"We took Maeva's Hypnobirthing classes and were lucky enough to have her as our doula, as well. I am so grateful to Maeva for her excellent care leading up to and during our birth. Like many births, what transpired on the day was certainly a deviation from our intended birth plan, but having Maeva there as my champion and my advocate was absolutely invaluable. Her compassion and knowledge make her the ideal doula. We are so grateful for her help and love in bringing our Jasper into the world!"
Testimonial from a mum who could only attend 2 classes
"I am so grateful for the hypnobirthing training that I was able to receive. It helped most with the surges; there were 2 occasions when distractions from the hospital environment interrupted my relaxed state. But then I immediately went into "rag doll" on one occasion, and used my "switch" on the other occasion. I also turned on my rainbow relaxation via my ipod and those surges became smooth sailing. Giving birth in the hospital environment can definitely limit the flow of your birth plan. However I was able to maintain the sweetness of my birth experience because of the control that hypnobirthing allowed me to maintain. I plan to use it again with my next birth God willing- hopefully in the home setting. Thanks Maeva!"
Cierra and little Giovanni's story
"It was 8pm and I just laid in bed after a very long day when I heard a snap in my pelvic region. I ran to the bathroom unsure of what just happened. It took maybe 20 minutes for me to realize my water just broke. By 8:45 I was at the 3-2-1 stage. I couldn't believe it because early that morning my doctor told us I was barely 3cm dilated. I was already uncomfortable from overworking myself in the previous week, and I had to keep reminding my husband to help me with relaxation. The most peaceful time of my labor was in the backseat of the car where I listened to the ocean, did my surge breathing and visualized. The discomfort seemed to drift away as I hypnotized myself. We arrived at the hospital, checked in at 11:49pm...then the staff took over my delivery. I wish my husband had been more assertive for me... I physically couldn't speak...
When he was coming down it didn't hurt at all until the nurse intervened... Giovanni arrived at 12:09am at 8lbs 5oz. I couldn't believe how fast everything went.
The one thing I'd do differently is i would have a doula there with me. I wish i had had more of an advocate for me during the whole process.
Thank goodness for hypnobirthing, at least I had a half hour of a peaceful delivery! Maeva, your generosity helped me get through. Thank you for everything."
Reagan Faith Kelly born May 30th at 2:13am.
"The day I went into labor, I had my weekly OBGYN visit. The doctor said I was dilated only 1cm and would probably go into labor later in the week but my water ended up breaking in the cab on the way home! I was planning on staying home until the 3-2-1 count you taught us, which I reached after only one hour. By the time I arrived at NYU, I was starting transition, which was really intense. Throughout everything, I continued the breathing techniques we were taught in class along with my visualizations. Everything happened so fast that before I knew it, they were telling me it was time to push. I did a combination of pushing and breathing down.
I did this for 4 hours but Reagan's head refused to push over my pubic bone. The doctor and nurses tried their hardest to help me through visualization and even turning her head themselves but no matter what they did, her head stayed put. Since the baby wasn't in distress, my doctor wanted me to push a few extra hours because he was very reluctant to perform a c-section but in the end, I had to get one. Everything moved so fast and was very tiring, that it all became a blur after a while so the only thing I remember during delivery was the doctor announcing it was a girl. We were totally shocked because we thought she was a boy!
Although it wasn't my ideal delivery, I was really happy with the way my doctor and the NYU nurses handled everything. I'm also very happy I practiced all of the hypnobirthing techniques as much as I did because I found them extremely helpful while recovering from surgery. I have barely needed pain medication. Reagan is a very calm baby and breastfeeding is so natural, which I attribute to hypnobirthing. In fact, when she gets a little fussy, I start my deep breathing and she falls asleep immediately! I'm continuing all of the relaxation practices so she and I can stay as centered as possible.
Thank you for everything. I'm so glad Brendan and I found your website because I don't think anyone else could have taught hypnobirthing better than you!"
"I took hypnobirthing classes with Maeva in winter, 2013. My baby girl was due April 25, 2013. But she's a headstrong little one, and from 30 weeks on she was breech, and despite trying everything, she didn't budge. We tried moxibustion, acupuncture, hypnosis, inversions, energy healing, and finally, an ECV at the hospital with my OB/GYN. One would think that hypnobirthing wouldn't come into play except during labor, but that's not true. I was terribly nervous about the prospect of having a scheduled c-section (it was the LAST thing I wanted), and I'd heard that an in-hospital inversion was horribly painful. So on the day we headed to the hospital to attempt to turn her, I practiced by breathing and visualized a very peaceful place. I was calm and collected during the ECV, and while it was mildly uncomfortable, it wasn't painful, and I relaxed completely.
