"Trust upholds the field of birth and invites the help of our highest guidance."
Sacred Birthing Insight

Birthing Sisters: Our Community Doula Monthly Gathering

The Sacred Birthing Community Doulas meet monthly as a way to support each other in our work and continue to learn and grow. We met last night and shared several birth stories. I see very clearly how our presence is making a difference, not only on Kauai, but anywhere we go.

Eight of the women from the first doula class were there along with our teacher, Barbara Essman, and one woman from the second class. It was a reunion of sorts as some of us hadn’t seen each other in several months. Because the course is so intimate and so much is explored, we really got to know each other and care about each other. What a great way to build community!

One of us is pregnant, due in a few weeks, and we’ve witnessed her blossoming into a beautiful, confident mom-to-be. Her blessingway was an outpouring of love and support. She recently assisted at a birth and watched with wide-eyed wonder at the baby’s head emerging from mom’s yoni realizing that soon that would be her. Great preparation for her upcoming birth.

We heard about two hospital births where doulas were welcomed, moms were fully supported in their wishes and the birth experiences were very positive. Happy moms, happy bright-eyed babies. Good news!

We talked about baby whispering and how responsive babies are to our communication with them. Telling the baby what’s going on at all stages of the birth and postpartum is really helpful and brings peace.

We heard about placenta previa and placenta abruptia – how to recognize them and their repercussions.

One doula, while visiting a pregnant friend who lives in a rural area on the mainland told of a community where several miscarriages have taken place recently and the concern on the part of women who live there. This real-life example got us talking about the environment and possible reasons why this might happen.

One mom was having problems breast feeding due to inverted nipples so this sparked a discussion of methods used to support lactation from nipple shields to breast pumps to formula feeding combined with nursing.

Barbara reminded us that it’s a privilege to be at a birth. It involves a lot of trust on the part of the family to allow us into their homes and their lives. What we’re doing as community doulas is a spiritual practice. We must let go of any attachment to outcomes. We bring an energetic infusion that will be there after we leave so we must take great care in preparing ourselves before we enter.

The next doula training program begins on January 8. Please see the calendar for a course description and details. I look forward to our next community doula gathering. Will you be there?

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What Is Healing? A Treatise

In my nearly 40 years of studying mind/body/emotional and Spiritual healing and the interrelationship of the parts to the whole, the simplest answer that has come to me is: Healing Is Remembering Who We Are.¹  This thought first came to me in 1971, after my first dip into the realm sometimes referred to as the Dark Night of the Soul.  I was lost and afraid; my body, mind and emotions were behaving in unfamiliar ways: all systems clutching and chaotic.  I was staying in a safe house with people I had family ties with but only knew briefly.  They opened their hearts and home to me in this difficult time.  The youngest of the family, 5 year old Kennon, slipped a piece of paper under my closed door the first day I arrived.  On that paper was written, “Remember Who You Are”.  I carried that paper with me for many years.  Needless to say, this time placed me on a path I never would have found if I had not been in this mysterious, frightening, and very uncomfortable state.

37 years later, there’s a lot more to the story through which I have gathered quite a few more pieces to the puzzle.  The story is only important as would be the chapters of a book in which pertinent knowledge is may be gleaned, integrated, put to use and finally transmuted into wisdom.  I began with the study of Nutrition: “What you eat can affect you thoughts”² Sounded good to me.  Ultimately this brought me to realizations around eating garden or nature fresh organic whole foods that fits each person’s unique constitution, as well as the influences of where they live, their stage of life and lifestyle.  (Ayurveda: The Science of Life).

