When you are from the Queen City it is hard to not love the Royal family. With the birth of Prince Louis Arthur Charles everyone is talking about Kate and her beautiful baby, her stunning hair and makeup and that adorable red dress, honouring Princess Diana. What we talking about?
What does our team at Queen City Doulas & Co think about Kate, her birth, her experience and her appearance? Quite a bit actually, and the best part is, we have varied opinions. We are talking about the variations of normal. I think this is quite telling to how unique we all are in our experiences, how individuals relate to Kate, how they might not relate to Kate and if that even matters!
Now day 3...oh day 3, I wanted to hide in that lion den and not come out. I am sure Kate has a day 3 that many can relate to. There is crying and leaking milk and inflammation in the nether regions and tender breasts. She is likely at home, snuggled into bed, feeding her baby, recovering from pregnancy and birth, being a protective mama bear as long as she can be.
It is not a contest, that is for sure. So many variations of normal, but I actually think seeing Kate and believing that Kate is a real mother like every other mother, vs just believing it is a team of lady maids only making her appear that way, actually shows birth doesn't have to leave us wounded and broken and scared. In fact, part of why I wanted to share my experiences of births 4 and 5 was because 1-3 were hard pregnancies, challenging births and challenging postpartum times and I felt broken and scared. 4 and 5 were not like that and I wanted to tell everyone how damn proud I was of creating my own amazing experiences.
You might be asking, did I do something different with 4 and 5. Yes, I sure did. I did a lot different, but one of the key differences was HypnoBirthing. It is well known that Kate also used HypnoBirthing. Here is a short video clip discussing HypnoBirthing and the benefits it has to birth.
Earlier this week Anna Baker was able to share some of her thoughts with CBC. You can have a listen to the conversation here. There are a lot of good tidbits in there - such as "do you and don't worry if it isn't what others do", or pointing out how it took a team to make Kate look that way. I would like to add she also had a team of care providers supporting her, not just a hair and makeup team! You can also read a piece that Anna wrote for CBC as well.
If you are preparing for a baby, what our team hopes for you is that you have a positive experience and that you are supported to have the experience YOU want. That is truly all that matters. This is why we exist, to be the support you need. If you have the desire to have a HypnoBirth, we have that class to give you those tools. If you need someone else on your birth team, we have doulas for that. If you need more practical in home support post baby we have doulas for that have that, too. As Anna mentions in her interview, breastfeeding struggles occur, so we have help to get back on track ASAP (and we have a class for breastfeeding, too).
I believe you might not be as far off as having an experience like Kate, as you might think you are. You are just spared the pressure of having to present your baby to the world, 7 hours post delivery.
The Next HypnoBirthing Class starts Tuesday May 22nd and runs through June 19th. This is the last class until fall. Get more information here.
The next Your Breastfeeding Experience class is May 5th. There are a couple spots still open in this class.
The next Your Life with Baby class starts May 12th. There are spots still available in this class also.
You can find many mothers who have tried HypnoBirthing who will explain it as a wonderful tool and transformative experience. Birth has that kind of effect on people! Birth can be amazing. We have been exposed to the idea that childbirth is an intensely painful unbearable process that we just have to cope with and get through. We want you to know, this is NOT truth.
We want women to not be terrified during pregnancy and in their birth experiences, as so many currently are. They are anxious about hours of pain, the agony of pushing and what damage might happen to their bodies. They know they are going to ask for pain management ASAP because that is the only way they know how to cope.
We want to introduce women to the idea of HypnoBirthing. We don’t mean *introduce* as in HypnoBirthing is a new idea - in fact, it has been around for decades, but it is still a new idea to many expecting women. The idea of birth not being painful, or less painful, the mother being calm and birth even being enjoyable is not something we hear in our current culture very much.
