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My midwife really recommended I read Birthing From Within. After about 50 pages I can see that thought this book will be helpful it will also be very challenging.<br><br>
I don't know that I can do this whole giving birth thing. My mom is dead. She died almost four years ago. The grief is duller that it once was- but really it's that days go by without me thinking about it that makes it easier. We talked about birth a bit before she died, but not enough. I have so many questions and not being able to just talk to her makes me so incredibly deeply sad - sad like I'm broken inside.<br><br>
I live on the other side of the world from my family. I thought I could do this- and I still think I can raise a child (with my DH of course). But how do I give birth? when all the women I can connect with are across the world. Phone calls can only do so much, and none of them can be on 24/7 duty to talk. How can I connect with other women the way the book says I should?? My Aunts and some of the other women in my life can't replace my own mother, but they can help. I'm too far away....<br><br>
My friends here are all young. Only one has had a baby, she's brand spanking new and still and infant. Plus this isn't a very close friend. I don't have mothers around me here....<br><br>
I feel disconnected to this baby. I lost my first baby. I bonded so instantly with him and losing him was so so awful. That unplanned baby and his loss was the reason we re-examined when we were planning on having children. The reason we decided that giving it a go this year was a good choice for us- even though we were far away. But this baby, this live baby inside me that kicks the every loving snot out of me, and I sing songs too- I don't feel connected. I've spent this whole pregnancy worried about being connected, then sort of giving it up to God.<br><br>
I've spent this whole pregnancy putting on a really good face because people thought I was crazy to have a kid in the middle of school. So I had to be just as on top of it as any of my classmates- just to measure up. I've had to be as non-pregnant as possible. I ignore the kid inside me during the day while I'm at school- to "normalize" my pregnancy and myself for the atmosphere I'm in. Sure I talk about it when people ask, but I try not to bring it up unless the person is a dear friend. I sure a heck don't complain. I don't know this baby....<br><br>
How am I going to give birth?? I read all I could read on pregnancy and birth. I educated myself on my choices and risks vs. benefits. I chose a birth center, then dealt with GD and am now having a homebirth. I'm a list maker, and organizer. I live in my head a lot. But I don't have my mother, I don't have older women, and I don't feel connected to my baby- not the way I did. I desperately want to meet him/her but is it enough??<br><br>
How can I go into myself and find the place to birth from? I've been walking around super confident and saying all the "right" things and having the "right" attitude. But in the end I have to labour, I have to push this baby out, I have to give BIRTH. and I don't think I have the resources for it.... If I haven't even deeply loved and mothered this child while s/he's in my womb, where will I find the strength resolve and ability to let go, to birth?<br><br>
I know the baby WILL come out- that's not what I'm worried about. S/he can't stay in there forever. I'm afraid I won't be able to BIRTH..... I'm afraid I won't be a mother, I'll just be woman with a kid....
 

