My approach to birth-planning with clients draws inspiration from different areas. One of them is goal-planning. Setting goals can be fun, exciting and also stretch you to consider different areas of your birth you might not have previously thought of.
Through my Clarity Sessions, you (and your partner) get up to four hours of one-to-one time with me. What do we go through:
1. Your previous pregnancies and births. Let's see what worked for you and what didn't.
2. The power of emotion - how do you want to feel during your labour, birth and immediate postnatal period?
3. Defining your biggest, juiciest goals.
WARNING: you might be surprised that these are different to what you originally believed.
4. A reality check - are your current actions in-line with your goals and circumstances?
5. Action steps - finally we will nut out specific actions you can start taking straight away and make achieving your goals one step closer.
How do you make your birth-plan unique to your circumstances, powerful yet flexible?
In this infographic I share 5 tips to help you to develop a fabulous, meaningful birth plan. If you'd like to delve deeper with me and get crystal clear on what you want from you birth, book in a Clarity Session asap.
Which of these 5 tips most INSPIRES you?
Let me know in the comments below.
Elemental Beginnings will be at BBB Parenting Fair
As a doula, Kelly from Elemental Beginnings is a specialist in supporting and coaching parents through pregnancy, birth and that adjustment phase with your new little one.
Just like a personal trainer helping you and your partner to achieve your optimum birth experience and parenting goals.
Whether you want private birth education, continuous support to cope with the physical and emotional intensity of labour or an extra pair of hands to help with your baby, Kelly is there for you.
Come see me at the Belly Baby Beyond Fair - Plant 4, Bowden, Adelaide
Sunday 10th February, 10am - 3pm
I'm taking bookings for free half-hour birth planning sessions or just stop by if you'd like to ask a Doula some questions about optimising your birth. I'd love to see you.
I'll also have a few little goodies for sale - postnatal lift balm, cord ties and bath soak herbs
As a little extra bonus - anyone who books my placenta or doula services on the day will get a 5% discount xx
This is such an easy and healthy meal to make. It would also be a nice meal to drop off to a family with a new baby so they don't have to worry about cooking for the night. It easily fed our family of 5 and could be bulked up with more veggies to go even further. The best bit is, that it is all prepared and ready to eat in under half an hour and tastes delicous!
Go Go Chicken
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 chilli, finely diced (remove the seeds if you don't like it hot)
2 large chicken breasts, bite size pieces
1 zucchini, quartered lengthways and sliced
1 cup frozen baby peas
1 fresh mango, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste
handful fresh parsley or coriander
small handful almonds
cooked rice or couscous to serve
* Heat the oil in a large frying pan and cook the onion, carrot and chilli until soft and golden
* Add chicken and brown
* While chicken is browning, roughly chop parsley/coriander and almonds together and set aside
* Add zucchini and peas, stirring until chicken is cooked through
* Add mango, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste and heat for 1 minute. The mango and lemon juice should coat everything in a nice sauce.
Serve the chicken on top of the rice/couscous, sprinkled with the herbs and almonds.
-You could also add a stick of chopped celery and a diced red capsicum.
-I think this meal would freeze well so you could make it while pregnant as part of your babymoon preparations!
- The chicken and vegetables could be served without the rice/couscous if you have a small family.
And yes, I really must start taking photos for these recipes hey!
Click on the image to download your free recipe card
3 Adelaide Women Share Their Experience With Hypnobirthing
When it comes to giving birth, one of the most common responses from women when you ask what worries them is Pain.
Google search results show that women are looking up:
How painful is birth?
Does it hurt to give birth?
How can I give birth pain-free?
Is it because of this that many women are now turning to hypnobirthing to manage the pain?
First of all, let's look at why childbirth is perceived as painful?
The changes your body is experiencing
The muscles in your uterus are contracting and your uterus and cervix are changing shape. Your uterus uses its thick muscle to pull your cervix up and out of the way so baby can pass through. It takes a lot of pulling, pushing and stretching within your body to get that baby out.
The position of your body
Much is written about the different positions you can birth in and the effect they may have on your labour. If you are laying down on your back, you are reducing the space in your pelvis. Thus making your body work harder to push your baby up the incline in your pelvis.
Not being able to freely move about will also impact the pain you are feeling.
