How do you retain a little bit of control when birthing a human being? We know you warrior women love being in the driving seat as much as we do, so we’ve teamed up with The Naked Doula to help you have an empowered birth.
Emma Armstrong, or the Naked Doula, as she’s known in the baby-birthing world is a Doula, Hypnobirth Specialist and Visual Educator.
Contrary to her superhero name, the Naked Doula refers not to Emma getting her kit off as she imparts her wisdom, but to the transparency and honesty in her practice. Emma vows to share as much information as she possibly can so that parents can confidently prepare for the biggest day of their lives.
We’re sharing the Naked Doula’s top 5 tips for an empowered birth. Prepare to get into your chill zones, ladies.
RELAX! aha! See now I know you’re thinking “here she goes” easier said than done but let me share a few fun facts with you that will reframe how you think about this.
Let’s imagine our bicep. Mine’s not the greatest in strength but if you tense it (I know you’ve got to be trying this right now) and then start moving your arm, what does this feel like? It’s uncomfortable and difficult to move. Now stop tensing and just move your arm about. How lovely and supple is it? You can move it freely and wriggle it about! Right! OK… stay with me here.
Now think about your uterus which is the muscle that’s going to help birth your baby. If it’s tense, how do you expect it to work efficiently? How do you expect those contractions to flow and wonderfully aid the moving of your baby downwards? The more tense you are, the longer it will take, the more you will feel and the more you restrict your body’s natural way to birth.
When we relax our body we allow those muscles to move freely just like our wiggly arm! We give more space for our baby and we decrease the sensations we feel throughout labour! Wahay! So get practising those relaxation techniques now and visualise those muscles as if they are wibbly wobbly arms!
Yes! One of my favs! So if you didn’t know already. Oxytocin (the hormone of love) is your life line during labour. When we have the right environment and we RELAX (see tip 1) we allow our body to make more Oxytocin which means a more enjoyable birth! Yay!
So let’s be real. If you were getting intimate (having sex) would you get some nice bright studio lights, have Tom Dick and Harry watching and maybe some background conversa
tion? It would be pretty awkward, wouldn’t it! That poor oxytocin would do a runner! You’d dry up for sure and the man’s ego would disappear! And you’d definitely not be in the mood!
This is the SAME with childbirth. If you have a calm environment. Dimmed lights. Minimal distractions! Maybe some music you like and your favourite blanket! You might have a certain smell that relaxes you.
The environment is BIG when it comes to delivering your baby so have a think about how you can make your environment better for you and which will boost those oxytocin levels!!
“Knowledge is power! The more you know about the anatomy of birth and your body the more confident you’ll be when it comes. Trust me!”
I know we all sit here sometimes and think oh f*** it. I’ll just wing it. What will be will be. Nooooo. Not with this future mama!
Knowledge is power!
The more you know about the anatomy of birth and your body the more confident
you’ll be when it comes. Trust me! Think of this like a really important interview. Your dream job is just a step away… Would you just not bother prepping and
hope for the best? Probably not. I know most of you would be reading and preparing as best as you could because it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity!
THIS! Is exactly the same! This is YOUR birth.
I mean wow. This is big guys!… OK so where would you even start you ask? Here are my favourite
books which will help you understand your body and prepare you in the best way possible so you smash that interview and of course come out the other end beaming!!!
Firsly Milli - THE POSITIVE BIRTH BOOK is your number one go-to here! It’s full of information…
4. Positive Mindset
La De Dar, did I hear you say? This is a thing people. This is the difference between how you manage situations on a day to day basis! So, firstly STOP watching one born every minute. This is FALSE! This is DRAMA. It’s like watching a soap. I mean come on, do that many people die on one street.
Does Barbara across the road have 3 affairs then murder her son upon finding out? I think not. So stop. Right now. Start watching positive births. Search positive births on youtube. There are some great stories and videos.
You may also want to start deflecting comments off the cashier at the supermarket, your best mate’s nan or Joe Bloggs in the coffee shop. We have no room for negative comments and that might be their experience but it’s NOT yours.
Because I know after reading this if you follow these few simple steps you CAN feel more confident and be on the way to an empowered birth!
5. BIRTH RIGHTS
...urm yes you read that right!! YOU do have rights!
It seems to be a common theme that women just go with the flow and do what they’re told when it comes to pregnancy and birth but what if I told you this isn’t the case! There are lots of things you DON’T have to do. This includes examinations, how your baby is born and what happens when the baby is born!
If you have any questions or want to chat to Emma, head over to Naked Doula for more!!