I bloody hope so.
When my friend and co-founder of The Calm Birth School Hollie De Cruz told me she was going to be popping over to Fearne Cotton's house to talk tea and calm birthing, I'm not going to lie there was a bit of me that was like, 'You what??!!! Fearne Cotton, where's my invite??' And then I remembered what the mission was for us and all hypnobirthing practitioner's out there is. We want to change the way that women view birth. So it's been with baited breath that we have waited to see the outcome of Fearne's birth experience.
Because although hypnobirthing has been edging it's way into the mainstream since the Princess of Cambridge reportedly used hypnobirthing techniques with the birth of Prince George, there has still been a little stigma attached to what it is, if it works and whether it's all a bit mumbo jumbo.
And I get it.
When the majority of all the birth stories we see in the news and in pop culture report on the drama of birth and how horrific it's going to be. Who wants to hear about calm, euphoric birth experiences? When women get rewarded for reporting on the war wounds of birth, who wants to be put in the smug corner with all the other 'smug perfect mums' who child poos rose petals and sleeps through the night from the age of four weeks? Nobody wants to be with those mothers...so it's never been particularly cool to talk about what a great birth experience you have had.
Up until now.
If there was ever going to be a celebrity we wanted to fly the flag for positive birth experiences and hypnobirthing in particular is was going to be Fearne Cotton. She's part of pop royalty, she's cool and she's super accessible. Who doesn't want to be in Fearne's gang? When Fearne says having a hypnobirthing guided her through the most intense and euphoric experience ever, 'women are going to sit up and listen. And that is a win for all of us.
The more women who hear Fearne talk about her experience, the more they will be moved to see how they can prepare for their birth which creates a huge opportunity for all hypnobirthing practitioners to explain what hypnobirthing is really about. However, while Fearne talks about enjoying a natural and pain relief free birth, hypnobirthing is about so much more than the mode of entry a baby enters into the world.
One of the biggest benefits to hypnobirthing mothers and babies is the reduction of fear towards labour during pregnancy. When a mother-to-be has a very clear understanding of the biology of the birthing body in combination with the appreciation of the mind-connection. Knowing how she thinks and feels about birth has the ability to impact her experience of birth is extremely powerful and can completely transform both the pregnancy and of course the birth experience. When you present this with the evidence now showing the impact lower stress hormones during pregnancy has on babies after birth. Why wouldn't every pregnant mother want to get involved?
Hypnobirthing also encourages mothers-to-be to create time and space for very specific down time in pregnancy that many women who don't do this type of antenatal preparation will take. This is because we emphasise the importance of practicing the breathing and relaxation techniques to prepare the body for birth on a daily basis. This gives mum time to think about her birth, relax and emotionally prepare for the big day and all of the various scenarios that may play out.
This is so important because although, some women will have easy natural births, others will talk about an intensity that is coupled with euphoria as Fearne has; some women's babies will need assistance in the shape of forceps or ventouse; whilst other's will end up having unplanned caesareans. When a mother-to-be understands that the work that hypnobirthing work she has undertaken before labour, helping her to feel calm, relaxed and confident is equally as important as feeling empowered, informed and in control when it comes to working with your care providers to experience the most positive birth outcome for you and your baby everybody wins.
So thank you Fearne for sharing your experience you have opened the eyes and ears to many women who would have never considered hypnobirthing could help to create an amazing birth experience for them. But let's all be mindful that a positive hypnobirth doesn't have to be drug free and natural to be amazing.