Today was a rather long day. I drove back from Fl as the only adult with my 2 kids. They are great kids and usually I have things planned out to include a stop or two and car activities/ toys. Today however, the universe had different plans than mine. We left late (so no time to stop and play along the way), the movie that I downloaded didn’t work and so of course, they went through their toys in the first hour. Ugh!

I did figure out plan B though: a book on tape. I have a (free) app with a bunch of classic book on tape so as I scrolled through the most popular ones, I saw The Wizard of Oz. I love this movie! I have never read the book and I thought the kids might actually enjoy it so win, win, win! It was quite long and as I listened, it dawned on me that it is all about the power of our own minds. The actual book is a good bit different than the movie. Some were some minor changes like Dorothy had silver slippers and not ruby (gasp!). Then others that were not so minor. For example, in the book, Glenda the good witch does not come to Oz to tell Dorothy she can go home but instead, the 4 (Dorothy, Scarecrow, the Tin Man and the Lion) travel through 3 different “lands” to get to the land of Glenda, but I digress.

When the 4 get to Oz the second time, after the wicked witch of the west is dead, they went see the great wizard of Oz for him to fulfill his promise. They find out however, that he is just a scared little man from Omaha that is just hiding behind a screen. Not being one to want to break his promises, he tells them all to come back tomorrow and he will give them what they each asked for: the scarecrow a brain, the tin man a heart and the lion courage and to get Dorothy home. The scarecrow is the first to come back to get his brain and we find out that his brain is nothing more than oats mixed with pins and needles (so he would be sharp). After getting his “brain”, he immediately feels so much smarter when in reality, the only thing that changed was his perception.

The Tin man goes next to get his heart and the same thing happens. The Wizard of Oz said he had to cut a small hole in the tin mans chest but it couldn’t be helped. The only thing the wizard put in there was a stuffed heart but the tin man immediately felt more compassion and love. The cowardly lion was last and the wizard gave him a green potion to drink saying it’s nothing now but once it’s inside, it will be courage because courage is only on the inside. The lion gulped it down as quick as he could and once more, immediately felt more courageous.

In all 3 of these cases, the only thing that changed was that ‘persons’ perception of themselves. In medical terms this is called the placebo effect. For me, I call it the power of our own minds. We all have within ourselves to be our own Wizard of Oz and yet so often, we keep looking for external validation. How many times have you asked your friend if you look ok? After they say,”you look awesome”, your confidence soars! Or have you ever known that you were doing the right thing but then stopped because a family member didn’t approve?

So what does this all have to do with birth? Well… everything! No matter how you are planning on birthing you child, you need to feel that it is the right path for you regardless of how other think or feel. Your mind is a powerful tool so why not use it to your advantage. Just remember, weather you think you can or you think you can’t, you are always right!