Boy do I wish I'd known about hypnobirthing during my first two labours. Don't get me wrong, I had a lot of tools in my kit bag to help me manage the pain of labour without drugs, from music to mantras, to the wonderful TENS machine, but labour of course isn't just pain (or it doesn't have to be). It's the process of getting to meet your baby for the very first time and it can be AMAZING! OK, it's painful, exhausting and often scary but still has the potential to be something more. I always remember my mother in law describing her labours a quite a 'spiritual' experience and I wanted some of that!
THIS WAS THE 'MANTRA' I WORKED ON WITH A PSYCHOLOGIST DURING MY SECOND PREGNANCY AND LABOUR DUE TO A PREVIOUS TRAUMA. LOOKING AT IT NOW, I CAN FULLY REMEMBER MY ANXIOUS STATE OF MIND AND LTHAT LIVING IN THE MOMENT WAS ALL I HAD, I DIDN'T DARE HOPE FOR A POSITIVE OUTCOME. HYPNOBIRTHING BROUGHT MY SENSE OF CONTROL AND RELAXATION TO A WHOLE NEW LEVEL.
So by my third pregnancy I finally decided to give hypnobirthing a try on the recommendation of a friend. Before that I'd thought it was only for people who wanted home births, water births, totally 'natural' births but I was due to be induced, again! However because of that, and a previous birth trauma, I seriously needed to relax, follow the flow, calm my anxious mind and just 'be' with the process'. So after jumping on the hypno-bandwagon for the final few weeks of pregnancy and absolutely loving the opportunity to practise the relaxation techniques, my labour with my little girl - in spite of the typical NHS hospital room, the needle in my arm and the frequent changing of staff - was the most positive experience I could possibly have asked for. But if you're still not convinced, here are a few words from the lovely Dany Moore (who I was lucky enough to have as my midwife in my final pregnancy) at Nurtured Mama Hypnobirthing Ooh and see below for details of a free hypnobirthing taster session with Dany, plus a 'guest spot' from me all about food, mood and movement in the last month pf pregnancy!
Power of Positivity
The power of positive words. Growing up you heard the rhyme- ‘Sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me’ Right?!
Well we all know that is just a bare faced lie! Words seep into our subconscious and become our inner voice. The words our parents, Grandparents, teachers said have the power to build us up or tear us down. This is the same when you become pregnant. We have spent years listening to birth stories, watching labour and birth on tv, look at one born every minute?! Dramatic, sensational sometimes scary stories. People love to share the good, the bad and everything in between. But pregnancy is NOT the time for them to share this with you.
What if I were to tell you there is another way!? What if you could practice releasing any fear and tension you had built up over the years and replace it with excitement? Calm, Comfort and Peace? No really!
When I first heard of Hypnobirthing I have to admit I thought it sounded at best odd, at worst untrue. How could the mind affect the body? Do we have control over what happens to us? Can positive words really make a difference?
Then I studied, read up. Went on a hypnobirthing course and realised- it was true! Where the mind leads the body follows. On my Nurtured Mama Hypnobirthing course, we explore the power of positive words both spoken over you and that you speak over yourself. We learn to reframe negative thoughts or worries into neutral or positive ones. See Etsy.com for these affirmation cards!
We encourage you to ask friends to share their positive birth stories (only!). We show you awesome birth videos and teach you how your body works when it is in a relaxed state. The freeze, fight or flight response many women have in labour increases adrenaline and inhibits Oxytocin. This happens because women labour best in a private, quiet, calm place. As soon as a labouring woman enters unfamiliar surroundings she no longer feels safe and this can affect her birth experience.
However, when a couple are practised in hypnobirthing- birth relaxations, affirmations, breathing techniques and releasing fear, they retain the ability to stay in the calm state they have practised. Oxytocin flows (the love hormone) and endorphins are released-200 times more powerful that morphine. Wherever you choose to give birth, either at home, on a birth suite, a birth centre or on the delivery suite, you can stay in a calm, relaxed zone. You will have done all the practice in your pregnancy and all you have to do is breathe. Your partner will be there to give you triggers for relaxation. They will speak positive words over you when necessary. You can do this! Your body was designed to birth your baby calmly, safely and naturally. Even if you do decide a birth intervention is needed you will have weighed up the risks versus the benefits and have made an informed decision.
Positive words really make a difference for all of life, but especially as you birth your baby.
So, Dany and I have teamed up to create a FREE TASTER event for you to learn a little more about how hypnobirthing can help you towards having a positive birth experience PLUS I'm doing a session on movement, food and mood essentials for the last month of pregnancy (much of this you will not get from your midwife so do come along to find out more, have a cuppa and meet other mamas (and dads)! Click on the link to join the event or email Dany at Dany.firstname.lastname@example.org!
Till next time....
Health and wellness mentor