Birth is a HUGE event.
Yet, so often we overlook that birth is going to have an imprint on our bodies, hearts, minds, and souls for life.
In today’s episode, we’re talking about birth stories. Specifically, why healing yours is crucial to your success as a mother. We’ll cover four tools to help you heal your story and tell some success anecdotes illustrating what can happen when you do!
Humans connect through storytelling. What we need most in motherhood, when we’re processing our birth, is a sense of connection. So if you’re willing to tell aspects of your story, you’re willing to open the door to healing.
Could you benefit from some healing?
There might be people listening who are thinking, oh my gosh, I just want to forget about my birth. I’m just happy we made it through! Or you’re worried about opening up a can of worms you can’t control.
But we’ve found that women who are able to process their birth stories often find gems that otherwise might have remained completely hidden. How do you know if you could benefit from some birth story healing? Ask yourself:
Are there things you experienced during your birth you didn’t deal with?
Do you still feel a lot of emotions about your birth?
Do you feel stuck reliving your story? Are you ruminating about it, or even having nightmares about it?
Do you find you’re AVOIDING thinking about it? Are you experiencing denial? Are you sugar-coating it or skipping over certain parts?
Processing your birth can play a role in relieving things like postpartum anxiety, postpartum rage, or postpartum depression. It can help you gain closure, and it can help you grow.
Four tools for healing your birth story
Tell the story. It sounds so simple! But over time, you might find you’re telling it less and less. Make it normal to talk about birth. Tell at least one person the whole story, with no editing. Another version of this? Write it down, details and all.
Reflect on your birth. Examine how you felt at different stages in your birth and why. What choices did you make and why? Were there some choices that weren’t available to you? What did you learn about yourself through this experience? Answering these questions can help you feel more settled about how it unfolded and more empowered to move forward.
Address inner layers. We have to address birth as more than a physical event. It’s emotional, energetic, hormonal, subconscious, spiritual. Doing some inner work to heal your birth often ends up also being about healing your relationship with yourself.
Movement. We don’t have to think our way out of trauma. Healing happens in many layers, some of which we don’t need to verbalize. We love the movement approaches of trauma-informed yoga and corrective exercise because they are not forceful movements. These take exploratory, non-judgemental approaches, and they begin healing at the physical level.
Why is this important?
Kendra was working with a mom two years postpartum who couldn’t feel her core, no matter how much core work she did.
One day, she started talking about her c-section birth experience and how overwhelming and shocking it was. This mom began making connections about the residual emotions that were holding her back from physically using her body.
After processing that part of her birth story, it was like a veil was lifted. The emotions she was holding in her core were no longer holding her back. She could fully access it.
Our bodies and layers cannot heal if we don’t feel safe, so finding ways to create space, both for dialogue and movement, is incredibly valuable.
(It’s important to note: we are not mental health professionals, and today’s episode should not be taken as medical advice; for that, we encourage you to see a therapist for your own diagnosis and support of your mental health and healing.)
Ultimately, healing your birth story is up to YOU. No teacher, therapist, or healer is going to do it all for you. Build your toolbox to help you find those gems that only your birth story has for you.
Notable Quotes from Kendra & Nicole
“The goal here is to make talking about birth normal, and being open to sharing your own story will create that environment around you that feels supportive. When we tell stories, humans connect through storytelling. And what we need most in motherhood, when we're processing our birth, is a sense of connection. So if you're willing to tell aspects of your story, you're opening the door to healing.”
“Oftentimes we tell the story, and then over time, we tell it less and less and less. And maybe then we stop telling it all together. So the tool here is to make it a practice to make it normal to talk about birth. Create conversations around birth experiences, support other people in telling their stories. Stop making it taboo and not relevant because it's extremely relevant.”
Resources & Links
Looking for support to stay active during your pregnancy or start your postpartum recovery? Here are some options to get you started on a great path forward:
1) Take the Pelvic Floor & Core Strength Quiz. After taking the quiz, you'll get a score and based on your results, guidance on what steps to take to move you forward in your recovery.
3) If you're pregnant, want to be way more active than you have been, AND want connection with other mothers, but don't know where to start…join the Expecting to Flourish™ Membership - a mom-driven and expert-guided virtual space empowering moms with a new approach to prenatal fitness and birth prep that actually prepares you for the physical and emotional hurdles of motherhood.
If you’re postpartum and ready to get moving, need to heal your body but you don’t know where to start…join us for Postpartum Repair & Restore LIVE, a science-backed and fun-stacked, Diastasis and Pelvic Floor Strength program. Start healing your diastasis and eliminating leaking in 8 weeks or less with our guidance.
4) Do you prefer working one-on-one, or have a high risk pregnancy, a severe diastasis or leaking that won’t quit? You might be a candidate to work with us privately. To find out, take this quick self assessment! If you qualify, you'll be invited to schedule a complementary Postpartum Strategy Session with us where we'll take a good look at what's not working in your repair process, and come up with a great plan just for you.