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Hypnobirthing Mumma’s Love of Yoga

Hypnobirthing Mumma’s Love of Yoga

Talk to me about anything pregnancy related and you’ll get a very positive vibe from me. I’m not denying I have days when I’m exhausted seeking the caffeine (some days the wine!) but I love it. I’m getting ahead of myself as rewind 8 years & I’d have told you quite categorically that childbirth is the most unnatural thing in the world! Followed by I like the idea of yoga but I wanted a ‘real’ workout.

Then something changed not all at once but I made a new year’s resolution that I would take up yoga and wow! Amazing going into a class that’s not competitive, all about acceptance and positive vibes. At first I thought I’m never going to be able to do this. I was a gym bunny so I was fit but my flexibility was a lot to be desired. Several years on I’ve still got a long way to go but I swear by yoga. It’s improved my strength more so than anything I’ve ever done in the gym.

I then reached a stage in my life where having a baby became a priority. Something changed in my mind set that actually woman are made to birth a baby. Like most women I’ve got friends who have mixed births some a breeze, others needing intervention but at the end of them they all had wonderful babies. We were delighted when I fell pregnant and I started on the amazing journey that is pregnancy.

I’d always worked out and was lucky enough to feel energized and healthy for the duration of my pregnancy. I continued to do most of the things I enjoyed at my gym including yoga regularly. My priority during pregnancy was my health and wellbeing – ensuring I could do everything possible for my unborn baby.

I visualised a relaxed, natural birth but was open minded knowing that sometimes we don’t always get what we want. I booked a private hypnobirthing course as the principles aligned with what I wanted and was amazed at what I learnt I was so inspired.  So much so I recommended it to many pregnant friends!

The day arrived when my baby decided that he wanted to make an appearance. It was a very chilled day I wasn’t even sure if I was in labour so carried on with my day.

My labour was a wonderful expereience. I’ll tell you I had harder days at work and I spent the duration of my labour in a happy place with my partner and Mum. Hypnobirthing was fantastic for me. I was so pleased I’d done it but what I also found out during labour was how much my yoga came into it too. The combination of yoga and hypnobirthing worked perfectly for me. It allowed me to take myself to a chilled out place. Believing in my body and the breath work ensured I was relaxed and my Oxytocin hormone levels high. I birthed a very calm little boy.

So I’d had my son and I was loving life.  Enjoying maternity leave but also realising I’d found something I was so passionate about and wanted to share with other pregnant women. Hypnobirthing and pregnancy yoga. It’s the two things I advise friends to do when they ask my advice around pregnancy. I truly believe they helped me be strong in mind and body pre and post labour. I wanted to do more than just be passionate so I retrained as a Hypnobirthing teacher.  This is one of the most amazing courses I’ve ever attended and get this it was in a yoga centre – I was in heaven! I felt so inspired.

I’m currently doing a BWY Foundation Yoga course and am going to train as a pregnancy yoga and baby yoga teacher. I finally feel like I’ve found my vocation and who knew considering I was the one who said childbirth was unnatural all those years ago.

So my advice to you ladies… Embrace your pregnancy and be kind to your body. If its your thing enjoy the yoga before, during and after your pregnancy. I find it can be more satisfying than the caffeine or the wine when you’ve had ‘one of those days’.

Ali x

FAQs

Hypnobirthing Mumma’s hypno baby

Hypnobirthing Mumma’s hypno baby

Today was a special day; it was my very own hypno baby’s second birthday. We spent the day at the New Forest Wildlife Park – albeit very cold the animals were a big hit! I’m not too sure where the past two years have gone but they have been nothing short of amazing. Being a Mother is the best job in the world. I often look at Oliver and feel like my heart may burst with love. Every day he makes me laugh with his endearing personality.

I’ve spent the day thinking this time two years ago I was very chilled.  I attended an antenatal appointment thinking I was in labour but the midwife didn’t seem convinced we didn’t even discuss it that much. Looking back I think it was because I was so relaxed why would she think I was in labour? Or perhaps she didn’t want to alarm me that yes it could be happening.  I just continued about my day having lunch after at one of my favourite cafes. It was during this lunch that I knew I was in labour!  I wasn’t scared or filled with fear just genuinely excited that my baby’s birthday had finally arrived.  I continued to be relaxed for the duration of my labour and my hypno baby boy was born into a very calm and relaxed environment.

