soaking album

One Word That Could Make All The Difference In Your Labor

 “I’m in labor!” one of my friends recently texted me. And as I started to pray for her, I immediately had the thought, Why do we call it labor? What if we called it co-labor instead?

Like what if she texted me and said; “I’m in co-labor!” Because truly that’s what God created it to be. And that’s the frame of mind we want to have as we enter the wild journey birth.

Labor is what came after the fall; a labor and toil that God never intended us to experience. But co-laboring is what we were truly designed for; what the Garden of Eden was all about. God gave Adam and Eve work to do but it was to be done in a joyful, intimate co-laboring with Him.

TOGETHER they named the animals.  In perfect fellowship with Him, they tended the garden and ruled over the earth. In Holy partnership with Him, they would be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. As Adam co-labored with God while tending the ground, there was joyful fellowship and fulfillment. As Eve would co-labor with God in bringing forth children, there was to be a similar joyful fellowship and fulfillment.

In co-laboring there’s no striving. No fear. No toiling. No pressure. No lack.

It was only after the fall that Adam and Eve experienced separation from God and suddenly found themselves “laboring” in their work instead of the peaceful “co-laboring” they were created for.

But Jesus bridged that separation for us and restored God’s original intent for perfect fellowship and co-laboring. So that can now be our experience once again! But we can miss it if we still see ourselves in a season of needing to “labor, toil, and strive.”

So what if we changed our language to reflect the truth of what’s available to us now?

What if we said, “I’m going into co-labor!” And as we said it, it served as a powerful reminder to us that we are not alone in this beautiful journey of birth.

What if we used it as a declaration that we are going to peacefully co-labor with God, our husband, our baby, and with peace, rest, surrender, and trust.  

What if served as a reminder that we will end up co-laboring with something and that we have already made a decision that…

We refuse to co-labor with fear. We refuse to partner with control. We refuse to co-labor with discouragement or worry.

That with all our heart, mind, and body, we choose to co-labor with God. With joy. With peace. With our baby. With excitement. And with Heaven.

I’ve already decided that with our next birth, I’m going to call it “co-labor.” I’m going to ask my husband, friends, and birth team to use that word as well.

If a friend calls me, I want her to ask “Are you in co-labor yet?

I want to call my husband at work and say “I think I’m in early co-labor!

I want my midwife to say “Looks like you’re in active co-labor!” 

And I’m excited to see how that word and the frame of mind it puts us in will impact the “co-labor” and birth!

I encourage you to embrace and use this word too! Our words are extremely powerful and this one word could radically impact your pregnancy and birth experience!

Proverbs 18:1 says “The tongue has the power of life and death and those who love it will eat its fruit.”  So let’s use our tongues and the language we use surrounding our birth to bring forth abundant life, the Kingdom of Heaven and all that’s available to us!

To your beautiful “co-labor” and birth,

Kierra

p.s. If you want more tools to transform your mindset and prepare you for a beautiful birth with God, come join my online Kingdom Childbirth Class! You’ll be empowered to truly enjoy the gift that God created childbirth to be and learn how to birth your baby in His joy and presence! Plus, you get to connect with amazing moms all over the world who going after the same thing! Come join us!

 

 

Ben mowing.

Enjoying The Work of Birth! (Holy Spirit lessons through my 3-year-old)

As I watched Ben play outside today, God gave me a powerful revelation about labor and birth and all that He created it to be for us.

We played outside for 2 hours and the whole time, Ben just wanted to “do some work” as he calls it. He LOVES to rake, sweep, and mow the lawn (with a toy lawn mower). Even though we were at a park, he wanted to do yard work the whole time instead of playing on the playground.

Seriously ladies, he’s in heaven when he’s working. He loves the rhythm of raking, the repetition of pushing the lawn mower in lines across the whole park, and the satisfaction of seeing the fruit of his labor in a cleanly swept sidewalk. He loves using his muscles and the hard work of it all.

I love watching him “work” because he’s enjoying himself so much. He smiles, hums, and gets lost in his own little world. And then he gets so excited when he finishes one of his projects like getting all the grass mowed.

And the thing is, he’s working HARD! By the time he finished at the end of the 2 hours today, he was sweaty and out of breath, but grinning from ear to ear at a job well done and the park “looking all nice now!”

