Making a Mountain out of a Molehill
When we give birth we want it to be the best experience possible. It’s a sacred time that cannot be repeated. However, especially for first time parents, there is a good amount of fear surrounding the entire birth process from being afraid to poop when you push to the fear of dying during childbirth. Given birth is so unpredictable, the fear of the unknown can really build up in our minds and become hard to sort through on our own.
Often, when we sit down and brainstorm about our birth plan we realize how many options and possibilities there really are, we sometimes develop anxiety about giving birth. There is a lot to take in and until we’re in the moment, it’s hard to determine the best choice for us. When prepping for your birth it's important to make room for change.
When planning for your big day it’s important to remember that stress and fear can affect the birthing process to a degree. It can literally have an effect on it when we dwell on our fears, potentially slowing down or even stopping labor. Also, though, it can affect us emotionally when we are so set on a birth plan and for whatever reason need to shy away from that plan. It can leave us feeling dissatisfied with our experience and even ourselves. This is why I like to think of it more as birth preferences than a plan. A plan sounds so set in stone.
It's not uncommon for people to keep these fears to themselves to avoid feeling judged or invalidated. Holding it in can be problematic for various reasons. For starters, keeping it to yourself and holding it in can deter you from overcoming these fears. Not only that, but denying yourself the opportunity to express yourself leaves room for exaggeration. Have you ever made a mountain out of a molehill? I sure have. I've kept things to myself and, in result, swore my situation was much worse than it actually was.
I'm not going to sit here and tell you not to be afraid because your fears are valid. I also won't tell you there is an infallible solution either. What I will tell you is that you deserve unbiased, nonjudgmental support. Having someone that will validate your fears, without judgment, and is not emotionally charged can make the world of difference. This is why I do what I do, because every birthing person deserves this kind of support. Your doula will not tell you not to fear something but, instead, will work through your fear with you. Your doula is a safe place to bounce thoughts, feelings, and fears off from without needing to censor yourself. They are also available to assist in your birth planning to create the perfect one for you, one that won't leave you feeling negatively if any last minute tweaks need to be made during labor.