Since I started teaching childbirth education classes, I’ve been developing educational material for my clients. I teach Birth Boot Camp classes, which I have found to be comprehensive, honest, evidence-based, and refreshingly modern. I am constantly learning about birth, about our bodies, about babies, and about what my clients need to know to have a good birth experience.
The new things I learn and the new things we are are all learning as we go have to be worked into my existing teaching. The questions I’ve been asked over the years have often led me to further research and new ideas. I have very often wished that I had something to give women who won’t read a whole book or maybe even a blog article I send them. Something to give women to share with their partners at home or to help them remember.
My birth class is 10 weeks long. We have a lot of fun in class, make friends, and become more loving, thoughtful, educated people. But I don’t want to make it any longer. The truth is that people have their own lives, and though I can do a good deal to get them going and feeling confident, they have to do the inner prep work on their own. I can add more classes to cover this awesome stuff I am finding, but if they aren’t processing it at home, in the end it’s just going to be a big jumble in their heads.
So I developed ways around this.
I have been researching and designing what I am calling micro-courses for pregnancy and birth. They are attractive, printable, one-page lessons on a particular topic—cervical dilation, oxytocin, breech, how to help a woman in labor, etc. They’re built on the belief that birth is not a medical event– even when it is. Women benefit from being fully informed, knowing their options, and feeling calm and confident about birth.
Sometimes that means a paper to refer back to.
I touch on it in class, give them the handout, and if it comes back up I know there’s more that needs to be said. We revisit the topic in class or one-on-one.
Birth is such an intensely personal event that everyone needs to hear and believe and know slightly different things to have the best, safest experience.
On top of that, neither I nor any birth worker has the time to cover *everything. We all know that a woman’s preparedness and mindset affect her birth, but even if you teach a long-haul class like I do, you probably don’t have time to get into it all.
Both we and our clients need things that are easy and don’t take much time to explain and start thinking about. A tangible piece of paper helps a lot of people revisit ideas, share ideas, and remember the ideas.
Relaxation is necessary for birth and this is easiest to achieve when confident.
Your best birth is one you feel good about. This requires forethought and connection. Start with a birth class, but get help from everywhere.
Since I started using the micro-courses and other graphic handouts, people ask better questions, do more at home, and leave more specific reviews, giving detailed feedback for social proof. They will refer to a concept from a handout that I never actually spoke about in class. The handout led them to access the knowledge and wisdom that they personally needed. When asked what about our time together was valuable for them, one of these physical papers inevitably comes up.
All of my breech materials are available now, with license to print and use with your clients, here. Over the next few months I will add more and more materials to support birth workers and others in their role as childbirth educators.
Join the mailing list to be notified about new arrivals, and as always, feel free to contact me anytime.