“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance.
― John Lennon
Just as the fear of an actress before she steps on stage fuels her to give an Oscar performance, fear that is understood and accepted can be harnessed and turned into a powerful force. The actress is fearful not because she doubts her ability. She loves what she does and she wants her passion to shine through her performance. Her love fuels the fear and the fear fuels the love.
And so it is in birth. You fear the unknown. You love your baby. You know deep down inside that you are able to give birth but you are assailed from every direction with messages and (mis)information that make you distrust your own intuition and ability. The fear of birth is very real in the 21st century so rather than trying to eliminate it, my aim is to help you harness your fear into a powerful force of love.
It is the unpredictability of birth that makes it so scary. It means getting comfortable with not knowing how long it might take or how it might feel and just letting it happen. It means learning tools and techniques that you know will help you but trusting that in the moment you will instinctively know what works best for you. It means choosing your care provider carefully so that you are able to fully let go, embrace all the emotions that arise during birth, knowing that you are held and supported without judgement.
What matters most during pregnancy is being able to dive deep with someone who listens and acknowledges the validity of your feelings. Someone who helps you to replace your fear with curiosity. Someone who openly explores what you are afraid of and discusses the likelihood of your fear becoming a reality. Rather than trying to control or suppress the fear, you name it and explore it like a journey through an interesting country and you waken to possibility.
During birth, you accept that feeling fear is not a sign of weakness of ignorance. You know that it is normal and you embrace it and work with it, not against it. Very often in the stage of birth called transition, your body releases adrenaline to give you the energy you need to push your baby out. Adrenaline is your fight or flight hormone. It can feel a little bit scary, and not least because you know you are going to become a mama any moment. Don’t fight it. Work with your body, say what you feel, let go of any ideas you might have of how things should be and accept them as they are.
Learning to birth with love does not mean avoiding fear and pain at all costs. Ultimately it is about listening to your instincts and trusting what you are being told to do, even if that feels a bit scary.
“Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood. “~Marie Curie
If you are feeling scared and in need of a bit of loving reassurance, why not head over to the members area. I have created a thriving online community of women just like you, and we all support each other.