As a first time mommy, I was scared out of my mind at the thought of delivering a baby. This fear really started to set in somewhere around 30 weeks. It was so bad that when people would ask me if I was “excited”, my answer was always an emphatic “no”.
I wasn’t excited. I was afraid.
My fear was so strong that I couldn’t even get excited about the end result, a beautiful baby boy. All I could think about was the pain.
I realize that feeling anxious about childbirth is natural but I believe that this fear only contributes to the pain, it does nothing to help ease it. While my labor turned out to be nothing like I had hoped and I found myself in the hospital having to conquer fear, once again, I can say that I was pretty calm and at ease for the last several weeks of my pregnancy.
I truly was not afraid.
Here are 3 things I did that helped me to conquer my fear of childbirth:
- I watched childbirth videos. Often times fear creeps in when we are facing something that is unknown. At the suggestion of my friend and Doula, I watched natural childbirth videos in preparation for my own delivery. I believe this was a big part of easing my mind about childbirth because the more I watched the less “unknown” it became. The more familiar I became with the process, the more I began to feel that I too could join the ranks of the millions of women who have given birth.
- I read Scripture. Faith in God is an important part of my life. Now, if this is not a part of your life and you are uncomfortable with reading Scripture (even if it’s not a part of your life, it could still be beneficial) then you could easily adapt this to reading positive quotes regarding fear. I looked up Scriptures that addressed fear. I took card stock and made index cards with the various scriptures I found. I put some around my mirror where I do my makeup and the rest I left in a pile that I would read through regularly. When it came time to deliver, I would recite the verses, as I could recall them.
- I listened to Childbirth in the Glory. In watching childbirth videos I came across one where the woman attributed her “easy” childbirth to listening to the CD Childbirth in the Glory during labor. For full disclosure, I really didn’t believe childbirth could be “easy” or “painless” (yes, there is such s movement of women that attemp painless childbirth) but I was willing to try! I downloaded Childbirth in the Glory and listened to it almost every night for the last four weeks of my pregnancy. I also listened to it any time I needed to relax. While I did not end up with an easy or painless childbirth experience, this CD helped tremendously in keeping my pre-labor anxieties at bay.
What have you done to ease your labor jitters?