Milestones and BIRTHdays

Thursday, 29 January 2015

January has brought a beautiful milestone our way, we celebrated Clara's first birthday.  This little girl has given us a full year of smiles, babbles, first foods, first steps and a great list of so much more.  The first year of a baby's life is remarkable to watch.  They change daily and as every parent knows, it goes by way too quickly.  "High five" to the smartphones that can capture all the love in pictures and videos!  

As my baby girl turned one, I am reminded of her BIRTHday.  We waited and waited for this little one to arrive.  She was born at 41 weeks and 4 days.  The weeks and days at the end of my pregnancy were filled with a whole lot of waddling, and even more moments of quiet and stillness.  I remember my daily meditation practice that helped me to trust that "Baby was right on time."  I sat in stillness everyday and repeated my mantra to myself.  I would talk to baby quietly and tell her that I trusted her timing and I knew we were the perfect team.  When she was ready to arrive, I'd be ready.  

The time we take preparing for baby's arrival is invaluable.  Suzy Ashworth discusses this in her article "Why Your Birth Is More Important Than Your Bugaboo."  Of course it's fun to design the nursery, choose the right baby carrier and highchair, but most importantly, the time we put into researching and educating ourselves is what can make this life changing moment a positive one.  Labor and birth are not easy, there is no direct path, and sometimes it does not turn out how we were expecting or anticipating.  With the right team around you, clearly presented options and respect for the mother's voice to be heard (because ultimately mommas, you call the shots!)  you have a solid opportunity to have a positive birth experience.  As Ashworth points out, positive does not mean natural.  it means you have the power to make informed decisions about the birth of your baby. 

As we labored and birthed at home, I knew without a doubt that we were in the best hands.  Our skilled and experienced midwives cheered me on all the way.  Even when I felt that I didn't have enough reserve energy in me, Lynn quietly whispered, "You have all the strength you need."  Those encouraging words, supportive massages, cool washclothes and the patience to let our birth unfold in its own time made our experience the amazing transformation it was.  Research and lots of discussion lead my husband and I to choose the team we birthed with.  I continue to encourage my mommas in my prenatal yoga classes to do the same.  Find the team that will support you, trust you, care for and respect you.  I always recommend for moms planning hosiptal births to hire a doula (labor support.) Not only do they offer comfort techniques to get you through challenging moments while birthing, studies are also finding that they can help to decrease the number of unnecessary interventions.

Take the time to prepare for your birth by researching, reading and hearing postive birth stories, and getting in tune with your inner strength through prenatal yoga.  Your body knows how to grow your baby, and you body knows how to birth your baby.  You were made for this! 

Lots of love to you, Amazing Mommas, as you celebrate each milestone!

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