Fear and Anxiety
If you’ve done any research into childbirth or attended any birth classes, you’ve more than likely heard about the fear-tension-pain cycle. For those that haven’t, I’ll explain it below:
The fear-tension-pain cycle is a concept introduced by Grantly Dick-Read to explain the pain associated with childbirth. The concept proposes that a woman’s thoughts and beliefs can induce anxiety and cause fear in labour. This fear leads to muscular and psychological tension that interferes with the natural processes of dilation and delivery, resulting in pain. And it is a cycle because with the pain can come more fear and so-on.
Now let's think of how pain works in your body
I like to use the analogy of cars driving along a road looking for somewhere to park (thanks Dr Sears!). When our body receives a painful stimulus, it sets a little car off to travel up the road of your nervous system and spinal cord and looks for somewhere to park in your brain.
So now we have three ways we can work with our body to stop this happening.
First of all by reducing the number of cars our body is producing. We do this in birth by remaining active and upright during labour. By thinking positively about the sensations we are experiencing and by keeping our muscles as relaxed as possible. You can use breathing techniques, visualisations or progressive relaxation techniques. Try not to get caught up in that fear-tension-pain cycle.
The second way we can stop the cars is by not letting them onto the road in our spinal cord. The Gate theory says, very simply, that we have little gates in our nervous system that pain has to pass through. If we can shut these gates or block them with other vehicles, then our little cars can't reach our brain to be perceived as pain.
So how do we block the gates?
We can create "peak hour" with different vehicles to travel along the roads of our nervous system by using all 5 of our senses.
And the third way is by filling up all the carparks (pain receptors) in your brain with other vehicles. Fill them up with the natural endorphins your body produces during childbirth or some pain medications also work this way.
What is hypnobirthing?
Hypnobirthing is a series of tools and techniques that promote pain management during birth. These techniques can include self-hypnosis, visualisation, breathing and relaxation techniques. There is also a birth education component so that women understand what is happening in their bodies during childbirth.
There are a few different hypnobirthing options around Adelaide. Some classes teach The Mongan Method and others teach the Hypnobirthing Australia method. Self-learning options such as books, websites and videos are readily available.
I spoke with 3 women from around Adelaide about their experience with hypnobirthing. I asked if they felt that their experience was consistent with the following statement: “One of the main theories that hypnobirthing discusses is the idea that pain is caused by fear and that by learning to relax, the amount of pain felt will be decreased.”
Why did you choose to use hypnobirthing for this birth?
“A friend gave me a copy of the [Marie Mongan’s] book and recommended that I read it. Reading the book completely changed my perspective. It eased a lot of my fears about birth and reminded me that our bodies are designed for birth”
“I wanted to have a different set of tools to use for birth”
“I wanted to have a natural water birth and avoid interventions. I placed so much focus on my birth outcome”
How did the theory of being able to relax in birth decreases the pain experience relate to your birth? Do you think your experience verified the above statement?
“It helped with reprogramming my subconscious beliefs and reaffirmed what I needed to do for a positive birth. My experience verified the statement and I think the most important thing is to practice and apply the info that the classes teach”
”It was helpful to have in the back of my mind. But I should have let go of my expectations and ideals. I feel like I failed though as I was exhausted and had an assisted birth after a long labour. I was able to cope with the pain which verifies the theory but I was exhausted”
”It turned around my concept of birth. The meditation was integral to keep me calm and focused. Even though my birth didn’t go exactly as planned my experience agrees with the theory”
What does the research say about hypnosis for pain relief in labour and childbirth?
A Cochrane review on hypnosis was released in 2016. It concluded that “Hypnosis may reduce the overall use of pain medication during labour, but does not seem to reduce the use of epidurals. Women using hypnosis are no more likely to have a normal vaginal birth. There is currently not enough evidence to say whether hypnosis helps women feel more satisfied with their pain relief in labour, nor whether it improves their sense of coping with labour.”
If you are interested in learning more about Hypnobirthing, please check out the below resources for local contacts.
Hypnobirthing Classes in Adelaide
0431 726 670
m: 0413 782 744
Mobile: 0413 505 533
Support for fertility & conception around Adelaide
Acumedica is home to a complete service for natural fertility, IVF support, pregnancy to postnatal care and women’s hormonal wellness. We have been Providing reproductive and general health care for women and men of all ages for over 25 years.
We are an integrative health care practice that utilises and combines Chinese medicine, acupuncture, nutritional, naturopathic and reproductive medicine.
We aim to inspire wellness beyond medicine by providing and integrating ancient medicine techniques with modern medicine for both men and women.