Hypnobirthing with Emma Saville

MyBump2Baby Expert Podcast

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  • Hypnobirthing with Emma Saville

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Emma Saville, founder of Elive’s Hypnobirthing, discusses the benefits of hypnobirthing and how it can help create a positive birthing experience. She explains that hypnobirthing is not about being pain-free, but about feeling empowered and in control during labor. Emma also highlights the importance of including birth partners in the hypnobirthing process and how it can help them feel more involved and supportive. She addresses common misconceptions about hypnobirthing, such as it being only for home births, and emphasizes that it can be used in any birth setting, including hospitals and during C-sections. Emma also touches on the role of doulas and independent midwives in the birthing process. She concludes by discussing the use of visualizations and breathing techniques in hypnobirthing and the importance of practicing them regularly.

In this episode we cover hypnobirthing, birth, labor, pain relief, birth partner, C-section, gentle caesarean, VBAC, doula, independent midwife, visualisation, breathing techniques.

Takeaways

Hypnobirthing is not about being pain-free, but about feeling empowered and in control during labor.

Including birth partners in the hypnobirthing process can help them feel more involved and supportive.

Hypnobirthing can be used in any birth setting, including hospitals and during C-sections.

Doulas and independent midwives provide additional support and guidance during pregnancy and childbirth.

Visualisations and breathing techniques are powerful tools in managing pain and staying calm during labor.

Emma’s links

www.ellivasehypnobirthing.co.uk

@ellivase_hypnobirthing

ellivase@gmail.com

Emma Saville is a Royal College of Midwives accredited hypnobirthing practitioner, qualified by the gold standard of hypnobirthing, KGH, and a member of The Hypnobirthing Association.

Emma is based in Oxford and has developed the 3 pathways to enable a calm, efficient birth by guiding you with theoretical and practical tools. Emma’s mission is to empower women to enable a positive birth experience by showing women and birth partners how positive changes can be implemented during and leading up to the birth of your baby with private, group and bespoke courses both in person and online. When she’s not teaching, she further educates herself on the options for women in pregnancy and birth, hosts various events to get together for brunch/afternoon tea where supporting women in pregnancy is valuable, she enjoys her endorphins in the gym and loves spending time with her

Carla (00:04.924)

and welcome to My Bumped Babies Expert podcast today. I am joined by the lovely Emma Seville. Emma, please can you just introduce yourself because you own Ellivase Hypnobirthing don’t you and I’m so excited to talk to you all about Hypnobirthing today.

 

Emma Saville (00:23.534)

Thank you Carla. Good morning, hello everybody. My name is Emma and I am founder of Ellivase Hypnobirthing here in Oxford. I provide group, private and bespoke

 

courses both in person but also online. I’ve taught over to Europe as well and up and down the country very much tailored to a couple’s needs. I help with first babies and subsequent babies, VBAC babies so that’s a vaginal birth after

 

Emma Saville (01:07.614)

people have not had a great experience for their first baby, wish that they had done hypnobirthing, want to try it for the second time round. So that’s what I do. Make a difference to many people.

 

Carla (01:20.928)

That’s amazing. It does, I mean, I think as well, something that we see when we’re young and we’ve got had…

 

Emma Saville (01:24.51)

yeah love it makes it makes so much difference

 

Carla (01:33.236)

Sorry Emma, I couldn’t quite get you there. But what I was gonna say is, something that we grow up with, you know, and we’re watching all these TV programmes and there’s someone having a baby and they’re screaming and it’s out of control. I think when many of us get pregnant, it can be something that we’re like, oh my goodness, that is gonna be awful. And it doesn’t have to be, does it? And thanks to you, that’s what you do. And you help people have a nice experience.

 

Emma Saville (01:35.)

Okay.

 

Emma Saville (01:56.33)

Yeah, except.

 

Yep, exactly. So I’m a qualified hypnotherapist. So some people think the hypnobirthing is that you’re going to be hypnotized, but just to touch on the hip, which you’re not, but just to touch on the hypnotherapy side of things. So through hypnotherapy, so we learn that we’re only born with two fears, and one is being dropped and one is loud noise. And everything else, all our fears come from lessons that we’ve learned from other people.

