Giving birth is a life-changing event and one you never forget. So how do you prepare to optimize and make it “you-nique”? Beginning with the precept that birth is a natural, normal event for women you can prepare yourself physically and emotionally. Surrounding yourself with people who advocate for natural birth will help you build confidence in birth and deal legitimately with whatever questions and fears you may have. Take time to choose your caregiver carefully with the advice of friends and by checking reviews.
Since the majority of women are considered low-risk, the midwifery model of care is a viable option for many. It affords a personalized relationship throughout prenatal care and during delivery as well. Childbirth educators are an enthusiastic resource for you and a childbirth class creates an opportunity for sharing and comparing pregnancy concerns, questions and all those niggling “what ifs” that otherwise may remain as a nebulous cloud of concerns, waiting to rain on your birth. Childbirth classes help you face birth without fear. Doulas are also a special gift to give yourself as part of your birth preparation. This may be your best requisite for your birth, especially if you plan to birth in a hospital.
Having a doula assures you someone who can and will advocate for you when you are especially vulnerable and you are in the care of hospital staff who, however well meaning, are less equipped to attend to comfort measures and to advocate for you. If you don’t have a doula, a good friend or family member who is a natural birth advocate can be invaluable as an encouragement to you.
Happy birthing and don’t forget to put your Labor Link with your other birth supplies!