As I watched him, Holy Spirit whispered to me,

This is the way I intended work to be. Fun. Fulfilling. Enjoyable. Peaceful. Satisfying. When I gave Adam and Eve work to do in the garden, it was a love gift to them – a gift for them to enjoy. I meant for them to take pleasure in their work of ruling over the earth, working the ground, and bearing children and raising children.

Then sin entered the world, and along with it came shame, insecurity, broken communion with me, pressure, worry, fear, and self-reliance. And those things affected their “work” – both working the ground and bearing and raising children. Suddenly the work I meant for them to ENJOY felt scary, hard, stressful, painful at times, and full of pressure. Everything became so much harder and work felt like a burden instead of a gift to enjoy with Me.

But when Jesus died on the cross and took all the consequences of sin onto His body, He set you free from all of them. You no longer have to live imprisoned by the effects of sin. He came to restore my original intent on earth. To usher in my Kingdom again, on Earth as it is in Heaven. To set you free from fear, anxiety, pressure, stress, self-reliance, pain, sickness, poverty, insecurity, and shame.

Beloved, you can now experience work again in perfect partnership with Me, free from all of those things that steal the joy of it. This applies to all work! Providing for the family, working the ground, bearing children, and raising children.

You can experience work like Ben experiences “work.” He’s able to enjoy the menial tasks of yard work that others dread because he operates under no anxiety, no pressure to make money, no expectations of others, no time pressure, no self-doubt, no self-consciousness, etc. He’s just free to be present to the moment and enjoy the work.

Ben Mowing

This is what I long for you to experience during the work of childbirth. Because of Jesus, you can enjoy labor the way I intended for you to enjoy it… FREE FROM:

  • The fear of something going wrong
  • Worry about your health or baby’s health (Jesus took ALL your pain and sickness on His body and by HIS stripes, you are healed)
  • Self-doubt (I designed you perfectly for this and it is the work I gave you to do, so you must be able to do it well – I don’t set you up for failure or impossible tasks)
  • Self-consciousness about what other people are thinking about you
  • The pressure of any time-constraints or the need to deliver on a certain day or in a certain amount of time
  • Shame or self-consciousness about your private areas (remember, Eve felt NO shame about being naked before the fall, and you don’t have to either. You can be proud of every part of your body and the beauty of how I designed you as a woman)
  • Comparison to other people’s birth stories (you have freedom to fully live in and enjoy YOURS)
  • Pressure to meet the expectations of others
  • Concern about money or provision (I am your perfect provider ALWAYS and will always meet all of your needs)
  • Any pressure to feel like you have to look a certain way, handle labor in a certain way, sound a certain way, etc. You get to birth freely just as YOU!
  • Any feelings of helplessness or that it’s too hard or all in vain. (Do I bring to the moment of birth and not give delivery? Isaiah 66:10)
  • Any sense of distance or disconnection from Me. Jesus destroyed all barriers that could distance us and I will be right there at your side, working inside you, empowering you, guiding you, and cheering you on. It can be one of the most intimate experiences you’ve ever had with Me.
  • Sickness and pain (Jesus took All sickness and pain on his body, including those related to childbirth)

Beloved, you can birth FREE! Just like Ben at his work. Like him, you may be sweating, working really hard, and out of breath; and it may feel like the hardest work you’ve ever done. But you can still enjoy this hard work; this labor of love. Like Ben, you can enjoy the rhythm of it and smile and hum as you get in your “work zone.” Like Ben, you can get so excited at the progress you’re making and the joy of seeing all your hard work pay off at the end and the completion of a job well done.

Hard work isn’t something to dread. Not the hard work that I created for you. No, the hard work I give you is a love gift. A gift to strengthen you, empower you, fulfill you, and bring a smile to your face and a deep satisfaction to your soul. And this is true for labor and birth!”

Wow, isn’t that SO POWERFUL?

So here’s what I want you to do – read back through the list above and ask Holy Spirit to highlight to you any areas have the potential to steal the joy of the work of childbirth from you. Maybe it’s all of them, or maybe there are a few specific ones that He wants highlight to you.

Then ask Him for the key to walk in freedom in each of those areas. The freedom IS available to you – Jesus already paid for it. So the question now is, What’s blocking you from walking in that freedom? Is it a lie you are believing? A wound from the past that you need Jesus to heal? Not having a scripture to stand on in that area? Baggage you need to get rid of? Unforgiveness?

Two great questions to ask as you go through this are, “Jesus what do you want me to know? And what do I need to do?”