 

usually from people in authority could be a parent, an older sibling, a teacher. And so what happens is that watching those TV programmes that you just mentioned were almost brainwashed and so our mind will hold on to those. And because when we learn things from someone of authority, we think, well, they’re doing it, therefore I must. So when I’ve helped with hypnotherapy, I’ve had people with fears of spiders.

 

Now that particular client had a fear of spiders because her mum did and her sister did so she felt that she should as well. So hypnobirthing is all about addressing the fear, breaking it down, putting it into logic and then working with our mind and our body.

 

Carla (03:21.516)

I love that. That’s a really good way to explain it. And it doesn’t only help the person that’s giving birth either, does it? Because it actually can help the birth partner too, stay calm and all of that. Can you elaborate a little bit more on that if that’s okay?

 

Emma Saville (03:36.202)

Yeah, on the birth partner side of things, so gosh, the amount of chaps that have said to me, thank you so much, I now feel included. And I kind of feel a bit sad about that, you know, men are fixers and women have a really strong intuition. So, men generally, they want to help. They want to do it, but of course it’s our body.

 

we’re developing our baby. There’s not really a lot that they can do at that stage. But actually there is so much that they can do. And coming along to the sessions, they learn a lot about the breathing techniques. They understand more about how the mind works. And not only just in birth, but in everyday life as well. So these things that you learn, you can take through to help bringing up your children. So…

 

with men being fixers and they always tend to smile and go, mm-hmm. So if, for example, a shelf falls off the wall, a man will come in with his hammer and his nail, right, let’s get this shelf up. He doesn’t want to know anything else. As women, we want to say,

 

The shelf came off the wall, I knew I put too many jars on there, I shouldn’t have overfilled it and now it’s got, it’s been beginning to bend, I had a feeling it was going to fall off and now it’s come off and what about the plaster, we’re going to have to redecorate da and we look at all these things, it’s just a general thing that we do The men just go, let’s just get this shelf up, I don’t want to know any other details, let’s do it So you see they’re fixers Men are very good

 

Carla (05:18.6)

Yes.

 

Emma Saville (05:19.542)

haunting us in birth, they’re not very good at giving birth because that’s what we do. But by the birth partner coming along and feeling included and I make sure that they do lots of interactive things including what it feels like to have waves and surges and I get them down and say right give me a plank for 40 seconds let’s see how that feels and just put into context.

 

what 40 seconds actually is. By helping the birth partner to understand the birth process I give a great demonstration of how the muscles of the uterus work. And with having an understanding enables him to keep calm which enables mummy to keep calm.

 

he understands the breathing so he can help and support with the breathing. We go through different birth positions in for first stage of labour and how he can help and you know so many of them say oh god that would be lovely to do or what and it makes them and helps them to feel included, makes so much difference.

 

Carla (06:35.092)

Yeah, I think as well it’s letting them know what’s to come as well because for first time parents you’re not sure and then you don’t panic as much if you know what could happen and you know not everything does go to plan, you know, and that’s just a way of life but being mentally prepared for what could happen can really help can’t it?

 

Emma Saville (06:39.282)

Yeah.

 

Emma Saville (06:47.402)

No.

 

Emma Saville (06:55.117)

Yeah.

 

Yeah exactly and one of the things that I say is if they’re able they can’t always go to all of the midwife appointments and all the medical appointments I get that with work it’s quite hard but any appointment that they can go to what tends to happen is the medical midwife or doctor will talk to the mum because the mum remember the mum is the patient so that’s what they have to do but then what happens is the birth partner, men

 

man or woman.

 

will feel a little bit in the shadow. So what I say, try this, when you go into your appointment and the doctor will say to the mum to be, hello Julie, how are you today, sit down. And Julie says, this is my birth partner, my husband or wife etc. And then whoever that birth partner is, shake the hand of the doctor or the midwife, look in their eyes and say, hello my name is Bob, Jane, whatever.

 

By shaking the hand of that person and then sitting next to your wife or girlfriend, you will become part of that conversation. And by mum doing that as well, we’ll move from being a patient to being a person. Your appointment will be completely different. Completely different.

 

Carla (08:17.78)

Wow.

 

Wow, I think that, I mean, I know when I first had my son the first time around, it’s very much, you’re almost a bit scared to ask questions a bit. It’s almost, especially, that’s why you, what you do is absolutely amazing because you help people understand, you know, it’s their birth and they can choose and, but I, I remember I had a low-blind placenta with my first son, George, and 20 weeks they were like, hopefully it’ll move out of the way. Well, it didn’t, just standard.