Alas, my daughter didn't turn, so I had a scheduled c-section on April 18, 2013. Lucy was born 6 pounds, 8 ounces, and I was cool as a cucumber during the c-section. I breathed and visualized before and during, and I had a clear head all throughout it. I knew if I was in control I'd have a good birth, and I did. I wasn't afraid to express myself or ask for anything during the operation, and I credit feeling empowered through hypnobirthing for that.
My birth story was the opposite of what I expected, but it was the best day of my life, and I have a happy, beautiful, smiling daughter to prove it!
"Welcoming Ellie, who arrived at 6:19 am on Saturday, August 24, 2013. Our wonderful little 5 lb 15 oz, 19 inch bundle emerged calm and alert, and greeted us sweetly, just three days before her "official" due date. Mommy Phoebe proved herself to be a true champion by delivering at home, after an intense 24-hour labor, with no medical intervention. Daddy James couldn't be prouder of them both."
"Grover arrived this past Friday morning, May 3 at 38 weeks! I had been feeling under the weather all week and woke up around 3:30am with what I thought was more stomach cramps. It wasn't until 7 when they were coming fast and furious that it really kicked in I was in full-on labor. Our doula was on her way to our apartment (thinking she would be laboring with us all day) but we got in her cab and left for the hospital. After an hour long ride through traffic we arrived at St Luke's at 8:45am. I was trying to tell everyone to take me to the birth center but then they checked me and I was already 10cm. Honestly, I was shocked. At the apartment and in the cab I had been doing the breathing and visualization techniques as much as possible and kept thinking - if I get all the way to the hospital and they send me back home I don't think i can keep doing this. I was trying to prepare for the worst because I really didn't know what to expect in terms of pain - I kept thinking it would get twice as bad as it was. And it was INTENSE.
So anyway, they wheel me into a room and I pushed for 30 minutes and Grover was here at 9:26am! 6lbs 2oz - little peanut. and he hasn't stopped eating since.
I'm super grateful everything went so well, and I think my yoga and hypnobirthing practice definitely played a large role. I think relaxing may have gotten my body ready and working that week before he came."
"I took Maeva's class late winter, and had my baby june 9th, 2013. The hypnobirthing techniques were tremendously helpful for the first 24 hours of labor (about half prodromal, half active labor). In the end I did end up asking for a mild epidural, about 6 hours before I gave birth. I hadn't slept in 2 days and had terrible back labor. But until then hypnobirthing helped me get through.
I'm especially glad I took the classes because of the perspective it gave me, erasing all my fears and anxiety over labor so I could truly enjoy my pregnancy. During my second and third trimesters, I was excited for baby, never scared. And here he is, and he is perfect!
"Thank you for helping us during different stages that lead to our beautiful baby: hypnotherapy, hypnobirthing, and your support during labor. In each of these roles, your kindness and guidance were essential to the birth of our baby. Hypnobirthing for me means taking charge of the experience by using a set of skills (mindfulness, breathing and relaxation techniques and hypnosis among others) to be present, enjoy and actively participate during labor.
I highly encourage women to try this approach. It truly works and prepares you for whatever turns your birth experience will take!
My labor was very long and full of unexpected surprises. We feel that definitely hypnobirthing help us to navigate through the experience with knowledge, pride, flexibility, strength, and confidence. It was definitely helpful at every step.
I feel that this method taught by you, really empowered me to take an active role and make informed decisions.
My husband’s support during labor was unbelievable and made the experience even more special! Thank you for giving the support, and confidence to be the best birth companion ever!
Maeva, your knowledge, support and generosity were key to the birth of our wonderful Lucas. We will always remember you as part of that special day. He is a very such a blessing!"
"I was interested in Hypnobirthing because a very close friend of mine had 2 children using the method. Her second child was born at home and she described her experience as completely painless. As a longtime yoga and meditation practitioner I hold the belief that I can work with whatever arises in my mind and in my body.
Maeva encouraged us to practice, practice, practice. When I asked my friend for advice she said “PRACTICE!” Everything I saw online had the same sentiment.