He will speak to you and lead you down the path of freedom. He’s such a good Dad and is excited to empower you to birth your baby in total FREEDOM in Him!

You are loved more than you know. Jesus paid for more than you have any idea. And God is for you more than you can possibly fathom.

To your beautiful, FREE birth,

Kierra

p.s. If you’re feeling stuck in one of these areas and want some help to get to freedom, I now offer 40 minute phone/skype calls to do one-on-one birth coaching and would be happy to help you process and find freedom in one of these areas. You can purchase a birth coaching call with me here :).

And if you want more info on how to enjoy your birth with God, check out my Online Kingdom Childbirth Class!

4725938510_b4ccb302ee_z

Fearless Birth: How to break free from the negative birth stories you’ve heard

Whether we realize it or not, we all have a “backpack” we carry around filled with everything we’ve been told about birth. And for most of us, it’s filled with pretty negative stuff.

  • Our friend’s traumatic birth story (which she loves to re-tell for dramatic effect)
  • The story our 7th grade teacher told us of how painful it was
  • The well-meaning comment from a stranger at the store, “Don’t worry honey, just ask for the epidural right away and you’ll do just fine.
  • And the Hollywood dramatic birth scenes of moms screaming, hitting their husbands, and yelling ‘You did this to me!’

Right? And whether we want them to or not, all of these things shape our view of birth and fill up the “backpack” that we carry around. Maybe even your own past negative birth story is filling your backpack and causing fear at the thought of going through that again.

Once we hear or experience a negative story, it’s hard to shake it. We start putting ourselves in that story again and again and fear gets a powerful foothold.

What if that happens to me? Oh no, what if my birth is that painful and hard? I don’t know if I’ll be able to that!

But here’s the truth: These stories are NOT your story. (Even if it was your own story from your last birth, it’s not your story for this birth). No two births are ever the same (just like no two babies are ever the same) so there is no way that birth story is going to be your story.

God is going to write your story and it’s going to be beautiful and unique to you. He is the author and finisher of your story. And he’s an amazing author who writes beautiful stories!

But here’s the deal: if you want to have the amazing, beautiful, peaceful birth that God wants to give you (which, by the way is SO POSSIBLE!), you gotta get free from that heavy backpack and the negative stories you’re lugging around. You gotta unload those negative, unhelpful stories and replace them with beautiful, hopeful ones. You’ve got to re-train your mind and heart to view birth in a different light – to see it as God sees it. To approach your birth knowing God designed it to be amazing and beautiful – a love gift and blessing for you enjoy. You’ve got to empty that backpack and then fill it with Truth so you can enter your labor free from fear, expectant, and excited.

Cuz if you carry those negative images, stories, and comments into your birth, they will only cause fear, slow your labor, and make everything more painful. They will steal the joy, peace, and wonder of it all! And they will keep you from receiving the beautiful gifts God wants to give you throughout the day.

Ok, so let’s get rid of them! Here are some steps to unload that backpack, get free from fear, and fill it up with all the good stuff that will set you up for an awesome, peace-filled pregnancy and birth:

Step 1: Dump out the contents to see what’s in there

Go on a date with God to unpack your bag with Him. Either set aside a quiet evening at home with candles and worship music on, or head out to a coffee shop or beautiful place with Him. Give yourself the space and time to really unload your whole bag with Him.

Once you’re settled and sipping your tea together :), start pulling out the contents of your bag. As you pull out a negative birth story you find in there, write it down. Any negative comments that got stuck in your bag, write them down. Something from one of your own past births, write it down. A birth you saw in a movie. Something your mom told you one time. Something you read in a birth book. A scary birth story from Facebook. Write them all down.

And when you think you’re done, ask God if there are any others in there that you missed.

One way to make sure you got them all is to think, “What are my biggest fears regarding birth?”

Once you identify them, then ask the question, “Where did those fears come from? Who told me that’s what birth is like? What stories or comments have stuck with me and planted fear in me?” You might think of a few more that you missed.

Ok, so once you got it all out on the table, move on to step 2…

Step 2: Ask God for HIS insight into these stories and comments

Just have a conversation with Him. For example… “God, what was up with THAT birth? Why was that so painful and hard?”

I don’t know what He’ll say back, but it could be something like, “That wasn’t my intent for that birth. She was carrying a lot of fear because of her own backpack and made decisions out of fear that caused the birth to be more difficult than I designed it to be.”