 

and I did have to have a C-section, an emergency C-section, but I didn’t really dare ask any more questions. I was kind of, I didn’t know what to ask and you know you just kind of go along with it but by having someone like you who can just explain things a little bit better and like that, that piece of advice there is so useful because I think you want to be a person don’t you and you want to kind of feel it’s a really special time having a baby isn’t it? It’s a beautiful time and you don’t want to feel like a number.

 

Emma Saville (09:14.994)

and

 

Emma Saville (09:19.774)

No, exactly, exactly that. And I’m not a midwife, and so I don’t give advice, but what I do is I signpost and I guide and I enable the empowering questions that can be asked. And by asking these questions in such a way enables the couple to get the information that they need so that they can make a decision. I have couples, after they’ve done the course with me, what do you think about?

 

XYZ or external cephalic version where they’re having to turn the baby, being told to turn the baby at 34 weeks or babies keep moving till about 37 or 38 so do you really want to put yourself through that discomfort for baby just to turn around again? But asking the questions and saying well why do we need to do this now and what’s the pros, what’s the benefits, what’s the risks of doing it, what’s the benefits and risks of not doing it?

 

and turning things around and making sure ultimately the parents are the one you are responsible for the birth of your baby. So asking the right questions that are right for you, you’re responsible to ask those questions. Unfortunately, you know, there’s such a shortage of midwives and they do a fantastic job. A medical care, they just don’t have the time to explain.

 

all of these really vital parts of the maternity system.

 

Carla (10:54.76)

Yeah, I mean appointments are back to back aren’t they a lot of the time and it is just a case of kind of getting through things and if you don’t ask the question they might assume that you already know because they don’t know what you don’t know. So yeah, by having someone like you Emma, it must be really useful to parents because they actually know what to ask or can ask you without feeling…

 

silly. I know that sounds a bit funny but you can sometimes if you’re having a baby think oh I can’t ask that because it might I should know that or you know.

 

Emma Saville (11:27.502)

Yeah, yeah exactly and there’s never a silly question and usually somebody else wants to ask that question but if you feel shy then drop me an email and you know I’ll answer the question and help or you know direct and signpost and you’re never ever going to get this experience with this pregnancy. It’s a one off.

 

You may have subsequent babies so you’ll have a different experience but for that one baby you won’t get that experience again so let’s make it a lovely one.

 

Carla (12:00.136)

I love that. And Emma, with hypnobirthing, what week do you tend to work with people? Is it early on or where do you come in?

 

Emma Saville (12:10.486)

generally from about 25 weeks. Some people start at 20 but generally it’s about 25. The sooner you can do it the better. The key thing with hip and birthing is practice.

 

So all of those people that we know who sing at Glastonbury or whatever pop concert, they write the song, they practice, they practice, they tweak the music, they may make a high note, a low note, they do not write a song and then get up at Glastonbury the next day. Exactly the same with hypnobirthing. You cannot possibly do a hypnobirthing course

 

and then just leave it for weeks and then expect to have an empowering birth. You won’t. It’s all about practicing with the mindset, practicing with the body. It’s a beautiful way of doing things but it does take that practice. And when I say practice, you’re looking at ten minutes a day and some practice is the audios at night time which sends you off to sleep. It’s not onerous but it makes all the difference.

 

Carla (13:22.889)

Yeah, yeah, a lot of people use hypnobirthing with the first baby and then go back to the same hypnobirthing teacher again. It’s a reminder really and just a recap but at the end of the day we want the births to be as comfortable as possible don’t we?

 

Emma Saville (13:38.998)

Yeah, definitely.

 

Carla (13:40.92)

So Emma, a common misconception is that hypnobirthing is just for home births. It is not, is it? You can be used in hospitals.

