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Teacher

Marjorie Lumet
Aileen Kennedy

Date

14th of May

Price

550 euro

Venue

Centrum voor Mindfulness
Raadhuisstraat 15
1016 DB Amsterdam

Requirements

This course caters to the expectant couple and supports the pregnant woman as well as her partner.

 

 

More information

For more information please use our contact form.

All dates Enroll

May 2018

Monday evenings from 18h15 to 21h
Start 14th May
Dates: 14, 22 (Tuesday instead of Monday), 28 May, 4, 11, 18, 25 June, 2 July
Stillness day : Sunday 24th of June from 10:00 - 16:30 hrs.
Plus one after birth reunion – date to be determined with participants.
Language: English (de trainers spreken ook Nederlands, dus ook met een basaal begrip van het Engels kun je deze training volgen)

 
September - October 2018

Monday mornings from 10:00 - 12:45
Start 10th of September
Dates: 10, 17, 24 Sep, 1, 8, 15, 22, 29 October
Plus one after birth reunion – date to be determined with participants.
Language: English (de trainers spreken ook Nederlands, dus ook met een basaal begrip van het Engels kun je deze training volgen)

October - December 2018

Monday evenings from 18h15 to 21h
Start 29th of October
Dates: 29 October, 5, 12, 19, 26 November, 3, 10, 17 December
Stillness day : Sunday 8th of December from 10:00 - 16:30 hrs.
Plus one after birth reunion – date to be determined with participants.
Language: English (de trainers spreken ook Nederlands, dus ook met een basaal begrip van het Engels kun je deze training volgen)

 
 
 

Contents

The Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting Course brings together the best of childbirth education and mindfulness skills to support expectant parents towards greater well-being, balance and wisdom as they go through one of the most transformative experiences of a lifetime : becoming a parent. The class prepares parents for the big event that giving birth is and includes all the usual components of a childbirth education class such as the physiology of labor, positions for birthing, and breastfeeding. However, the course goes well-beyond a traditional childbirth class as it equips couples with life-long mindfulness skills providing a healthy foundation for coping with the stresses and challenges of parenting, family life, and indeed, life itself. One learns the full spectrum of practices that are taught in a traditional 8-week mindfulness course as well as mindfulness practices tailored to childbirth to support partner communication and working skillfully with discomfort and pain during birth.

Even if it’s not your first child, you will learn things that can change your whole birthing experience, and also for parenthood beyond birth and life in general.–Elke


My partner learnt tools to support me during labour that we were able to apply in an effective way during the birth.– Disa

Background

The mindfulness-based childbirth and parenting training (MBCP) was founded in 1988 by Nancy Bardacke, certified nurse-midwife and mindfulness teacher. The program is an adaptation the ‘regular’ mindfulnesstraining (MBSR) created by Jon Kabat-Zinn. Nancy has woven her 45 years of experience of paying attention to the birth process and needs of expecting parents into creating and adapting the MBCP course.


What I really like about this mindfulness course is that it helps you accept things as they are. This was very helpful for me during labor. – Marlene

Program

Course outline

The MBCP course includes 8 weekly classes of 2h45 hours, an additional stillness day and a post-birth reunion. Classes include the physiology of childbirth, mind-body awareness practices, hand-on practices to work with pain during labor, positions for birthing, breastfeeding and parenting a newborn. Participants learn mindfulness meditation as a self-regulation approach to the physical and emotional challenges of pregnancy, birth and parenting.

In this class you will:
• Access deep physical and mental relaxation
• Learn to engage the mind to work with pain during labor
• Increase confidence and courage for the experience of labor and delivery
• Practice prenatal yoga for strength and flexibility
• Develop skills for managing stress in pregnancy, parenting and daily life
• Enhance partner communication skills
• Become more aware of our own approach to parenting

Course materials include a workbook and guided audio practices. Home practice is an essential ingredient to the success of this approach (30 minutes a day is recommended). Being more aware of and in tune with your body and more connected to the amazing physiological experience of pregnancy.