Or you might ask, “Why does my best friend keep telling me I’m going to need an epidural? Is it really that bad?”

He might tell you, “No Beloved, it’s not designed to be that bad at all. But that’s her mindset right now because no one has ever told her how amazing it can be if you learn to partner with my perfect design for labor and how to relax and work with me in it. She’s only sharing what she knows from experience and her own “backpack” of stories.

He might have answers for all your questions, or He might not. But either way, give Him a chance to speak into them with His perspective.

With some birth stories, we just have to be ok saying “I don’t know why that happened. I know it wasn’t God’s will for that person or baby to suffer like that. I don’t know what happened or why that happened, but I do know that it wasn’t God’s will for them and it’s not His will for me either.

Step 3: Break any ownership or agreements you’ve made with those stories and comments

It’s really important to break any ties you’ve made with these stories. So below are some statements to declare out loud to break free from any ties or agreements you’ve made. This is warfare in the Kingdom and these declarations are powerful weapons to demolish strongholds and help you take every thought captive to obedience to Christ! (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

Declare outloud with intention and authority the declarations below (if you’re at a coffee shop, you might want to go sit in your car for this part because there really is power in declaring them OUTLOUD). Do this for each story or comment that you unpacked from your bag:

  • In the name of Jesus, I break any and all ties I’ve made with this birth story
  • I refuse to own any of this story as my own (even if it was from one of your past births, refuse to own the story for THIS birth. THIS birth is a whole new story)
  • I repent for making any agreement with the enemy that this birth story will be mine
  • God is writing my birth story and it will be beautiful and unique, unlike any other birth story out there.
  • The labor and birth process is beautiful, natural, and designed perfectly by a really good God. He meant for me to enjoy it! (if you have trouble believing that, sign up for my Kingdom Birth Class where we’ll get you believing and experiencing this truth in no time :)). 

Want more? Click here for a pdf of more declarations to prepare you for an awesome, fearless birth! These are super powerful in renewing your mind, getting free from fear, and preparing you to enjoy your birth!

Step 3: Now fill up your backpack with positive birth stories!

Replace those negative stories with some awesome ones! Find some beautiful and encouraging stories and comments to carry with you through your pregnancy and into your labor. To get you started, here are a couple comments I received from moms just this week:

“I had wanted above all, a peaceful birth. And that is exactly how my little Abby arrived – at home in such a peaceful atmosphere. I delivered her with absolutely no anxiety or fear. Exhausted but perfectly peaceful and drug free. God was so faithful!” – Amber (1st time mom)

“My second birth was smooth and only four hours from the beginning of my labor to holding my son.  Thank you so much for your encouragement, breaking down fear and turning my first thoughts to Jesus, a sweet welcoming breath and smiling through my labor while I pictured how excited Jesus was for me to see my son!” – Laurel (2nd time mom)

And here are some places you can read some awesome birth stories to fill you with hope and excitement for yours:

  1. My Birth Stories Page. I’m committed to keeping this page filled with awesome birth stories to fill you with hope, faith, and excitement for your story!
  2. Beautiful Hypnobirth Stories (even if you’re not into hypnobirth, these birth stories are beautiful & encouraging)
  3. The books “Supernatural Childbirth” by Jackie Mize and “Ina May’s Guide to Childbirth” by Ina May Gaskin. Both these books have super encouraging birth stories in them!

Step 4: Ask God to give you His specific words and pictures for YOUR birth!

Ask God what he wants to do in your birth story. Does He have a special gift for you? A theme He wants you to focus on? A promise or scripture for you? Let the words, scriptures, and pictures he gives you begin to replace the negative words and pictures that have built up. Take some time to sit at his feet and listen to his heart and words for you. Then write them down, share them with your husband, and re-read them often!

Step 5: Plan your response to any other negative birth stories or comments you may hear

It’s really important to prepare what you’re going to say the next time someone tells you their terrible birth story or makes a negative comment about birth. Because if you don’t have a response planned, it’s easy to just agree with what they are saying and unintentionally put it in your backpack (the same backpack you just cleaned out). So let’s just keep it clean from this point forward.

You can brainstorm with God what feels right for you to say. It might be a little different for each of us. But here are a few possible responses to get you thinking:

If someone tells you all the things that went wrong in their birth – “Wow, sorry about that. But, it’s not helpful for me to worry about it, so I’m declaring my birth is going to be awesome.”

