On the back of practising creating mental images of your birth, I would like to talk to you about watching birth videos. Yes, the ones that if you are not pregnant or remotely squeamish you wouldn’t want to watch even if they paid you.. I was one of them. A friend of mine sent me one of this collection of birth videos through FB and when I first opened it, I almost screamed. It was only after I did my hypnobirthing preparation and we were given the opportunity to watch the most beautiful and gentle birth videos, that I thought to myself: I can and I should do this. You might be thinking why subject yourself to that. My answer is because I wanted to become “numb” to the sight of seeing a baby crowning, to a vagina being stretched and be able to look at those images without seeing pain and saying to myself “uuuh I can’t look at this!” I wanted to be ok with that event happening in front of my eyes for the simple reason that it happens ALL THE TIME! It might feel like a rare and special event in one person’s life, and don’t get me wrong it is, but whenever you think that every single human being on this planet has come out of a woman, well that makes that event we feel so alien to, pretty common!
So I went from not wanting to watch, to crying at every birth video I would see, to marvelling at what the woman’s body can do, to cheering quietly for that baby to come out. I followed IG pages which promote positive and gentle births, I watched babies being born breech, born folded in half, mommies howling, mommies being completely quiet, home births, hospital births you name it. If you think about it, it is very rare to witness someone giving birth unless you are in that line of work. Up to my parents generation, the fathers’ presence in the room was still not a given. I remember one of our family members nonchalantly asking Luca if he would assist at the birth like that was even an option. We thankfully know much better now! But that is probably why we are so scared of it and the concept of giving birth feels so foreign to us.
We now have access to an encyclopaedia of content; not all of it might be right up our street but what works, can do wonders for our self confidence and preparation for birth.
Do you ever find yourself feeling numb at the sight of violence on the media, be it fiction or real, simply because you are exposed to those images so frequently? Wouldn’t it be much more helpful if we were exposed to imagery of how we all came to be in this world and let our minds be primed to the idea that giving birth is something powerful and beautiful.