"There is no other organ quite like the uterus. If men had such an organ,
they would brag about it. So should we."
So says the wonderful Ina May Gaskin, American community midwife, co-founder of The Farm (a village and midwifery centre in Tennessee), leading proponent of positive birthing.
Her book 'Ina May's Guide to Childbirth' was my top read during my pregnancy last year and if I could recommend only one thing to pregnant women to help them through birth, it would be this woman's wisdom.
Ina May's position is simple and very powerful. Women, and our bodies, are amazing. Our bodies are capable, strong and wise and above all are built for childbirth. She believes the best approach to childbirth is to surround yourself with positive messages and birth stories, to understand your body's capabilities and the process of childbirth, and to embrace the process as one that will empower you both at the time and afterwards.
I was very open to this message before I came upon Ina May (thanks, no surprise, to the Mighty Jen...) but I remember feeling physically changed by reading this book. It made me feel strong, excited and eager for birth! I am happy to say that feeling didn't leave me, and this is despite a pregnancy very much marred by severe and constant sickness (and they call it morning sickness!) and a strong general aversion to pain.
The power of the positive is a wonderful thing that we don't use enough. Believe in ourselves, believe in what we can do.
Coming soon...the power of positive messages.