What you will learn

• Letting go of unhelpful and fearful beliefs or expectations around the birth experience and replacing these with trust and confidence.
• Embracing and surrendering to the sensations of labour rather than resisting these which generally allows for a quicker, more effective labour and overall more positive birth experience.
• Partners can use their mindfulness skills to support the birthing mother to remain centered and present throughout and especially in the more challenging moments of labour!
• Be flexible when things don’t go according to plan. As much as we prepare for the birth, the whole process is a leap into the unknown. Mindfulness supports us to be comfortable with not knowing, let go of our expectations and be more open and accepting with the outcome of the birth.
• Being a more confident and much less stressed new parent. Postnatal life is intense: the constant responsibility can all be very overwhelming. Mindfulness supports you to remain present, loving and calm – the best gift you can give your child.

Results

Participants to the MBCP report that learning mindfulness brings benefits greater than they could have imagined during and far beyond the birth process. Mindfulness practice continues to serve in the immediate, intense, joyful and sometimes stressful weeks and months of learning to care for a new baby. Many report that the mindfulness practice has indeed been a source of strength, growth and pleasure in the early years of becoming a family.

Being new to mindfulness I was afraid it would be a bit airy-fairy or wishy-washy for me, but I found Marjorie to be knowledgeable, engaging, but also realistic and down-to-earth. –a participant

For whom

This course caters to the expectant couple and supports the pregnant woman as well as her partner. The program is open to first-time parents as well as to those who already have children. We welcome people from all backgrounds and sexual orientation. Single parents are welcome to the course and we would like to support them the best we can. We would recommend then choosing a birthing partner, be it a doula, midwife, mother or friend to attend this course with you.



When to start

Most people take the course toward the end of their pregnancy. However, some people may want to start their meditation practice much earlier. These include people who simply seek the benefits of a meditation practice throughout their pregnancy, or who have a meditation practice and find it easier to maintain it in a group context, or who have lot of fear around childbirth, or who are experiencing a pregnancy complicated by other health factors, or are challenged by other stresses in their lives at home or at work. As many studies show, stress can be a contributing factor in a number of difficult pregnancy conditions, such as preterm labor or low birth weight. Those who want to begin mindfulness practice earlier are welcome to start the course at any point in their pregnancy.
More questions? Go to the Frequently Asked Questions

Meet the teachers

  • Marjorie Lumet
    Marjorie Lumet

    Mindfulness Teacher

    Marjorie Lumet

    Inviting mindfulness into my life has had such a positive and profound impact on me. My own practice allows me to be calmer, more centered and connected to myself, others and the world around me. Over time, mindfulness has helped me free myself from some unhelpful behavioural patterns that I had developed over the years, gain perspective on what really matters and find the courage and confidence to make this a priority.

    My professional background is in the corporate world where I worked for 15 years as a senior communications professional for a large number of global brands. I am now dedicating my time to provide English language mindfulness trainings to groups and individuals as well as being a mother.

    I also offer mindfulness trainings for expecting mothers and their partners as I believe this is a special time to get acquainted with mindfulness that can have a very positive influence on pregnancy and beyond.

    I feel very privileged to share this beautiful practice with others and continue to be amazed by its power to get us in touch with what is best in us. I believe that mindfulness is exactly what our fast-paced, often stressed-out, modern world needs more of.

  • Aileen Kennedy
    Aileen Kennedy

    Mindfulnessteacher and psychologist

    Aileen Kennedy

    During my first pregnancy I became a Mindfulness Trainer. After the birth of my first daughter I came in touch with Mindfulness Based Childbirth and Parenting Program (MBCP). MBCP made so much sense to me I instantly fell in love with it. I have further trained myself in understanding better labor pain the birth process. I have a Masters degree in Psychology and have worked as a ‘GZ-Psychologist’ for over 6 years, in the same setting I also taught MBSR.

