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A Sense of Peace (In the Delivery Room?)
The HypnoBirth Experience

By Mamie Nash


Anyone who reads the latest celebrity news knows that Kate Middleton, England's sweetheart, is again front and center in the gossip pages. The topic? Unconfirmed reports that the princess is now planning a HypnoBirth for the delivery of her first child. The palace spokesperson has stated that they “are aware of the report but cannot confirm or deny it.”

Kate pregnant“We appreciate it's a happy occasion,” continued the statement, “but there are some matters which should remain private to the Duchess.” This response is to be expected, as royal mothers are notoriously silent on private issues, choosing to keep a professional relationship with the public on the matters of pregnancy and birth.

But what, exactly, is HypnoBirth? It is a birthing method which promotes peaceful, stress-free births through relaxation and hypnosis techniques. This method emphasizes the importance of maintaining calm and peaceful thoughts and feelings, in order to relax the body and allow the natural process of childbirth to take place. Proponents of this method hold that nature intended for women to give birth relatively easily, but the fear of childbirth incites physical pain.

While it is currently unknown whether or not the princess has actually chosen this non-traditional birthing method, there are more than a few famous celebrities who have shared very intimate details of their own birthing experiences.

“My husband takes me through sort of a meditation,” sys Jessica Alba, mother of two, in an interview with FitPregnancy Magazine. “So he’s saying, ‘you’re relaxed and you’re floating on clouds’ while you’re going through labor and your contractions. I’m just concentrating on breathing and staying relaxed because it’s when you get tense that makes the whole labor worse and more painful. That’s all it is. It’s not like a weird thing.”

Jessica Alba pregnantThis method has fast taken hold in the circle of Hollywood’s pregnant elite, and is now being explored as a viable delivery option by the average woman. Programs on HypnoBirth are offered nationally and internationally, normally consisting of five 2 1/2 hour classes.

“I was notably calm for both of my labors and feel that HypnoBirthing was very helpful to me in learning to go within myself and tune out the world. I also feel it helped make my children's entrances into the world as peaceful and serene as possible,” Alba added.

Notable celebrities who have chosen the HypnoBirth method include Cindy Crawford, Demi Moore, Pamela Anderson, and Meryl Streep. Erykah Badu, the queen of hip-hop and soul, also believes in relaxation during delivery. When the star's third child was born at home in February of 2009, the mom tweeted between contractions, and kept her two small children in the room with her!

“Maybe to some it’s scary, but preparation is the whole key. When a mother has found out she’s going to have a baby, her whole life – her diet, her mood, her energy – should kind of prepare her. After she prepares herself, fear is never a part of it,” Badu said in a recent interview.

From a traditional birth to a squatting birth to a water birth, the modern-day woman has the ability to tailor her birthing plan to fit her personality and individual needs. HypnoBirthing is now taking it's place among the many outside-the-box options, and is fast finding acceptance in the delivery room!

Marie F. Morgan bookThe HypnoBirth method was introduced in a book copyrighted in 1992 by Marie F. Mongan, who expanded on work originally done by Dr. Dick-Read, an early twentieth English obstetrician. The book talks about the journey through Mongan’s own deliveries, and the techniques and ideas that she discovered.

“I discarded all of the negative literature devoted to descriptions of laboring mothers trying to cope with and survive the “excruciating pain of childbirth”, and focused on Dick-Read’s theory of eliminating the Fear-Tension-Pain Syndrome. I was excited and looked forward to my normal, natural birth, awake, alert, and free of the fear and pain that it caused,” Mongan says.

Mongan goes on to describe how her babies were born, and talks about the benefits of letting nature take it’s course in the delivery room.

To experience a Hypnobirth delivery you must be willing to let go of the fear of shoving a child the size of a cantaloupe out of your body, and instead focus on your body’s natural ability to deliver at the appropriate time, and in the appropriate way.

Pregnant and interested? See the following link to find a class near you! / Issue 148 - September 9605
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