Birthing from Within encourages parents to stay present, working with what lies at their feet in any given moment, moving through one contraction at a time, and being flexible enough to navigate any terrain. Rather than bringing assumptions or judgments about the kind of birth parents should have, I aim to bring mindfulness and love – for one’s partner and one’s self – to whatever twists and turns the birth brings their way.
Birthing from Within classes help parents prepare for birth with practical information – stages of labor, nourishing the body, what kind of support a laboring woman needs, the hormones of birth, how to push, how to cope with medical technology, and much more. It also helps parents prepare for the unknown and unknowable parts of birth by strengthening resourcefulness, flexibility, and self-discovery.
Given the fact that there is no one-size-fits-all way to birth a baby, hands-on, the experiential learning in Birthing from Within classes is a powerful tool for parents to explore what their unique needs are for the birth. Working through pain coping practices together will help moms find what fits for their individual preferences and help dads/partners gain confidence in their ability to support mom through the labor. Role plays allow partners a safe environment to experience what comes with the many hats they have to wear during the birth – from providing physical support, to protecting the ecology of the labor environment, to having important conversations with the staff while mom is in the throes of Labor Land. Birth art provides an opportunity for parents to step out of their comfort zone and access the creative, primitive part of their brain – the same part mom uses to drift off to an altered state to carry her through the rigors of labor.
By expanding the realm of possibilities for getting through labor, many doors open up to parents to be whoever they need to be to support themselves and each other through this rite of passage, armed with skills and new awareness.
– Fueling your body through labor
– Building a pain coping mindset, including breathing practices, visualization, and vocalization
– The range of emotions in labor from excitement to “get me out of here!”
– Hormones and brain waves in labor and how they help mom through the process
– Medical support: what it looks like, how to know when it’s the wise and compassionate choice, and how to cope with unexpected events
– Hands-on support techniques for partners
– Encouraging baby into an optimal position for birth
– Fostering feelings of strength and grounding during pushing
– Acknowledging fears and working through them
– Exploring ideas about birth and postpartum through birth art
– Breastfeeding and baby care
– Setting realistic expectations for parenting, and more!
In Birthing from Within classes parents will spend time working on supporting themselves and each other through the birth and postpartum period. Both mom and her partner should come to every class. If mom’s partner must miss any classes, it’s a good idea to have a family member, friend, or doula stand in as a support person.