Helpful, simple birth mantras you actually used during labor? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 08:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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With DD I made this huge list of birth affirmations and mantras that looked really good taped up on my bathroom cabinet door. They even *sounded* good at the time. But then labor hit, and everything went out the window. I couldn't remember one whit of what was on that paper.

I'm not sure something as simple as "open" would work for me. I think I will need something to keep myself calm so I don't get fearful of the pain. (DD was posterior and I has some cervical scarring to break though.)

So...thoughts on good birth mantras that really helped you (and that you remembered to use? smile.gif )





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#2 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 09:21 AM
 
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During my labor with #3 I would imagine my cervix opening like a turtleneck going over a head lol, and tell myself it wasn't pain, just stretching. That worked well for me. During my last labor it hit so fast that I was caught off guard and couldn't keep on top of the contractions, 2.5hr start to finish. But what helped me when I was trying not to push in the car on the way to the hospital was to think to myself "I can handle this, I can handle anything as long as my babies are ok"

 


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#3 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 09:45 AM
 
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I had a circle of paper, 10 cm in diameter, that my husband colored in blues and greens for me.  It was helpful to look at it and know that I just had to stretch and dilate that far (10 cm is not all that far), then I could push the baby out.  My mother-in-law had a picture of a peaceful landscape to look at in labor.

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#4 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 09:49 AM
 
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Simple worked the best for me.  I found that concentrating on "open" was simple enough to do without any coaching and kept me focused on what I was doing.  Another thing I did was to visualize each contraction as being a wave, and all I had to do was ride it out.  DS2 was born at home, and my labor was fast and hard.  DS1 and DH had gone to bed, and I ended up laboring by myself for the majority of the birth.  I also had a lot of back labor, so I gave myself counterpressure by jamming my elbow into the couch. 


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#5 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 12:15 PM
 
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O, just the letter O - it's big, it's round, it begins the word Open, it's good to say Ooooo during a contraction. This worked very well for me during two labors.

 

Some simple affirmations that have worked well with doula clients:

Release

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

I'm okay.

One of my clients said she wasn't planning on it, but she imagined a rose opening with each contraction.

 

Have some plans, but be open to using what seems to work in the moment.


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#6 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 01:31 PM
 
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For me two things worked:

1. The visual image of my baby's head pressing on my cervix and it stretching open

2.  Counting my breaths.  Yes, not really a mantra, but a contraction was around 15 breaths, and I knew once I got to 15 I was done (or would be very very soon). 

Taking it minute-by-minute was the best approach.


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#7 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 02:54 PM
 
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I had nothing planned ahead of time, but once I hit transition I found myself just repeating RELAX RELAX RELAX every time I hit a contraction, and focusing all my energy on trying to relax my body.

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#8 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 03:38 PM
 
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I hadn't planned on any mantras but ended up chanting, "down down down, baby come down down down". I had a long labor and I wanted to be done so my doula told me to tell my baby to come down. My body then pushed out my baby in 20 minutes, so maybe it worked.

 

 


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#9 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 04:03 PM
 
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Simple worked for me too.  I instinctively went to a very primal place and thinking wasn't part of where I was at when nearing transition.  The doula chanted "I can, I can, I can" with me during contractions.  And when it got to the point that I couldn't talk through the contractions, she held her finger in front of me and told me it was a candle...then said to blow on it through the contractions.  It was extremely helpful!

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#10 of 21 Old 03-15-2011, 04:14 PM
 
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"Down, down, doooooowwwwwwwn, baby.  Doooooooooowwwwwwwnnnnnnn."

and

"Open, open, ooooooooooooooooooooooooohpen, ooooooooooooohpen."

 

ETA:  I tried really hard to frame things in the positive.  This worked for a long time.  "I can do this.  I can do this.  I can do this."  I stayed away from negative language.  No, "I can't."  No, "This is too hard." No negatives.


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#11 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 09:07 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starling&diesel View Post

"Down, down, doooooowwwwwwwn, baby.  Doooooooooowwwwwwwnnnnnnn."

and

"Open, open, ooooooooooooooooooooooooohpen, ooooooooooooohpen."

 

ETA:  I tried really hard to frame things in the positive.  This worked for a long time.  "I can do this.  I can do this.  I can do this."  I stayed away from negative language.  No, "I can't."  No, "This is too hard." No negatives.



I like these mantras!!!!!

 


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#12 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 11:01 AM
 
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I took some encouraging phrases along for my birth as well but I didn't look at them more than a few times. What was helpful was that I meditated on them a lot before going into labor...so they came to my mind throughout the day. A lot of them are from a Christian perspective so forgive me if that's not what you're hoping for. Good luck. 

 

Here's a few: 

 

“... babies know how to be born.”

“... you only hear about the bad stories. “

‘Cast your anxieties on Him…’

‘I will never leave you…’

‘Is anything too difficult for the Lord…’

‘Do not be afraid….’

