I get asked this about the antenatal classes I run all the time via message and email. I always try to give a short enough but detailed enough answer. Sometimes I am successful and women book the classes held in Linlithgow, sometimes I am so successful and they enjoy the class so much that they book two or (the current record!) three blocks with me. Sometimes I get silence and I realise that I haven’t managed to convey my passion and enthusiasm or how beneficial the classes are for all pregnancies, no matter how you plan to birth your baby. I am always very clear that the classes are not Hypnobirthing classes as I am keen to not mislead pregnant Mums. However what you ARE getting is a qualified midwife with huge passion about Hypnobirthing, bringing you the elements of relaxation and deepening relaxation. I am also very passionate about choice, decision making, the right to decline and how to get the birth choices that you want. I express this in almost every class and certainly throughout every four week block that I teach. This passion is what led me to becoming a Hypnobirthing teacher in the first place.
The classes initially started as a more affordable snapshot into what Hypnobirthing is, along with a chance to experience the relaxation and deepening relaxation from Hypnobirthing. A chance to relax, breathe and focus on you and baby. A place to ask all your questions, voice your fears and get answers. Knowledge and information is so important and I have a passion for antenatal education and bringing pregnant women together to support each other too.
Since the antenatal classes began on Tuesday nights in March this year I have realised that they are so much more than what I advertise them as. I believe that every woman has a right to a positive birth experience and that what that means to one pregnant Mum can and will mean a totally different thing to another. The feedback that I have received from women that have done the birth preparation classes via face to face, message, email and the Facebook review system has made me realise that I am filling my classes with the same message. I am encouraging women to think about the birth they would like, offering them information and resources around that and giving them the tools to facilitate their decisions. I am teaching them that even if things go of course during the birth, they can still take parts of their birth plan and wishes and make them happen.
My first insight into this was verbal feedback from a second time Mum that came to two blocks of the Relaxation in Pregnancy classes held in Linlithgow on a Tuesday night. I bumped into her in Linlithgow and was so excited to see her and baby and hear how the birth had been. I don’t know what I was more excited about, the birth story, her excitement or when she told me that it had been my classes that had helped her seek the birth she wanted and encouraged her to fight for her birth rights more than she would have before. A couple of months later and I bumped into another lady from one of the blocks, “Victoria, I could hear your voice in my head, telling me to breathe and let my body do it, don’t fight it. So I did.” Even today I received a review from a new Mum with the words, “I honestly could not have given birth the way I did without these classes” and it brought a (happy!) tear to my eye. I was so overwhelmed, honoured and excited that my passion and enthusiasm in class was helping and assisting women to have the birth experiences they had set out to achieve. That right there is the definition of job satisfaction for me. I truly could not ask for more.
So, what are the Relaxation in Pregnancy Classes at The Old Pavilion on a Tuesday night? Why should you come? If you are pregnant, would like a little time to focus on you and baby, have questions, fears or worries about anything in pregnancy, labour, birth or the postnatal period, want to meet other pregnant Mums from Linlithgow and the surrounding area (we have had Mums from Bo’ness, Falkirk, Kirkliston, Bathgate and Livingston), want to know more about the hospital system, how to get the birth you want or have questions about what kind of birth you want, or if you have no idea at all and just feel the need to start somewhere, come along. Join us and see where it takes you. I would love to meet you.