If a friend tells you how hard and painful it is – “I’m sorry yours was so hard. But I’ve been reading lots of amazing birth stories and I’m believing that mine can be too.”

If you read something negative in a birth book, declare out-loud, “That’s not for me” and move on.

If you read a birth story that scares you online, say out-loud, “I’m partnering with what God wants for this birth, not what she experienced in hers.”

And if you experienced a negative birth in the past, declare, “I’m partnering with what God wants for this birth, not what I experienced last time.”

Ok so decide on your responses (feel free to write your own) and WRITE THEM DOWN and PRACTICE SAYING THEM! Rehearse them in the bathroom, while you’re driving, and with your husband. Get them memorized so that when you’re put on the spot and someone is suddenly spewing their negative birth story at you, you are prepared and ready with an answer that will deflect that story and keep it out of your bag! You can do this and your baby will thank you!

Take the time to go through these steps. I’m telling you, it will make such a difference in your pregnancy, birth, and journey of motherhood. You may have to do it a couple times throughout your pregnancy if new fears start to build up. But that’s ok! God is excited to go through this process with you as many times as you need to. And the freedom and peace you will walk in will be SO WORTH IT!

Your story is going to be unique and beautiful, Mama! And if no one else has told you this yet, I’m here to tell you today that birth is beautiful, amazing, magical, supernatural, exhilarating, fulfilling, and can totally be one of the best days of your life! So get excited – you got a great thing coming!

Excited for you,

Kierra

p.s. Karen Welton talks about the “backpack” of birth stories we carry around with us in this powerful teaching! She shares her journey of unpacking her bag, filling it up with positive stories and truth instead, and the supernatural, pain-free birth she experienced as a result. Such an encouraging story to put in your bag! Check it out!

p.s.s. Don’t forget to get this super powerful tool to get you free from fear and ready for your birth!

Top 5 Ways to Prepare Your Mind for Birth

Top 5 Ways To Prepare Your MIND for Birth

Preparing your mind for birth is one of the MOST IMPORTANT things you can do to have a wonderful birth experience. Our minds are incredibly powerful and the thoughts we think have a physical affect on the rest of our body.

We see this in daily life all the time.

For example:

If you imagine that you are eating a lemon, that THOUGHT ALONE will cause your mouth to start salivating.

If you’re worried about something, those THOUGHTS can cause a tension headache or a “knot” in your stomach.

If I think about my newborn baby when I’m out running errands, that THOUGHT triggers my milk letdown and I’m suddenly dripping milk all over the grocery aisle floor.  

Our minds and our thoughts release hormones and chemicals in our bodies all day long – whether good or bad. And this is SO TRUE during birth! Your mental state and the thoughts you think during birth will greatly affect the length, ease and comfort of your labor.

If you are worried or fearful about anything, that will produce stress hormones that will slow labor, cause you tense, and make everything much more painful.

On the other hand, if your mind is peaceful, joyful, and trusting, it will produce oxytocin and endorphins that will speed up labor, give you those lovely, euphoric feelings and make labor much more comfortable and enjoyable.

Watch the video above (or read below) to find out what you can do NOW to prepare your mind to be your ally during birth instead of your enemy:

  1. Practice being in the moment.  

    It’s really important during birth to fully be in the moment and fully present to what your body is doing. If you’re not fully present and your thoughts are wandering to the nursery at home that isn’t set up yet, or “what-ifs” about the delivery, it will slow your labor. You need every part of you fully engaged in the birth of your baby – and this includes your mind!

    Often if labor is stalling, it’s because the mom is thinking about something that she needs to get off her chest or let go of. Once she does, babies are often born surprising quickly. SO, practice now. Take moments throughout the day to practice letting go of worries, the endless to-do-list in your head, and any other issues that tend to occupy your thoughts. Practice being fully present in the moment and just being present to God, your baby, your body, and the miracle of life growing inside of you. Practicing this now will help you do this easily and quickly during labor ☺.

  2. Worry with God.

    Fear is about the worse thing possible for your body and your baby during birth. Fear causes you to tense up, making the contractions more painful and very unproductive. And fear can also cause you to make decisions that aren’t really best for you and your baby. Fear blocks all the good hormones God designed your body to release during birth that make labor enjoyable and comfortable.  SO, we need some good tools to tackle fear and get free from it. My favorite way to do this is to play the game ‘Worrying with God.’ Click here to read my blog on how to play this fun and liberating game! It will greatly enhance your birth experience.

