What is a birth journey?
While at the osteopath having a general post-baby tune-up, my therapist and I started discussing birth. We both agreed, having both had miscarriages, infertility issues and children, that pregnancy, birth and babies were a journey. It was one we both thought was an amazing journey but fully of up’s, down’s and everything in between.
The beginning of mine was by far the steepest learning curve in my journey. It consisted of a couple of years of pregnancy, miscarriage, infertility, pregnancy and birth. In another post I detailed my journey in full but below I’ve lisited some of the things I learnt along the way.
Knowing my cycle – sounds silly but until after I had a miscarriage I didn’t know exactly how long my cycle was. I had been on the pill for so many years. I never bothered to know what my body wanted to do. I just care about what I wanted to do to my body. I fill it so full of hormones during my 20’s in order to not get pregnant that we I came off the pill it was like meeting a long lost friend again. Sorry body, my bad.
Finding out about vitamins and supplements – in order to help me keep my cycle regular and help with any potential ups and downs in my fertility I chose to find out about and use some herbal supplements. Now, I’m not saying this is for everyone but I am saying if you want to help yourself there’s a lot of products out there that can help… if you’re willing to do your research.
Looking after my body, mind and soul – unfortunately I did this in this order. I would look at my physical body first as the starting point of everything – I’ve got a/an insert illness/pain/symptom, so that must mean XYZ. It was a great starting point for becoming aware of my body but I failed to see the state of my mind and soul as starting points to. I suffered from anxiety (and still do) for way too long before I acknowledged some big parts of my life were out of balance. Once I started to look at the state of my mind and my soul, then I started to create happiness and content rather than waiting for physical symptoms to send me on a wild goose chase to fix the body and then the mind and soul.
Finding out what made me happy, not just doing things that I thought made me happy – I used to fill my days doing things, now I fill the extremely little and precious me time I have doing what I really, really love. It might be meeting up with friends or having plans but often it’s not. I value freedom and spontaneity and so my ‘me’ time is sometimes me doing whatever takes my fancy at the time. My point, don’t just feel you have to do something, do what makes you truly happy.
Knowing my inner strengths and weaknesses in me/not just my personality or job title – Some parts of me don’t fit into work or my personality that others see. Most would say that at work and outwardly I’m always in a rush, quick to jump in head first. They would be right but then there’s the part of me that takes ages to paint my toenails and I’m probably one of the slowest readers I know. There’s a part of you that only you will know. Keep it that way. But also get to know it really honestly. We are not just a reflection in the eyes of our partners or workmates. We also don’t need to be perfect. Our flaws create contrast for our strengths. Know them and it’s like truly knowing yourself.
Keeping everything in moderation (more often) – in my 20’s I loved to go out and have a drink. I wasn’t great at drinking and I didn’t do it particularly well. On arrival at a bar or pub I could easily drink too much, too fast. It was all too exciting for me. I would peak hours before everyone else, be in full party zone while some people were just coming back from work and have vomited before I crashed out in a drunken coma. I could accomplish this easily before midnight. I also wasn’t that great on keeping tabs on what I was eating. I have celiacs and so I figured if it didn’t have wheat or gluten in it, it was good for me. Turns out you can get chocolate muffins that don’t have wheat or gluten in them, doesn’t mean too many of them are good for me. A little bit of everything does you good, moderation included.
So what have you learnt on your journey so far? Do you know where you want to go? Do you know where you started from? How far along are you? I’d love to hear about your personal journey and what helps to keep you going. Leave a comment below or get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org to have your say.