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Wow. That's big stuff. You know, I read that book when I was pregnant with my son and it sent me into a tailspin of anxiety for months. I mean hard core anxiety where I could barely function. It was a different issue, but still. I'm thinking this might be a good book to read before getting pregnant. We're just to vulnerable to all that heavy stuff when we're in the middle of it.<br><br>
I was sort of in the same boat. My mother was (and is) alive when I was pregnant with E, but since we had lost my dad the year before she just wasn't interested at all in the pregnancy or the baby particularly. I'd lived overseas for 12 years previous to coming back to the US with DH and getting pregnant, so all of my girlfriends had moved on. I really had no mentor. I did not really bond with the pregnancy at all. I had a lot of anxiety when he was first born and can't say that I was "in love" with him for about 4 months...but then...it all just fell into place. Now 7 years later I can't believe I'm so lucky. He's the most fabulous charming little boy in the whole world.<br><br>
You don't need all that stuff in the book. The fact that you're concerned about getting it all right already says what a great mom you'll be. Give yourself some slack and let it happen. You're LO will bring out every good thing in you that you weren't sure you had. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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I seriously wish i could be talking to you about this in person b/c there is no way to hash through something like this online.<br><br>
That said, a few things:<br><br>
1. I did not make it through this book b/c it made me anxious, too. Instead, I picked up a copy of Ina May's guide to childbirth and felt so freakin 'positive about laboring after reading it. It was so positive and gave such great ideas about handling labor.<br><br>
2. Are there women that you would want to be with you if you could transport them to you? If so, can you all get hooked up on skype? It's not a perfect substitute but it's a way to have their presence with you. Sure it will be hard to have supporters the whole time but it is something. I am willing to do a shift too if that's at all helpful <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
3. Do you feel like the book made you crave female companionship during labor or have you been feeling this way leading up to birth? I'm wondering if it's a superimposed need or one that you have felt but haven't been able to express.<br><br>
4. My doula from my first birth lives in Australia now; she is super. Please let me know if you would like for me to contact her and have her work with you. She's in Melbourne, btw.<br><br>
5. I empathize with your feelings of disconnectedness and particularly your comment about "being a mom vs. a woman with a child." I can'tpromise that itwill be the same for you, but it took me a tiny bit of time to adjust to being the former rather than the latter. It does happen, though. The very fact that you are working through all of this means that you are already working on being a nurturing, loving mom. I also think, given your history, that it's totally understandable why you are feeling this way.<br><br>
I hope something in all of this was helpful <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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Hugs mama. Have you considered hiring a doula? My doula was so empowering for me. You can find low cost or even free doulas. I would strongly recommend one. I had one with DS and plan to use the same one this time around. I cant imagine giving birth without her.
 

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Oh, yeah, see if you can get your caregiver to hook you up with a new moms' group asap after the birth. This was the best thing that ever happened to me given the lack of female support in my life. It is so very helpful to go through all this stuff with others in the same boat. Getting together was the absolute highlight of the week for all of us in that first year. You see how all your most worrying stuff is just normal! We're all still getting together 7 years later!
 

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I'd probably stop reading the book, it seems to be causing a lot of anxiety. I know that I have absolutely no interest in birthing shows or stories while I'm pregnant. I just don't want to focus on it. I have no interest in infants while I'm pregnant either.<br><br>
What I found more helpful for me was reading and preparing myself for the physical aspect of birthing instead of the emotional aspect.
 

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DDDC...hope that's ok but I have read BFW and can totally understand the intensity of the feelings it can bring...<br><br>
You *don't* have to follow the book (or any book for that matter) cover to cover. What do you need? If it is labor coping techniques, then there are many in here that can be quite helpful, and you could just read those and skip the rest. Or just skip the whole book if nothing appeals to you! I didn't do any of the birth art when I went through this book with #2...I mainly focussed on the coping techniques. This time around I am reading some of the more emotional bits because I feel like I do need to work through some trauma from my last birth. But I will pick and choose what works for me and throw out the rest...kind of like the pile of advice you get while pg and parenting, kwim?<br><br>
It does sound like you feel the need to be connected with other women. You are very much missing your Mom...and away from others you would potentially rely on...not to mention trying to hold it together while doing SO much at school! It is totally OK to not feel 'connected' right now. It sure sounds like you are just trying to cope and take it day by day! The last time you bonded immediately you faced a loss and it isn't surprising that you may be protecting your heart a little or just finding it hard to imagine a baby in your arms. But that's ok and that does NOT mean you won't be an amazing, loving mother to this little life.<br><br>
Baby is connected to you even if emotionally you feel a little distant - you are giving life and nutrients...and when s/he comes out you will be the one who brings comfort and is the centre of baby's world! Your voice and heartbeat will calm this little love and s/he will KNOW you! You will sniff baby's head and all will be well. You will indeed be connected to your mother and all other mothers in the world past and present who have birthed their babies in a deep and profound way.<br><br>
I am a month after you, due in June...but I do have fear that I am working through (or at least trying to!) surrounding this upcoming birth. I do have a few quotes to share...maybe one of these may resound in your heart and bring a little comfort as they did me.<br><br>
"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." --Eleanor Roosevelt<br><br>
"Courage is doing what you're afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you're scared."--Eddie Rickenbacker<br><br>
"... without darkness<br>
Nothing comes to birth,<br>
As without light<br>
Nothing flowers." --May Sarton<br><br>
"Love will find a way through paths where wolves fear to prey."--Lord Byron<br><br>
"Why are we so full of restraint? Why do we not give in all directions? Is it fear of losing ourselves? Until we do lose ourselves there is no hope of finding ourselves."--Henry ******<br><br>
"We have perhaps a natural fear of ends. We would rather be always on the way than arrive. Given the means, we hang on to them and often forget the ends."--Eric Hoffer<br><br>
"Love is the emblem of eternity; it confounds all notions of time; effaces all memory of beginning, all fear of an end."--Madame de Stael<br><br>
"The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become." --Charles Dubois
 

