Expecting a baby and looking ahead to the birth? Wondering if there's any point preparing?
You've heard all the horror stories. People tell you there's no point doing a hypnobirthing course as it'll all go out the window. That you'll be screaming for the epidural and wishing you'd saved your cash. Part of you thinks it's a good idea to get ready and learn some coping skills, but another part wonders if it's easier to just see what happens on the day and trust the midwife will tell you what to do. After all, people do this every day, so why not just go into it and see what happens? Keep an open mind as it's unpredictable and you don't know how it'll go. So no point having a set plan?
If anything, the fact that birth is unpredictable means it's even better to prepare. How can you deal with changes to plan if you don't have a plan in first place? You might think it's good to just be open to anything - and you'd be right, but what if you don't know what your options are? How can you be ready and open to changes in birth if you don't know what's available, what's likely to happen and why.
Now is the perfect time to get your mind ready for the upcoming birth.There is no right or wrong way to prepare, as long as you prepare in some way. There is not much to gain from just burying your head in the sand and hoping for the best.Trust me I've done this four times and it's not easy, it's hard work. It's exhausting, at times scary and totally unpredictable.It's probably one of the biggest events in your life, if not THE biggest.You wouldn't do anything else this important without any preparation would you?Imagine just turning up for your wedding and hoping for the best, no preparation beforehand.Imagine running a marathon with no training.I coped with birth much better when I had a set of coping techniques.I dealt with things much better when I knew what was happening and why.It is much less exhausting if you work with your body and know how to help it do what it needs to do - a bit like training for that marathon.Going into something as important and memorable as birth is well and truly worth a bit of thought beforehand.
So if you're having a baby and want to change your mindset from chaos to calm...Prepare mentally - find out what can happen and why. You might think you're better off not knowing, but believe me you'll feel far more confident understanding the process. Learn about the stages of labour - how your body works physically and what you can do to make things easier.Learn about how your emotions change throughout labour and how to cope.Imagine having effective ways to manage pain, using your own powerful mind and natural endorphins, as well as practical comfort techniques.Imagine being able to cope with fears and lower adrenaline so you feel calmer and more in control.Learn about your options and how to have the best birth for you on the day, no matter how it needs to happen.