Birth Doula Blog
Why Exploring Your Unwanted Birth Matters
When it comes to labor prep you know to get your body ready for the big day. You will practice yoga, find a breathing technique that works for you, fuel your body with the right food, and become mindful about your body's mechanics. But did you know the most important labor work is mental?
The deepest work you will do in labor is emotional, mental, and spiritual. You will need to surrender to the great mystery that is childbirth. You will not know how or when baby will come. You will need to give up any time limits, expectations, and control in order to go deep within yourself and labor peacefully. Labor is not a time for holding back our primal instincts nor allowing fear to hold us back. It's a time of surrender and acceptance.
Limiting yourself to only one desired birth can greatly impact your satisfaction. If you are adamant on delivering vaginally, the thought of a C-section can be very scary. And if you are looking forward to an epidural, the idea of having contractions for hours on end might make you nervous. But, step back and remember that childbirth is not truly within your control. We can only plan but not demand. We can work with the knowledge and resources available to us. So, do you currently have those resources and knowledge if an "undesired" birth is your only option but you have avoided imaging that experience for yourself? Will you be certain you won't have a C-section, a failed epidural, a long labor? Why you...why not you?
Explore why you don't want medication, a C-section, to feel contractions, to labor at home or the hospital. Have a moment with those thoughts. What makes you uncomfortable about that experience? What fears do you have? What are the possible outcomes? If you had no choice but to give birth that way, what would help you feel better? Can you make room for the fact that the experience you don't want is sometimes necessary or empowering? It's true! There is no ONE way to give birth and even people who give birth completely opposite of you can still feel satisfied.
Finding the balance between hope and expectation will ensure you have a positive experience. Resistance will not grant you permission to accept any possible outcome, and believe me, there are tons of unforeseen outcomes! Now, if you imagine yourself in almost every scenario and gather the resources and knowledge necessary to give birth that way, you have eliminated the fear of the unknown. That fear is what holds us back from acceptance. Fear will put us into the fear-pain-tension cycle that we can't get out of. Fear eliminates acceptance which eliminates satisfaction.
Yes, create your birth plan and envision it, but make room for other truths. Plan for that other birth too and surrender to the great birth mystery.
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