My pregnancy journey has been amazing. Oh, sure, I have suffered from my fair share of morning sickness and aches and pains, but on the whole I am loving it. I have wanted a baby for so long and my journey has had its ups and downs, but I feel so blessed to finally be growing my own baby. My pregnant body still amazes me. I catch sight of the curve of my stomach in shop windows or mirrors and still feel astonishment that I am looking at my own pregnant belly.
It has been a long journey so far, and it is fast reaching its end- or rather, its beginning. I have been fortunate enough to have the support of some wonderful people along the way and would like to take a moment to mention them now.
My yoga instructor, Sarah of Sacred Journey. Deciding to attend weekly pregnancy yoga classes has been one of the best decisions I could have made. Each class leaves me feeling energised, revitalised, relaxed, free from aches and pains and in a better frame of mind, and more and more prepared for the birth. Sarah has such a wealth of knowledge and leads her classes with joy, humour and a sense of calm. I also enjoy the opportunity for a chat with the other mums-to-be before and after the sessions. I plan to continue the classes right up until the birth and am looking forwards to putting the techniques I am learning into practice during labour. One thing she has said has really stuck with me: "The pain you will feel during labour is coming from your own body and therefore it cannot be stronger than you or more than you can bear." This is something I want to remember during my labour.
My massage therapist, Annie of Sanctum Body Skin Soul. I met Annie at a Niche Market several years ago and quickly became addicted to her beautiful candles and soaps. She has since opened Sanctum and I have had several enjoyable experiences there, being pampered and wrapped in chocolate, having foot soaks, facials, and more recently, pregnancy massages. Back, shoulder and pelvic pain have been a problem for me over the last few months and Annie's wonderful pregnancy massages have been a lifesaver. I feel more relaxed from the moment I step through the doors of Sanctum, and enjoy every minute, from the chat with Annie to the massage itself to the cup of herbal tea and sample of fudge afterwards.
My doula, Cherie Chugg. A doula is a trained birth partner; someone who is there for you and your partner before, during and after the birth to offer support- both emotional and physical- assistance, encouragement and act as your advocate. She is there from the beginning to the end of the birth as continuous support- something that will be very helpful in a public hospital with no guarantee of having the same caregivers throughout the labour and birth. I decided long ago that I wanted to have a doula with us at the birth and am very happy with our choice of Cherie. We have had several pre-birth sessions together now and I feel relaxed and comfortable with her, as if I am chatting with a trusted friend. She brings a sense of calm and support with her as soon as she steps into our home and I am very grateful to know that that same sense of calmness and support will be brought into the labour room.
These three ladies are lovely and I do feel incredibly lucky to have them as part of my journey. I feel sure that it would have been a lot harder without them. I have no idea what my birth experience will be like, but I am feeling strong and ready to face it.