BY Alice Grist
Several months ago, like many an expectant mother, I was in a place of fear. A lifetime of hearing horrific birthing stories had well prepared me to feel instant horror at the thought of what loomed ahead. Whilst I could embrace my pregnancy happily, spiritually even, the whole idea of giving birth was terrifying.
I no longer feel that way. You may be surprised to hear that I am looking forward to my birthing day. How did this marvelous transition occur I hear you gasp? Well as a soulful kinda gal, fear was not something I could tolerate for long without doing something about it. I have written books on adapting a positive spiritual mental attitude and I believe that life is as you think it. Something had to give…
I’m currently studying Hypnotherapy, so I decided to look into the possibilities of how hypnotic techniques can assist a laboring mum. What I found was a goldmine for any potential momma to be. I discovered ‘Hypnobirthing – The Marie Mongan Method’. Hypnobirthing digs into our ancient ability to birth and is incredibly logical. It is about changing thought patterns and learning coping strategies that are self-implemented and powerful. Hypnobirthing teaches that the pain felt in childbirth is not a natural side effect of birth – this pain, instead stems from fear. Fears provoke the body’s fight, flight or freeze response, energy is directed away from the birthing process and a lifetime of anticipating great pain becomes true. It is no surprise that so many of our women folk are left begging for the numbing sensation of whatever drug happens to be closest.
In spite of this many other cultures experience childbirth as an empowering, straightforward, intense rite of passage for women. They don’t understand what all of our Western fuss is about. Yet physiologically our bodies are identical.
Hypnobirthing places the power for birthing back in the hands of the parents. The formula is a simple one. It involves removing fear, learning to deeply relax and guess what… trusting our bodies. Yes actually trusting that women have birthed for millenia, many in a time or land without chemical or surgical interference and they have done so quite nicely.
I’m currently learning to trust my body and my baby to do what comes natural. I believe I’ve conquered my fears of childbirth and I’m looking forward to the whole process. I know – how peculiar! I’m not suggesting birth won’t be a challenge, or that it will be totally pain free, but I am visualizing that the intensity of natural birth will be a wondrous occurrence. This is the first soulful gift I can give my little baby. A birth that is not only anticipated with excitement and big huge love, but delivered with it too.