Thursday, 9 December 2010

My feelings on birth

This afternoon I decided I would watch some birth videos in order to prepare me for the big day and I'm so glad I did. I've got quite strong views on childbirth and labour - I don't think that medicine has a place in childbirth and that the whole process is completely natural and normal. Women used to give birth in fields without doctors or midwives or pain relief and I honestly think it should still be like that. Yes, women used to die during childbirth, but that was more to do with basic hygiene practices than anything else and it rarely happens in the western world now.

He doesn't share the same views as me - he thinks I'm completely insane for not wanting pain relief and for thinking I can do it without screaming and shouting and begging for an epidural. I'd like to follow the practices of hypnobirthing, which promote the idea that pain comes from fear. They believe women who are well informed and well prepared for labour and who birth their babies as naturally as possible are less likely to need any form of medical intervention, be it pain relief, an epistiotomy or tearing or to need a cesarian. The babies born using this technique are less likely to suffer trauma during the birth and to be calmer and more contented.

The process is based on self-hypnosis techniques and positive visualisation in order to 'breathe' the baby down and completely tune yourself in with your body, your baby and what is essentially a completely natural process that women are biologically designed to do. Doing this allows the body to take over and many women who use the technique find themself pushing without being aware they are doing it. Generally, hypnobirths are shorter, and the active phase of labour (where the cervix is fully dilated and the baby is born) is usually very fast. I've read lots of stories of women spend a few hours in labour and the active phase is a fe minutes - of course this is my first baby so I have to expect the process to take a bit longer, but I'm really ken to learn about the techniques and see if they work.

The videos I was watching today of women using hypnobirthing were just amazing. Theres no screaming, the father is involved too, usually in the birthing pool with mum, holding her and talking to her, or if its not a water birth, he's massaging her and breathing with her. Its a beautiful thing to watch, especially as mum smiles when the baby is crowning, and usually births the baby into her own arms and straight onto her chest. This is one of the best videos I've found - its not gorey I promise, everyone should watch it just to see how beautiful birth can be

I wish I could get him on board with it so he was as supportive as the dad in this video - a lot of my friends don't really understand what it's all about and think the minute I go into labour I'll be screaming and begging for pain relief. I'm determined to prove to Him and to them, and to my mum who doubts it too, that it really is possible to have a completely natural birth. Hopefully once we've been to the classes this weekend he'll understand more about it and he'll be more supportive of it. If not, I guess I'll be doing it on my own.

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