Some simple meditations and visualisations for preconception care, pregnancy, birth and beyond. As a new mum it can be very challenging to find time for yourself. Good opportunities for meditation could be when you feed your baby or 10 minutes before some much needed rest. Get comfortable in a supportive chair, either close your eyes or keep them open and let go…
Benefits of Meditation - Lowers stress (reduces cortisol levels) and anxiety. Deepens the link between mind and body. Increases sense of peace, calm and acceptance. Nurtures creativity and helps you to live in the present moment. You can reap the benefits through daily practise even if it’s only for 15 minutes.
Meditation for Calm …….. Take a moment to relax your breathing. Breathe in and out through your nose – you might also want to exhale through the mouth to help let go of tension. Is your breath deep or shallow? Regulate your breath by connecting the in and out breath together so there are no gaps in between, and allow your breath to fill your chest. Breathe regularly at a pace that is comfortable for you.
Become aware of the floor supporting your feet and the chair supporting your body. Now bring attention to your body. What sensations do you experience in your lower body – your feet, legs, lower abdomen and stomach? What sensations do you experience in your upper body – your chest, shoulders, arms, hands, neck and head. If you experience any tension you might want to either tense the muscles for a few moments and let go and/or exhale through the breath.
Now draw attention to your inner world, and simply observe your thoughts and feelings without judgement. If you get pulled in, that’s okay, simply acknowledge the thought or feeling and return to observing. Observing and accepting brings a sense of calm and starts to quieten the inner world. You might find your self starting to detach from your thoughts and feelings and have a heightened sense of awareness of being the ‘witness to your experience’. Allow your self to simply go deeper into this experience and let your self be drawn into the calm of the present moment – an experience of just ‘being’. You might feel your body tingling or other sensations – just be aware and observe what is happening. As you allow your self to go deeper and deeper you might want to say some postive affirmations; ‘I am peace’, ‘I am calm’, ‘I am pregnant’, ‘I am connected to my baby’, ‘I feed my baby in peace’ etc. To come out of the experience draw your attention back to external noises and sounds and become aware of the chair supporting your body.
There is no such thing as positive or negative meditation as the process is about acceptance, and this brings increased peace over time. If you found it hard to relax, came up against blocks and resistance, felt annoyed or angry, that’s fine, just ‘ be’ with what ever is happening in the moment; be with the bodily tension or be with the anger without judgement. It’s judgement that draws us further into whatever is happening while acceptance attracts calm and peace.
Meditation for clarifying feelings about having a baby……. Close your eyes (or keep them open) and take a few deep breaths. Feel the ground supporting your feet and chair supporting your body. Turn your attention inside and start to become aware of the feelings and sensations in your body. Simply be with these for a few moments or however long you feel. Then turn your attention to the lower abdominal area where your womb is situated and breathe into this area. If you feel comfortable place your hands on this area of your body. If you find your self drawn to another area of your body stay with this part. What do you feel or notice in this area of your body? Does it feel tight or relaxed? Does this part of your body want to give you a message? Do you notice any memories surfacing? Allow yourself to ’be without judgement’ with whatever you are experiencing.
When you feel ready ask yourself the following questions; ‘what does mother mean for me?’, ‘what does having a baby mean for me?’ Notice your response and the response of the area of your body you are currently paying attention to. Spend some time with whatever you are experiencing. Then start to bring your attention back to the outside noises and the floor and chair supporting your body.
Creative visualisation is a powerful technique using the imagination to create a clear image, idea or feeling of something you wish to attract and manifest in your life. Daily visualisation and positive focus on your goal can help it to become reality. Affirmations, writing your goals down, and making a picture collage of what you wish to manifest all help strengthen the power of your visualisation work.
Creative visualisation can also help to dissolve emotional blocks and increase creativity, calm and peace. It can be a powerful tool for laying the mental and emotional groundwork for conception. If you want to learn more about this technique then I highly recommend Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain. Prepare yourself for any visualisation exercise by relaxing or meditating first.
Visualisations for conception …..
Turn your attention to your womb and breathe into this area. Notice how this area ofyour body feels and just be with whatever you experience. Then imagine anyone of the following (affirmations also included) …….
Imagine a golden light bathing your womb in warmth and vitality. Now see a sperm meeting your egg and fertilising it. Imagine its descent down the fallopian tube and embedding in your uterine wall. Imagine a baby growing in the golden light of your womb. Affirmation(s) – ‘my eggs are ripe and healthy’, ‘my womb receives my growing baby’, ‘I am pregnant’ …..
The above are just suggestions. You might find you have a different experience to the one you expected to happen. For example you might experience a visual/emotional ‘block’ in connecting with your womb. Whatever happens is fine – if it appears ‘negative’ that’s okay; it might be an emotional block which will dissolve over time. Repetition of the visualisation will help to release old emotions and path the way for your desired experience.
Visualisation in pregnancy …..
Place your hands on your pregnant belly and breathe into this area. Imagine your womb is full of golden light enveloping your baby. Let this light spread out over your entire body. Nourish yourself in the protection, peace and warmth of this golden light. Focus on your heart area sending love to your unborn child on each in breath and become aware of your baby’s connection to you on each out breath. Allow yourself to merge in connection to your baby. Affirmation(s) - ‘I am connected to my baby’, ‘my baby receives my love’, ‘I love my baby’.
Visualisation to aid on set of labour (from due date) …..
Breathe deeply into relaxation. Imagine your cervix is a beautiful flower ripening and opening. Now visualise your baby moving down the birth canal. Imagine your perineum opening again like the gentle, unfolding petals of a flower. Affirmation(s) – ‘my cervix is ripe’, ‘my cervix opens’,’my labour has begun’.
Visualisations for/during birth …..
Vaginal birth – Imagine your body is enveloped in golden light. As you breathe in send golden light to your uterus. As you breathe out imagine a golden trail of light leaving your mouth. Imagine your baby descending down the birth canal peacefully. As you breathe in send love to your baby. Affirmation(s) – ‘my body knows how to birth’, ‘I birth in peace’.
Cesarean birth - Imagine you are lying in a place (it could be a favourite room in your home) that makes you feel safe and secure as you await the operation to birth you baby. Visualise your birth partner offering you comfort and reassurance. Now imagine your body is enveloped in golden light. As you breathe in send golden light and love to your baby. As you breathe out feel connected and supported in the safe place in which you are lying. Stay in this safe place as the operation takes place. When your baby is birthed and lifted from your tummy imagine your baby at peace, enveloped in golden light. Affirmation(s) – ‘I am safe, my baby is safe’, ‘I birth in peace’ …..