Childbirth is a natural thing. Women's bodies were made to give birth. Birth works. But is that all there is to it? Do we just “trust birth” and then go on our way to a perfect birth? In an ideal world, trust would work just fine. But the rising number of birth interventions, maternal mortality rates, and the vast number of women who feel defeated and disempowered by their birth experience suggest otherwise.
Birth does work – but it has a much greater chance of working if you do work during pregnancy to prepare for it. This involves educating yourself, learning your options, choosing a good care provider (or consciously choosing unassisted care/birth), and taking care of yourself nutritionally and physically. I go into all of these issues on my site.
But increasingly I feel that outside of prenatal nutrition, practicing birth skills before you go into labor is a key to having birth work for you. You do the work before, and you reap the benefits. It's hard to convince people of this – doing anything to “prevent a future problem” is a hard sell 🙂 But the benefits to you, and most especially to your baby, are great.
Scott and I are working through the Pink Kit right now – and when I say “working through,” I'm serious. It is a practical, step-by-step, down-to-earth resource that actually covers skills that you can take into birth. You learn relaxation, yes, but you also learn so much more. It goes beyond any other birth course. It's insightful, proactive, and positive. You learn the skills and you know that you can, and how you can, use them during birth.
When I was pregnant with Galen I found that one of the biggest problems with studying the Pink Kit was just how extensive it is. I wasn't sure how to move through the resources. The Common Knowledge Trust, the charity that developed the kit, said you could pretty much start anywhere and move through it. I know that for me and for many other women, though, that was overwhelming. I even developed a timeline to help guide myself and others.
The To-Do List
Thankfully things are a lot clearer this pregnancy. The Common Knowledge Trust has put together a Pink Kit To-Do List that guides you week-by-week through which resources to cover – you know which book, video, or audio to use, and what page numbers or sections you should use. You know when to start the Internal Work daily.
I have been working through each resource during my current pregnancy and the To-Do is list super clear and easy to follow. I find myself amazed (again) at my own birthing body, and how I get to explore it and (re)discover how to work with it. This information is amazing – I know my own shape and how I can sit, stand, kneel, move, etc. to open myself up and relax my muscles. When my baby is ready to be born in a few weeks, I will be able to use all of these skills to pay attention to what I'm feeling and get my baby out – as smoothly as possible.
I highly recommend that you work through the Pink Kit with the To-Do List. It breaks the kit down step-by-step and makes it easy to get all the resources you need.
This is my second time working through the kit with a pregnancy, and I want to go through all the resources again – I find and re-discover so much information. Scott doesn't want to read every word, so the To-Do List makes it easy for me to review the materials every week and pull out things I want to read to Scott or discuss with him. I also know which video segments we should be watching, and we're doing the Internal Work daily at this point.