 

Emma Saville (13:50.618)

and

 

Hypnobirthing is for all births, whether at home and all births, whether caesarean or water birth. The more you know the better. A lot of people that I teach, particularly for their first babies, they like to go to the midwife led unit which is attached to a hospital, gives them that level of security and reassurance, particularly for the birth

 

Emma Saville (14:21.216)

transition in the event of anything happening if need be. In truth we don’t know what’s going to happen until labour, until that day or night of labour. But going into hospital for your… so I had a lady a couple of days ago so she went in but she was messaging me actually while she was waiting to go down to the ward and saying that the birthing techniques and knowing what questions to

 

particularly with vaginal examinations for example, she felt really strong and she was in a hospital setting. The difference with a hospital and a birth setting is that in hospital you will be interrupted a lot more, the lights are a lot brighter, the smells are unfamiliar, whereas at home you are in the comfort of your own home. So think about it, say that you’ve left work

 

home before you left work you didn’t need to go to the loo. As soon as you put the key in the door you’re desperate, it’s like get out of the way I need to go to the toilet because what’s happened is your body is familiar with where you are your body recognises that you’re in a safe place you’re comfortable and so therefore you can go to the loo. The same is when you’re on holiday some people take about three days to settle before they can go to the loo because you’re

 

Carla (15:28.332)

Thanks for watching!

 

Emma Saville (15:50.956)

new hotel, there’s nothing familiar etc exactly the same with a hospital so when if you choose to go into hospital I would say take sunglasses I know it sounds weird take sunglasses because it would dim the lights you know that feeling of it’s really bright you put your sunglasses on and you think

 

Carla (16:07.916)

Oh wow, yeah.

 

Emma Saville (16:12.398)

oh this sunshine’s lovely, you know you then enjoy it. Take your own pillow. A lot of people take aromatherapy scents so that they recognise that smell. Take your audios, really make that space. Just because you’re in hospital does not mean you can’t make that room your own. You can take Twinkly lights, have your own music and you can do all of that in a theatre setting as well

 

So ultimately you need to do what’s right for you.

 

in a hospital setting you will be disturbed a lot more and you may have a change of midwife because depending on the shift if you’re having a birth at home you have two midwives and you have continuity of care and you won’t be interrupted. It’s down to the individual of what’s right.

 

Carla (17:13.236)

With a home birth, would the midwives come from the hospital or would you have to hire people in? How does that work?

 

Emma Saville (17:21.058)

So you can hire an independent midwife. So a lot of midwives have moved into independent midwives and I know a few amazing, both midwives and independent. And the reason they go to independent is because of the bureaucracy. And sadly, a lot of midwives have a very difficult time.

 

to the point of some are bullied and they can’t follow through with what their gut instinct is because they have to follow guidelines. Guidelines are there, they’re set by NICE, they’re set by the Royal College of Senghaini, they have to follow this. So they’re all fantastically trained but you can hire an independent midwife.

 

If you don’t have one, then there’s a telephone number that you’re given if you’re having a home birth. So there’s a telephone number that you’re given that you call that will go to triage and then depending on the availability of midwives, they will then send midwives to you. And it’s very rare not to have anyone sent to you. But their shifts are 8 to 8.

 

So it depends on your area as well. If in the instance, as some people think, well what if, so all of the what ifs, what if something happens and I need to go to the hospital. So the midwives have a direct line to the hospital so they will phone through. So you’re not going through the triage again of if you were phoning for an ambulance or an emergency call. So the midwives will call through and they’ve got a direct line there.

 

Carla (18:41.885)

Yeah, yeah.

 

Emma Saville (19:01.546)

and they will stay with you and they will come with you. So yeah, it’s, again, it’s down to the individual. It’s a shame in many ways there aren’t more home births but equally I do also understand that if there’s a halfway house where there’s a midwife led unit attached to a hospital to give those first births that reassurance then you’ve got to do what’s right for you.

 

Carla (19:28.492)

Absolutely and for me personally I mean I would love to be confident that’s probably part of working with a hypnobirthing instructor like you because if you confident enough and you know you know what’s gonna happen you’d feel more at ease but it’s that unknown and it’s just it can be a bit scary can’t it when you don’t know. So what is the difference between a doula and an independent midwife sorry I get a little bit confused with those.

 

Emma Saville (19:58.787)

So a doula, so I mean I love that word doula but it’s actually a Greek word and it means woman servant which I don’t like. Yeah, not keen, not keen on that.

 

Carla (20:05.202)

Yeah.

 

Carla (20:10.328)

Oh wow! No, I didn’t know that!

 

Emma Saville (20:15.442)

Yeah, doulas again, I mean all the support workers, they’re just magnificent, magnificent. So there’s a prenatal doula and you have postnatal doula.