It’s a great feeling being able to look back at the birth of my son as such a wonderful and amazing time.  I have no negativity surrounding the birth. I loved every moment of being able to experience labour and have a birth that I was happy with.  Throughout I was calm, in control and I laughed a lot! Hypnobirthing had opened my eyes to the choices we have as women around the births of our children. I felt empowered during my labour and knew what I wanted.  I felt educated on the elements of birth and what our bodies need to birth a baby.

Since Oliver arrived in this world at 23:31 on the 26th January 2015 he has been a very calm and content little boy.  Although these could be just seen as personality traits I do believe because he was born in a very calm environment. At no point during the labour were either of us distressed  and I believe this has contributed to his calm nature. He was never a baby who cried a lot. Even now when he wakes he just kicks back in his cot chilling out until eventually he’ll call out Mummy or Daddy to get our attention. Hypno babies are often calm babies to the nature of the births.

I feel blessed everyday to have Oliver and to have experienced a wonderful hypnobirth. It’s made me so passionate about helping other women achieve a birth they are happy with and one they can look back on with great affection because it’s possible – I’m the proof!

So here’s a big HAPPY BIRTHDAY my gorgeous hypno baby. Thank you for all the things you’ve taught me about myself since I found out I was pregnant.

Ali x

hypno baby

Does hypnobirthing really work?

Does hypnobirthing really work during labour?

Since I’ve started my hypnobirthing practitioner journey I’ve often got a lot of glazed looks when I talk about hypnobirthing generally being asked what’s that? I’ve even been asked do I have nursing qualifications to do that? For women who have had babies they’ve looked at me like I’m crazy when I’ve explained what it is, saying ‘oh no that would never have worked for me’ to which I reply it did work for me. What I learnt quickly is that hypnobirthing is still an unknown area for a lot of people and why wouldn’t it be as we live in a society where normally we only focus on the negatives of childbirth, viewing it as a medical procedure not what a positive and amazing experience it can be.

Hypnobirthing can help expectant mothers achieve a birth that they are happy with and one that makes them feel in control of the situation and the choices that they make. It helps fathers and birthing partners be part of the labour, learning how to support you and a have an active role in the birth – sound good so far? It can help women not only through a natural delivery but also one where there may be a c-section, an induction or other forms of intervention mentioned or given. It gives women the ability to understand their choices and question their caregivers to ensure they achieve a birth they are happy with.

Hypnobirthing works as it educates women on eliminating fear and building confidence in birth. Fear causes stress and when you go into labour you don’t want to feel stressed as this just discourages the love hormone, oxytocin, which we want the body to be producing as this works as a natural relaxant enabling our muscles to work as they should to birth your baby. It teaches us to be able to go into deep relaxation and to use visualisation as a tool.  I visualised I was lying on a beach during my labour….it was bliss! I wasn’t aware of all of these important hormones though before I got pregnant I was only introduced to them during my hypnobirthing course and I was totally enlightened. What are bodies actually work with us to birth a baby?!

I’m an advocate of hypnobirthing as I was that terrified girl from a very young age who thought childbirth was totally unnatural. As soon as I conceived I knew educating myself on everything to do with pregnancy and labour would stand me in good stead once that day arrived. I believe knowledge is power and hypnobirthing enabled me to have the tools to have a relaxed, calm and focused birth.  Even when I had to be moved from the lovely natural birth centre into the labour ward I wasn’t fazed or concerned. I was confident in myself and my amazing midwife not to mention the support I had from my partner and my Mum.  When the labour ward team started to prep me for an epidural my hypnobirthing course had given me the tools to question my caregivers. I was able to tell the team I didn’t want to go to theatre, why would I when I’d done all the hard work. I was able to ask what did I need to do for my baby to be delivered naturally, which he was albeit with a little bit of help very shortly after. My baby wasn’t in distress and nor was I so why would I be rushed to theatre unnecessarily? My baby boy was born in a calm environment and was very calm himself. I trusted my body and had been confident in delivering my baby successfully.

Unfortunately on the whole we do have a negative view of childbirth and it’s associated with being the most painful and hideous thing a woman can go through at times or something that happens immediately as soon as labour starts. We only ever talk about the bad experiences and we don’t celebrate the good as who wants to hear a straightforward story? I do that’s who! I like to share my happy birth story with any expectant mums who want to hear it as since having a baby a new bug bearer of mine is others parents not only like to tell you how awful birth is they also like to tell you all the negatives of parenting from how breastfeeding is so hard, the lack of sleep, tantrums, you’ll life will never be the same again need I go on?!  Not how amazing it is becoming a parent and all the wonderful new things you get to experience – I can’t imagine my life now without my little boy.

So lets spread the word that hypnobirthing can work and celebrate the wondrous thing that birth is.

Ali x