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The Mind/Body Connection and Birth

This being human is a guest house. Every morning a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of it’s furniture, still, treat each guest honourably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.

Rumi, The Guest House

I get more from this beautiful poem each time I read it. Even writing in the 13th Century Rumi knew that suppressing feelings in life isn’t healthy, and it’s just the same in birth. Our mind/body connection is strong, and ignoring our fears and doubts during pregnancy may hold us back during labour. Taking the time to voice our worries during pregnancy, to pluck them out of our subconscious and acknowledge them, can prepare us for what may arise during labour. Talk. Talk to your partner, your friends, your family, a counsellor if you need to. Pregnancy is a wonderful chance to clear out the old and welcome the new.

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