I didn't know what to expect when giving birth. I also made sure I didn't want to hear about other people's experiences as it may subconsciously program my mind with unnecessary fear and angst.
I intended to have an amazing delivery.
John and I didn't do any "antenatal" classes with the hospital - instead, we opted for Calm Birth and chose The Life Pod by Lauren Falconer as the facilitator of choice. Till this day, I am filled with awe and gratitude.
Calm Birth was recommended by the extraordinary Prue Tsewang, who runs an acupuncture clinic specifically for women's health.
This was my village for pregnancy and delivery.
It is so easy to be swept up in the drama and fear-based thinking that comes with pregnancy and delivery - and I also acknowledge that there are pregnancy's that are risky and challenging; and birthing experiences that can be traumatic.
AND I believe, in my heart of hearts - that there is wisdom that lives in these moments. This wisdom is asking us to hear it. This wisdom is asking us to trust it.
I protected my mindset around the delivery of our child fiercely - for my wellbeing. I learnt from those that empowered me - and it was only their opinion and teachings that mattered.
I chose to cultivate the following beliefs:
There is no such thing as pain - it is pressure.
Release the attachment, what matters most is that the baby is healthy, and you are healthy.
TRUST IN THE INNATE INTELLIGENCE WITHIN YOUR BODY. YOUR BODY IS DESIGNED FOR THIS.
When we know better, we also do better.
We stand in our power. We trust our intuition.
It was Thursday, April 28th 3am. The contractions started. I didn't know they were contractions. I thought it may have been "Braxton Hicks".
The contractions continued throughout the Thursday, then more consistent through the Friday. Finally, it was 7 am on Saturday, I was 4cm dilated, and the Birthing Centre would take me in.
At 11 am on Saturday 30th April, our beautiful midwife Vicky says; "Honey, your body is really tired. Nothing is happening. You should have been fully dilated by now - I think you may need to be induced."
At that moment, I could feel the fear in my body. I could feel the angst... I asked Vicky to give me a moment to think about it.
I surrendered to the emotions and cried. I knew that if I tried to suppress the emotions OR even trap them in my body - I would be compromising my clarity... and Fear begets Fear. I needed clarity.
I took a few deep breaths...put my hand on my heart, tuned into my body and listened. I asked; "What would you like me to do?"...
I heard it so clearly; "Dig deeper".
I learnt this from Lauren in her Calm Birth class. To trust and surrender. Let go and have faith. The breath holds magic.
I asked my husband to call our acupuncturist Prue - the incredible Prue - and ask for advice on what to do. She gave us "pressure points" to help with the labour.
Vicky walks back in; "Vicky - give me one more hour. If nothing happens within another hour, I will get induced". I responded. I gave myself a deadline.
I shared with her about the pressure points, and Vicky and my husband both started helping me.
I then gave myself over to the process - and dug deep. I trusted my body. I trusted the intelligence within me.
By 12:30 - I was fully dilated.
The delivery of Avery was one of the most profound experiences of my life as I had the opportunity to connect to that intelligence that is within all of us.
I knew - that to continue to connect to this - to trust our intuition, to learn and hear what it wants to tell us - we must make time to listen... and to listen means to make self-care a priority. Mind, Body, and Spirit.
Here was my lesson from the birth of our Avery:
"Trust yourself. Dig deeper - you can always dig deeper. Back yourself up - and Courage will never fail you.
Learn to listen to your heart.
Disregard the noise. The noise will try and seduce you, distract you, and tempt you. The noise is Fear."
One of the biggest myth that is harmful to new mothers is this - "You cannot prepare for Motherhood."
When we are forewarned, we are forearmed. When we know better, we can do better.
Postnatal depression, anxiety - stems from the health of the mind. Stems from our connection to our self. Stems from how connected we are within our own skin.
When we feel unworthy, when we feel unloved, when we feel lack and not enough - and we continue to feed this value system; our mind is hijacked.
The main challenges of Motherhood are all stemmed from how we think about ourselves - and the belief about what is happening versus what we want to happen.
Attachment vs Surrender
Control vs Faith
Fear vs Love
We can prepare for Motherhood. Make an interest to seek the lessons, to seek the wisdom that is vying for our attention.
There is wisdom in how we give birth.
The wound that needs healing reveals itself in the delivery room.
There is wisdom waiting to be heard all around us.
We can only hear the message when we tune in; make space and learn to listen.
So my gorgeous friend, I know the noise of Fear may be loud....
"Giving birth is scary, giving birth is painful...."
"Motherhood is about sacrifice, suffering, survival... It's all about the children.. my needs come last"....
- I want you to know, you have a choice on whether you choose to listen to Fear; or tune into the intelligence that lives within you.
Time to reflect: