Whether your intention is to have an epidural or an unmedicated birth, physical and emotional preparation are options. This may seemingly apply to a first pregnancy specifically, however may be just as important for a second, third or more, if we bear memories or trauma of a previous birth that did not go as planned. Guided meditation and breath-work are pivotal parts of this training.
Before I became pregnant with both of my children it was clear to me that my intention was to labor and give birth without medication. Intention is one single aspect that usually must be coupled with a significant amount of physical and mental preparation in order for us to be able to follow through on our hopes. Can some women birthe naturally without preparation? Yes. Do some women who trained experience medical intervention? Yes. But mind/body preparation trains a woman in learning a language that becomes the internal narrative for her experience – one she has practiced repeatedly and can call upon in the face of challenge. In our training physical preparation includes prenatal yoga movement and the holding of certain asanas as a way to encounter how our mind and body reacts in the face of challenge; mind preparation is introduced via meditation and mindfulness practice both on and off the mat. A yogi of 15 years, I practiced Khalsa Way ® prenatal yoga through both of my pregnancies.