 

So the prenatal doulas, something that I would like to train in later on in time. So they will help with you on your journey in pregnancy. If you want support to go to appointments, they can come with you to appointments, help you with your home setting, help you with colostrum harvesting, all of that type of thing with the journey. It’s basically to give you… It’s like a really, really close friend.

 

all of that training and support for you. And then a postnatal doula will come with the first part. They’re particularly helpful when if you’re married or your partner goes back to work because they only get two weeks paternity and then all of a sudden you’re on your own.

 

So a postnatal doula can come in and say if you’re tired they can say why don’t you have a sleep hour look after baby, they could put a wash on for you, they could put the washing on the line, make a meal for you, you can have a bath and you’ve got someone there looking after baby so that you can you can relax. So again it’s like a fantastic you know close friend and they I’m probably doing them with this service because I haven’t had the training in doulas

 

Carla (21:44.748)

That sounds lovely.

 

Emma Saville (21:50.046)

but generally it’s that peer support both before and after babies are born. Whereas with independent midwives

 

Carla (21:58.72)

That sounds amazing.

 

Emma Saville (22:00.31)

They’ve had all of the medical training. Some go from a nursing qualification into midwifery. Some train straight into midwifery. So it’s a three year degree course, unless they’ve done nursing and then they’ve gone in. And you know, their training is superb. And you know, some people think that if they have a home birth then gas and air won’t be provided, any pain relief won’t be provided. Can midwives help with suturing?

 

Yes they can, they do all of that, they’re just absolutely amazing. Make you a cup of tea! Yeah.

 

Carla (22:37.504)

Wow, they sound brilliant. I mean, I… Oh, wow. Well, the Dula, both of those sound amazing. I mean, my little one is two and a half, and I feel like I could do with a Dula at home now, make me a cup of tea and, you know, all of that. That’d be heaven. Oh, it sounds…

 

Emma Saville (22:50.846)

Yeah. Put the mopping on, yeah. Yeah.

 

Carla (22:55.864)

Yeah, it sounds lovely. Go and run yourself a bath and oh yeah, it sounds like heaven. So yeah, we do have do-listen-all directory and obviously if you listen to this later down the road, it might be that Emma actually can offer that service so make sure you check in with her.

 

Emma Saville (23:07.17)

Yeah.

 

Carla (23:12.504)

and see about that if you’re close to the Oxford area. So Emma, sorry, I feel like I’m just question after question, but hypnobirthing, it does, it’s incredible. I love talking about it because it’s so, so interesting. So with your hypnobirthing, does it mean that someone wouldn’t have pain relief? Like, do you not talk people out of pain relief? Do you need pain relief or do you, what do you suggest for that?

 

Emma Saville (23:20.466)

No, no, I’m fine.

 

Emma Saville (23:42.718)

So until you go into labour you don’t know but nothing is off the table so to speak. So it may be that you want to have a pain relief, it may be you want to have gas in air, it may be that you want to have an epidural, it may be that you want to have, it’s the rentafinal, which is a pain relief so it’s fed in through a drip.

 

you can manage it yourself by pressing a button and that helps with the duration of the surge and the wave but then you have to look at that, that anything that’s going through your vein will go across baby as well so you know there will be, baby would also receive that as much as you. So in the hypnobirthing, so I cover off all the dips, so there’s a lot

 

Emma Saville (24:42.652)

Ultimately, so that we cover a synopsis of each one, a tens machine as well is another idea, but then the couples can then have a look at that and put that in the priority order that if it comes to it that I want to have pain relief, this is the order that I want to have it in. And I always say that when they’re writing their birth proposal,

 

and I call it proposal not a plan because if it doesn’t… when we have a plan if it doesn’t work out we feel we failed regardless of whether if it’s birth or something else we go well that plan A didn’t work let’s do plan B. So with birth I say birth preparation or birth proposal and it’s important to put on there what you don’t want

 

as opposed to what you do want, because what you do want you’re going to be happy with and you’re not going to worry, but if it’s something you specifically don’t want, you need to write it down, and that includes with pain relief as well.

 

Carla (25:45.42)

I love that, yeah. Gosh, you’re so informative, Emma. I love like, you just really do share so much value, honestly. So with C-section, so for my previous experience, I’ve had two C-sections now. And they were great, but.

 

Emma Saville (25:58.213)

Mmm.

