"This is a very special time.
                                    I would love to teach you HypnoBirthing and be your Doula."

                                                              Stina Richardson BSC (Hons), Member of CthA & MHbA
                                                        Accredited HypnoBirthing® Teacher - Original Mongan Method
                                                                        & Recognised Doula, represented by DoulaUK


I trained at the University of Westminster (BSC (Hons) Complementary Therapies Degree, 2004), so I have a scientific foundation. A few years later I saw Elena Tonetti’s* film “Birth as We Know it.” Its amazing. The film shows women having peaceful, empowered births - at home and even the sea! This changed my world. It totally challenged my idea of what birth could be. People were having births that were far from traumatic - they were beautiful! (Click Elena Tonetti tab for more info)

So I trained with Elena to really immerse myself in her ethos and then became a Hypnobirthing teacher and doula as a way to help spread the idea of postitve birth. 

                                                                  My Birth Story 


                                     Bluey and I the day after he was born at home in a birthing pool 

"I really put that postive mindset and HypnoBirthing to the test! The birth took a quite a while (19hrs) with lots of stopping and starting until Bluey was born peacefully at home, in water with the help of two independent midwives.  

My sursges were stronger and more regular at night. My surge routine was to repeatly say - “oooohm.” Women have been “mooing” during birth since the beginning of time, and “”OM” is “MOO” backwards! Making these sounds and spiralling my hips helped to move the pressure through. I also rubbed my lower back. It was squatting on the birthing stool brought his head down and start crowning. I felt a sting as the head stretched my tissues and getting into the pool soothed this profoundly. I used the J- breath to bring him down and when his head was out (a very bizarre but magical moment, staring at the back of his bead between my legs!) I waited (with the guidance of the midwives beacuse all I wanted to do was push!) til the next surge and with another push he was out!

I obviously had an hit of oxytocin - it was comical - I was saying “I love him I love him!” and everyone was laughing. I looked into his little blue eyes and he was so calm. He didn't cry and suckled immediately. It was such a funny feeling but it was then that I realised what my boobs were for!

He weighed 9 1/2 lbs / 4.3kg and had a masive head! The second largest the midwives had seen and I firmly believed it was the Epi-No and perineal massage that help prevent me from tearing. The 'Epi-no’ is a rubber balloon that you start using around 37 weeks. Each day you gently inflate it inside you and it helps to gently stretch the tissues and reduce the risk of tearing. Try it!

Having independent midwives made me feel like I was holding someones hand through the experience. It was all the unknown to me, but I knew they would guide me. Having supportive, informed people with you duing birth is crucial. Continuity of care is so rare these days. The birthing room is typically filled with strangers! These were some of reasons why I became a doula.  

Independent midwives also spared me the time pressures and unnecessary 'protocol.’ This became evident when I had reached 8 cm dilatation but my contractions became infrequent and at times almost seemed to stop! Instead of taking me to hospital for induction (to increase regularity of contractions) knowing that the baby was in the ‘happy heart beat range’ and that I was fine, they instead  had a cup of tea while I slept  and Blu was born peacefully that night. Every body has its own natural birth rhythm and it makes sense to listen to it.

Hypnobirthing had given me a set of tools. I had practiced most techniques before birth and found that depending on how I felt, I chose whatever felt right at the time. Listening to the body, and just ‘going with it’ is everything.

Sound helped me focus on my out breath. It felt soothing to the body and helped move the pressure through. Bluey would have heard it too. He would have probably felt the sound as a vibration and in the months following the birth he ‘hummed’ himself to sleep!

My testimony with photos is on the Phoenix Midwives website: