Calm Birth: Sound Good?

Calm Birth… don’t the words just relax you? There are so many things that we think about birth, and rarely are “Calm Birth” the first words to come to mind! But all this is changing! Or shall I say changing once again. It wasn’t always that birth was the dramatic, medical experience that so many of us have experienced it to be!

Why would we want to experience a CALM BIRTH?

Well, I really can’t imagine why we wouldn’t want to experience a Calm Birth! Many of us have been taught how to live off the adrenaline of anxiety! Our world is consumed with small and large fears and concerns. We are always on the cusp of fight or flight… but every day is the opportunity to practice another way! Calm Birth is a meditation/relaxation practice that not only can help with birth, but can help with all of our daily life!

The History of Calm Birth

Calm Birth is a program and book created by Robert Bruce Newman. He once wanted to be a doctor, but instead followed his desires to study Vajrayana meditation. After years and years of study he started teaching meditation in Colleges and Universities, then started teaching meditation to aid the healing process.

From there the Calm Birth Program was created as Robert realized the potential of using meditation science as a way to take the suffering out of our modern day birth! He immediately started teaching it in hospitals and teaching other childbirth professionals. Robert has a wonderful heart for helping and has provided us with such great tools! Visit www.calmbirth.org for more information--they are a great resource! Calm Birth has three main components… All of them encourage the practice of going within and all of them can be practiced with your partner for deepening the connection between you and baby.

Practice of Opening

Many of us have already tried this technique in a similar version called progressive relaxation. Imagine laying back and relaxing, our eyes are softly open (to help us stay awake). We start at the feet and we slowly make our way up the body, becoming aware of each area of the body, bringing our attention to the life force flowing through each area.

This practice is about reconnecting to the union of all things, the life force in all things. How many times have we cursed a part of our body? Well, it hears us and it believes us! This is a gentle reconditioning, all the way down to the cellular level that says, “feet, knees, womb, heart, etc. you serve me well. I feel the life in you and I appreciate it!”

Womb Breathing

Energy breathing has been used in many ancient traditions, going back a long ways, but with this program, Robert has brought energy breathing into childbirth. Imagine sitting in an upright position, so we are sitting into our life essence. We are comfortable and well supported by the earth. We begin to breath down into the belly, imagine an energy Vase at the navel center, very near the womb.

The Vase is made for energy breathing, as you breath the Vase fills up with luminous light-energy. In essence we are breathing not only into our physical body, but our energy body, feeding ourselves with breath and energy, feeding our babies with breath energy. Closing our eyes and breathing with the intention of filling the navel-center. It is a practice that allows us to breath and face fears. It allows us to intentionally bring in energy to ourselves and to our child.

Giving and Receiving

The practice of Giving and Receiving is a healing practice, one of not only our own wounds, and our childs, but those that the world is experiencing and ready to move out of. It sounds like a tall order, but in practice it is made beautifully easy. Closing our eyes we imagine breathing in the health conditions or disturbances of ourselves and as it is in us, it is easily transformed into light and exhaled as healed energies.

We continue this with our child, in our womb. Breathing in any disturbances, dissolving them into light and releasing them. It is a true act of giving and receiving. As we practice we continue with embracing the disturbances of other pregnant women, realizing there is no separation in the universe, we extend our giving to groups of pregnant women, then their partners and their children.

As we practice this, we prepare to breathe in our working uterus during labor. We breathe, we dissolve into light, we release light into the world; through this process we release the idea of suffering and embrace the idea of grace and ease. We are empowered because we are free.

Calm Birth vs. Hypnobirthing

I find Calm Birth very empowering. Unlike hypnobirthing, it is not about staying limp or hanging out through birth with a relaxed birth. It goes much farther than that.

It’s about healing the physical body, down to the cellular level. It’s about being with ourselves and feeding ourselves as we face fears and anxieties; and seeing through them. It’s about the connection, between ourselves and our babies; and also that what we give ourselves; we give another… may we each give and receive love, light and freedom.

My Own Practice of Calm Birth

In my own practice of Calm Birth, I have enjoyed reading the book, but found the CDs to be a profound help in the everyday practice. The book helped me to understand more of what Robert was explaining and really wanting me to do, but the CDs helped me to sit down every day and practice!

I chose one part a day to practice, and on some occasions found that I like to do two practices. I also find that if I feel like I need a nap, but can’t fall asleep, the progressive relaxation is a perfect helper! Because of my practice, I will often realize in the day that I’ve cut off my breath, or that my belly is tight, I have become much more conscious of what energy I am feeding myself and my babies! Thank you Robert for such a beautiful practice and for all your work! Calmbirth.org

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