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  • Jennifer Day-Sully

Why a Positive Birth Has Nothing to Do with Your Vagina.

Before taking the Hypnobirthing Australia course in Gladstone, I had not really thought a lot about having a “positive birth”. With my first birth of my daughter, I admit, I did minimal research. I didn’t want to freak myself out with too much information. I watched some videos, read a handful of articles. I thought, “I’m a strong woman, my body is built to do this, I’ll just go primal with it all and it will be fine.” Unfortunately, I was wrong.

Looking back, I can see exactly where things went off track. I can see now that I was uneducated and unprepared to be the leader of my birthing experience. My daughter was positioned posterior and I had no idea what that meant for my labour or what to do about it. As a result, I experienced an exhausting three-day start-and-stop labour during which my body and mind deteriorated until I ended up having an emergency caesarean (which I probably did not medically NEED to have). It was not a pleasant experience. It was physically and mentally painful. It did not put me in the ideal headspace to start my motherhood journey.

So, when I found myself unexpectedly pregnant just ten months later, I was disheartened. I had a very hard time getting excited about this surprise pregnancy- not about the baby, but the fact that the baby would have to come OUT and I was not ready to face that process again. Deep in my gut I knew there had to be a better way- a more loving, peaceful way. So after about two weeks of sooking and feeling sorry for myself I decided to take charge and set about on my journey for a better, more positive birth.

Me and Giorgio, just a few hours after our healing, natural, VBAC birth.

I did a few things differently- first, I snagged a spot in the Gladstone Hospital’s Midwifery Group Practice (MGP). Wow!!! Love this program, the continuity of care it provides, and just overall, I cannot speak highly enough of this program and my experience at the Gladstone Base Hospital. If you are interested in this program ask your GP for a referral right away as spaces are limited.

Second, I enrolled in the Hypnobirthing Australia program. The program opened my eyes to the “secrets” of positive birthing. And key to achieving a positive birth, is to actually think about the concept itself! What a notion! LOL But, in the course we actually took the time to pull apart what we felt a positive birth would entail. What did we want for our birth? How did we want to feel? What was a priority for me? I know it seems so simple, so easy. But I had not taken the time before to even really consider this with my first birth. Sure, I knew I wanted skin-to-skin and wanted to breastfeed. But to look at the idea of a positive experience as a big picture and then break it down into individual elements was so eye opening for me, and to do this exercise with my partner by my side was so useful. We were already approaching this birth differently- as a true team.

In the course, once the students begin to conceptualize what a positive birth means to them (and it’s something different for everyone)- the rest of the course materials continue to build upon one another to create a positive, empowering mindset. You begin to realize you have choices, power, and you realize that so many of the qualities you envision for your positive birth can apply to the experience regardless of how your baby comes out into the world.

Taking the time to actually think about what a positive birth means to you creates structure for an empowering experience.

And after achieving my own healing, VBAC (vaginal birth after caesarean) hypnobirth, and coaching dozens of Gladstone families on their birth journeys, I have come to truly embrace the idea that a positive birth has nothing to do with your vagina. This course is not about vaginal delivery versus surgical birth. It’s not about drugs versus no drugs. This course gives the gift of clarity and flexibility. It taught me that a positive birth is not about the technical aspect of how your baby enters the world- it’s about the tone or feeling surrounding the experience. You can have a positive Caesarean birth, which I cover in the class, just as you can have a wonderful vaginal birth. It has become my and Cloud Nine Coaching & Hypnobirthing’s mission to create births were families feel: safe, supported, respected, and experience a birth where they feel they are a part of the decision-making process regardless of how their baby enters the world. Please let me help your family achieve a positive birth. How we birth matters and I would love to give you the tools and education I WISH I had with my first birth.

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