‘Do I bring to the moment of birth and not give delivery…’

‘For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power and love…’

‘ I am He who will sustain you…’

‘I wil strengthen you and help you…’

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified…for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you or forsake you.” -- Deut 31:6

“So do not fear,  for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand.” -- Isa 41:10

“Listen to me…you whom I have upheld since you were conceived, and have carried since your birth. Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you. I will sustain you and I will rescue you. “ -- Isa 46:3

He would not call you to something and then not give you what you need!

This is worth it! Your little one is almost here!

Your body is made for this!

The Creator is not a careless mechanic!

Focus on power not pain!

You’re going to get huge! There is room for the baby to come out!

God is in control!!!!

“Birth is only as risky as life and death. “ 

Labor pain is purposeful and temporary.  

 

 

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#13 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 11:04 AM
 
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Loose lips....loose hips!

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#14 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 11:24 AM
 
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I did a lot of practice before hand with my mantras - which really helped me because they acted as a cue to me to relax my muscles.

 

"My body is open...my mind is strong....my body is strong...my mind is open..." (alternating strong/open with body/mind)

 

I needed something to remind myself that 1) "I" could do this mentally, and (2) my body rocks and is loose and can do this.

 

 

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#15 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 11:54 AM
 
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"it's a wave, it's a wave" as the contractions flooded through me, it helped to imagine the wave rolling through me and moving my baby down and opening me.

along those same lines "Let it flow, let it FFLLOOOOOWWWWWWW"

 

"the waves are opening you up"

and just closing my eyes and imaging the wave moving through me.

 

I also talked to the baby

things like

-come down baby

-come out baby

-I want to meet you baby

 

when things started to get too tough and I found myself complaining or whining I turned it into humming, rocking, and imaging myself opening, letting myself be completely immersed.

 

something along the lines of letting go of control might be good


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#16 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 09:34 PM
 
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My mantra was: "This is only one day."

 

As in, it was only one day out of my life, it would be over soon (or eventually anyway!), and then I would have my daughter. You can do anything for a day, right?


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#17 of 21 Old 03-16-2011, 09:37 PM
 
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I did lots of vocalizing (oooooooooohhhhhhh mostly).  I also kept repeating in my head, "this will soon be a memory."  


CPST & mom

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#18 of 21 Old 03-18-2011, 09:57 PM
 
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I used:

I can do this. I am strong.

I want to meet you baby.

Do not be afraid.

This too shall pass.

Mostly the first one though. I'm all for the positive self talk. I do it all the time. DH laughs because I will be in the kitchen struggling with a jar and muttering "I can do this. I am strong...". So maybe pick something you might say normally?

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#19 of 21 Old 03-18-2011, 10:02 PM
 
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I had the exact same experience with my first birth... this time I used ' I can do it, and I am doing it'. It was just a reminder that I was doing fine (with the contractions) now, and there was no reason to think that I wouldn't be doing fine later.


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#20 of 21 Old 03-19-2011, 03:55 AM
 
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I like this thread! I was thinking of writing a bunch of stuff on my arms for labour, so I don't forget them. :p I like two variations I've heard of Ina May Gaskin's mantras, "This is an interesting sensation that requires my full attention" and "This is an interesting sensation that gets my baby out". Not sure how I'll feel about them during labour, though!

 

My last labour, I was a bit of a mess. But one thing I repeated during several contractions was, hilariously enough, "Mind over matter... mind over matter". :p I had a half-cocked theory that if I ignored the pain or convinced myself that I was "above" it, everything would be OK. It actually did work to some extent, although not forever. Later, I spent a fair few contractions clutching at the gas and air face-mask thing, mantra-ing to myself "I don't need this... I can use it next contraction... I'll just get through this one first". lol.gif

 

I have a friend who's birthed six children now, and during her second-to-last birth she made it a point to greet each contraction with "Come on! Bring it!", and when it was over "Come on, give me another one! That's the best you can do?". She was trying to view each contraction in a positive, they-have-to-get-stronger-before-it's-all-over, these-need-to-happen-so-they-may-as-well kind of way. Apparently it worked to some degree, and I know she was planning on taking the same attitude with her last birth... I should ask her about that.


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#21 of 21 Old 03-19-2011, 10:53 AM
 
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Beauchamp,  I remember your mantra list from your last pregnancy, it was really good!  I wrote some of them down myself, to use in labor.  And, like you, I mostly forgot about them when the time came.  :) 

 

At some point late in a veerrrrry long labor, I started rocking on hands and knees and saying with each contraction, "Let gooooooo, let goooooo."  I'm not sure what prompted it - but I suspect the baby was stuck behind my pelvic bone and I was trying to convince my body to let her out.  My MW was convinced I was having some psychological hangup and started asking all sorts of leading questions about reasons why I was afraid to let the baby come out.  It took me several minutes of staring at her blankly before I realized what she was doing -- then I laughed and said, "I'M totally ready for this baby, I'm just trying to convince my body to get on board!" 

 

I think a lot of it is just listening to your body and trying to use words that will help it do its job!  Having a few things prepared can't hurt, though -- I'm sure I used some of my mantras during labor and just don't remember. 

My mother says I spent a bit of time in transition saying over and over, "Hypnobabies LIED!"   lol.gif

 

 


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