What is HypnoBirthing all about? It is not what you think. There is no Hypnotist, no pocket watch, no doing silly things, or losing control and definitely no doing anything you don’t want to do. It is really a form of deep relaxation. It gets to a deeper level of consciousness then we use day-to-day to plan, manage & cope with the labour and birth experience.
In a HypnoBirthing class attendees learn breathing techniques, positive affirmations, and self-hypnosis plus real facts about birth. The classes are weekly for 5 weeks and during that time there is light homework. This allows attendees the time needed to practice during pregnancy. It also allows time to use the techniques taught as stress relief for other life situations to practice and use that time to focus on preparation for labour, birth and even the postpartum time.
During this time, the goal is to remove the fear, that is so deep within our culture, that many women don’t even know they are fearful. This fear comes from the media, friends, family & health care professionals. It is snuck into minds in a subtle ways, like talking about big babies or negative health consequences. We need to remove that fear because it really is problematic. The fear cycle in the body creates muscle tension and anxiety which makes pain more painful and can make labours harder and longer. HypnoBirthing teaches how to get into the safety cycle, which promotes relaxation of muscles and proper function.
Is there solid evidence that HypnoBirthing benefits women? It is still up for debate as far as collectable stats go. But if we look at what attendees say after birth it is about so much more than the actual birth. It is about how women feel during their pregnancy & labour. It is about them gaining control and taking back their own experiences. It is about birth not happening to them but them being active participants in their birth. Ask a women to share her HypnoBIrthing story. That is where you will find the benefits.
Get more information about the next session of classes!
9 reasons why HypnoBirthing isn’t a good idea!
1. You don't want to understand the normal process of birth.
Of course you want to understand birth! Now, you do not need to be a “birth expert” but you should have a basic understanding of the process that occurs with the body so that you are not left surprised and wondering. The HypnoBirthing class is going to teach you the important parts of giving birth.
2. You don't want to be able to stay calm during your birth experience.
Who stays calm during birth? Isn’t it a time of chaos and commotion? NO, it doesn’t have to be at all. A very wise person once said to me, while I was pregnant, “If you stay calm, everyone else will stay calm”. HypnoBirthing helps teach you how to remain calm while experiencing something new to your mind and body. You can even remain calm in times of feeling nervous, worried, anxious. The goal is to help you remain calm so that your baby is welcomed into a calm environment. Babies are only born once and isn’t it a lovely idea to welcome them into a calm environment so they are ready to receive all the love you have to give.
3. You don’t want to take time in your pregnancy to connect with your baby.
I bet you have already connected to your little one! It is almost impossible not to feel connected to something that is throwing it’s limbs into your organs. But, are you connecting on an intentional level? Are you sending loving messages to your baby and showing baby how much, way more than I bet you imagined, love you already have for this little person you have not even met? HypnoBirthing is going to help you get a deeper level of connection with yourself, your baby and even your partner! YES, your partner can get bonded with baby during your pregnancy, too. Attachment is the root of our emotional well-being and starting early has great benefit.
4. You don't want to be in control of your birth experience.
When I say control here, I don't mean that you can plan all the details of how your birth experience is going to go. When I say control, I mean, you are in the drivers seat of the car along this unknown journey. You know your destination, but you don’t the way. However, you are not on this trip alone. Your car is full of passengers, guests. Ok, it might be more like a bus from time to time. Some people get on the bus and off the bus, some get on the bus and stay the whole journey. All these passengers have pieces of information that when put together will help you arrive at your destination safely. Some of these passengers you feel really safe with and trust and some of them are rather unfamiliar and you might not trust them so much. How do you know if you should listen to them or not?
By learning a series of discussion points and communication skills, HypnoBirthing, helps you to ask the right questions to get all the information you need at the time during your experience to help you make decisions. You are still the one in the drivers seat and need to know what direction to go, but if you don’t know, you get to ask the passengers for the information to help you decide. You do not need to get out of the drivers seat and let someone take over the driving.
