New Beginnings Doula Training

New Beginnings Doula Training
Courses for doulas and online childbirth education

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Fear and Pain-my own experiences

The one time I really feel like I understood this concept was my last labor. I was getting into good active labor and I really started tensing up. I think I was a bit more worried this time about what to do with my kids and just making sure they were going to be OK in general. My fear in this case, was that our baby sitter wouldn't be able to make it or that my kids would wake up in the middle of the night and be worried. I remember thinking how this labor seemed more difficult and I couldn't figure out why. I felt a lot more tense and the contractions hurt more than I expected at that point.

At this point, I remember thinking I needed to breath. My focus then shifted away from my worries and concerns, to just relaxing and letting my body work. I was amazed at the difference it made. I was much more able to cope and the sensation of pain was diminishing.

It makes sense to me that pain would diminish as our fears and tensions diminish. When we are afraid, we tense up. Just thinking through this, I bet that when we tense up, our body's contractions have to work harder to push through that tension. In a way, it creates more work and more pain for our body to work against the tension brought on by fear.

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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.