At just about 6 months pregnant now, labor and delivery is creeping closer and closer to me each day.
For practically my whole life, I've been conditioned to be afraid of giving birth. It's awful, right? It's the biggest reason that men are grateful they're not women. They will never have the bear the horrendous pain of bearing a child.
I've heard all kinds of crazy analogies for how terrible birth is - like that it's equlivalent to breaking every bone in your body all at once, or that it's second only to the excruciating pain of being burned alive.
And yet, as anxious of a person as I typically am, I really struggle to be truly afraid of labor. My husband thinks I'm not prepared mentally for birth because I'm not allowing myself to realize how painful it will be.
But in my opinion, it's not that I don't realize how painful birth can be. It's just that I know that an awfully painful birth is not my only option. I believe wholeheartedly that I can give birth naturally without hating the experience. I can embrace and enjoy it.
Here are some affirmations I'm planning on using in these last few months of pregnancy, and during my labor and delivery experience, to make the most of giving birth for the first time.
My body was created for this.
My body knows exactly what it needs to do - I just need to trust it.
Relax and breathe. Relax and breathe.
Each contraction will bring me closer to meeting my baby.
Giving birth is a bonding experience for baby and me.
This child is a gift - let her be given.
I am so strong.
What I feel is intense, but it has purpose.
Enjoy this experience - it will be over soon.
I am the best and only mother for this child.
If you're planning on having a natural birth, don't let the crazy painful stories and analogies scary you. It's all about mindset. Your brain is such a powerful tool. Only you can choose to use it for good.