Birth: there's nothing quite like it, and it's clear no two birth stories are the same. Which is why we're asking everyday women and some of our favourite celebrity mums to share theirs, in Mamamia's My Birth Story series.
This week we profile Allanah Secis, Brisbane-based mum to one-year-old Harvey and water birth queen.
Pregnancy was mostly smooth sailing for primary school teacher Allanah, who always knew she wanted a natural birth.
“My mum Michelle had my brother Dylan and I in her early twenties and then another son, my brother Miles when she was 47-years-old. Mum had an amazing home birth so I took a lot from her experience and knew that I wanted something similar.”
Watch: All our pressing questions about giving birth, answered. Post continues below.
Allanah did pre-natal yoga to help her both physically and mentally, and at 37 weeks she and partner Brandon enrolled in a ‘Calm Birth’ course.
“I had some fears about the lack of control around birthing as I like to be in control," she says.
"The course was very practical and not at all ‘hippy-dippy.' It was a safe and positive place and I came away thinking that if my body was capable of growing a baby, it was capable of getting the baby out!
“I found the course was important for Brandon too; he was given techniques to support and guide me on the day.”
Allanah and Brandon chose to go with a midwife-led birth and as she was low risk, she barely needed to see a doctor at all.
“I met regularly with the midwife team and we put together a birth plan based on what we wanted.”
At 39 weeks, and on Brandon’s busiest day at work as a health and safety officer for the Ekka Agricultural show, Allanah went into labour.
“At 11pm I felt a wave of intense pain that quickly subsided. I had a night of broken sleep and breathing through the contractions. By 4am I got up and began meditating, then at 6am Brandon woke up.”
The morning passed by in a hazy, relaxed blur. Allanah’s mum, Michelle, came over to make sure everyone ate and to comfort the pair throughout the day. Brandon got the candles and the playlist going as per the birth plan and applied pressure to Allanah’s back while helping to count breaths.