 

Carla (26:07.608)

Well, the first one wasn’t actually. You can have a bit of trauma, can’t you? And then you’re terrified. And that was the first one for me. That was an emergency. Second time around, it was okay. But a lot of the time we can think, oh, well, if I end up doing a C-section, well, there’s no point having hypnobirthing, but there absolutely is, isn’t there Emma? Can you explain a bit about the benefits of that?

 

Emma Saville (26:29.858)

So with a C-section, so with hypnobirthing and a C-section, you can create what’s called a gentle caesarean. So a gentle caesarean is where you make the room your own, you have the lights dimmed at the head end, obviously not the other end, you can have the curtain up or down, your gown is on back to front so that the pads are on your shoulders so

 

Emma Saville (26:59.152)

to your chest. You can have music playing, you can have lights etc etc. With the hypnobirthing with c-section, you know going down to theatre, the breathing techniques are very useful and helpful to keep you nice and calm and nice and relaxed. You can choose to have baby walking out so that means rather than baby being lifted up and put on your chest, it’s a very gentle way of

 

Emma Saville (27:30.373)

from you and then gently put onto your chest. The common thing is with the breathing as well is that a lot of people forget that…

 

uterus is only seven centimetres so it’s very tiny and then as baby grows obviously the uterus grows. Regardless of whether you’ve had a caesarean or a vaginal birth that uterus has to come back down to those seven centimetres and with that you will have the same feeling as if you were going into labour. So the waves and the surges will continue to happen regardless of whether you’ve had

 

Emma Saville (28:14.44)

So you may have like cramping surges and so the breathing that you learn on hypnobirthing will also help you after birth regardless whether you’ve had a c-section or not because your uterus will be coming back down to size.

 

Carla (28:33.256)

Yeah, yeah, that does make sense. I remember those feelings actually afterwards. Now you said that, I remember exactly what you mean. And it is very similar, isn’t it, to contractions? In fact, is that what it is? It is contractions, but kind of the other way around.

 

Emma Saville (28:49.89)

Well it is, it’s retracting, so you contract open and then you retract, so contracting, retract, so you need to come back down to size. So it’s a bit like a big balloon and then you’re coming back down. Yeah.

 

Carla (29:03.72)

Yeah, yeah, that does make sense. So with hypnobirthing for a V-back, which you explained earlier, that’s a vaginal birth after a caesarean section. Sometimes, I mean, I was advised, you know, even though it was six years down the line, not to do that, just because my scar might open and…

 

and that was what was advised. So I just went with what they said, but you do have the option to have a vaginal birth, don’t you, after a C-section.

 

Emma Saville (29:38.518)

No. Yeah, you do. It depends. I think it’s a minimum of two years. But.

 

you would have to go on your medical advice by asking those questions. In France they support VBAC very highly and they are professionally trained with VBAC. So one of the couples who I taught in France last year, so she had her baby in the UK, didn’t have a great experience, ended up

 

Emma Saville (30:14.832)

the excitement of pregnancy again and also she wanted to look at having a VBAC which was very much supported in France and helping her with that. So hypnobirthing is absolutely…

 

beneficial to that but in terms of you know I couldn’t say whether you if that was okay or not it would depend on because the risk is of the of the scar you know having that damage so to speak so you would have to have professional advice.

 

Carla (30:52.244)

Yeah, of course, of course. So visualizations during hypnobirthing, is that something someone would have to use?

 

Emma Saville (31:04.126)

I mean we can use visualisations at any stage. Our imagination is incredible. If I said to you, if I asked you a question, do you believe in unicorns, Carla? Tell me what’s in your mind now.

 

Carla (31:25.56)

unicorn going across a cloud with a big yeah what is that thing called I don’t know what the word is but I can see it I can see it and it exists in my mind yeah

 

Emma Saville (31:31.71)

A horn.

 

Emma Saville (31:36.202)

Yes, and it comes instantly doesn’t it? But if I said to you, you know, oh no, the unicorn’s now turned blue.

 

Carla (31:47.036)

Yeah, now it’s blue.

 

Emma Saville (31:47.306)

I bet you did.

 

Emma Saville (31:51.714)

Our imagination is so, so powerful. So the beauty of visualizations when we’re doing the breathing is that we can easily visualize. And what we visualize and what we find calm, the importance of visualizations is knowing what, how they make you feel. So for example, if we’re doing up breathing, you could do a visualization of breathing in through the nose and as you breathe out through the mouth, you’re blowing bubbles on a summer day.