Maeva gave me Birthing Through Hypnosis as an alternative to the traditional Hypnobirthing CD. I listened to the Head to Toe Relaxation track, usually at night when I was winding down for bed. I would practice the silver glove at the end of the track. Only once during my preparation was I able to pinch myself and truly felt no sting. But it convinced me that I could control how my mind perceived pain and motivated me to work harder. In the last 6 weeks of my pregnancy I practiced once or twice a day, every day. My husband and I also practiced different labor positions together while he read some of the scripts out loud to me. I found the private, fear release, session with Maeva to be very powerful. She is excellent one on one and I came back to this practice a few times throughout my pregnancy. Her guidance in this was indispensible.
When I found out that I had low amniotic fluid I was very resistant to being induced. But after a long, informative conversation with my midwife (Midwifery of Manhattan) and my husband’s calm perception of the situation, I realized it was the right thing to do. My main goal was to have a vaginal birth. If I waited longer, I might be putting the baby in danger and therefore increasing my chances of a C-section. We made an educated decision to go for the induction. I felt prepared and was ready to go forward without pain medication. No one at Roosevelt even mentioned pain medication to me; it was understood that I was having a Hypnobirth. My midwife started the Pitocin drip at very low level and increased it very gradually. This helped me get my bearings and gave me some time to acclimate to the surges.
The surges were very strong and I attribute that to the Pitocin. I felt fearful that I could not handle the intensity. I could literally feel my uterus pulling up over and over again throughout the surge. My uterus was contracting so hard that I was involuntarily exhaling air as the muscles pulled up towards my lungs (ps. I happen to be very short waisted). I remembered Maeva’s advice, not to keep anything in, to express whatever I was feeling especially if it was fear. I expressed my fear to my midwife and husband, “The surges are not what I was expecting…” and described the experience I was having. My midwife said, “Go with it”. With that simple statement I remembered all my training and my fear release session with Maeva.
While I found it impossible to practice the silver glove, I concentrated on what I was able to do. I used the breathing techniques and actively relaxed during each surge. I mentally and physically worked to release tension and let the surge happen. In a way, the Pitocin and my body were in control and I did my best to get out of the way so the work of opening my cervix could be done. When I remembered in between surges I would visualize the opening flower. I became extremely focused and barely spoke; only opening my eyes if my midwife or husband asked me a question.
My active labor was very fast and I attribute this to a combination of the powerful Pitocin surges and my ability to relax and let my body do its work. I went from 5cm to fully dilated in 3 hours. When it was time to breath the baby down I “pushed” maybe 2 or 3 times. I could feel my baby moving down! On the surge I breathed out my little girl. I had read in books and heard other friends talk about “the ring of fire” but I had absolutely NO pain breathing down my baby. I didn’t do anything special at this time, I just used the breathing technique. I think that I relaxed so deeply at this point that my body just opened with no resistance.
Even though I was induced, the whole experience felt like a completely natural birth. I know I could not have done it without my Hypnobirthing practice. I am grateful to my amazing midwife, my husband and to Maeva for instruction.
"Thank you for the hypnobirthing teaching you shared as we prepared for childbirth. Your strength and poise as you guided us through Hugo's gentle arrival were remarkable. Thank you a thousand times for helping make possible the calm, natural, joyful birth of our son. We would recommend you to anyone, any time, anywhere. And if we ever have another child, you'll hear from us! " Robin, Melissa, Miles and Hugo
"Thank you Maeva for helping to bring our beautiful Elle into the world. Her early arrival didn't allow us as much time as we would have liked to practice the hypnobirth techniques, but I know I couldn't have had the amazing experience of natural birth without all I learned from you and your tireless hands on help as my doula. We love you!" Lydia, Jordan, and Elle Charlotte
Alexa's Birth, born July 7th, at 2.25pm
One of the key reasons we started looking into the hypnobirthing method was because some of our friends had used it and they were very positive (they had a home birth). It also sounded appealing when reading more about it as it had a very different approach to labour than any other book that I had read that just focused on the pain. It also seemed like a good approach as to how to handle my fear.
After the first session with Maeva we were both convinced that this could really help us and we knew it would be a good way for both of us to prepare together. As we read more about the hypnobirthing and after our sessions we both started becoming much more relaxed and excited about was what to come and much less focused on the pain. I started feeling really strong both mentally as well as physically. We focused a lot on the breathing and relaxation exercises which was something that became very useful throughout my labour.
My labour started slowly on the Thursday afternoon and our daughter wasn't born until Saturday afternoon. The strong surges really kicked in on Friday after lunch but I was not dilating much. By noon on Saturday we agreed to the doctor giving me pitocin in order to move things along and by then I was just too exhausted to handle that without an epidural which I then felt very disappointed by. The support of both my husband and Maeva throughout really helped me.
