'I was walking around in an hour'
Former PR/journalist Emily McElarney (32), living in Dublin, qualified as a hypnobirth specialist (www.naturalbirth.ie) after giving birth naturally to Seimi (3) and Sonny (9 months).
"I have a back condition and always said I wouldn't let anyone put a needle in my back during labour, so I looked for an alternative.
"I believe that every woman is powerful and able to do a hypnobirth, but they get this fear instilled that they can't do it.
"It's the fear that causes the pain during childbirth.
"Hypnobirth isn't a magic wand but if you can go into a delivery ward relaxed and confident you'll have no problem. I put a lot of prep in before the birth. The first thing I did was find a practitioner, a midwife in Holles Street, and did a course in hypnobirthing. When I first floated the idea with my husband Colin, his first reaction was, 'I'm not into that hippie mumbo jumbo'. In the end he became the biggest advocate.
"When I had my first wee fella, he was a big baby ready for action. With the second, his shoulder got caught and he was a big bruiser too. I was up and walking around within an hour, not a bother. I have had periods that were more painful. I was watching women who had epidurals still in bed after 12 hours, needing bedpans.
"But I was looking after my baby and enjoying it. A hypno baby is calm and all is right in the world. I made it my mission to empower other women.
"After such a good experience, it would be rude not to give something back."Happy family Emily with Colin, Seimi and Sonny