    I have been interested in pregnancy, birth, eastern philosophy and meditation from a young age, in MBCP it all comes together. I found much wisdom in books and as I started to practice I found some peace in those moments and the seed was planted for this way of cultivating awareness. For over a decade I have practiced yoga.

    It was after my first daughter’s birth that I realized that the transition into parenthood was a time where many need support. I also learned during birth that a trained mind (in mindfulness, being with what is moment by moment) really had a positive impact on my birth experience and coping with pain. Having a positive birth experience, I experienced is empowering, the effects last for a long time. I felt a strong urge to want to share how mindfulness can impact the birth experience with other women.

    I grew up in the Alps and have been living in Amsterdam since the end of elementary school. This base not only gave me a great appreciation for nature but also for languages and a broader sense of cultural understanding. I’m in my mid 30’s, I have two daughters and live with my partner in Amstelveen. I’m passionate about delicious food, yoga and travelling.

Frequently asked questions Naar alle veelgestelde vragen

  • In addition to teaching mindfulness practice, what topics are covered for childbirth education?

    The topics are the same as those usually covered in childbirth preparation classes, such as the physiology of labor, yoga, positions for birthing, and breastfeeding. We also spend considerable time learning to engage the mind to work with pain, so that participants are prepared to use all their inner resources in labor, regardless of how their particular birth experience unfolds.

  • How much meditation do we do?

    We learn a number of meditation practices, including yoga, and practice them at each class meeting. This childbirth preparation course is unique in that people who choose to enroll make a commitment to practice at home with meditation CDs. The true learning comes through one’s own experiences with the meditation practices. Taking this course is challenging–but not as challenging as birthing and raising a child! Learning to rise to challenges is good preparation for birthing and parenting.

  • Does my partner learn the meditation practices too?

    Yes. Partners are invited to learn the practice of mindfulness too. Partners are going through their own stresses in the process of becoming a parent and the practice of mindfulness can be of great benefit for them. Partners learn ways to be supportive of the mothers during labor and also discover how living in the present moment can help them in many aspects of work and family life. Many partners say that though their original purpose in taking the course was to learn how to support their partner, they also learned something extremely valuable for themselves. Often they are surprised and delighted to find themselves quite calm during labor and feel deeply satisfied that they were able to be truly helpful and present at their baby’s’ birth.

  • What if my partner or I have to miss a class?

    Occasionally someone has to miss a class because of travel, illness or unexpected circumstances. As long as participants continue to practice at home, learning whatever the rest of the class is learning that week, there is no problem. We often talk by phone with people who miss a class so we can discuss how their practice is going and review what was covered in the class they missed. I have to miss the all-day session. Should I not take the course? Even if you are unable to come to the all-day session, or can only come for half of the day, we would still encourage you to take the course. The all-day session is a wonderful opportunity to deepen your mindfulness practice but even if you can’t come you can still get much benefit from coming to the weekly classes.

  • Can I come to the course by myself?

    Absolutely. Pregnant women are very welcome to take the course on their own; those who do have done so have found it very helpful. If you have a partner and they are unable to attend the full course, I encourage them to attend the Introductory Session if possible. This session provides some understanding of what we will be learning and what you will be practicing at home. You can also come with a friend or family member. Mindfulness can be of benefit to everyone. As long as the friend or family member wants to participate fully in the course and will practice at home with the CDs, they are most welcome. Pregnant women have attended the course with a doula, a sister or a close friend.

  • Is this class mainly for people who want a “natural” childbirth?

    No. This is a course for people interested in learning mindfulness for childbirth and parenting. Mindfulness offers benefits to everyone, regardless of one’s intentions regarding pain medication during childbirth. The truth is, no one can know ahead of time how the childbirth experience will unfold. It may very well be that using pain medication is a totally appropriate choice for a particular individual in a particular situation at a particular time. There is no one “right” way to birth a baby. Each of us must find our own way to birth, in the moment, according to the situation as it is. However, course participants often say that they experience a tremendous increase in confidence in their capacity to give birth. This confidence deeply impacts their choices around the use of pain medication.

