Did you grow up watching TV programs where someone giving birth was screaming hysterically in a hospital delivery room?
Or was there a scene in a movie where the birthing person slapped their partner in the face, blaming them for the agony they were going through?
Yeah, you probably grew up seeing some of that. And if so, then the associations you have of childbirth are of intense and unbearable pain.
The stories we watched on TV were mostly that: stories. And in particular, stories meant to incite emotions such as humor, astonishment, horror…Documentaries such as Orgasmic Birth offer a very different view of what a birth can look like.
What I've learnt from being on my own pregnancy journey and supporting so many other Birth Warriors on theirs, is that if we're taught the practices and body positions that are most supportive of childbirth, the process can actually be a beautiful, empowering, and pleasurable one.
(And while we're on the topic of positions, lying on your back happens to be one of the least effective positions to give birth in. More on this on Evidence Based Birth.)
We've been so misinformed over the years, love.
Not only is much of our miseducation about childbirth and our subsequent fears coming from TV programs scripted for entertainment, but standard birthing practices are also rooted in fear: doctors not trusting that women/birthing people have the wisdom in their bodies that can guide the birth of their babies. It’s fear and miseducation that disconnect us from that wisdom. But we also have the power to reclaim it!
I'm so passionate about this that I could go on for several minutes, but here's what I really want to say today:
❤️ You don't have to be afraid of childbirth…even if you've gone through a pregnancy loss or have had a previous difficult childbirth experience.
❤️ Just like anything you haven't had a lot of practice with, you can work with a Guide to prepare you and your partner to birth in the easiest, most effective way.
❤️ Said Guide is also trained to be with you during your entire childbirth experience–whether you choose to do so in a hospital, birthing center, at home, a fancy Airbnb...
❤️ And if you want additional support with newborn care, breastfeeding, sleep training, or an extra set of hands to help with cooking and laundry, etc. that’s possible as well.
This kind of Guide is called a Birth Doula. Postpartum Doulas help with all things post-birth. Many Doulas are trained as both. When we lived in traditional societies surrounded by our grandmothers, mothers, aunties, and other members of our family, this support was a built-in part of our pregnancy journey.
Now that we live in “modern societies” with some not-so-helpful practices, adding a Doula to your Birthing Team is one of the ways we can create this village around us.
Would you like to learn more about what this might look like?
In Ep 40 of the Preparing for Pregnancy After Loss Podcast, I chat with one of my favorite Birth Doulas, Kris Bailey, who shares more about how a Doula can support your birth. Check out the preview clips below as well.
What a Birth & Postpartum Doula Does:
Examples of Postpartum Doula Support:
💃🏻🎙️ Listen to the full episode here.
Some Final Thoughts:
We can do so, so much, love. We just need to be taught the strategies and have support and assurance along the way.
It does take a village and we get to create it.
✨ If you’re in the NY Metro area and you love Kris’ vibe, learn more about her here
✨ If you’d like general recommendations on when / how to work with a Birth Doula, feel free to book a free consult with me here.
✨ And if you’d like support with releasing fears and anxiety before or during pregnancy, I’d be happy to support you with that as well. Book your free consult here.
✨ If you had a past challenging birth and would like to process it in a loving space, let's connect here.
NO more suffering in silence, Birth Warrior. Reclaim your village. Reclaim your power!