  3. Renew your mind through Scriptures and Birth Declarations.

    It’s really important that we think like God thinks as we approach the topic of birth and that we understand birth from a Kingdom perspective. If we just listen to what the world says about birth, we’ll be convinced that it’s a painful, scary experience that you either have to suffer through or get an epidural to avoid.

    But the Bible says that birth is a beautiful gift and blessing that God gave to us as women – a gift to be enjoyed. And that He will empower us and equip us with everything we need to birth our babies well and in his joy and presence.

    One great way to start renewing your mind and to think about birth differently is to soak in the scriptures. I really encourage people who take my class to listen to scriptures as they fall asleep at night so that the Word is able to wash over their mind. I provide a soaking track of scriptures on my labor prep cd, but even if you don’t take my class, you can make your own list of scriptures that speak truth about God’s heart, nature, and promises to you for your birth.

    I also encourage you to make a list of “Birth Declarations” that you can speak out loud during the days to help renew your mind. I provide a bunch of these in my class, but you can also write your own. Just write out statements that you know to be true about birth and God and his promises to you. For example, one of mine is “The process of giving birth is a gift and a blessing from a good God! This is better than Christmas!”

  4. Let go of control.

     As you near your due date, it’s really important to let go of control and surrender the whole thing to Jesus. It’s so easy to want to control our birth stories, but birth is one of those things that you just can’t control. You can plan and prepare, but ultimately, you can’t control your experience.

    The best thing you can do during labor is to let go of control. Surrender it all to Jesus and let him take control and lead you and your body.

    Prepare for birth mentally by letting go of control and choosing to enter your birth open and expectant. And then don’t over-think things during labor. One of the best things to help labor progress quickly is to turn your thinking mind off. Turn your thoughts off and let your body and Jesus take over. Just be in your body. It’s usually when a mom stops talking and thinking so much and I can tell she’s just fully in her birth zone, that I know, ok, NOW we’re going to have a baby soon! 

  5. Get educated!

    It’s really important during pregnancy to learn about the labor process and how to partner with the way God designed your body to work.  Read books! Take a childbirth class!

    I highly recommend taking my Kingdom birth class so that you learn about all the details of birth through a Kingdom perspective. You learn how God designed labor to work and how you can partner with His beautiful design.

    The more knowledge you have about the birth process, the more calm your mind will be on that day. Instead of worrying, “Is this normal?” or “What’s happening now?,”  you will understand what is happening in your body and feel confident to know how to work with it. I’ve heard too many negative birth experiences that were really only negative because the couple didn’t educate themselves on the labor process ahead of time and then became fearful during birth because they weren’t sure if what was happening was normal or not. They then made decisions out of fear instead of wisdom and their birth experience went downhill. Don’t let that be your story. Prepare your mind by LEARNING about God’s beautiful design for birth!

So those are my top 5 ways to prepare your MIND for birth! Do them and your mind is going to be in a great place to birth your baby in joy and peace! You can do it Mama! I’m excited for you!

Stay tuned for my next entry coming up on the Top 5 ways to prepare your SPIRIT for an amazing birth experience! Make sure that you are subscribed below so you won’t miss it when it comes out. =)

Bless you! I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments below.

Love,

Kierra

Redlands-Pregnancy-Photographer-14

Give Birth Like You Make Love

Giving birth is like making love in many ways. And I hope that by the time you finish reading this post, you look forward to your birth experience as much as you look forward to a romantic Friday night with your hot hubby ☺.  AND, I hope you’re ready to give birth like you make love!

Here we go…a comparison between sex and birth:

Sex: High levels of the Love Hormone, Oxytocin, flowing through your body
Birth: Also crazy levels of Oxytocin flowing through your body – actually the highest level of Oxytocin you will ever experience in your life comes in the moments following the birth of your baby – even more than when you orgasm! (Ok, 1 point for birth)

 Sex: Can give you feelings of pleasure and euphoria (from hormones like Oxytocin and endorphins)
Birth: Same deal. You get the same awesome hormones and can have the same feelings of pleasure and euphoria and an indescribable “birth high”

Sex: Can be painful if you’re not relaxed or feeling safe and loved.
Birth: Exactly the same thing.