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Your poor heart, you sound so isolated from your pregnancy and birth. I am sorry your mother is not here and your so far from home. No one should have to go it alone but believe me, when you are laboring, when you are pushing, you are so far inside yourself, so alone and yet so connected to every other mother all at the same time. Birthing will happen without you being ready for it, it is a power beyond you. So while I think that is a good book I wanted to say that I never did those things, never talked to the mother who left me about birthing, or had any Aunts I was close to and was just me and DH 3k miles from family and friends. Birth came, and I did it, and baby came wonderfully into the world.<br><br>
You have a special situation in that you need to connect to your baby and birth now, just you, no one else. You don't need help doing that. You need to celebrate the natural order that will carry you into motherhood.<br><br>
You have a special situation because unlike women who have other women around them to talk about birthing, you are spared the horror stories and you don't have to do fear clearing to get those out of your mind. You just have to work on your own fears and it sounds like your worried you can't do this on your own. You can. You have made this baby and you can birth this baby and you can raise this baby. You didn't need your mother to tell your body how to build your baby, nor do you need her advice on how to birth him. You have her love, the life she gave you, and strength given to all women to birth our babies. You can do this!<br><br>
I didn't have any of the support the book wanted me to, but I had a great DDC and heck last pregnancy DH was in a war zone for the pregnancy and birth. My point being that all you need is you and to trust that you can do what women have done for a very long time, and you can do it wonderfully!
 

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I think you have made an important step in "birthing" this baby by writing what you did today! I am sorry that you are aching so much inside and I wish I could fix it for you. I also feel disconnected from other woman as I have moved to a new place and haven't had the chance to meet anyone, and I feel guilty that I don't feel connected to this baby because it wasn't planned and I am pretty wrapped up with my other kids. But I know that when I birth her and touch her for the first time on the outside that I will be absolutely head over heals with her. It sounds like you have let your head rule your heart as a protective major, both because of your loss of your son and your mother. Birth is a primative process and your heart will take over during that process. Trust yourself, trust your baby... be kind to yourself mama. You say that you don't know if you can do it, but you are already doing it! What you are doing and dealing with right now is a big part of giving birth!<br><br>
Remember we are here for you!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/mecry.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="crying"> you ladies are wonderful. Thank you so much for the support I desperately need right now.<br><br>
I have a doula, we met today. She thinks I should put the book down too, and that I may have a few emotional blips in birthing but she has faith in my ability to deal with it.<br><br>
My sister and I talked for a long time today. I was afraid she'd think I was silly... but she doesn't. We both miss mom. She reminded me that I'll never be "over" mom dying-it's just a reality I have to live in and sometimes will suck more than others. I can't work on it, I can't change it. I can only feel it and move through it. It's normal for me to want my mother as I am becoming one. She also comforted me about connecting to this baby. I am protecting myself a bit- and haven't been able to change that. But it's ok, because every pregnancy is different. She doesn't think I'm a horrible person for not loving this baby the same way. When this baby is born I won't have anything to compare it too... I'll fall in love and she's sure I'll be a wonderful mother.<br><br>
I do honestly miss my family and my connectedness with my female relatives. This is not new and brought on by reading the book. I guess I'll just be reaching out a bit more in the next few weeks.<br><br>
There are local mom's groups organized for all new mothers. It's a really awesome service organized through community districts, I know I'll be seeking that out.<br><br>
I'm really trying here - I just need to processes some of this stuff I think, and probably discontinue the book.
 

