Sorry everybody, this one’s a long one.
Ryan and I went away for the weekend. We went to Bowral, and stayed in a beautiful B&B. We didn’t explore the region, we didn’t watch the Highland Fling (a big mountain bike event) and we didn’t get to the Berrima Lolly Shop at all.
We spent two whole days at a workshop called CalmBirth.
I’ve always wanted kids. I grew up in a big family, I spent time babysitting and nannying and messing around with scouts. I like kids and while I found the whole idea of parenting daunting, it was something that I totally expected to do one day.
Childbirth, on the other hand, seemed completely horrifying. You were going to squeeze what through where? How could that be good for either of us?? All that pain, all those bodily fluids and the plain physical brutality that seemed to be involved… and that was before I worked for a neo-natal doctor, who knew every bad birthing story under the sun. Working for her put me off children for at least ten years. And eleven years later I find I’m pregnant.
It’s not much fun in the hospital ante-natal class, when the midwife’s first comment is “I’m not going to bullshit you, you’re going to be in a lot of pain. Maybe more pain than you’ve felt in your life.”
Thankfully, I’m not just going to the hospital to find out about birth. My beautiful yoga teacher has been teaching us breathing techniques and poses that can help. She taught Ryan how to hold me and rock me and encourage me and get me through each contraction. I was beginning to think this whole birthing thing was something I could do.
Then CalmBirth. Two days of positive birthing stories and practical things. How to cope when things go right, and when things go wrong. Relaxation and breathing techniques. More things Ryan can try to support me through it, and when and how to go for pain relief. I heard stories from people who had wonderful experiences, not horrible ones. I began to hope. I began to hope that I could get through this, it wouldn’t kill me and it could actually be pretty amazing…
Now we’ve been home for a couple of days, and I’m slowly internalising what I learned. And Jamie’s wish prompt came at just the right time. This week is all about daring to believe.
I wish to dare to believe that we’re going to have an amazing birthing experience.