It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so. - Mark Twain
Preparing for a fulfilling birthing journey is an exercise in self discovery and requires deep soul excavation. What you believe to be true about birth will profoundly influence how your birth proceeds; I would venture to say it is even the determining factor. The story you tell yourself about how women are “supposed” to give birth and what a "normal" birth looks like... will impact every facet of your own birthing. Your thought and beliefs create every moment of your reality, so exploring your Birth Beliefs is essential inner work.
Do you perceive birth as a sacred, holy occasion? A profound rite of passage? Do you believe birth to be a healthy, normal biological function? Do you EXPECT birth to go well? Do you see The Male Doctor as the authority figure who will guide you through the process and "rescue" you from labor, or do you see yourself trusting your womb wisdom to guide you on your birthing journey? Do you believe birth to be safe or dangerous? Is it "supposed" to hurt? And why is that? Hmm?
Why do you see birth as such? Are these perceptions accurate? Why do you have such strong beliefs about something you've never experienced first hand (assuming you are a first time mother)? I want us to look at birth in a completely new light. We need to explore the potentialities that birth holds.
What's most detrimental to women isn't that they lack childbirth information; it's that what they DO know about birth "that just ain't so".
Case in point. An old Auntie of mine once said that giving birth is like pushing a watermelon through a straw.
Jesus Christ, why would you tell a young child that? For one, this is entirely inaccurate, anatomically speaking. Second, it is damaging to spread these kinds of lies and misinformation, as it instills fear and doubt- the true enemies of birth (and self). The truth is- your yoni, or vagina, is a strong elastic structure, capable of expanding exponentially to easily accommodate baby. Your yoni, that sacred portal through which life emerges, is composed of rugae, an accordion like feature; MUCH different than a "straw", which is a fixed, non expanding, hard structure. A watermelon is also a fixed, non yielding structure, completely unlike a human baby, which is mostly squishy fat, and very slippery at that. And did you know that the plates of baby's skull aren't fused together yet; allowing baby's head to easily mold and conform to the birth path? Baby and yoni were intelligently, specifically and perfectly designed to work together in perfect harmony. They are juicy, organic, yielding and soft.
And then, the pelvis. The pelvic outlet, which baby must pass through, may expand UP TO 30%, depending on what position that mother is in. Squatting, for example. Squatting opens the pelvic outlet so much more than laying down. And then, gravity is also on your side as well. Work smarter, not harder, right?
Birth is not your enemy.
But about the fear part. These falsehoods that are so prevalent are what's causing birth pathology and damage to women. It sends the message: Your body will break. Birth is traumatic. Birth is abnormal.
The accumulation of these messages imprint on her mind until she fully EXPECTS birth to hurt, become dysfunctional, and be scary. So, before birth even begins, she is already looking for someone to save her. She views her Male Doctor as the hero, her knight in shining armour. She lays there, helpless, a victim of her own mind. Her fears release adrenaline, which stop contractions, make her body tense. Her yoni won't open under these conditions. Her labor does, in effect, become dysfunctional.
It becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.
This is why we must learn to separate fact from fiction, and myth from reality. In regards to childbirth, myth and misinformation ABOUND; much to the detriment of the birthing woman.
Your body is not the enemy. Your mind is.
This is why I think it is helpful to invoke the Dark Goddess Kali, as she is the destroyer of maya or illusion. A Hindu Goddess, also called Black Mother, Kali goes to war against ignorance. She is the Destroyer, and she defeats demons. She cuts through the bullshit so you can see the Truth. She liberates. "The death of the old makes way for creation of the new", she reminds us.
What do you need to destroy? Your old, outdated, ignorant views of birth? What do you need to let go of? What do you need to shed, heal, release, resolve? What shadow parts of yourself do you need examine, explore, shine a light on?
Like Whapio Diane Bartlett, traditional Midwife said: "It's hard to pass through the gates of labor if you've got a lot of baggage."
Now is the time to lighten your load.
Let us reclaim, remember and reconnect with our ourselves, our womb wisdom, the sacred and spiritual aspects of birthing.
You are a powerful Creator.
PS: Do you want to release fears and invoke Kali? Yes, Bitch. You bet I do.