Participant Reflections

“…This class has changed the way I experience my whole life. Sounds like a really big statement to make, but it’s true! I can find joy so much more easily, don’t become stressed as much, can tolerate pain/frustration/disappointment so much better. I feel like a more free, happier version of myself. COULD still be some residual hormonal glow, but I felt this way before I gave birth too.”

“…I noticed an increased confidence in my partner in his ability to support emotionally and physically through this process and how we plan to parent.”

“…As you can imagine, the last few weeks have been the most emotionally intense of our lives, and were a far cry from how we had imagined Oliver’s path into the world being. But we used the tools from the class throughout our birth experience, and they helped us remain present, and at times even calm, for Oliver’s birth. We felt able to celebrate the incredibly unique way Oliver was born, rather than focusing on the anguish of how we hoped things would be, and we’ve continued to draw on skills from the class as we deal with the challenges of being new parents of a child in the NICU. This was an incredible gift from the class, and from our time spent with all of you.”

“…I avoided that cycle of fearing the next contraction that sent me to such a panicked place during my last labor. I definitely felt plenty of fear between contractions but I was able to breathe it away and bring myself back to ground zero before the next contraction started….As contractions got more serious I actually had less anxiety…it was so insanely intense and I was working so hard to relax and just get through the diarrhea/contractions I think there was no space for fear. The fact I could stay so entirely present with the physical sensations actually kept my emotions at bay…”

“…While I was pregnant, the course helped me feel more relaxed and in touch with my baby.  I loved meditating with other pregnant women, being quiet together, feeling our babies kick together.   It was also a wonderful space to discuss the experience of pregnancy and imminent parenthood with people at a similar time of life, and with Danielle who has so much wisdom and calm.  Our meetings were a great source of support.  In the postpartum period, it has stayed with me in lots of ways.  Sometimes I look for a long time a my baby’s face, and I don’t feel the need to read or move on to a more “productive” activity.  Danielle, you said that it is a form of meditation to be so present with her, and so instead of letting myself move on to another activity, I stay with her, and try to be still and go deeper.”

“…In the course, we practiced shifting the focus of our attention from a painful area (simulated by holding ice) to an area where a partner was laying on hands. This really worked for me during labor: during almost every contraction, my husband held my head in the way that we practiced in the class, one hand on my forehead, the other on the back of my head, and it helped me enormously to get through the pain. I felt more in control of my attention, even if I could not control the pain.”

“…The only time we can really influence is the present.  In childbirth, if we are terrified about pain, then we are missing those precious moments between contractions when we feel alright or good. The same applies to parenting.  If we always live in the future, allowing our fears to dominate (“what if this or that happens”), we will preclude our children and ourselves from many meaningful experiences right now.   (In MBCP), I refreshed the skills and techniques I can use to manage my stress, discomfort, anxiety during pregnancy, childbirth and hopefully beyond!”