 

day so you’re blowing the bubbles and then as you’re breathing out the bubbles are going further and further and further and further away so basically that’s helping that your first initial surges or waves come

 

and then it’s going and as it’s going you’re breathing out, out and out. Down breathing and down visualisations could be, seasons are very popular, so people watching leaves falling down or snowflakes coming down. And so coupling that together with your breathing distracts you from your surges and your waves which is why a lot of people say I’ve breathed baby down.

 

because they’re visualizing and they’re breathing at the same time.

 

Carla (33:10.572)

sounds lovely, sounds very calming. I can just imagine your workshops must be amazing because I was just thinking then oh right yes yeah I know it’s very nice I bet people use hypnobirthing after birth as well for support don’t they really because that fourth trimester is hard.

 

Emma Saville (33:12.921)

Um…

 

Yes, let’s send them to sleep.

 

Emma Saville (33:26.201)

Mm-hmm. Yeah.

 

The fourth trimester is really hard and I do touch on that as well and the importance of building that fourth trimester now. A lot of us feel that I’ll be fine, you know, I’ll get baby and everything will be okay. But then you’ve got somebody else to look after, you’ve got that baby there in your arms and so thinking, you know, who can I call on, what can I do, where can I go, who can help me, all of that sort of thing is harder at that stage.

 

having that fourth trimester in place, what’s going to carve out for you. Remember as well, even when you were in a fourth trimester, you’ve now become a parent and if it’s your first baby, you’ve never been a parent before, but you’ve always been Carla.

 

So you’ve always been, you know, you’ve been a little girl, you’ve been a teenager, you’ve been a young woman, been a wife, a mother, a daughter, maybe a sister, an auntie, lots and lots of roles, but being a mum is one job that you don’t have to go for an interview for, you don’t need a CV for, you don’t need to have a test for, and all of a sudden you’re in this role, and like, it’s…

 

right what do I do now? So it’s remembering in the fourth trimester who you are as a person as much as this new job so to speak of what you’ve got. So but like with the visualizations and the breathing and yeah people a lot of people use them in sitting in traffic you know being in a traffic jam or

 

Emma Saville (35:06.902)

you know another example would be you know you’re sitting on a plane you’re so excited to go on holiday you finally got through you checked in you’re on the plane you’re waiting to go and the pilot says very sorry but we’re gonna have to sit on the tarmac for the next 20 minutes because of the weather or because cabin crew aren’t here or whatever else what can you do?

 

Emma Saville (35:32.198)

nothing. You have to sit and wait. You have to wait for the pilot and so the breathing just think okay well I can’t do anything so I’ll breathe.

 

and I’ll just relax and I’ll think about that and keep calm, keep calm, keep ready. And that pilot is the same kind of example of when baby will come, you know, baby will know when baby’s ready, baby is the pilot, baby will say, right well, you know, you might think, well I’m 40 weeks now, come on, I’m ready, you know, I’m ready to go on holiday, well until that pilot says, nothing’s going to happen, you have to sit on that tarmac and wait.

 

So you may as well enjoy yourself.

 

Carla (36:17.995)

Yeah.

 

Yeah absolutely, totally agree. So with a lot of people, a lot of mums that we speak to, obviously everyone’s birth story is so different and so unique and something, a real bugbear of mine is when someone’s pregnant and you know they’re like oh about my birth how was your birth and it was like oh horrendous and you just think I don’t really need to hear that but there are people out there that absolutely love the births and they say it can be painless. Now is that true?

 

brave.

 

Emma Saville (36:52.146)

I think it’s the percent, I think it’s the percent. I mean, if I said to you, if someone asked me and said, was it painless? I can’t, at the time, I mean, I had an epidural, I wish I knew about hypnobirthing back then. It was tiring, but I can’t describe any level of pain. It’s a little bit like, if you’ve cut your finger,

 

or if you’ve broken a bone and you’re going, well, was that painful? Well, yes, at the time it was, but try and explain that pain to someone now. It’s quite hard to do without over-exaggerating it.

 

Carla (37:40.187)

Mm, mm.

 

Emma Saville (37:40.386)

quite hard. I always say with first time mums and they’ve got people in the office or people saying to them, oh you know, this is what I did, da da, and then they’re consumed by negative stories which is not what you want. So one thing is, you know, you could say I need to stop you there because I can’t…

 

Carla (37:56.321)

Mmm, no.