5. You want to have your baby in the hospital.
That is A-OK! HypnoBirthing works everywhere. You won’t be the first person ever to use HypnoBirthing at the hospital. In fact, HypnoBirthing is a great option for people who are transitioning to a new location to give birth (see above; staying calm. This is an important factor for travelling in labour).
6.You are too scared of birth to be able to relax.
Fears. We all have them. Good news is; HypnoBirthing deals with fears. It is a unique program in that way. Rather than saying “don’t be silly, you have nothing to be afraid of", HypnoBirthing looks at the fear, accepts the fear and addresses the reality of that fear. Fears teach us some things about ourselves. When you give fear your attention, see it, learn what it was needing to teach you, then it will release from the body. Some people struggle with that and HypnoBirthing helps make this an easier process.
7.You don’t relax easily.
Most of us don’t. Relaxation is not something we do enough of. Relaxation needs to be practiced. The way HypnoBirthing is structured, it allows for that practice to occur and be built upon throughout the pregnancy so that it is much easier to use in your labour & birth.
8. You don't want to be hypnotized and be persuaded to do something you really don't want to do.
I promise this cannot and will not happen. The body cannot do anything it is not open to doing! And, no one is doing this TO you. YOU are doing this for yourself. You will be 100% in control at all times.
9. You are going to ask for pain medication so you won’t feel labour anyway.
Pain relief is absolutely an option women will choose. This is also OK. Some people do choose to use HypnoBirthing as a way to avoid pain medications. Also, OK. I just want you to consider a few things. There is a period of time before you can receive pain medication, that will still might be uncomfortable and you will have to manage somehow. Also, the pain medications do not take away all the discomfort and they do not always work for everyone. So, HypnoBirthiing can be complimentary to the plan of pain medications, as you will learn about some other pain relief options. Also, with all the other the other benefits of HypnoBirthing, it would still be a great class for anyone to take. Don’t let choices you think you will make in birth keep you away from all the other amazing benefits of this class!
If you are in the Regina area, here is more information on future HypnoBirthing classes. If you have some more questions for us, send us an email.
When does learning begin? Annie Murphy Paul posed this question to us in her TedTalk (she also answered it). You might be thinking maybe at Kindergarten, and then jump to preschool or maybe a few months of life. Or maybe you think as soon as they are born, they are a blank slate, ready to take it the world in. Annie Murphy Paul has some good research to share which shows learning starts in utero, before we are born. The womb is full of first learning experiences.
She goes on to talk about what she calls "Biological Postcards from the outside world". The teachings of the world this baby is going to be born into comes from the food the mother eats, the mothers voice, the air she breathes, the chemicals she is exposed to, the emotions the mother feels. It is multi-sensory and multi-dimensional learning. The world in which a mother is living has great influence on that infant.
Many of the things a mother is exposed to might be harder to control then others.
The "Biological Postcards" are being sent whether we send them or not but I want to challenge you to think about Biological Postcards you can send with intention as you plan for your babies arrival - the birth and the time following.
Are you sending messages to your baby that are full of enjoying your pregnancy and feeling excited for your future family or perhaps you haven't been able to enjoy your pregnancy for one reason or another. Are you feeling safe and relaxed when the time for birth comes or is it a feeling of being fearful and stressed? Have you thought about that message to your baby? Are you feeling like you are creating a loving, welcoming space for your infant or perhaps you haven't been able to get to that space yet because you are feeling scared and overwhelmed?
At Queen City Doulas & Company we want to help you create intentional Biological Postcards. Through our classes and our doula services we can help construct the feelings you want to feel, alleviate some of the feeling you might rather not feel and create a loving, calm, relaxed environment for you, so you can create the same for your baby. I invite you to look at our upcoming HypnoBirthing classes as the perfect place to start writing postcards to your baby. I also invite you to share by commenting what you want your baby to read on their postcard.
You can watch Annie Murphy Paul's TedTalk here.