! I totally understand what you mean about being excited about the program, I get all fired up about natural birth in general, and could go on for hours about all I've learned and experienced. It's part of why I decided to become a certified birth educator! LOL
That makes total sense, "programming" yourself to expect "pressure" instead of "pain". I instinctively did the same thing with my 2nd baby, after I read Ina May's Guide to Childbirth, and she described it as "intense sensation" rather than "pain"...I was also given great hope by the shared birth stories of things like orgasmic birth and laughing through birth! I just kept in mind that I was simply feeling sensation, and that it wasn't going to be painful (and in fact could be pleasurable). It's worked nicely for me through my last 3 births, and I expect it to be the same this time!
And yes, being connected with your body and aware of your surroundings and interactions with birth attendants is huge - I loved that part of my natural births! My first was a nightmare hospital birth: unnecessary Pitocin augmentation with an OP baby after
telling the Dr I wanted a natural birth, IV sedatives instead of analgesics, and finally an epidural that caused nerve damage (which I am feeling tingles from as we speak, 9 1/2 years later), episiotomy, horrible mean nurses, and more importantly, birth trauma to my son. One of the things I hated the most was how the sedative rendered me incoherent and unable to speak, even though I was still in severe pain, and I couldn't communicate this to the hospital staff. That's why I asked for the epidural when the drugs finally wore off enough for me to speak - figured at least I'd be conscious for the birth, even if it wasn't my ideal! The nurse told me I wouldn't be able to get on my knees to push since I'd had the epidural, I said "Oh yeah? Watch me!" - and I willed myself to feel enough to not only get on my knees, but also feel when to push. Anyway I totally get the "eyes open hypnosis", and it does seem like such a natural state of mind!
Thanks so much for the great links - I can definitely recommend this to my students! What an amazing tool to have at your disposal, to help make your birth experience as wonderful as it can be! I'm always amazed, yet unsurprised, by the mind's ability to create a physical manifestation of our expectations...so nice to see that ability being used in a positive way!
(On a somewhat related side note, you might be interested in a great book by Louise Hay called "Heal Your Body" - it deals with the underlying emotional causes of physical ailments, and how to release them. Her affirmations remind me of the sort of mental retraining in Hypobabies...except she used it to heal herself of cancer. Pretty cool stuff!)