 

Emma Saville (38:06.23)

join in this conversation yet because I haven’t yet had my baby. When I’ve had my baby we’ll have this conversation because then I can contribute but I can’t at the moment because I haven’t had baby yet. It kind of stops you know a negative story coming your way. Hypnobirthing isn’t about having a pain-free birth.

 

Carla (38:24.564)

Yeah, yeah, that’s it.

 

Emma Saville (38:33.374)

It’s about having a powerful birth. So we all have a scale, a threshold pain, pain threshold. So if your pain threshold is, you know, a 10 is the highest and one is the lowest, hypnobirthing is about moving that scale down to the low end of the pain threshold.

 

Carla (38:37.473)

Hmm.

 

Emma Saville (38:58.262)

because by being empowered and understanding how your body works and so it’s bringing it down. But hypnobirthing doesn’t guarantee a pain free birth but it gives you a powerful birth.

 

Carla (39:14.3)

It gives you internal tools that you can use to manage the birth, doesn’t it really? So you’re providing mums and dads with almost like a toolbox that is built into them that they can use anytime, anywhere and you know, even if they’re on that aeroplane and the pilot says no, you know, so it is, it’s so powerful.

 

Emma Saville (39:34.403)

Mm-hmm.

 

Emma Saville (39:38.454)

and it will pass, it will pass, baby can’t stay in there forever, baby will come out.

 

Carla (39:45.232)

So Emma, would you mind just, sorry, we froze there, sorry, a second. Would you mind just telling people a little bit more about you, all the different ways that you can help and where they can find you and we will put Emma’s links underneath this podcast as well so you can contact Emma directly, give her a follow on social, she’s very useful, a useful person to know.

 

Emma Saville (39:50.887)

Okay.

 

Emma Saville (40:04.95)

Yeah, thank you.

 

Emma Saville (40:09.198)

Thank you. So to recap, so I provide antenatal and hypnobirthing courses both face to face and online. In Oxford I provide group courses which are on a Tuesday at 7 o’clock in Botley in Oxford. So there’s four sessions, so there’s four weeks. We run from 7 to 9.30, we cover the logic, we cover the techniques, we cover the being informed.

 

We talk about before the birth and after the birth. So we have quite, it’s not death by PowerPoint, it’s very interactive. There’s great conversations that we have between each other. There’s cake, there’s videos, there’s videos, there’s demonstration. I bring all of the materials which I’ve provided and have provided.

 

Carla (40:54.52)

Oh. Ha ha ha. Yeah. Ha ha ha.

 

Emma Saville (41:04.19)

myself. The Hypnobirthing book, so I’m trained under Katherine Graves and Katherine is the home of Hypnobirthing so she was the first UK Hypnobirthing Association and so I’m a member of her and my training is accredited to the Royal College of Midwives. I also help, I provide pregnancy relaxation classes here in Oxford and currently that’s at the Prana studio in Jericho, they’re

 

And then I also host bump and brunch events. So these are on the last Sundays of every month and anyone can come, birth partners, pregnant ladies. The idea is to support you in pregnancy.

 

come along, have a nice brunch, have a very informal conversation, meet other people on the journey. If I can, I get one of the midwives that I know to come along to answer any questions or just to join in on a lovely Sunday morning. So I do those as well. And then I’ve been asked to go along to different retreats and mum clubs to do some talking. So yeah, so there’s quite an array. I’ve got lots of things on my website

 

Instagram and but also if there’s any questions at all then please drop me an email and I’ll be more than happy to answer.

 

Carla (42:30.82)

You’ve been amazing Emma, really enjoyed that. So so powerful and thank you so much for being our guest today.

 

Emma Saville (42:35.822)

Thank you.

 

Thank you very much for having me. I mean, you know, I’m so passionate about it because it makes so much difference to many, many lives. And not only to the lives of the parents but also the life of the baby. Because being born with reduced trauma or no trauma generally makes for happier babies and happier children. They’re more content, sleep better, feed better.

 

and generally happy and we want more happier people in the world. So yeah, it’s great.

 

Carla (43:17.176)

I love that, I love it. Thank you so much. And if you want to make connections with Emma, please do, her links are under this podcast. Thank you so much.

 

Emma Saville (43:27.266)

Thank you, Carla. Thank you.

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