  • I plan on birthing in a hospital. Is this the class for me?

    People who take this course choose a variety of birth settings—hospitals, homes and birth centers. Although where you choose to have your baby is very important, knowing how to access deep inner resources to work with the experience of childbirth moment-by-moment is a skill that can truly bring great benefit, regardless of where you are choosing to birth.

  • Because of my situation I know I am going to have a Cesarean birth. Would this class still be appropriate for me?

    Yes. A Cesarean birth is your experience of giving birth to your baby. It is an experience that you can be very much present for, fully welcoming your baby into this world. It is not unusual for women to have some post surgical pain after a Cesarean birth. The mindfulness practices can be very helpful for working with the pain, for enhancing your healing process postpartum, for breastfeeding and for the challenges of parenting.

  • How is this course different from Hypnobirthing and other mind-body approaches?

    There are many ways to use the mind in childbirth, and hypnosis is certainly one of them. Throughout the 1980’s, Nancy taught couples self-hypnosis for working with the pain of childbirth and knows it has a certain effectiveness. Although the practices we learn in the Mindfulness-Based Childbirth and Parenting course definitely teach us how to work with pain during birth, we can learn so much more. Mindfulness is about learning how to live fully in each moment. Through mindfulness we wake up to our lives as we live them, becoming more aware of our automatic reactions to life around us. We learn how we might make different choices, responding to the moments of our lives with greater clarity, kindness, patience and wisdom rather than automatically reacting to how things are. This is a life skill, one that we can call on not only for birth but as we parent. So much of parenting requires us to work with our children in the present moment, just as they are. The course prepares us for parenting and for living the birthing experience and life right now in all its fullness. As Nancy often says, “When your two year old is having a melt-down in the supermarket because you won’t buy him/her the candy bar at the check-out stand, you don’t need hypnosis, you need mindfulness!”

  • I took a childbirth class for my first birth experience and the birth was fine. Won’t this course just be a repeat of things I already know?

    Unless you already have a mindfulness practice, this course will not be a repeat of what you already learned. Rather, you probably will learn something quite new and helpful in the challenges of parenting two children. For those who already have a mindfulness practice, it is an opportunity to deepen an understanding of living with awareness and discover how to bring mindfulness practice to pregnancy and childbirth. Another benefit for those who have previously given birth is that the course provides a way for a couple to spend time together as a couple learning something new, and focusing on the birth of their next child. Often we are so busy with our lives, taking care of our other child or children that we barely have time to focus on the miracle of the new child that is about to enter our family. Having a once a week “date” is often just what a couple needs to prepare for their expanding family. Another unexpected benefit commonly reported by couples who have other children is that the mindfulness practice greatly improves their relationship with each other and with their other child or children.

  • I had a very difficult birth experience with my first baby. I am looking for something that will help me have a different kind of experience with my next baby. Do you think the course will help me?

    Those who have taken the class for a second (or third) birth experience have reported very positive results. By learning how to be in the present moment as it is happening, it becomes increasingly clear that the previous birth experience is simply a memory. Through practice, we are able to recognize memories as they arise, and come back to this moment, to this birth experience, right now. In fact, every moment is new; every experience is different. It is impossible to have a repeat of a previous birth experience. While we may understand this intellectually, it is only through practice that we can understand it experientially. The course can help us to be fully present for a totally new birth experience—and a totally new baby!

  • Why do you have a class after the birth?

    The class after the birth is a time to meet each other again, to meet the new babies, and to share birth experiences. The after-birth or reunion class also gives participants an opportunity to reflect on what their birth experience taught them and how they are continuing to use their mindfulness practice to meet the joys and challenges of parenting their newborn. In addition, people often feel quite connected and caring about one another as a result of sharing time and learning and practicing mindfulness together. They have formed friendships that last well beyond the childbirth course. Some mothers have formed new mother’s groups from the women they met in the course. Others have continued to meet as a parent group, providing support, friendship and community as they move through their parenting journey together.