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Just wanted to say two things. I am happy to talk by phone/email anytime you want to if you feel like it would help.<br><br>
And also, I do not feel especially attached to our baby yet either. I have viewed most of this pregnancy as a very interesting science experiement but I am not overwhelmingly in love. I know that doesn't really help you except that you're not the only one maybe?
 

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I'm really sorry your Mom isn't with you in body to help you through this experience... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
In terms of your other sentiments, you are not alone! I too am far from family and have no friends here in "baby mode". I doubt my abilities to birth and to raise a kid. I find the entire thing pretty overwhelming actually. I think our feelings are normal. I think bonding happens at different times for different people.<br><br>
What has helped me is the constant reminder from my DH, that all I need to do, is take one thing at a time. No need to worry about what might happen - look at the present and deal with the minor battles facing you now. When I start freaking out (cause I'm also a planner and list-writer), DH reminds me to just think about today - get through today, or that hour, or that minute.<br><br>
Maybe it some strange form of denial, but it works for me. It allows me to parcel up my little anxieties into manageable pieces. It allows me not to be scared of the big picture with all the complicated details and possible opportunities to fail. It lets me let-go of all the "what ifs" that tend to get me all worked up.<br><br>
So many women on this earth give birth to babies every day. If they can do it, so can we <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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Bubblette--I just wanted to thank you for putting your feelings into writing and sharing with us.<br><br>
I'm so glad you have a doula. I think the fears you have are common, but exacerbated by missing your own mama. It just makes sense.<br><br>
FWIW, none of my close friends had babies when I had DD. I started attending a mama-baby group at our birth center and it really helped. I have close friends today that I met there.<br><br>
Also, I am less attached to this baby than I was to my 3yo DD. How could I be? I don't know her yet. It will happen. I remember when I first got a look at my DD after I pushed her out, I thought something like, "So THIS is who you are!" and just melted.<br><br>
Also FWIW, just the other day I started reading the Birth Partner and felt really anxious b/c I didn't remember the stages of labor, didn't have a ritual, am arguing w/my DH half the time, etc, etc. I feel better after doing some journaling and talking about it, but it was like, "how will I be able to do this at all?"<br><br>
I think it's pretty common. I am sending HUGE hugs to you, mama.
 

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DDC crashing, and nursing my newbie at the same time, so this will be short - there is a wonderful book "Motherless Mothers" (following "motherless daughters", also very good) which has been incredibly helpful in making my journey feel less lonely. My mom has died 4 years and 24days before my first child was born (when i was 22, in school, in a new city far away from any family), and it is a hard, hard journey to be on. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"><br><br>
But, you can do it. You will be connected to your mom in a way you never were before, because you are going to look at your baby and suddenly realize how very, very, very much your mom loved YOU. And it will hurt, but it is such a gift, and one i wish us MotherlessMothers could share with our moms.<br><br>
There are 360,000 women birthing every day, and on the day you welcome your little one, there will be 360,000 women laboring, pushing, birthing and celebrating with you. You are not alone. You are being birthed into this new role in your life, and you are welcomed into the sisterhood. You're going to be wonderful.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Bubblette</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15358816"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">How can I go into myself and find the place to birth from? I've been walking around super confident and saying all the "right" things and having the "right" attitude. But in the end I have to labour, I have to push this baby out, I have to give BIRTH. and I don't think I have the resources for it.... If I haven't even deeply loved and mothered this child while s/he's in my womb, where will I find the strength resolve and ability to let go, to birth?</div>
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I am on baby number three after two previous traumatic births and I feel the same way. Fortunately I have experience and I know in my heart I will do this, because I cannot <i>not do it</i>. There is no way around it, only through. Even if your mind doesn't know if you can do it, your body does.<br><br>
Another thing is, I'm not sure when your baby is due, or maybe you don't care about zodiac stuff. But my baby is due in gemini and he just seems changeable. My 2nd son was a beautiful soul in the womb and I talked to him daily and I felt like he talked to me. But this guy, I don't know who he is at all. I know that when he is born I will meet him and it's okay that I don't know him now. We have a whole lifetime ahead of us.
 
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