Preparing Your Labor & Birth Space
Do you know how to prepare your labor and birth space?
Have you thought about it yet?
We know that when a birthing person feels safe and comfortable, their labor will progress and their surges will feel much more manageable. In this post, we’ll tackle preparing for your best possible birth by creating a safe, sacred space. And, we will explain what you want to avoid in your birth space. Let’s start with the latter…
What to avoid in your birth space
Certainly there are things that can negatively impact your birthing experience. We invite you to “cast out” the following, so that you can envision and then physically & energetically create your labor and birth space:
- any sounds that draw you out of the primal space – this can be a loud tv blaring in the background, a family member or friend loudly talking about their own experiences, asking questions and just plainly taking away from your experience by distracting you from the time at hand
- any overwhelming smells – this can be a heavy perfume or cologne that someone in your space is wearing or the smell of food that can make you feel nauseas
- bright lights – when you think of how other mammals birth, they like dark, cave-like spaces. It’s the same for us! You can dim the lights in any birth space, hospital room included
All of our senses are heightened during labor – and breathing through surges takes precedence as labor becomes more active. When we have any of the above distractions taking place, it can stall labor, cause you to lose focus and make managing through surges more difficult than it needs to be.
Making your birth space productive
Read through the following ideas to make your birth space a productive one:
- use tea lights or hanging twinkle lights to give the space a soft glow
- choose music that helps you feel calm and relaxed; spa, instrumental covers, worship, wedding play lists, or putting on guided meditations (hypnobirthing.) Or just having it quiet can be great too!
- diffuse essential oils that you have picked out ahead of time or can be placed on something close to you that can be easily removed
- hang up ultrasound pictures, affirmation banners, or scripture verses
- keep electrolyte drinks, water bottle and high protein snacks close to help you stay hydrated and fueled
What about the people in my birth space?
Keep in mind that because your birth space is a sacred space, anyone that comes into the room can shift your energy in a positive or negative way.
Choose support people who are mindful that this is your experience and have an active job, whether that be to help you manage surges, holding space, prepping food, being an extra set of hands for your birth team or helping with older children. One of the biggest regrets that I hear from clients is that they were guilted into letting people into their space for one reason or another who did not honor or meet needs.
An important note:
This may be news to you, but there are a lot of bodily fluids moving around during birth. Ask yourself if you are comfortable pooping in front of the person whom you are about to invite into your birth. If the answer is “no” then they don’t need to be there.
Finally, because your birth and postpartum are such a tender space – and the ones around you may have a giving heart – we’ll remind you that there are plenty of other ways others can show up for you once you’ve entered into the postnatal space. Childcare, meals, helping around the house, and holding your baby so that you can shower are a few vital and life-giving options to give those whom are not invited into your birth.
Remember to tap into hidden wisdom when it’s an option
The tips we share today are numerous, but remember there are always more. Hidden gems within your midwife, your birth doula, your postpartum doula, and the many who have birthed before you (mothers, sisters, aunts, grandmothers, etc.)
Have you birthed before and have some great tips for someone birthing today?
Has someone imparted wisdom onto your path and you think it’s worth sharing?
The best part of walking alongside women who birth is often learning from and with birthing people. You are brilliant! And we are so thankful to do this journey with you.
Your Cherry Blossom Doulas