Most first-time moms will experience some anxiety about giving birth. Although birth is a natural and beautiful thing, when it is something that you have never experienced, it can certainly be daunting.
When I was pregnant with my first baby, I read a lot of literature about childbirth. I even came across a thread once devoted entirely to, ahem, pooping on the table while pushing. The horror!
When my time to deliver came, however, I was amazed at how my body went into auto-pilot and a lot of my fears ceased as I was focused on the task at hand. The fact is — women’s bodies are amazing, and one mom’s post about giving birth is a powerful reminder of that.
Laura Mazza, the popular blogger behind The Mum on the Run, directed her now-viral post to all of the pregnant mamas out there. Her main message is to encourage women not to fear birth — which has clearly resonated with many moms, since the post has gotten 1.5K likes and 217 shares to date.
With this moving post, Mazza admits to having had fears herself, reminding parents that it’s normal to worry about themselves and their babies. And I think she’s absolutely right. It’s up to us to find our inner strength and power as mothers.
As a woman, finding your power during childbirth means that you need to do what is best for yourself. As Mazza passionately said:
If you want to go with a 5-page birth plan because anxiety is getting to you. Do it.
If you want to take pain relief. Do it.
If you want to feel every bit of it because you can, do it.
If trauma has hurt you, and you want a Cesarean. Do it.
Yes! We are all different, and what is right for one is not going to be right for everyone.
And, as any woman who has done it also knows, giving birth can be a wild ride that may not turn out the way you thought. Mazza understands this, saying, “Never beat yourself up for that. Never. Feel strong that you’re willing to do anything for your baby.”
As Mazza tells Babble, “I see how easy it is for mothers to feel guilty or grief over a birth they expected to have but didn’t get, so I felt it would be an encouraging thing to talk about.”
Mazza has two children and is currently pregnant with her third. She tells Babble that this time around, she is looking forward to giving birth.
“I am actually so excited, whereas if you had asked me about it when I was due for my first or second I would have told you I was petrified,” she explains. “First because I had no idea what to expect and the horror stories scared me, and second because first didn’t go to plan and I was worried about the same outcome, but I took back my power as a woman and a mother and had such a wonderful experience.”
Good for her!
I wish that I had “taken my power back” when I gave birth to my third child. The truth is, I thought I had things figured out and anticipated a birth similar to my first two. My experience ended up being vastly different because I lost my voice. I let an aggressive nurse withhold the epidural that I was planning on getting and ended up feeling traumatized. What I learned is that it is up to you to be an advocate for yourself!
When it comes to giving birth, Mazza wants pregnant mamas to know: “Birth is normal, fear is normal, and you, never underestimate yourself, because you mama, you are powerful.”
It’s a beautiful message — and an important reminder to go in armed with the inner strength to advocate for yourself as well as the birth you want. That way, fear can never win.