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Getting ready for the big day

It’s time to turn your attention to yourself. Your body is going to do an amazing thing.

Delegate as many things possible so that both you and your birth partner get as much rest as you can.

Many mums find they need to do a bit of nesting. Even if you’re planning a home birth it might feel good to gather your labour things together in one place.

Everyone is different and you might not feel like eating much in labour. It’s good to stay hydrated so focus on that side of things if you’re not so hungry but make sure you have the choice to eat nice things by packing plenty of snacks.  Partners –pack your own supplies in case she’s not up for sharing.

Oxytocin is the hormone we make to move our labours along and to help ourselves manage the powerful sensations and feelings of labour. The more oxytocin the better -before, during and after the birth. Oxytocin likes privacy, safety, warmth, comfort and darkness. Do what you want to make your birth room oxytocin friendly –anything from flameless LED candles to your favourite fleecy blanket. Your birth partner and your midwife form part of that environment –they need to be on the same wavelength as you so it’s OK to tell them what you need from them. And you don’t need much –peace and quiet, dark and comfort are not much to ask for.

If you’re going to give birth in a hospital or a birth centre you can make a huge difference to your birth environment by taking a few simple home comforts with you. Your own music will personalise your environment and help you to relax -choose music that makes you happy. If you can, take a couple of extra pillows with you –you can get vacuum packed pillows that don’t take up much space in your bag –pop your own home laundered pillowcases on and they will smell like home.