Sophie's Story

Updated: Dec 19, 2021

A positive second birth on labour ward at the John Radcliffe Hospital.

Featuring Low Papp A, Induction and a quick birth.



So here’s a brief run down of the whole thing - It was so different from my first birth and the Hypnobirthing really did make a difference, my partner, Neil, said I was really zen and serene throughout it all and not panicked at all.

So we were induced due to pregnancy induced hypertension and low Papp A at 40+1. I was already 3cm dilated at 40 weeks so didn’t need a balloon to open cervix so we started with a stretch and sweep on Saturday. We then went into the John Radcliffe hospital on Sunday 7th November at 3pm, they did the usual checks and monitoring and then broke my waters at 4.30pm - we then agreed we’d give it an hour or so to see if anything then happened naturally.

The amazing midwives set me up some aromatherapy to diffuse around the room, and helped us adjust the lights, and get a birth ball. I used all the breathing techniques through the uncomfortable process of waters being broken which kept me really calm. By 6pm nothing was happening so we started on the drip (again using the breathing for the slightly gruesome cannula insertion - to be honest Neil could have done with some here as it made him a little faint 😂).

We decided that we should eat, so we ordered a Lebanese feast on Deliveroo to be delivered to the John Radcliffe entrance. The food arrived really quickly so we started eating, using our LED candles for a romantic little meal, and by 6.45 we’d eaten and I felt like things were starting to happen.


I sat on the birth ball bouncing and listened to the Fear Release track concentrating on my breathing. By 7.20pm I felt like things were intensifying and I needed to crawl onto the bed on all fours, at 7.30pm the midwives came in and I started on the entonox and they confirmed we were now definitely in active labour.

From there things went incredibly quickly. The contractions started to be 5 in 10 within about 15 minutes, and by 7.45pm I said I felt like I needed to push. The midwives were aware I had been really keen to use water (thank you birth plan!) and told me the pool was almost ready, we just needed to move rooms and if I could hold on we’d get in the pool.

Somehow between then and 8.05pm I got into a wheelchair and down the corridor, at 8.07pm we got into the pool and at 8.10pm Ziggy was born into the water and I caught him and lifted him up. It was panic stations at first as the speed meant he wasn’t in the best state, but after everyone rushing in he quickly perked up with just some rubbing and TLC and was back in my arms in minutes - again I managed to keep calm using all the techniques I had learned. By 8.20pm we were tucked up in bed having skin to skin and he had his first feed at 8.30pm.

Overall the things which I think made all the difference from my first birth experience and this one were concentrating on my breathing, staying calm, and having a great but pragmatic birth plan which was really respected and understood by the midwives and which helped me feel in control despite my ideal scenario beforehand definitely NOT being an induction on the delivery suite with continuous monitoring.


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