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Australian Birth Stories


Dec 2, 2019

In today’s episode I interview Hannah aka The Sleep Nurse. After birthing her second son she recognised a gap in support when new parents come home from the hospital. She was in the throes of exhaustion and anxiety triggered from sleep deprivation when she resolved to become a sleep support for new parents. She now works with families of newborns to 5-year-olds and admits that she loves helping frustrated, tired, overwhelmed families through the newborn period that she found incredibly challenging. 

Hannah’s transition from hospital to home was a unique experience with her first son, Cliff. He had spent the first four weeks of his life in NICU and Special Care after being born at 32weeks so those first days at home were actually the very first time Hannah and husband Phil had been alone with their baby. “The day that we went home...that was the day that felt like he was born. It was the best day of my life,” she says. 

Eight weeks prior she had left home with a suitcase and jumped on a plane to Bali with Phil. They had been together for a year when they unexpectedly fell pregnant, embraced the surprise and moved out of a share house and into an abode of their own. Hannah had nausea and dreadful heartburn but apart from that she was gliding through a trouble-free pregnancy. Phil planned their Balinese babymoon as a surprise and they spent the first week in a remote part of the island before heading to Seminyak to shop and eat. It was during dinner with friends that Hannah first started to experience period pain cramps that came every half an hour. She didn’t think much of it, put it down to the heat and went to bed that night to sleep it off. She was 29weeks and 4 days pregnant. The next day she woke with a sore lower back, went out to shop and when it was time to have lunch she couldn’t get comfortable enough to sit down so she went back to the villa with Phil. By evening she was in the hospital; her mucous plug had come away and she was regularly contracting.