Persephone: Parent

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Pregnancy Yoga: A Time for Counselling

on February 20, 2015

I’m not going to go into details even though I don’t know any of the mums in question and they have no idea about this blog, but I wanted to discuss how much my yoga classes have felt like counselling sessions.

The best counselling I’ve ever been to!

There were 5 of us there the other day, varying in gestation; I think I was actually the most pregnant but only by 1 day! Three of us are on second pregnancies and the 4th is having a problematic pregnancy. Before we start the yoga we have a discussion about how we’re each doing. I’m sure this isn’t normal for yoga but it is important for pregnancy yoga.

Afterall, if something has changed in your pregnancy, something physical which affects your mobility you need to discuss it. Equally though if there’s something emotional going on, fear, anxiety, etc then maybe you’re at yoga to help deal with those emotional factors.

During any pregnancy, no one can tell you that everything is going to be okay. No one can tell you exactly how it is going to go. No one can tell you what to expect. But someone can help you to deal with the worry. With me, for example, I am worried about being forced into an induction when I don’t feel ready. I am worried about not being given enough time to labour, to let it progress before interventions.

I’m also worried about making the wrong decision and how to then cope during the newborn phase that I really struggged with last time. I found it difficult to sleep. My body can’t just nap when I tell it to (except whilst pregnant). I’ve always had a problem relaxing. So we discuss these things and then do a few yoga poses and then do some amazing yoga relaxation.

In fact, I already find it hard to sleep and yoga breathing is already certainly helping.

Unfortunately, at the session in particular, I felt really bad for the 5th mummy. She’s a first time mum-to-be and is currently having a breeze of a pregnancy. The poor woman sat there and listened to 4 women discuss their “horror” stories of first births or not so breezy pregnancies. I really worried afterwards if she went home traumatised!

However I’m also a huge advocate (now) of discussing the negatives of pregnancies. Whether it’s just my current inability to walk up even a few stairs without feeling like an asthmatic or whether it’s something life threatening, why keep it all inside? Why keep the negatives quiet? Is it to continue some facade of how amazing pregnancy is? Is it some female bravado? Is it because, in most cases, you, the pregnant one, chose to be pregnant so suck it up? Or, as my mum still insists, pregnancy is not an illness so you/it shouldn’t be treated as if it were?

Except for some,  it is. And, surely, if pregnancy and labour are all roses then when something isn’t run-of-the-mill, isn’t rosey and picture perfect, mums have no idea if it’s a problem or normal. And they have no idea who to talk to, how to deal with it.

~ P

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