Monday, January 21, 2013

Enjoying the moment

One of my biggest weaknesses is that sometimes I have a hard time being fully present and enjoying the moment. For example,  for most of my pregnancy I lamented the fact that I was unable to take on very many clients. At the beginning of 2012 it seemed that I was going to be able to attend lots of births. I was very busy. Then. Nothing. No inquiries. No births. Nothing. I ached to attend births. However, it seemed like the universe knew that I was going to need that dry spell. At the beginning of the dry spell, I learned I was pregnant. During weeks 6-18 of my pregnancy, I experienced a surprising amount of nausea and vomiting. There was no way I would have been a very useful doula during that time. I finally started to feel thankful for my break. Finally, halfway through my pregnancy, I attended a wonderful birth. I hoped to be able to attend a few more births before giving birth myself. However, inquiries started coming in for January, my due month. I had to turn people away. What a cruel joke! 

For some reason I had a hard time being taken care of as a pregnant woman. During my first few visits with my midwife I talked about doula work and how hard it was for me to be the pregnant woman. For some reason it was hard for me to take care of myself. I wanted to help others and take my mind off of being pregnant. I enjoyed being pregnant but for some reason I really wanted to keep my mind busy. And not having any families to serve and births to look forward to was torture!

I decided that I would force myself to start my maternity leave in December. It  was and continues to be so hard seeing my friends and colleagues keeping busy attending births while I am just being a pregnant lady and now babymooning lady. I worry about becoming obsolete. Irrelevant. I worry about being forgotten. It's especially hard to see how busy January has been for everyone. 

I think at some point around 37 or 38 weeks I surrendered to my pregnancy after having a really good talk with my midwife about it. I told her that I was feeling a little self-conscious in the way that I would probably end up laboring. During the second half of my pregnancy, I started to practice the Hypnobabies materials. As I got closer to my birthing time, I expressed concern that I didn't think I would be able to labor quietly and zen-like. I so wanted to be one of those amazing zen-mamas I have heard about. I was afraid I would moan and moo like a cow again like I did during my first labor. My husband said, "It got the job done." I expressed concern to my midwife and that's when she talked about surrendering during labor. I wish I could remember exactly what she said, but I can't. I do remember how I felt though. It's almost like a switch got turned in my mind and all of a sudden I didn't worry about it anymore. This wasn't the first time she was able to say something that just instantly alleviated my worries. 

After our talk, I didn't worry anymore. I didn't worry if I labored noisily. I didn't worry if I did my Hypnobabies wrong. I didn't worry if I used my Hypnobabies at all. I didn't worry that I didn't have any doula clients. I didn't worry about when I would resume attending births. I finally started to think about MY birth, whatever it was going to be. I finally started to enjoy being the pregnant woman. 

And then, in an instant, it was all over. My labor started quickly and just as quickly as it started, it was over. I had a baby in my arms. And now, I miss being taken care of as the pregnant woman. I wish I had enjoyed it more while I was there. 

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