The Environment of the Womb
The environment of your womb is rich with sounds and sensations, and your impressions of the world continually filter through to your baby.
Each sensation—pleasurable or uncomfortable, imaginary or real—releases chemicals through your body which have an effect on you and your baby.
Ultrasound monitoring has shown that minutes after a pregnant woman experiences a stressful event, her baby responds with an accelerated heart rate or a strong kick.
When the environment is peaceful, a mother’s unborn baby is peaceful as well, and able to play and grow in his own natural rhythm, without needing to fight against imposed stress by his mother.
By four to five months’ gestation, a baby in utero has similar awareness and feelings to a newborn. By holding your baby in your awareness each day, as you sing and talk to her, dream about and welcome her, sensations of love flow through you, enabling her to grow into an amazing human being.
When the input you receive through your five senses is soothing, your body releases health promoting chemicals. It’s been demonstrated that adrenaline, noradrenaline, oxytocin, serotonin, and most other messenger molecules are transported across the placenta.
By bringing awareness to the sensations you imbibe through your five senses, you create a nurturing, positive environment in which your baby can thrive. The following practices can support you in experiencing and deepening this connection every day.
Connect. Several times during the day, tenderly place your hands on your belly. Imagine yourself holding your baby as she sleeps or kicks inside your womb. Gently caress your belly while speaking softly to her. Loving or therapeutic touch sends relaxation and healing to you and your unborn baby. Spend time connecting with your baby through the sense of touch, even before she is in your arms.
Soak. Draw yourself a luxurious bath, lighting candles and diffusing a soothing aroma, such as lavender, neroli, or orange to create a relaxing atmosphere. As you feel yourself and your baby floating together in the warm water, affirm that you are both loved, at peace, and completely supported.
Speak Sounds of Love. The soothing timbre of your own voice is perhaps the single most nourishing sound that you can share with your baby. Take some time each day to sing, coo, read to, and talk to your baby, knowing that he or she is listening.
Pregnancy is not just something that is happening to you; it is a miraculous unfolding that you are co-creating. For nine months, you are your unborn baby’s environment; your baby is affected by each one of your experiences.
Pregnancy is a journey that will take you beyond your mind and body. It will enliven your compassion and reveal the most intimate truths of your soul.
Be in the experience, and cherish every moment. It will be gone before you know it: the big belly, the movements felt from inside, the pregnant waddle, the wonderful looks from passersby, and the sensations of having your baby growing inside your body.
Pregnancy offers a unique opportunity to become deeply connected with your body, your growing baby, and, ultimately, the creation of life itself.
You and your baby are one.
This article is adapted from the book Magical Beginnings. Enchanted Lives, co-authored by Vicki Abrams, Deepak Chopra, and David Simon, M.D.
This article appeared in Pathways to Family Wellness magazine, Issue #51.
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