In the Press
Glamour model Jordan, 23, is due to give birth to her first son Harvey tomorrow - on the internet. Lifestyle Editor ZOE CHAMBERLAIN meets two Midland women who opted for their own unconventional births for very different reasons.
CAROLINE Bailey was overjoyed when she discovered she was pregnant for the first time - and dreamed of a smooth natural birth at her local cottage hospital.
But things didn't go to plan. After enduring 12 hours labour 'strapped up to monitors and pumped with chemicals' she had to have an emergency Caesarean. Caroline, from Burntwood, Staffordshire, eventually gave birth to a healthy baby girl called Florence. But she had lost three pints of blood and had to remain in hospital for a week to recover. Now 36 and manager of a printing business, she says: 'Florence is now a three-year-old beautiful little girl.
'I loved her from the moment she was born, but it didn't change the fact I'd been through an incredible amount of pain.'
Last year Caroline and husband Darius, a 35 year-old sales executive, decided they wanted another baby - but she burst into tears at the prospect of more pain.
'People kept saying it should be easier second time around,' she says. 'But I was more scared because I knew exactly what I was in for. You go into your first birth wearing rose-tinted spectacles but the reality is far different.
'Darius and I got to the stage where we actually spoke about adoption, even though there was nothing physically to stop us having our own baby.
'Eventually, I realised I was being ridiculous and I became pregnant in February last year.
'For the first three months, I tried to put the birth out of my mind but every time I thought about the delivery I burst into tears.
'At one point my midwife said my blood pressure was sky-high which was dangerous for the baby.'
Then a friend read about women who gave birth with fewer drugs and less pain - after being hypnotised.
Caroline decided it had to be worth a go and contacted hypnotherapist Sheila Jones from Boldmere, Sutton Coldfield.
'Under hypnosis, Sheila asked me to think of something I didn't like about giving birth,' she says.
'For some reason I thought of a specialist I'd met when I had my first child. I don't know why I thought of him because he wasn't mean or nasty.
'But Sheila said to simply throw the thought away - and I instantly felt better.
'During another session we dealt with pain relief. She said to imagine that my fingers were wooden and that I couldn't feel a thing in them. Gradually we worked up my body until I felt as stiff as a post. By the end of it, I felt as though I'd enjoyed a massage: a vocal massage. I returned to the midwife and she said that my blood pressure had gone down.
'On the last session, we went through the whole of the labour process, saying how each part of it was going to feel fine.
'I came out of hypnosis, waving my hands in the air, saying it was going to be great. From that point on I really looked forward to giving birth.'
On November 22, 2001, Caroline went into labour - but this time it went on for 14 hours. 'My waters broke at home and we rushed to the hospital,' she says.
'Doctors told me I was just two centimetres dilated and warned me that it was going to be another long labour.
'For a minute I panicked. I thought it was going to be the same as before and I couldn't cope.
'Then I calmed myself down, and thought of my hypnotherapy.
'When I finally gave birth, I did haemorrhage again but I remained calm because I felt great. I felt in control the whole time.
'I was tired but exhilarated. I left the hospital the next day, despite doctors saying I may need a blood transfusion.
'I told them I was fine and that I wanted to go home with my beautiful baby boy, Cyrus.
'He slept through the night from day one and is an incredibly contented baby who is always smiling.
'I think the hypnosis had an impact on him. I was relaxed and that must have affected him, too.'