Sometimes the light is made more brilliant by the contrast of darkness.
Have you had a scary or unpleasant birth experience in the past?
If you’re expecting again, you might be worried about a repeat of your last birth scenario, and that past fear and anxiety can play a role in the way that your current pregnancy and birth experience unfolds.
We can talk about living in the moment, but when the spectre of a past birth is haunting your thoughts and feelings, it can be hard to move forward.
You might be feeling like you’re stuck on a treadmill or hamster wheel, running through the same thoughts and feelings.
Ultimately this pattern will be likely to result in a manifestation of those very fears and worries.
Strong feelings, whether positive or negative, are like a magnet, pulling experiences toward us.
What we pay attention to aligns us with receiving more of those feelings in our lives–bringing us more of the same. T
hink of your feelings like a beacon or radio signal, attracting experiences, people, and situations that are in alignment with your “signal”.
We can’t change the past, but we can change the way we think about it.
If you had a prior birth experience that you perceived as negative, try to located where there might be room to feel gratitude or love–any emotion that uplifts you instead of brings you down.
Perhaps your partner was not as supportive as you would have liked.
Instead of staying stuck in anger about this, you can find an opportunity for gratitude.
You’re now aware about your partner’s limitations and comfort zones, and perhaps this knowledge will lead to you enlisting alternative support, such as a doula or childbirth education class.
Perhaps you feel that you were bullied into unnecessary interventions by your care providers.
I certainly felt this way after my third birth. That feeling crippled me and undermined my self-worth, for far too long.
But in the end, I was able to transmute that feeling to fuel my passion and determination, to fight for a better birth experience in my future.
That extreme trauma lit a fire inside me to learn all I could about birth, and why birth is the way it is in modern America.
Through my pain, I have come to feel thankful for my negative experiences surrounding birth–because that darkness gave contrast to what I knew birth could be like instead.
Don’t let your fears of the past define your NOW. Use the power of gratitude to transform your pain and fear into empowerment for the future!