Sex: Can be both painful and euphoric at the same time. Just cuz you’re feeling a little pain from the stretching, it doesn’t mean you’re not loving it at the same time and feeling pleasure alongside the pain.
Birth: Totally the same thing! You can experience pain and pleasure at the same time and still LOVE the whole experience.

Sex: Works best if you just let go and surrender to your body – not trying to control the experience.
Birth: Ditto! Let go of control and just let yourself go – it will be way more enjoyable!

Sex: How much you enjoy it is directly related to how connected you feel to your partner, as well as your emotional and mental states.
Birth: Absolutely the same thing! If you’re feeling connected to your partner, and are peaceful, relaxed and fully present, you will enjoy it much more.

Sex: Can lead to amazing orgasm
Birth: Can also lead to orgasm (if you’re allowing yourself to let go and enjoy the sensations and hormones like you do during sex)

Sex: A wild ride! Best experienced by letting your wild side come out and letting go of all inhibitions. Turning your thoughts off and fully just being in your body and letting yourself feel all the sensations.
Birth: Also a wild ride! And also best experienced by letting your wild, primitive side take over and losing all inhibitions. Turn your thoughts off, fully just be in your body and let nature take over – it’s amazing!

Sex: Is different each time. Sometimes wild and euphoric. Sometimes intimate and peaceful.
Birth: Absolutely. Each birth is so unique and special in its own way. 

Sex: Doesn’t work so well when you’re feeling observed, judged, or interrupted by others
Birth: You can say that again! So try to create an atmosphere that limits interruptions by others as much as possible. (They say that the same atmosphere it takes to make a baby is the atmosphere needed to birth a baby).

Sex: Though it can be described in medical terms, it’s much more a spiritual, emotional and relational event than a medical event.
Birth: Definitely the same thing. Wish culture would stop making us think it’s mostly a medical event. It’s definitely more a spiritual, emotional, and relational experience! We’d enjoy it more if we saw it as this.

Sex: Accompanied by lots of fun sounds – moans, screams, yells, ahhhs, etc.
Birth: Same exact sounds ☺. In fact if you listen to a home birth from another room, you may think the couple is making love in there. It often sounds exactly the same. And that’s because again, it’s many of the same hormones and sensations going on in the woman’s body if she lets herself enjoy and embrace them.

Sex: Can be awkward, uncomfortable, messy, and disappointing at times.  But it’s still such a special, intimate gift. And it gets better the more you learn and the more you do it ☺.
Birth: Totally the same!

Sex: Best to go into it open without a lot of expectations (especially the first time), not thinking it has to look or feel a certain way or fit in a specific box that friends or society tell you it’s like.
Birth: Same deal. It doesn’t have to look or feel a certain way or fit in any box.  Best enjoyed if you go in open without a lot of specific expectations and just enjoy the experience. 

But there is one huge difference between sex & birth:

Sex: The world tells us it’s awesome, amazing, sensual, euphoric, orgasmic, and something to desire, seek after and enjoy.
Birth: The world tells us it’s scary, dangerous, painful, medical, something to dread and fear and suffer through.

And therein lies much of the reason that women have very different experiences between making love and giving birth. Because our expectations and the way we approach these events greatly impact our experience.  If people told women the same thing about sex that they do about birth, lots of women would be scared of sex, find it to be painful, dislike it, and miss out on all the good gifts God meant them to experience in it.  And that’s what happens with birth. So I’m here to tell you a different story today! Birth too can be very enjoyable! And if you prepare well and learn how to embrace and enjoy it, you too can join the many women out there who look at their partner after their baby is born and say, “Wow, when can we do that again?!”

So my birth advice for you…go into your labor the way you would enter a passionate love-making session with your husband.  Be free, have fun, let go of inhibitions and control, let your body take over, make whatever noises you want, let out your inner roar, be sensual, enjoy this gift of womanhood, make it intimate, and be fully present to this beautiful gift!  And if it’s chandelier swinging, wild and orgasmic, awesome! Or if it’s intimate, deep, powerful and spiritual, awesome as well! Or if it’s awkward and uncomfortable, but still really special and intimate, awesome as well! Embrace it – it’s a gift to be fully experienced and enjoyed. The God who created the crazy good gift of sex is the same God who created the crazy good gift of childbirth. Enjoy both of these love gifts from our wild, generous God! 

Find out more of what God has for your birth by downloading this free PDF of Birth Declarations!

photo cred visphotography