Every mother deserves a positive birth experience
As a doula, IBCLC, and mama to four LittleBears on earth and one in heaven, I have quite a bit of experience in everything birth and breastfeeding. I know the emotional and physical ups and downs of the entire pregnancy, birth, and postpartum experience. Most women are looking for tips on having a positive birth experience that leaves them feeling empowered, strong, and respected. If you're looking for tips on how to be confident during childbirth, how to not be afraid during labor, and how to have a positive birth experience, then you're in the right place. In this blog post I'm going to share with you my Three Pillars of Confidence in Childbirth. Understanding these three pillars can help you position yourself for an empowering birth experience. These three pillars apply to every mother, whether or not you're planning a natural hospital birth, a home birth, birth in a birth center, or a cesarean. Keep reading to learn more about my tips for preparing for a positive birth experience.
Why birth can seem so scary...
When you find out you're pregnant, so many thoughts, questions, and even fears start swirling through your mind 24/7. In a world of everything at our finger tips, you'd think we'd be able to ease those anxieties with quick answers.... but the truth is the internet usually makes those fears worse. From horror stories on blogs to societal myths about birth and breastfeeding, it's hard to figure out what the heck we should expect during pregnancy, birth, and new motherhood.
Three Pillars of Confidence for an empowered, positive birth experience
After my own experiences with birth (miscarriage, c-section, medicated VBAC, and 2 home births) plus supporting countless women through pregnancy, birth, and postpartum, I've discovered there are THREE elements necessary to feeling confident during birth: Womanly Wisdom, Self Advocacy, Surrender.
Whether you are planning a natural childbirth or a cesarean, you deserve to feel confident in your choices. In this post, I want to talk with you more about how these three pillars of confidence will help improve your birth experience!
Womanly Wisdom prepares us for birthing and mothering
Throughout all of history, women rallied around women to support them through pregnancy and birth. Young girls learned from a young age what birth looked and sounded like. They learned how to support birth, They learned how to support new mothers. And they expected that support. Modern women have been sheltered from learning about pregnancy, birth, and postpartum support. In fact, our culture has gone as far as to make pregnancy and birth out to be an illness, disability, or something to be ashamed of and kept secret. I could go on and on about the issues surrounding how we support women in modern day, but what you and I both know is... we don't. We as a society do not support women. We do not prepare women. We do not empower women to embrace their femininity. The Womanly Wisdom of our ancestors, passed down for centuries, has nearly been lost over the last 150 years. This doesn't mean all hope is lost. Womanly Wisdom does still exist. And I'm here to connect you with that wisdom. I will never claim to "know it all" when it comes to pregnancy or birth, but what I can tell you is that after years of experience both personally and professionally, I have discovered how to help you tap into the wisdom of your foremothers.
Self Advocacy in Birth
Realistically speaking, self-advocacy could fall under Womanly Wisdom, but it is so crucial that it requires fine tuning of it's own. Let's be real... growing up as a lady, you were taught to keep your mouth shut, and if you're like me and... well, didn't... you were probably labeled as a hot-head, loose cannon, crazy lady, or whatever stupid term that women who speak up get labeled as. By the time I gave birth to my eldest son, I had been so beaten down emotionally that even my fierce self was defeated, weak, and had no idea how to advocate for myself or my baby during the most challenging and vulnerable time of my life. After being treated like a "stupid, overly worried, new mom" over and over, I finally said enough is enough and I found my voice. You don't need to go through all the hell to find your voice. I can teach you how to effectively communicate from the start. This will give you the ability to cultivate a top notch birth team that you trust as you walk into your birth space.
Surrender in childbirth
When you think of finding strength, hearing that you need to learn surrender sounds strange, doesn't it? But true strength comes from learning how and when to surrender. Surrender to yourself.
Surrender to God.
Surrender to Birth.
Sometimes the strongest thing you can do is accept you are not in control of a situation, and while you can "call the shots", birth is the purest exercise in relinquishing self control and surrendering.
Surrender is the one skill I can not teach you. That will be an ongoing journey for you in your life. But I can inspire you and support you as you learn to surrender, feel this discomfort in surrender, and find the power in surrender.
When you work with me to prepare for your birth, you will learn how to tap into these three key elements of Confident Birthing. Join me for a Free Confident Mama Bear Webinar on November 12 to learn how I can help you tap into these three elements for your empowering birth.
Jaimie Zaki is a wife, mother of four Little Bears, Doula, IBCLC, and motherhood photographer. Jaimie specializes in helping women advocate for themselves during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. Jaimie offers in person and virtual pregnancy support, labor preparation, labor support, and breastfeeding preparation and support.