Did you have any did you need any stitches? Or?

KIARA

I did. Yeah. I had a grade to tear. So, I had a couple of stitches. And yeah, I think that’s because the pushing phase was just very quick. And I don’t like looking back. I don’t know if maybe I could have slowed that down or not. But I just I felt like my buddy. Sorry, my body was just flooded with adrenaline that I was just in this state of. I just need to get her out. So, I don’t know if maybe I could have avoided the terror or not. But yeah, grade 2 tears. Not too bad.

KATH BAQUIE

Yes. And if you’re listening and you’re thinking, oh my gosh, grade one, two tears. They generally heal really well with no long-term effects. So, the majority of tears that happen are the grade one and two tears. So, have you, on that note with the recovery now, is that eight weeks, is Ruby eight weeks old?

KIARA

Yeah, eight weeks.

KATH BAQUIE

And how’s the perineum around the stitches feeling now?

KIARA

It’s fine now. And it’s been fine for a couple a good couple of weeks. So yeah, it was just the start that it was a little bit uncomfortable. But I did all the recovery that I had learned about in the in the master classes. So, I had them all written down, and I was all prepared for those things. So yeah, I made sure that my recovery was top priority, as well as of course, looking after my baby, but I wanted to make sure that my recovery yeah that I I’m so glad I learned about all of that while I was pregnant, because of course when you have a little baby, you don’t have time to be researching and looking at all this stuff. So, I’m so glad I knew about all of that beforehand.

KATH BAQUIE

Oh, you are like a star. Star member, Kiara.

KIARA

I devoured all the resources.

KATH BAQUIE

If you don’t not short Kiara’s talking about inside FitNest Mama, we do have all the workouts for pregnancy and postpartum but there’s also quite a few resources so Kara has mentioned the Preparing for birth resources and like the pushing techniques, but Kiara is also referring to the afterbirth recovery resources. So, whether or not you have a vaginal birth or a southern birth, there’s a few videos talking you through some key elements to help recovery. And on that note, Kara has there been any unexpected anything unexpected with your recovery, your body in your recovery?

KIARA

I didn’t realize how almost like squishy my belly would feel afterwards. Like I know, everything’s been stretched, of course, but it was like, I remember just pushing in going. It’s like there’s nothing there. Like where are my abs gone? Not that I, not saying you know, like a six pack of ABS or anything but just the muscle like I just it was such a weird feeling not being able to feel them.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, 9 months of stretch. And then, it’s like an elastic band.

KIARA

It was crazy. And then what I initially with feeding, I was actually doing sideline feeding for the first two weeks. And that worked out really well to help out with my recovery because I just remember I had in my head, Kath said horizontal rest said horizontal as much horizontal rest as possible. So, I took our board that advice very well.

KATH BAQUIE

And that’s so amazing that you were able to master the line down breastfeeding because that did you find that more challenging or pretty good?

KIARA

Funny, funny you say that because it was actually the opposite. I struggled upright in hospital. And it was the midwife that actually suggested the side lying because we tried all these other techniques. And Ruby was quite a small baby, and she wasn’t latching properly. She just didn’t have that good reflex, which I said again, was quite common with small babies. And then she’s like, oh, have you tried this side lying? And I said, no, I actually thought that that would be more challenging. But Ruby loved it. She just seemed to latch straight away with it. I was like, you go, girl.

KATH BAQUIE

That’s amazing. So how was…

KIARA

It actually helped me as well. I was so happy that she latched in that position.

KATH BAQUIE

Oh, perfect. And it sounds like you had a bit of a great bit of support with the breastfeeding.

KIARA

Yeah, the midwives were really helpful. I was. I was definitely utilizing them while I was there. And I think I ended up staying three nights in hospital. So, I think I’d probably stayed that extra night because they could see, I needed some extra help, which I was happy to take on board all the help I could get. I was not being proud or anything like that was like I need help. And yeah, so the feeding journey has been a little bit up and down. But I haven’t put any pressure on myself. I’ve just been doing the best that we can.

KATH BAQUIE

You’ve done such an amazing job Kiara. And now that you’re eight weeks after birth, I’m just curious, what are your goals in terms of your physical recovery? Is there anything you really want to get back to doing?

KIARA

Yeah, I would love to be able to run again confidently with everything, you know, feeling good. And that’s why I was so proactive beforehand. And I remember you suggested to also see a pelvic floor physio, and I would never have thought to do that beforehand if I hadn’t learnt that information from you. So just all of those things really helped me and then of course, I’ve been seeing her as well. I had my check-up last week. And yeah, we talked about some goals as well and the running year was one of those goals and just to be able to feel really confident when I’m exercising knowing that I am taking my time and not pushing my body too much, just, you know, working with, with my body rather than against it.

