Generally speaking, childbirth and parenting comes along with a generous serving of opinions and advice, some of it relevant, most of scary and daunting. This is why, I always preface my ‘advice’ with the most obvious yet rarely disclosed statement of ‘this is what worked for me.’ In saying that, CalmBirth was one of those experiences, I strongly implore people to consider very carefully…and by consider I really mean, do it.
The reason for my strong support of Calmbirth, is not shares in the company, it’s that I genuinely believe everyone has something to gain from the experience. My personal benefit came in the form of control. Throughout the course of the pregnancy experience, I was repeatedly reminded of how little I had to do with what was happening to me. Numerous mums told me that I shouldn’t bother with a birth plan because it was out of my control, the day I would go into labour and even if I’d actually go into labour was out of my control then Drs told me that specific changes to my body and the pregnancy symptoms I would experience were out of my control. Not something easily absorbed by a control freak.
Enter Calmbirth. Don’t get me wrong…I had it pegged as some hippy, weird Lamaze deal, it was founded in Byron Bay after all! My gorgeous friend talked me into it and I will be forever grateful. It’s not remotely hippy and most certainly not some speed breathing race with other mums.
Calmbirth is a technique devised to give women their control back. Sure, we can’t pick the date or the circumstances but we can sure as hell chose what we do with them. After a very thorough, without being graphic, explanation of exactly what’s going to happen to you every step of the way, you will be armed with options and techniques to help with each phase. Notice I used the plural tense for options and techniques. There isn’t one solution, there are multiple so you can change and adapt to whatever works for you. The premise heavily relies on a form of meditation. You will learn visualizations skills supported by audio meditations. This is coupled with breathing, positions and yoga moves and supported by the use of the techniques the hospital will invariably supply also. There is also some pretty compelling evidence to support some actions you can avoid to promote an easier situation rather than a stressful one.
As the name suggests, Calmbirth rests on the ideals that if we can manage to stay as mentally calm and relaxed as possible for as long as possible then it allows the body to take over and do what it knows how to do. It takes into account people’s personal choices like water birth (obviously a recommended method) but also a hospital birth and offers solutions for all possibilities.
Of course this all sounds wonderful as long as you can manage to deliver naturally right? I know people who have used this technique during cesareans, natural labours and induced labours. No matter what situation they found themselves in, they managed to draw on the options and solutions they had to chose from to apply to them, walking away with what they all described as ‘positive experiences’. Suddenly the time it took or the method they used/were forced into using bared no impact on their perception of the experience.
Calmbirth gave me a skill that suddenly gave me a sense of control and determination. I went from approaching the birth date with apprehension, fear and concern and suddenly saw it as something I could have a say in. Even if things changed and I had to adapt, I was still equipped with skills to deal with it and that was a game changer.
If you’re interested in learning more, check out this dynamic Midwife-Yoga Teacher duo. With such an extensive background between them, you not only get a well-rounded view of everything but a few little extra gems of information as well!