Two hours later our daughter was born and disappointment was long gone. She had arrived and she was beautiful, healthy and ours.
I would recommend hypnobirthing to anyone being pregnant as it helps you to prepare for what is to come in the best possible way. Johanna, Joe and Alexa
Owen's Birth, born June 29th
"Hi Maeva, i just want to let you know that Molly gave birth to baby Owen last Friday (June 29th). It was a great birth with no intervention of any kind. Our midwife was very impressed by our labor and birthing techniques. She even asked where we received our training right after birth...." Molly, OJ and little Owen
Rogan James birth
"My husband and I attended HypnoBirthing classes relatively early in my pregnancy. This gave us time to personalize our study of the method and really embrace the mentality that my body is fully capable of a natural birthing experience. HypnoBirthing enabled us to remain calm and in control during a fast moving and very intense natural delivery; my surges began immediately after my membrane released and were never more than two minutes apart... no easing into labor for me! While my husband and I hardly spoke during labor, we remained in near constant physical contact and felt very connected to one another. Together with our midwife and doula, we worked to avoid any interventions, even though my son's head became lodged in my pelvic bone. Deep breathing and visualization enabled me to stick to our birth plan and deliver him safely and naturally. My son and I have recovered from the birth beautifully. We have formed an incredible bond as a family and are thrilled to have welcomed Rogan James with such love."
" Our little girl came a bit earlier than her due date on August 3rd. We had a successful homebirth that was all we could have envisioned. It began with my water beginning to leak at 9:00pm on August 2nd. The surges didn't begin till about 2:00 in the morning. I listened to my affirmations and was able to get some rest through the night. The next day everything took a nice gradual pace. I was able to breathe easily through the surges. We took a walk, filled our birthing tub, and got the house ready for our upcoming event. I tried to take lay down for a bit more rest about 4:00 in the afternoon. This was a true test to the Rainbow Relaxation because my surges were just a few minutes apart. I was able to really rest for a good amount of time. Enough to store up some energy for later. The midwife came about 8:00pm as the surges were close together. There was an intensity to this last portion of my labor. Jeremy was great with continuing to prompt me, as well as providing the counter pressure on my pelvis. The breath continued to help me throughout. The birth breath and finding how to follow it bearing the baby down took a bit of effort for me. Finding where to bear down from, and continue to try to keep relaxed was hard for me. But we had success at 10:55pm. Ansley Catherine Baber was born weighing 6lb 4oz. My midwife gave me a nice complement on my follow up visit. She said my birth stood out for her, because it kept a nice pace from start to finish, there was never any moment throughout that there was a stall. She said she does not see that very often. I attributed it to Hypnobirthing.. The affirmations, keeping a clear vision of what we wanted our birth to be, and the ability to be able to relax into the birth process. Thank you for your help and support, preparing us for this momentous event." Allison, Jeremy and Ansley Baber
"As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I instinctively knew that I wanted to have our baby naturally. Our hypnobirthing classes prepared us for childbirth and made us even more determined to do it our way and to avoid the routinely orchestrated cocktail of: pitocin, epidural, more pitocin and then the threat of a c-section.
Two days before my due date, I went to see my midwife for another check on my cervix. I found out that my cervix had softened but was posterior...meaning that it was not in alignment with the birth canal & therefore the baby couldn’t come down. I wasn’t going to have the baby in the next few days, that seemed clear. Thoughts of induction and c-sections loomed so I did everything I could: walked, rested, had sex, took evening primrose oil pills, drank red raspberry tea, ate pineapple, envisioned my cervix in the anterior position. And I tried to ignore the calls and messages and texts from friends, family and relative strangers wondering if the baby had come yet. Please people, I’m already anxious and feeling a little bit scared. Om to that.
Sunday evening, the day after my due date, I felt tightening. My husband was on the phone with his sister, I heard him say ”the baby may not come until next week”. Good husband, thank you. A few more tightening sensations in and I said “I think I might be having a surge.” So, we timed them...they started at 8 minutes apart at 10:07pm. We turned on our hypnobirthing cd’s and timed the surges all night. I walked around during the sensations as much as I could, my husband gave me light touch massage and I used the breathing techniques....all night long. Our aim was to stay at home for as long as humanly possible to avoid induction. We knew that once we stepped into the doors of the hospital, we would be on their clock, not our babys. When the sun rose we called our midwife. After timing the surges until they were three minutes apart, we left for the hospital. We skipped the triage and went straight to the delivery room. After three and a half hours of labor in the hospital our sunny side up baby boy, Mysun Orion Higgins, was born - 100% naturally, no pitocin, no epidural, no c-section.
