Instructor Susan May, HCHI

About...me, my family, my babies, births and more!

I am a country girl at heart, born and raised on a farm turned golf course near Rochester, NY. I went to the University of Rochester where I played basketball, obtained my BA in Brain and Cognitive Science, and most importantly, met my husband. I have always been an information seeker (aka bookworm). Once I found out I was pregnant I began browsing the stacks of local libraries for all things pregnancy and birth related. Along the way I became convinced that I wanted to try for a natural birth. We prepared by taking a local Bradley childbirth class, hiring a doula, and switching to a midwifery practice in the last trimester of our pregnancy. I birthed my daughter completely naturally in a hospital and it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. Three years later I was once again pregnant and wanting to prepare myself again. We were living in DC with no family in the area. I didn't feel like we could take a class as a couple again with no reliable care for our daughter. I began searching online (remember? information seeker!) for home-study options and stumbled onto Hypnobabies. I bought the course, studied hard (remember? bookworm!), and listened to the hypnosis tracks faithfully.

While my daughter's birth was amazing, it was also long. We found out late in my birthing time (labor) that she was posterior. So as I prepared for our second child I really focused on one line in particular, "you deserve a fast, easy, comfortable birthing time." It made me laugh but I really did believe it,want it, and as I said, I focused on it. I also used the fear release hypnosis track to let go of the anxiety I was having about how my daughter would be cared for and how she would deal with my birthing time. I visualized my ideal birthing situation (when, how long, who would be there, when they would arrive, etc.). Amazingly, everything happened exactly as I imagined! I was sold. My son was born at a birth center less than one hour after we arrived there. Once again, my son's birth was one of the most amazing experiences of my life and now I was completely convinced about the power of the mind. I have been passionate about childbirth since my daughter was born in 2006. Many people are amazed when they learn that I had natural childbirths. While I certainly felt like superwoman after both births and they transformed my life in more ways than I can briefly describe here, I by no means believe that I am "special" or "different" in my ability to birth babies. I truly believe that the majority of women could have positive, empowering birth experiences given adequate information and support about their choices, during pregnancy and birth.

I am so excited to teach Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis classes. I've known for a while that I want to get more involved in the birth community. Hypnobabies and its philosophy resonates very deeply and truly with me which us why I chose to become a certified instructor.

Other tidbits about me and my family:
Before my children I was a High school science teacher. I've been "home" since my daughter was born, but for the first 3 years of her life I babysat/nannied other children too.
We are looking forward to homeschooling.
I'm so lucky to have a truly supportive and loving husband on this journey! He is an incredible teammate.
Other things you might be wondering:

What's with all the bubbles?

Good question! Well, as I thought and waited for inspiration to hit me for starting this venture I wanted create a logo. I knew I wanted the name Hypnobabies4Peace and the motto "Peaceful Births, Peaceful Parenting, Peaceful World". None of the images that I found seemed to fit perfectly and I also wanted to create something myself as much as possible. One night I was playing with a simple program called Bubble Art on my computer and made a few different pictures. I thought my daughter would like it, and sure enough when I showed her the next morning she played with it for hours. I played around with it until I came up with me "Bubble Earth" and the idea to make the name and slogan into a peace sign.

I was thinking later, "hmmm... what *do* bubbles have to do with birth or peace??" At first my mind wandered, well, "kids love bubbles" which is definitely true. "And bubbles are just fun! happy! light! I mean now that I think about it, it's not just kids, just about everyone loves bubbles." Then it hit me... you will learn in Hypnobabies how to make your own "Bubble of Peace". Wow. It all came together for me. And so that's why my website is full of bubbles. :-)

Do you really believe your motto? Can Hypnobabies actually have an impact on world peace?

Another excellent question! You are really on top of things :-) I will try to answer it the best way I can. I've already had several people close to me wonder out loud, "Hypnobabies4Peace? What does that mean?" or "so if I had been a 'Hypnobaby' I would be more peaceful?" I laughed with them because honestly I believe it is a good thing to keep a sense of humor and not take oneself too seriously. And it would be so nice if World Peace were so easy to attain, kind of like when people wonder, "Can't we all just get along??" But I do believe that there is a very real connection between birth, parenting, and peace in the world. During pregnancy and birth parents are making decisions that affect their children. Right now there are a lot of practices out there that are the "norm" but not necessarily best for mom or baby. Everyone knows that it is not always easy to make the right choice or the one that is different. How we treat our children is a very real and important way that we can begin to create more peace in our immediate world. This begins from the time our children are growing inside of their mothers. Even decisions that only seem to affect very few people can have ripple effects. It can be that simple. So yes, I do really believe in my motto. Thanks for asking :-)

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