I have been doing Craniosacral Therapy (CST) sessions with my client, Sylvia, since she was first pregnant and throughout her pregnancy. A prenatal CST session is a special time for a mother to get in touch with her body and the growing baby and helps mother and baby to prepare for the birth together. CST helps rebalance both the mother’s energy and her physical body as she goes through the natural changes in her body. It releases restrictions in the body and helps the pelvis, back, head, neck, and ribs adapt with the changing body. It relieves effect of daily stress and/or any past emotional or physical trauma related to birth. In the third trimester, CST sessions gently improve mobility in the mother’s pelvis so her baby can more easily assume an ideal position for birth. This creates an easier birth process for both mom and baby
Mark, her baby, was two weeks early, so when I got the call that Sylvia was in labor I was surprised. It was 6:30 in the evening and Sylvia had been in labor most of the day. She had been at the hospital with her husband, Sean, since 11:45 that morning. Both had agreed to have the baby in the hospital while in a tub. I arrived at the hospital about 8:30 and Sylvia’s doula was already there providing support during the contractions. Sylvia was sitting on a therapy ball, glowing, and ready for the birth.
Since I have worked with Sylvia prior to birth it was easy to connect with the family when I arrived. I checked Sylvia and the baby’s craniosacral rhythm and found them beautifully in sync, so much so it brought a tear to my eye. I could feel that the baby was ready and that his body would know what to do naturally when the time came. I could feel the love Sylvia and Sean had for their unborn son. I knew baby Mark would come into the world feeling love and support.
Sylvia continued to labor through the night, both in and out of the tub. Sean provided support with each contraction, acting as her cheerleader and giving her the confidence she needed. Their doula rubbed pressure points and used essential oils on her stomach to help the uterus relax and open.
Between contractions I would do simple craniosacral work on Sylvia’s head. Sylvia had not slept in a few days and had not eaten since breakfast. The simple treatments on her head helped restart the nervous system and prepare her for her next contraction. Simple releases on her sphenoid bone allowed her pelvis to prepare to open. In addition, the doula and I created a presence of calm, love, and support and everyone in the room could feel it.
Sylvia was also amazing and had prepared for this birth doing yoga and taking hypnobirthing classes. She created a playlist of music that was happy and about love. She was ready to take on the process of labor and was confident her body would know what to do. About 2:30 am, little Mark was born. Parents were ecstatic and the baby was happy and healthy.
Post labor the doula commented that births are never “this easy, especially a first”. As I drove home I was thinking how there is no way to know if the craniosacral therapy sessions during pregnancy and while during laboring helped make Sylvia’s birth “easy” because there is no comparative. I just have to go off what I felt and witnessed, what I know, and what I believe about craniosacral therapy and pregnancy. I felt love. I felt peace. I felt a baby who was ready to be in this world. I witnessed a beautiful birth. I witnessed a calm mother and father. I know craniosacral therapy calms the nervous system. I know it can help prepare the body before and during labor. I believe it helps mother and baby connect before birth. I believe it helps families connect and come together. So was it the craniosacral the helped? Who knows but as one of my favorite teachers said, “ A happy birth makes a happy earth.” My goal, make a more happy earth, one birth at a time.
Note: Names in the story have been changed.