Thank you Maeva and Hypnobirthing, we couldn’t have done it without you."
Before I started the HypnoBirthing classes with Maeva I was quite apprehensive about Labor. My experience of Labor was what other people had told me but I believed that childbirth didn't need to be painful, that it could be a beautiful gentle experience, and that as a birthing mother you should be able to be in control of your beautiful child's birth rather than being 'coached' through it.
Upon my readings I began to open my eyes to a new world of possible birthing, a world where relaxation became an integral part of the birth, where a woman was made aware and encouraged to realize that she was in control of her body, that her body did know what to do and that trust in herself and her baby was the key.
I choose HypnoBirthing as it resonated with me the most - calm breathing, subconscious conditioning, faith and trust in one's self and releasing all negative emotions from the past -becoming aware of what is affecting you at a deeper level than just surface -and as you're having a child all these things were important to me, being pregnant become a cleansing experience for me emotionally, getting rid of all my baggage i was holding on to - releasing the things which no longer honored me or would no longer honor my child ... and opening (for want of a better word) myself up to the birthing experience, becoming excited about it.
The classes helped to understand the birthing process more on a physiological level, what happens to the body, what surges do to the muscles,the visual aspect of the rose, the budding flower - it was a very educational course. The rainbow visualizations from the CD were extremely helpful in relaxing - and I did them religiously each night
I can say I was much calmer during my birth and my mindset become different to the whole birthing experience.
Two days past my due date, I unfortunately had high blood pressure and my OB told me to go straight to the labor room, my blood pressure was incredibly high and they were worried I might have a seizure, I was only 1cm dilated but full term, as soon as they took me to the room - I started doing deep calm breathing and my blood pressure went straight back down to normal, I didn't need to be induced as my body went into spontaneous labor on it's own, which I doubt it would have if I wasn't as calm as I was - I was probably the most calm I've ever been during my birth - the breathing was amazing and the core lessons in the class. I used the visualizations - I will admit to forgetting to use my birth color but had I remembered I believe that would have been quite a calming one as well!
We played Classical Music, I felt more in control, I was confident in that my partner and I were on the same page with our birth plan and he made sure the doctors were aware of it - I was also lucky to have Maeva present at my birth as well and she was very calming for me.
The surges started off very calm and there was no need (from my experience only) to breath through them but it is imperative to get yourself into a calm state from the onset of labor, so you should! Going deeper in your self-hypnosis which you learn in the classes, for your partner to be incredibly supportive which is why it's important he/she does the class with you - my partner did and he was amazing.
I breathed through each surge but when I got to 7cm and I was so exhausted ... that I opted for an epidural. No decision is a wrong one and through the course I learnt to release my disappointment at getting the epidural, I wanted a pure natural birth but sometimes things don't go to plan.
HypnoBirthing was amazing for me, when I have my next child, I’ll use the same techniques I did in this birth and I think it will be even more beneficial as I realize from this birth the things I could have changed to be calmer and more trusting of myself, it is a big undertaking and you need to honor the process for it is a life changing one. I use it even now and she's 6 weeks old, I use it when she's crying at night and all I want to do is sleep, during her fussy times and just when I need to calm myself or want some quick ME time.
Maeva was a wonderful compassionate teacher so I feel lucky to have been taught by her - the benefits as I mentioned continue into your every day life and that's something I’m forever grateful for.'
Poppy's Birth, May 26th at 2.55pm
"I woke up on friday morning with some uncomfotable cramps and decided to breathe through them. From 4am to 8am i breathed and relaxed and then decided to wake my husband up. He actually helped me realize that i was in labor (Poppy was not expected for anoher 2 weeks or so). We decided to go to the hospital. I was 3cms and my blood pressure was up. I sat on the ball for a bit, went into the tub (which was amazing!) and did the rainbow and the birth affirmations. I did a ton of breathing and visualization! After a while, i decided it was time to get this baby out :) So i started my squats. My water broke at 2.45pm so they called for a nurse and doctor.. But then at 2.55, i was in a bucket squat position, breathing down and visualizing the J, she litterally came flying out. The nurses were in shcok, the doctor was not even in the room! I don't remember a lot of what happened, no drugs, HypnoBirthing all the way!"