Believe Your Way to a Better Birth
by Laura Shanley
Our minds are magical, and infinitely more powerful than most of us realize. I learned this fact more than twenty years ago. In the intervening years, I have gone on to create a life of health, wealth, and happiness.
OK, so that’s not entirely true. I’m still working on the wealth part. But I have managed to do a few things even Tony Robbins hasn’t done – I birthed all of my children easily, without the aid of a doctor or midwife, and healed cavities in my teeth (ask my dentist). I’ve also created several small businesses, raised four happy, healthy children, and stayed married to the same man for twenty-three years. But enough about me. The point I’m trying to make is that each of us has been given a tremendous gift: the power to create our own reality according to our desires, beliefs, and intentions.
Although the concept that we create our own reality has gained favor in recent years, it certainly isn’t a new one. It can be found in all the major religions. Gautama Buddha said, “Mind is everything. We become what we think.” The Bible states this truth in other ways: “If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth” (Mark 9:23).
Many present-day authors agree. The late Norman Vincent Peale, a minister and author of numerous books stated, “Thinking is the body of the rocket. Believing is the propellant which carries it to the stars. Thinking is the birth of the deed. Believing makes it happen.” Richard Bach, best known for his book ‘Jonathon Livingston Seagull’ wrote, “We magnetize into our lives whatever we hold in our thought.”
So, you may ask, how can we apply this concept to our births? The first thing we need to do is ask ourselves what we believe about birth. Do we believe that birth is inherently dangerous and painful? There’s certainly enough “evidence” to support that line of thinking. On the other hand, there is also evidence to the contrary. If we accept the idea that our beliefs create our reality, we will understand why some women give birth easily, while others struggle. True, there are rare cases where a physical deformity makes birth difficult, but for the most part, our beliefs determine our experiences.
The only way to create a good birth is to believe it is possible.
Identifying what we believe about birth is only the first step. We also need to examine other aspects of our consciousness. What do we believe about our bodies? How do we feel about our sexuality? Do we believe that sex is shameful? If so, birth may become the punishment. How do we feel about our bodily functions? Are we ashamed of them? Do we believe we’re too fat? All of these beliefs come into play when we give birth. Love and acceptance of the self is essential if we are to create the birth of our dreams.
Of course all of us, to one degree or another, are bound to discover at least some beliefs that are less than desirable. The key is to believe we can change them. As author Jane Roberts wrote in ‘The Nature of Personal Reality’ (my all-time favorite book), “The point of power is in the present.” It doesn’t matter if we’ve believed all our lives that birth is dangerous and painful. What matters is what we believe right now.
With a little faith, changing our beliefs is easy. I accomplished this through visualization and belief suggestions or affirmations. Here are the suggestions I used when I was pregnant with my first child, John. I continued to say them occasionally during my pregnancies with Willie, Joy, and Michelle, as well.
Photos above copyright to Dejan Dizdar.