By Iona Leigh
For those of you that don’t already know me, I’m Marion’s daughter Iona Leigh, and the Findhorn Flower Essences newsletter and website designer. I’m currently 30 weeks pregnant with my first child, and with just ten weeks to go I am about to complete the mission I set myself at the start of my pregnancy: – to discover how to achieve a ‘blooming marvelous’ pregnancy. I’ve read lots of books along the way, but found that talking to other Mum’s has been the most helpful way of learning; mother to mother.
Pregnancy is such an exciting voyage of discovery that offers a real opportunity to become even more intuitive with your body’s rhythms, health needs and deep emotions. I have never felt so connected to the moon, tide and the great earth beneath my feet. This experience has taught me to honor my body and give thanks for my health, family and friends. It has also been a time of great vulnerability, where I have learned to deeply trust, and let go on many levels.
In the first trimester, I felt very tired in the afternoons, had sudden bursts of hunger and felt emotionally sensitive and vulnerable. During this time, I found Heart Support, sleep and yoga to be the most beneficial practices. I also enjoyed taking walks in nature whilst singing to my baby, reflecting on changes, and soaking up prana energy. This was also a very special time to connect with my husband, as we consciously welcomed this being into our hearts, our lives and my body.
During my second trimester, I felt even more energetic than usual, but had to learn not to over-do it! I found swimming and aqua aerobics really helped me to focus my energy, bond with my baby, and feel more confident and positive about my weight gain. I also found music offered a great way to connect with my baby, who would kick with joy to the sound of my voice, harp, or even classical pieces of music (particularly piano/ string music).
Since entering my last trimester, I have needed to increase my iron intake by eating seaweed, drinking nettle tea and taking Floradix (a liquid iron supplement). During this period, I’ve found sleep much harder due to my increased weight and the baby’s kicking patterns, so afternoon naps are now very important (this is where Sweet Dreams can help). I’ve also reduced my caffeine intake to just one cup of tea a day, as this helps me to stay more emotionally balanced and less jittery.
As I get closer to the big day, I continue to practice visualization and hypno-birthing techniques. I’ve found that by talking about my worries and fears with family and close friends, I can release and let go of anxiety on a deeper level. I recently asked four mothers in my local community (two English, one German and one American) between the ages of 24 and 47 to share their pregnancy experiences with me by answering the following four questions: –
1) What particular ‘practice’ did you find most beneficial during your pregnancy?
Laurel: Yoga, Swimming. In fact, sleeping was one of the most beneficial things I did while pregnant.
Katy: Pregnancy Yoga was by far the best form of relaxation and exercise for me, especially in the later months. I went to a weekly class up to 36 weeks.
Stella: Sleep whenever possible & Hypno-birthing tapes for relaxation.
Anne: Shiatsu and Yoga
2) What hobbies/activities did you continue to enjoy during your pregnancy?
Laurel: Biking, walking, painting, craft work, singing, yoga, reading, writing, swimming, travel.
Katy: I found swimming fantastic!! Went three or four times a week. Sometimes I went to swim, sometimes just to float!
Stella: Volleyball (until 5 months), walking, biking, reading.
Anne: All sports, (but I stopped Volleyball towards the end)
3) What natural health products/practices helped to aid your pregnancy issues?
Laurel: Ainsworth homeopathy kit for pregnancy and child birth. You can look up pretty much any symptom and find the appropriate remedy. I didn’t have many problems but I had jumpy legs when resting (yes it is a pregnancy symptom!) and the remedies helped with that, also with sickness in the early days… anxiety leading up to the birth and the most important was for after the birth in speeding up the healing process, belladonna, arnica and hypericum.
Katy: Homeopathy and flower essences! I had a homeopathic birthing kit, which was fantastic. I think I would have found labor a lot harder without it!
Stella: Floradix & nettle tea for iron.
Anne: Herbs, homeopathy, Flower essences, acupuncture
4) What would your top recommendations be for a ‘blooming marvelous’ pregnancy?
Laurel: Relax mind and body, Meditate, Exercise, Rest, Enjoy.
Katy: RELAXATION, eating well, putting your feet up, letting people do things for you and taking time every day to consciously connect with your baby ‘bun’.
Stella: Spend time in nature and rest, rest, rest!
Anne: Enjoy it and do things you really like, before you have to focus a lot on the new family member. Also, you can’t get pregnant while you’re pregnant, so enjoy your partner.
In closing, pregnancy has taught me to be really honest with myself, to ask for help when I need it, and accept that my mind and body is ‘on loan’ to my growing baby. When dealing with doctors and midwives, I’ve learned that it’s really important to stand up for what you believe in, trust your intuition, whilst surrendering at the same time! Lastly, I’ve learned that it is important to be gentle with yourself, and release expectations by simply practicing to become more and more present in each and every moment.
(P.S. ~ Watch this space for a follow up article on birthing using flower essences! )
** Heart Support & Sweet Dreams are types of Findhorn Flower Essences which are available at The Violet Flame.
What are Flower Essences? http://www.thevioletflame.com.my/products/findhorn-flower-essences.html