Diet alone clearly was not enough however.  Thought forms, belief systems, fears, life traumas, karmic and/or ancestral imprints, soul design or purpose; the sense of disconnect from Nature, Source and Self; all these and more play major parts in our state of being.  To me this is the adventure of Life; to be open to explore the unknown or forgotten wisdom of being Spiritual beings in human form.  This “Remember Who We Are” has turned much more into “Re-Member Who We Are” for as the adventure unfolds, we discover we are carrying within us huge amounts of collected illusion, that which is not the truth of our essential selves.  This collection of accumulated dross adds weight, density and distortion to our other wise pristine nature.  If we could look at our lives through the lens of our soul, we might see an amazing tapestry spanning millennia portraying all the experiences through time that has brought us here with all the baggage we have gathered. We identify with the energetic, physiological, psychological and emotional responses to all this, which is why we become unconscious and numb to recognizing the subtle and not-so subtle communications that our being sends through our bodies, minds, and emotions in an attempt to bring our attention to not only the imbalances forming in us but to the wisdom that is wanting to come to the surface and be integrated through the release of those imbalances.  This unconsciousness is what is sometimes referred to as being asleep and what disables us from our capacity to see ourselves for who we really are.  It is what creates our suffering while at the same time, creating the challenge, the clues and the opportunities to stop looking outside ourselves and turn within for the answers to our life problems and the question “Who Am I?” The journey back to remembrance begins with opening and this opening often comes on the heels of deep illness or other types of suffering creating enough of an inner force that it catalyzes an openness otherwise not awakened.  Once there is openness, the task is to allow for expansion rather than contraction and go into that vast inner frontier to find that which is not us, learn from this and then release it and watch the pieces of our wholeness re-member or reconnect and come into the light.  It is then that we get to see that through all time, not only have we been gathering encumbrances, but wisdom too has been gathered and as we release, we get to harvest that wisdom. Finally, joy of joys, we get to share that wisdom.

Some scientific and spiritual teachings tell us that our bodies were never meant to have disease or age and that death is something outside of Creation’s design.  Mostly we don’t believe in such “nonsense”.  Where’s the evidence to substantiate such a statement?  I don’t claim to have the answer to this but what I have seen over and over and over again within myself as well as in others, is people’s innate capacity to revitalize, regenerate, re-awaken and even re-create their bodies, minds, emotions and spirit as they use their courage to take full co-creative responsibility for their health and well-being on all levels within which we have existence.  Imagine what life might be like if we were to completely clear all that isn’t who we are! Our bodies wouldn’t grow tired and weak or sick from the exhaustion of carrying energetic distortions out of harmony to our essential being.  This is what finally brought me to transformational clearing work; first for my personal healing and then as my life service.  There is no more joyful experience than to witness a person come back into alignment with their True Self with all the fringe benefits that go along with that: joy, clarity, vitality, divine capabilities, health, purpose and a deep sense of union with something so vast, unlimited and loving, our minds have a hard time believing in the possibilities.  It is within our hearts, the seat of the soul, that we find that which propels us toward self-realization or wholeness.  As we turn within and begin to trust the inner voice of heart and soul, we move beyond disbelief and fear into trust and openness and that is when life shows itself to be the greatest gift of all.

37 years ago, I had no reference points with which to understand what was going on within me, but my eyes had begun to open.  Over the next 30 years, I gathered pieces to the puzzle.  Then, nearly 7 years ago a degenerative condition came upon me.  I know now that this condition was my opportunity to put into personal practice all that I had gathered prior to this time in the way of mind/body/spirit tools in order to heal myself.  I had to put myself as top priority in all things, and this was new to me.  I had to trust myself and Creator deeper and more tenaciously than ever before.  Where I have moved from and what I have learned and continue to learn has come from within myself, from indigenous cultures, the courageous people I have worked with and unique teachers and healers from antiquity and within the world today that have constellated my path.  I have reached and found help within various outer modalities as well as those within.  I am grateful for every step.  My intention; and gratefully I am far from alone in this, is that we can now be those role models offering the love and support that each of us need to make the journey to remembrance and wholeness.  As the current saying so aptly implies, “We Are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For”.

¹ Healing is Remembering Who You Are, a book by Marilyn Gordon, founding director of the Center for Hypnotherapy Certification in Oakland CA.

Ronda was an instructor at this school for 7 years; offering the class “Accessing Your Inner Healer”.

² Eat Right to Stay Fit; a book by Adele Davis

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