But there sure is a difference between the “prepared, educated birth” and the “fly by the seat of your pants” kind!
It must be true we are crazy with hormones because what I considered ‘preparing for birth’ consisted of:
* over bleaching my hair (it was a knotted, tangled mess by the time my son emerged – see photo below! lol ),
* finding a second hand nightie and cutting the sleeves with scissors to get the right fit, and
* not even remembering a maternity bra for the hospital (so that I was actually lectured by a nurse about modesty when my boobs grew to a massive size E).
And that’s just fashion blunders… that’s not even mentioning actual birthing mistakes!
Post birth I was just as crazy, messed up … Sitting in a park one day I found myself trying to decide whether to pull my t-shirt upwards for feeding (and show my flabby, post-birth tummy to the world), or pull the breast up (and over) the neckline and feed my newborn at shoulder height?!
Crazy, ah yes!
I know now, with over seven years’ accumulated wisdom, that birth is a serious event.
It is as momentous as a wedding, it is as physically and mentally challenging as competing for Olympic gold and it is as delicate and as private as letting out a ‘number two’ (physiologically the same too – except the reward is much more beautiful when it’s a baby!).
I say ‘letting out’ because our solid waste really does gently glide out of the body when we are completely relaxed and we allow it to happen.
Next time you do a number 2, try breathing your energy downwards and learn how you can ‘relax your body empty’. Literally put your chin down to your chest and breathe calmly down. No need for physical pushing. Relax all muscles instead. It is important to time this with your body signals.
With the right preparation and practise women breathe babies out too!
No need to get carried away by a ‘cheerleader-type’ medico who yells “push” “push”*. We don’t have cheer squads in our toilets for a reason.
Yes, there is a reason your partner doesn’t yell “push” from outside the bathroom door. Sphincters are shy! Your cervix and vagina have circular bands that can be shy too.
Speaking of shy, Ill never forget my trip to Kathmandu where my system completely ‘shut up’.
Toilets with locks that don’t work and cracks in the walls! I felt so exposed. There was no way my body was relaxing out any ‘solid waste babies’!
As the days progressed I was glad I had learned and practised HypnoBirthing tools, which I was able to implement:
- I accepted and admitted my fears of my system not working.
- I replaced that fear with curiosity (hmm, will the poo be the colour of that red earth patch?… the colour of that cow dung?…)
- I established self-hypnosis which allowed a full body relaxation
- I breathed my energy down and out.
And guess what – I produced a poo! Yay!
We empty our body best when we deepen into a natural trance state and let our body do its thing unhindered by troublesome anxious thoughts. That’s why people often read in the toilet and why self-hypnosis works well for birthing.
In the case of a number two, the passage lubricates and the muscles and micro muscles move the waste out.
In the case of birth the passage lubricates, the uterus muscles contract and micro muscles move the baby out. The scientists call it the bodies ‘natural expulsive reflex’.
If you fight your automated muscle contractions, you tense up and cause pain. Imagine what a mess we would be in if we tried to fight our diaphragm muscle during the automated breathing process. Yet women do fight birth every day.
For birth (just like a number two) you need to find ways to achieve:
- Time, patience
- Relaxation of all muscle groups
- Trust in the bodys’ instinctual, automated functions
- Curiosity (afraid how big the head is? instead get curious about how the infants’ amazing soft skull presses into a cone for birth – natures design for passing through the pelvis!) Get curious about your baby’s sex, hair colour, nose shape… They are great, positive thoughts to keep your mind focused.
Yes, birth is private, it requires time and quiet… but it has a momentous side too… It’s a big event, it’s life changing.
So lets compare Birth to:
what you need for a special event in column one,
and column two, what you need at a wedding,
and column three, how it translates to what you need for birth!
|What you need||Wedding||Birth|
|Essential skilled companions||Bridesmaids and/or maid of honour||Midwives, doulas|
|Love, trust||Partner||Chosen companions|
|Specialist on hand (only as required)||Celebrant||Occasionally an Obstetrician|
|Words to say and think||Vows||Birth plan/preferences, Positive affirmations audio|
|Preparation||Wedding rehearsal||Birth preparation course (relaxation based
|Place||A beautiful venue that has personal meaning for you||A place where you can be assured privacy, positive vibes, patience, relaxation and calm supporters|
|Something special for her||Wedding dress, jewellery||Clothes to feel good, positive, relaxed and comfortable.|
|Practical stuff||Make up, tissues, etc.||Maternity bras, Breast pads|
|Ceremony and mood
|Wedding cake, rings, love songs, decorations, perfume, flowers.||Hot water, dim lights, soothing hypnotic music, scents|
|Health||Nutrition and Exercise to look your best||Nutrition and Exercise to perform your best (pelvic floor and perineum muscles)|
|State of mind||Slow deep abdomen breathes to remain calm and to ensure endorphins outweigh stress hormones||Slow deep abdomen breathes to remain calm and to ensure endorphins outweigh stress hormones|
*Pease note: The lack of body coordination and sensation caused by an epidural or pethidine administration often does lead to a situation requiring ‘coached pushing’.