When we give birth naturally, we enter ‘labourland’; a place where you’re totally connected with yourself and your baby and where you’re disconnected from everyday life. To do this, takes 100% concentration and focus. The sensations are strong but it’s nothing you’re not designed to manage. Some women can even be ecstatic in labourland, even orgasmic! But you have to be open to that possibility. You have to know it exists. It can be a very beautiful private sensual place but there are conditions that either enhance or detract from this process. We need to feel supported and prepared; mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. And it helps if the environment we’re in is conducive to making the birth process work.
Ecstasy in birth is something that just isn’t talk about enough. It doesn’t exist within the medical model of birth where we are at the mercy of others, where survival is the main and sometimes the only focus, education is lacking and women’s voices are often not heard.
I write this article after chatting to a woman who had never been told she needed to come here. When she entered ‘established labour’, her instincts told her to switch off, go ‘into herself’ and not talk to anyone. And yet, despite having these feelings, she forced herself to talk to those around her and walk around. She had little to no idea what she was meant to be doing. That to me sounds like a scary place. How can mainstream birth education have ‘allowed’ that to happen?
Surely we have a duty to our women and our babies to prepare them fully for the birth process and give them every chance to give birth the way they want to?
Oxytocin: The Hormone Of Love
Did you know the hormones responsible for orgasm are the hormones responsible for getting the baby out too? That special hormone is Oxytocin; the hormone of love.
So think about what you need to create oxytocin? Think about the conditions you need to create orgasm. You need to feel uninhibited, right? Comfortable enough to let go. To surrender to the sensations. You may need privacy. A familiarity with your environment? A feeling of intimacy? We need to feel safe. Trusted. We need to have confidence it can happen.
You probably don’t want random strangers walking in half way through, checking and disturbing you. Telling you, you only have x amount of time. That time pressure may slow it down. You might be nearly there but will have to start over if you’re disturbed, the process will simply last longer.
Mammals find somewhere warm, secure and dark to give birth in and this kind of environment provides humans with the optimum birthing environment too.
What does your ideal environment look like? Sensual? Are the lights dim? Are there candles, fairy lights? Who would you like to be with?
You will always give birth best in the place you feel safest. How can you create your chosen birth environment to be as intimate as possible in order to optimise the birth process.
I would always recommend a thorough investigation of places of birth you have available to you. You might want to consider your own personal circumstances as well as the statistics of your potential birthplace.
When we acknowledge the sensual aspect of giving birth, I believe the fear of birth will be reduced and the voices of the women shouting from the rooftops that labourland can be ecstatic will be loud and clear.
If you’d like to study hypnobirthing with me in Manchester or Cheshire or via skype or if that’s more convenient or you’d like to consider me as your doula, do get in touch. I’d love to hear from you.