Preparing for Birth

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Preparing for birth is more important now than ever simply because of the incredible rise in Cesarean births across the USA.

Do you want one? Even if you have a low risk pregnancy, meaning everything is going great, no problems, you are still at a risk for a Cesarean.

Women are NOT getting the information they need to prepare for birth so read on to  ready yourself.

When should you take a childbirth education class to prepare for the birth of your baby?

Right now! 🙂

In the fifth or sixth month, or even earlier if you can find an Early Pregnancy Class, and/or start planning to take birthing classes depending on the childbirth education program.  For example, a Bradley(R) class, will run 10 – 12 weeks!  Birthworks(R) offers a 10 week class too.  Lamaze(R) International, 4 – 8 weeks. So, you need to contact each organization to find out more information about their childbirth classes.

Don’t wait too long to sign up for a birth class because the skills that you learn, like relaxation techniques, need to be PRACTICED regularly to be effective when the time comes! So, you need TIME to practice them or you’ll forget them!

Also, having a baby is a life changing event encompassing physical AND emotional changes.  Childbirth education classes present you with a lot of information and options which you can investigate if you have the time to do so.

There are other things you can do to get into a “mind set” for the upcoming event. Visit the Online Childbirth Class, and the following are some helpful ideas.

*Start “tuning” in on what helps you to relax in stressful situations.  Do you take a walk?  A hot shower? Listen to music?  Becoming aware of what you do may assist you in your labor.

*Learn all you can! Please don’t wait until your Lamaze class two weeks before you are due to have baby! You have many decisions to make and before you know it, you’ll be a MOM and your partner will be a DAD!  Yikes!

Actually, you are beginning your roles as future parents right now, this very instant as you read this!

So, what are your options and the decisions you’ll have to make?Here are just a few:

  • to circumcise baby or not
  • natural birth (no medication)
  • birth with an epidural
  • episiotomy or can I go without one
  • why would I be induced
  • what’s involved in a Cesarean birth
  • does baby stay with me after birth
  • do I do skin-to-skin with baby
  • What kind of birthing environment do you want? Hospital, birthing center, home with a midwife, in a hospital with a midwife, Doula, what?
  • What are your concerns and how can you prepare for them?
  • Will you breastfeed?

These are all important questions to ask and learn about so you are prepared, knowledgeable, and make the decisions best for you.

Learn about your baby’s development too instead of watching TV shows on women in labor having babies. TV shows increase their ratings through sensationalism and drama.  Do you really think you’re getting the real stories about birth? Most births are kinda boring! Who would want to watch that?

  • Start asking yourself these questions now.  Talk  with your partner, and doctor or midwife.  Why? So you will be prepared to make on the “spot” decisions when the time comes.  It will also prompt you to communicate with your healthcare providers throughout your pregnancy and labor experience.
  • Daydream about your delivery.  What would be the perfect experience for you and your partner? This would include where you would have the baby, or type of environment, music playing, dimmed lights…and so on.  How do you see yourself in labor?  How do you envision your partner helping you? How do you feel about giving birth?  Daydreaming is visualization. This is one of the skills Lamaze encourages, so get an early start and practice.
  • Stay positive! There are enough stories out there in the real world and in “cyber-land” that will curl your hair!  You MUST remember, when you hear a horrible story, first of all, you were not at the delivery, so you don’t have all the facts.  Chances of the SAME events happening to you are unlikely.  Sometimes the story gets diluted or exaggerated. But,  what is most important to remember is there are more healthy deliveries than not.
  • Stay ROMANTICALLY and emotionally connected with your partner – if you can.  A simple “I love you”, gentle carressing, holding hand,  will go far during pregnancy AND during labor. You don’t have a disease! Touch is ALLOWED.
  • Find out about ALTERNATIVE methods for pain management, such as relaxation skills and hypnosis, meditation,Yoga,  etc. These things really help!
  • Check out the facility you plan to birth in – are they supportive of what you want? Are they mother/baby friendly? VERY IMPORTANT.
  • Giving birth is a personal, unique, and INDIVIDUAL experience  totally dependent on your attitude, your pain level, physiological makeup, the amount of anxiety and/or stress you are experiencing, and other variables.
  • Don’t underestimate the power of your mind and  your emotional state!  Your mind is very powerful and you have the power – I’ll repeat this – YOU HAVE the POWER to control HOW you respond to your birthing experience. This response will influence how your body responds during the labor and birth process.

Remind yourself from time to time that there is no right or wrong way to birth your baby. Your way will be the best way for you,  your partner,  and your baby, when the time comes. Being educated will make your experience  it even better and that’s  what matters.



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