KATH BAQUIE

Amazing. Well, you’re in the right place, because we do have that 12 week return to running program. So, to help support you along with that with those goals.

KIARA

And I joined my first class yesterday, which was really exciting.

KATH BAQUIE

The first live class. That’s right.

KIARA

Sorry, my first live.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah. And also, beautiful because Kiara started, and we all started together. And then at the end, I was like, Kiara, hello?

KIARA

Ruby’s crying.

KATH BAQUIE

Where are you? And you came, I think, during the pregnancy class, the following class, you showed us all Ruby, it’s always beautiful to see the babies in the classes afterwards.

KIARA

Yeah, I was like, sorry, guys just had to attend to a crying baby. Yeah, she’s not loving sleeping in her bassinet during the day. She just wants cuddles during the day, but overnight, she’s very good, sleeps beautifully.

KATH BAQUIE

Oh, that’s good.

Well, to finish off with, I’m putting this on. And I didn’t actually tell you, I’d be asking this question. But what final words of wisdom or advice do you have for pregnant mums or new mums who might be listening today?

KIARA

I guess the one thing that really helped me so this would be for anyone who’s pregnant, especially with their first and just has no idea what to expect is that, you know, you can feel pain and still have a positive experience. And I think learning that information and learning what your body is meant to do in labour, and the different stages and what’s actually happening, and also with your hormones, and how you can actually help your hormones, all of that, you know, you can create a positive birth experience. And even if it might, like for me, you know, I of course, wanted a natural birth, but I was so open to, okay, if I needed to have an epidural, then that’s what needed to happen. If I needed to have a caesarean, then that’s just what needed to happen. But at least I would have understood why. It wouldn’t have just been thrust upon me. During labour going, you have to have a caesarean and me going, what do you mean, why do I have to have one for I don’t like, you know, I would have properly understood why I needed one in that situation. And I think then, you know, having that power and feeling like you’ve got that control is so much more beneficial than just going in sort of a bit blind and going, okay, we’ll just kind of see what happens. And then, you know, things don’t go, you know, smoothly, and you need to have interventions and whatever have you and you don’t understand why I think that that can be really scary. And that creates the fear as well.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, I love what you just said, you know, we do our research before we buy a car, we do our research before we go on overseas trip. So, to do our research before we have a baby can be a really empowering experience.

KIARA

And just one thing on research, though, is just careful not to go too far into it, because you can absolutely go down a rabbit hole. So, for me, I just kept my where I was researching very limited. So, for example, with FitNest Mama, I just looked at those resources, and with my hypnobirthing course, and they were the only two things that I looked at because I was like, you know, you could be googling forever. You could listen to endless podcast episodes, you know, reset, do a whole bunch of courses and end up horribly confused afterwards. So that would be my other advice with the research is just keep it contained. So that you don’t, you know, you don’t go off because then you’ll get stressed out.

KATH BAQUIE

Yeah, absolutely. Awesome. Great pieces of advice. We’ll leave it there. Thank you so much Kiara.

KIARA

No problem.

KATH BAQUIE

It has been amazing chatting, and I really thank you for sharing your beautiful birth experience with us.

KIARA

No problem. And I hope it was helpful to anyone that are listening.

KATH BAQUIE

And for those who might want to come and find out about you and your work. Would you like to let us know how to find you?

KIARA

Yeah, sure. So, I’ve got my own podcast as well. It’s called become your own best friend. I need to get back into recording episodes, actually. And my Instagram is @insideouthealthwellness.

KATH BAQUIE

Yep, beautiful. And I’ll put those links in the show notes. Thank you so much to take coming on the FitNest Mama Podcast today, Kiara. I really do appreciate it.

KIARA

No worries. Thanks, Kath.

KATH BAQUIE

And before I sign off, remember my team and I will be putting together the show notes for this episode with all the links including how to connect with Kiara at fitnestmama.com/podcast and don’t forget to sign up for that Free Pregnancy Workshop that I talked about at fitnestmama.com/free. Have a fabulous day everyone and I look forward to you joining me soon for another episode of the FitNest Mama Podcast.

KATH BAQUIE

Thanks for listening to the FitNest Mama Podcast brought to you by the FitNest Mama Freebies found at www.fitnestmama.com/free. So please take a few seconds to leave a review, subscribe so you don’t miss an episode. And be sure to take a screenshot of this podcast, upload it to your social media and tag me, @fitnestmama so I can give you a shout out too. Until next time. Remember, an active pregnancy, confident childbirth, and strong postnatal recovery is something that you deserve. Remember our disclaimer, materials and contents in this podcast are intended as general information only and shouldn’t substitute any medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. I’ll see you soon!

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