Tuesday, May 14, 2013

GentleBirth Hypnosis Home Study | Class 1

GentleBirth is a great home study program for women wanting a calm and gentle birth.  Each of GentleBirth's classes are designed to be focused on over the course of a week and then you move onto the next class.  However, the first class really introduces you to the base of what GentleBirth is and CD 1 is one that you will listen to throughout the rest of your pregnancy.

When I started GentleBirth I actually started with the CD only.  Tracy, the wonderful mastermind behind GentleBirth,  was kind enough to send me the MP3 before I received the whole kit in the mail so I could get started and not have to wait too long.  Listening to the CD really, really helped me.  I didn't notice it was happening at first, but over the course of just a couple of days I found my outlook on my entire pregnancy and the upcoming birth changing dramatically.  Perhaps you noticed it, too, if you read my pregnancy journal.  I feel confident and have faith in my body and my ability to birth a child.  This is precisely what the hypnosis session is meant to do.

I started my listening to the CD at night before bed and found myself sleeping better than ever as well.  In fact, I can tell in the morning whether I've listened to the CD or not just by how I feel.  When I wake up feeling well rested and ready to go, I know that I listened to the CD.  When I wake up feeling tired and sore, I know I haven't.  It's an amazing thing, the mind.

After receiving the full kit I was finally able to read the first class in the workbook.  I found the information in it to be repetitive, as in the same ideas are written in numerous places, but that is the point of the whole thing.  The book makes a point to explain that by repeating positive affirmations and positive words of encouragement over and over it will eventually "reprogram" or "replace" negative attitudes toward birth that are ingrained in us from Hollywood and society.  So the fact that this is mentioned over and over is done on purpose, it's part of that reprogramming.  It did become a little mundane toward the end, but the chapter isn't too long and I was left fascinated by some of the wonderful studies that it mentions.

In fact, it was the mentioning of numerous studies on the brain and psychology that really kept me interested.  It made me want to look these up and get more information because they truly show how powerful our brains are, and how our perception of the world around us and our opinions on things like birth can truly affect our experiences.

Most importantly, I appreciated the easy-to-understand comparisons of birth to things we do every day without thinking about it.  In different places birth is compared to your heart beating or your stomach digesting food- your body has the ability to do it, and can do it even without you thinking about it.  We don't need to force our stomachs to digest, just like we don't need to force our bodies to deliver babies.  Our bodies come fully prepared with the knowledge of how to make this happen on its own. 

The final part of the first lesson of the GentleBirth Hypnosis Home Study Program is the breathing techniques CD.  This CD guides you through a series of relaxing and helpful breathing excercises that put you in the right mindset for dealing with birth so that you may have a calm and gentle birth yourself.  I will admit, despite listening to this CD at various times during the day I never fail to fall asleep by the third breathing excersice.  The breathing techniques have a way to sooth me and put me right out before I hit the "Scan Breathing" excercise.  So what I've started doing is listening to ONE breathing technique at a time and then going to do something else.  Each is about 10 minutes long and I've only done the first four so far, but it's going well using this method!

So whether you connect with the program through the numerous studies that relate to it or by the comparisons that just make sense, this is a great program for any woman wanting a natural birth.  But don't worry, it also doesn't leave out those that aren't going to be able to or even don't want to.  It is explained how the GentleBirth program can be used for those wanting epidurals as well as those who are having c-sections.  So even if you are on the fence about having a completely med-free/intervention-free birth, this is still a program that you can use and utilize during the birth of your choice (or the birth you are going to have regardless).

I will have a more in depth review of the GentleBirth Home Study Course included in the guide that I am creating, which will be live on the blog in a few months time.  This is just a brief description of what you can expect in the first class session should you choose GentleBirth as your home study method.  All in all I am very pleased with the course so far, and look forward to future weeks. 

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