As part of my hypnobirthing and hiring a Doula we have talked a lot about Birth Affirmations. I know these aren’t for everyone but having these around me have really helped me feel positive and look forward to birth as well as keeping me focused on a positive experience. The idea behind affirmations is to increase a positive mindset and goes along with what the mind believes the body acheives. I really think that they have helped with my confidence and decisions when it comes to planning my birth and generally keeping me feeling upbeat and positive throughout my pregnancy. I wanted to share a few of these with you that I have around my desk, on my living room wall and even on my fridge notice board. I am hoping that my mind is taking these in throughout the day as I get distracted or cast my glance elsewhere and that subconsciously my mind is taking it all in and this will help me during labour. I can’t say how effective they are as I’m still pregnant a the time of writing this but it has been a nice thing to do and has given me some focus.
“My baby will arrive at the perfect time.” – 3-5% of babies are born on their due date, 85% are born before 43 weeks and the rest might come slightly before or after. Did you know that there is no universal time for when a baby should arrive or when the conversation of induction should start happening? Here in the UK our estimated due date is 40 weeks from estimated conception (I can tell you very confidently that 21st September is not 40 weeks from date of conception for this baby…it’s actually at least a week and a bit off – yes, I really do know!) It’s actually better to think of a due month or period because babies are classed as full term between 37-42 weeks. That’s a five week window in which most babies are estimated to arrive. So my baby will arrive at the perfect time that is exactly right for them and us. For me, that means not discussing induction until 41 weeks and not booking in a planned c-section until 42 weeks. The NICE guidelines recommend babies are born before 43 weeks when the risk of stillbirth begins to increase, however, that risk is very small, but still a risk.
“My baby is the perfect size for my body.” – I think we get caught up with the size of the baby and the size of the pelvis. It’s unlikely your baby will not fit, although it does happen. There is also no exact average size but anywhere from 5lb-11lb is considered pretty normal here in the UK. I’ve also heard that bigger babies are actually easier to birth. Growth scans also have a 10-20% margin for error either side and the further along in your pregnancy the less accurate they are.
“Birth is amazing no matter how it happens.” – This is a big one for me. As much as I want my planned home water VBAC I know that a c-section could still happen and I want to avoid feeling guilty or shamed for the way my second baby is delivered.
“Birth is the ultimate act of love.” – Labour and Birth are designed to feel good releasing high levels of Oxytocin, the love hormone, and natural endorphins – our pain relievers. The more we trust ourselves and our ability the more positive our birth will be. No matter how birth happens you have carried a baby lovingly for nine months and finally you get to have them in your arms.
“My Birth Partner is by my side and on my side.” – Birth partners do not need to be in the background, there is plenty for them to do and the more open you are about birth place and planning, the more your partner can be your advocate in labour and can feel like they are part of the process too.
Here are a few others you might like: