The planets aligned for me, in the early stages of my second pregnancy, when I came in contact with Daniella from Healing Sessions for Mums. I had a traumatic first birth 2 years prior and only a few weeks into this pregnancy I was already anticipating the outcome for my next birth.

I came across a post on the Hunter Birth Education Centre Facebook page which was reaching out to women wanting to share their birth story, to work with Daniella who was studying to become a Birth Story Listener with Birthing from Within. My first thought was, I definitely have a long and detailed birth story filled with unfortunate and unnecessary interventions and procedures – I bet she would be able to use my story. I thought my story would benefit her and her study, I did not really think I would benefit much, other than being able to tell my story (again) but guilt free and start to finish.

Little did I know that simply telling my story to someone who was listening, I mean really genuinely listening, was the first part of healing I would experience. I was heard, validated and understood. Something I was so desperately craving and unknowingly searching for during the 2 years since my first birth but had not received. I was now elated to begin working with Daniella and excited to find out what the rest of our journey had to offer.

We “met” via online video calls, which meant I never had to travel or leave the comfort of my house, which was amazing in those first nauseating weeks of pregnancy.

We were face to face but 2 hours in distance. I opened my mind and my heart and was ready to experience healing, I was open to anything Daniella wanted to try or discuss but was also still a little naive to how great this could be.

Once I’d told my story to Daniella, she asked me to think about the most significant moment of my birth story and coached me through the whole thought process around opening up that moment. We discussed how and why it effected me and we followed on from that with ways I could overcome those feelings. Another huge step forward for me.

Throughout my pregnancy we had a few more sessions where we explored how I was feeling about my impending birth and again delved into positive and negative emotions, helping me to compartmentalise fears and positive or negative anticipation. Daniella was very intuitive and knew what to ask and how, which enabled certain thoughts and words to come out of me that I wouldn’t have otherwise had the ability to discover on my own.

Another tool we explored together was Birth Art. By then I was quite content and accepting of my traumatic birth and felt like I had the mental clarity to feel positive towards my second birth. Again, I was naive about how a Birth Art Session could benefit me. Daniella asked me to draw a few simple things, I had no idea what I was doing but managed to put pen to paper and again, with her coaching and guidance something was released which I didn’t know was inside. Things I drew gave me amazing thoughts and concepts on ways to feel positive and how I wanted to bond with my pregnancy without any negative resentment from my previous birth.

I was then coached into journaling thoughtsand reasoning behind the basic sketches which turned feelings into black and white action – I was gaining so much excitement and positive renewal in preparation for my second birth. We then worked with clay and again journaled immediately after thoughts and feelings around what I did. This birth Art was the icing on the cake for my healing and moving forward. I was amazed at how these simple processes turned wordless feelings and emotions into healing and gave my mind the ability to give itself a plan and new ways to feel connected, positive and excited for this birth.

I wrapped up my time with Daniella feeling thankful and completely empowered. I went on to have the most perfect birth that I had always wished for. It truly is mind over matter, I had let go of all negative feelings and anticipations which allowed me to invite the feelings of labour and birth my baby into a space of Euphoria. Something which is also worth being “listened to” – I found that positive feelings and experiences are just as important to be heard and validated, Daniella was excited to hear about my outcome and being able to tell her my amazing birth story was the final chapter of my pregnancy and birthing journey. I will be forever grateful and wish that every birthing woman could have this experience, support and total empowerment.

Lana Middleby