This is not the final word, just enough for now.
Continuing on with the deep discussion on fears – some thoughts on addressing/managing those fears that fester within us.
Please consider the following, and add to this any points or additions you feel are relevant.
- Getting in touch with intuition can serve to soothe fears. Knowing the difference between insight and emotions. Emotions (possibly gut feelings) are not the same as intuition (inner knowing). Fear is an emotion, and emotions are often based upon memories that remain with us, desires and attachment, and concerns of the ego– not deeper, higher or inner wisdom. Practice feeling, learning and understanding the difference.
- If thoughts create realities, as some say they do what are you thinking? Be aware, always! Continue your mindfulness training. Train your mind. Choose your thoughts carefully. No matter how overbearing and ruling they may feel at times, our thoughts are still our choice.
- Acknowledge fears with knowledge. One friend feared the umbilical cord around the neck in birth and heard more and more horror stories about this serving to fuel the fires of her fears. Finally, she took the time to research how common the nuchal cord is (about one third of all babies) without complication, how normal this can be, and her fears were alleviated. When her baby was born with the cord around (twice) it was a smooth simple matter of calmly removing the cord without complication – or fear. Mother was a peace; baby was perfectly well.
- Dreams (and when fears are expressed, we call these nightmares) can be a forum in which we allow our subconscious to work through fear. Do not fear your dreams, thinking they must be harbingers of truth, and visions of things to come. Rather honor them for being the opportunity for release that they often can serve us. Allow your fears this sacred time of letting go. Wake following a nightmare feeling more refreshed, lightened, free…
The importance of learning to let go, feeling not thinking.
The birth process, as you know, is normal and natural. It is a healthy state of being and becoming, not a medical emergency. No matter how much we study the ifs, ands, and buts of birth, we will never know it all. Birth is non linear, unpredictable. Like a river, powerful and wild one moment, gentle and soft the next, and ultimately completing its journey when merging with the sea. Like all of nature, birth shall always remain a part of the Great Mystery.
Make the most of this wild ride. Do not fear. Rather, dive in. Let go, float and flow. Let the water hold you up, bring you where you need to go. Slow down, be curious, be open; nurture and nourish your whole self, your emotions, your spirit, even your fears; celebrate and elevate, rejoice. Allow it to be. Trust it. Trust yourself. Allow yourself to become.
Give into the experience. Gain power by letting go of control. Become the wave. The wind. The bamboo tree. Sands in a dune. Moving, flowing, becoming, evolving – without resistant. Allow yourself to lose control, and then you can become. When your time comes, forget all you have learned. Forget everything I’m telling you. The right way is YOUR way, however your way unfolds.
“What if we referred to the sensations of labor with a word other than “PAIN”? The word PAIN is so small and limited. When I stub my toe, I feel pain. When I eat something that gives me gas, I feel pain. I wish I had a better word to describe what it actually FELT like to birth my babies. There was definitely sensation. A LOT of sensation. I could feel it. But it was good. It was OK! I even enjoyed it. It was so primal and sensual. I remember saying at the beginning of a surge, “This one is going to be really big…” and it WAS, but following every wave of labor was a wave of pleasure and relaxation and love. I felt so sexy. I felt so warm and soft and open and flushed with excitement. I guess you could say the pain of childbirth felt really…good. I wish I could invent a new word for it. The closest word I can think of is POWER, but mixed with surrender, sensuality, sexuality, vulnerability and strength. We belittle women and the birth experience when we refer to it with the same word we use for broken bones and bruises. The pain of labor is transcendent.” — Lauralyn Curtis, HBCE
“According to physiological law, all natural, normal functions of the body are achieved without peril or pain. Birth is a natural, normal physiological function for normal, healthy women and their healthy babies. It can, therefore, be inferred that healthy women, carrying healthy babies, can safely birth without peril or pain.” – Dr. Jonathan Dye, 1891
“Childbirth shouldn’t hurt. The word “HURT” implies that something is injured, damaged, broken, or malfunctioning. Think of the intense sensations you may feel during a deep-tissue massage or yoga class, rock-climbing, running long distances, or during a normal healthy childbirth; because nothing is being injured, damaged or broken, any sensations of pain you may feel can be very positive and productive.” – Lauralyn Curtis HBCE
The pathway to working through pain:
We’ll look at this again when we open the discussion on the sexuality of birth and the potential for ecstatic, or even orgasmic birth. More and more women are understanding the potential of this, and are learning the steps to take ahead of time to make this possible – no matter where, how or with whom they chose to birth. For now, let’s consider this formula, and understand the basics of working through pain.
