Becoming a mother

Visualization for Distress at Birth

You may wish to create you own images for healing if you feel your relationship with your baby is suffering unnecessarily because of feelings surrounding the birth. Usually, this manifests in an excessively irritable baby who is particularly sensitive to changes in the environment and reacts negatively and fearfully. The baby is usually difficult to console.

By allowing yourself to visualize the experience as you would have liked it, paying particular attention to those moments when you wanted to hold your baby, or be alert and present, you change the movements of your body. Your touch will now communicate feelings of confidence rather than uncertainty. Babies do feel connected through your body, and feelings are physical. Healing visualization can affect your feelings, and your touch will soon impart calm and reassurance.


If you feel that you and/or your baby may have felt fear during labor, birth or immediately afterward, and you believe it is inhibiting a positive relationship, go back to visualize the experience as you would have wished it to be. First, visualize it by yourself; identify what you needed or wanted. Then, share it with your partner or a friend. If you wish, you can have someone help you visualize a change by repeating phrases to you that feel healing, such as seeing yourself hold you baby right after birth, taking your knowledge that your baby is safe and healthy back to a time when you had fear, holding that younger you who was afraid during or after the birth. Use whatever images work for you. Write them in your journal.

When you feel ready, close your eyes and visualize these images while holding your baby. Feel the contentment, healing and love of these images communicated to your baby through your body, heart and mind. This should take only three to five minutes. Then set the images aside, and continue to enjoy your baby.

These images and feelings will remain with you and can help you feel calmer and more confident in your mothering as time goes on. Your baby will respond to your experience.

Copyright 1993 by Shadow and Light Publications. Reprinted with permission from the author and publisher. This excerpt may not be reproduced in any manner, including electronic, without prior written consent from the publisher.

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