When I became pregnant for the second time, it took visiting my local doctor once for me to decide that home birth was a must for me. And although I’d considered home birth on occasion, when I finally settled into that route for my birth, it became a life-changing endeavor for my husband and I.
Birth can be empowering. Transformative. And such a positive experience. Natural birth. Home birth. It can be all of these things and more. So, for whichever route you choose to approach your upcoming birth from, here are a few very simple but powerful ways a mother can prepare.
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1. Start by reading. Visit your local bookstore or library and dive in. In preparing for labor and birth, one of my
favorite books is Journey into Motherhood: Inspirational Stories of Natural Birth–beautiful but real stories. I’m also loving Progressive Pioneer’s birth story blog series in which she’s posting guest stories of natural birth. (I was a guest last week. Read my story here.)
2. Decide which method of birth you would like to pursue (hospital, birthing center, home birth, unassisted) and learn more about it. Lots more.
3. Although I can remember cringing at the expense, choose a birth class. You’ll not only learn a lot in class, you’re partner can too. And, you can begin building a community of like-minded individuals in the process. (I took Bradley Method of Natural Birth Classes and will likely post on that sometime.) You may also consider Hypnobabies, Hypnobirthing, Birthing from Within, or others.
4. Figure out your support network. This will likely consist of family and close friends, but should also include either a doctor you trust, a midwife, and/or a doula. Most importantly, build a network of people who trust in you and your birth choices. People who don’t trust your decisions can really unnecessarily frazzle a pregnant mother.
5. And now begins the hard part. Relax. (Easier said than done while pregnant.) Learn to trust your body.
(It’s changing every minute now.) Envision positive birth situations for yourself. Instill yourself with confidence. And then, let everything happen the way it needs to happen. It will inevitably be different from your dreams, but it’s own story nonetheless.
Much luck to everyone on their own journeys.
P.S. If you’d like, read my latest birth story and birth preparations.
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