- Acknowledge, honor and work with your fears.
- Start by facing your fears. Shine light on the darkness.
- Address each one with honor.
- Give them a name. Don’t analyze, or judge, just be curious.
- Dig deep. Do not allow repression .
- Knowing what to expect in labor and birth.
- Empower yourself through education.
- Take childbirth educations classes, with me or wherever/however, and with whomever you feel most comfortable.
- Read – and read carefully. Research good books and get to know what to expect and what is possible in birth. I highly recommend two books by Elizabeth Davis: Heart and Hands and Orgasmic Birth.
- Ask questions. And filter your answers.
- Visualize the birth unfolding… beautifully.
- Use meditations, affirmations, and whatever tools work for you to rise you to a level above your fears, and to a place of letting go, and trust.
- Any dark spots? Shine the light! (One midwife I remember reading calling this “getting rid of the monsters under the bed.)
- Prepare for a positive birth.
- Set yourself up for success. Take the time it takes. This is a different formula for each of us. Do your research and figure out what you need. Honor your needs. And honor your uniqueness.
- Surround yourself with loving and understanding support. This means a completely supportive environment – from the people, to the place, to the light, noise, sound, smells, and sense of safety that is unique to each of us.
- Gather yourself and your supplies well ahead of time. Proper preparation helps reduce fears too!
- Approach with excitement not trepidation.
- Work through past experiences.
- Address fears, memories, anything weighing heavy on you now, not in birth.
- Now is the time to heal your past if possible.
- Confront and address, rather than think it will just go away.
- Childhood, sexual or abusive issues deserve the greatest of honor, care, compassion and attention.
- Negative or abusive past birthing experiences or stories can linger, last, and hold on strong. Talk these out. Work these out. They are the past, but the past does it’s darndest at times to hold on into the present.
- Emotional scars are the hardest to see – and heal. Dive deep. Explore. Excavate. This matters. You matter.
- Treat yourself, your family, the upcoming birth with honor and respect in order to heal the past and create the strongest present.
- Actively work through your wounds.
- Know you can heal!
- Work with your baby.
- Tap into your soul level connections.
- Meditation, relaxation, rituals – find what works for you to feel the connection.
- Actively work together – in motions, movement, feelings. Practice daily.
- Commit to communicate. Take the time now to learn how you two can relate.
- This is, and will always be, one of the greatest elements of the web woven between you. Listen…
- Talk to your baby, verbally or in spirit.
- Visualize your coming together.
- Visualize your working together.
- Visualize your being together soon.
- Work with your inner wisdom
- Intuition may be the most powerful tool in childbirth (as it is in mothering).
- Practice now with visualizations, affirmations, sounds, aromatherapy.
- Meditation may be the greatest tool to develop to calm emotions, and thoughts, and allow the inner wisdom, your quiet but wise intuitive voice, to sing through.
- Be silence, still and willing to receive.
- Believe. Let yourself know.
- Let go of the linear patterns of thinking this is “hokey” – and start to understand this true power and value.
- Give it time. Allow it. Nurture it.
- Connect with nature, with loved ones, with strangers, with animals – allow yourself to feel connections.
- Be willing to let go.
- You have done your work.
- Now it is time to let go.
- Find your inner wisdom, and the higher powers.
- Trust, believe.
- And let it be.
- Allow it to unfold as it will.
- Flow with the wild currents and know they will carry you through.
- Naturally, normally, and beautifully.
If you’ve had a chance to read Orgasmic Birth by Elizabeth Davis, you’ll notice one of the underlying truths through the stories shared in that book was the mother’s ability to let go, to surrender, to flow with the process.