New Beginnings Doula Training

New Beginnings Doula Training
Courses for doulas and online childbirth education

Friday, November 30, 2007

"A child will be born in the center of the pain"

The beginning of this week I had a lymph node that was very painful. It was interesting because I found myself responding to the pain in the same way I did with labor. I started my deep breathing and pacing. I took a shower, and longed to have my husband near me if only to hold my hand. I turned off the lights and I started to internalize the pain-analyze it from all sides. I could do this because I had learned to accept pain as normal and useful.

I used to work for Hospice, which dealt a lot with pain issues. It was interesting because I noticed that quite often those that were the most at peace were not always those who were in the least pain. It seemed that those who were the most at peace were those who had learned to accept pain into their lives and who had stopped fighting it. I think the same thing applies to labor. It is by accepting the pain and working with it, not to push it back, but to help it accomplish its purpose, that we find the most peace and satisfaction with our work.

"Birth is painful to Mayan women. But the pain is universally recognized as a normal part of childbearing. A child will be born, it is said in the Yucatan, in ' the center of the pain.' Pain is seen as the very hallmark of labor progress rather than as a symptom to be treated or an evil to escape."

**quotes come from the book Easing Labor Pain by Adrienne B Lieberman, 1992

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Birth is a Journey: Does it have to be life changing?

  • One woman might have to climb on an overfilled boat, risking her life and nearly dying as she escapes over the ocean to come to this land. This experience could certainly be life altering. It may very well color the rest of her life, positively or negatively. (I overcame this amazing struggle and here I am triumphant! OR Holy crap, that was SO hard I don’t know if I can go on! By the way, neither response is “right”. No one would judge the woman with the 2nd response.)
  • One woman may buy an airplane ticket, sit on a comfortable 747 and fly to America with a nice smooth flight and landing. She is happy to be in America. Those welcoming her are glad she is here safe and sound. She may only travel by plane 2-4 times in her life, so it is pretty memorable. But the journey itself probably wouldn’t be life changing; it would simply be a journey.
  • One woman may learn to fly an ultra-light plane to lead a flock of geese into America teaching them to migrate. This experience could certainly be empowering and life altering.