Words from Earth Mother
“Birth was never meant to be in pain. To give birth was a gift of love. So much has been forgotten because feminine wisdom was destroyed each time it grew to be threatening. Fear grew where wisdom abated. It was in this frame of mind that you were told, ‘birth is painful, for you have sinned.’
Can you let this go now? Can you see the context of that era and know that it is complete? Can you recreate another powerful statement to affirm the birth of your babies as the highest gift there is? Let them be brought forth in the joy and ecstasy of your fullness: ‘In joy all babies are born and in that joy we live.’ I am your Mother Earth. Hear Me.”
Excerpted from Sacred Birthing: Birthing A New Humanity by Sunni Karll page 136
Thirty one and twenty seven years ago, I gave birth to my 2 daughters in pain-free ecstasy. I had no idea then that what I had experienced was out of the norm for women of my culture. I only found that out after I began teaching HypnoBirthing Childbirth Education Classes years later. The birth research path this took me on revealed all too well how disconnected to themselves, nature and birth my sisters have become. For the past 10 years, I have taught childbirth preparation classes, first HypnoBirthing and now Sacred Birthing classes. In this time, I have seen the reversal of the belief that birth equals trauma and pain. Over and over, parents or individual women have reclaimed their innate birthright to birth with ease and empowerment. Many films now testify of this new trend as we watch couples and women, surrounded by other wise, loving, and supportive women, family and friends, give birth in the quiet of their own homes, in birthing centers and in hospitals. These births show the beauty and power and sanctity of birth as it always was before fear entered the birth arena hundreds of years ago.
A key element of a sacred birth without trauma and with greater ease is a woman or couple taking conscious responsibility for their birth experience. What does that mean? Ideally that means a couple go into conception, pregnancy and birth prepared for the transformation that childbirth is for all involved. The couple clear themselves energetically of fear, cultural misconceptions, personal traumas and negative imprinting that may have been held in mind or body. This allows the energy within them to flow clearly and at a vibrational level aligned with that of the soul wishing to incarnate into this life. The process of clearing the past is a huge gift to both baby and birthing mother because negativity held in the body is a fear resonance that constricts muscles and the flow of energy, blood and oxygen in the body which can all contribute to the creation complications and pain during the birth process.
Going into conception, pregnancy and birth being aware and practiced in healthful eating, physical fitness, meditation and other relaxation and self-realization aspects of life are also indicators of taking responsibility for conscious living and play their parts in creating an attuned, gentle birth.
Couples taking responsibility for their birth experience will also explore their birth choices around what practitioner, midwife, support persons and childbirth preparation classes best support their birthing vision. They will also explore where they will feel most comfortable giving birth: home, birth center or hospital. These steps take one to clarity, empowerment, confidence, and trust. Trust and love are the vibrations within the birth field of energy that engenders a truly natural and gentle birth experience.
The re-emergence of the role of Doula is a wonderful sign that our remembrance of birth is on the rise. A Doula is a trained birth assistant who reminds us of the community or village wise woman. Her place in birth is as mother/family focused pregnancy support, birth support and postpartum support. Doulas are there when questions arise about or during the birth process They are there when mothers or partners get anxious, or when something needs to be communicated to hospital, midwife or birth center staff, allowing the birthing mother to stay in her birth bubble undisturbed They can organize the family and friends of the birthing couple to have meals brought to the family, or errands run, or laundry cleaned after birth. Statistics show that the presence of a doula greatly reduces the rates of interventions and cesarean births. When a woman feels that level of personal support, her sense of empowerment rises greatly
Long, long ago, during the times when fear entered the birth chambers, midwifery was abolished. During the European inquisition, it became illegal for women to be attended in birth. Those, whose lives were centered on this ancient art, were either killed or went into hiding or disclaimed their professions. There is much to this story, but suffice it to say, it is still very difficult in most parts of this country, to be a midwife. There are more and more women stepping up to do this work, but with no support from community or state, it is still the rarity for women to have true information on the benefits of such support, and it is difficult for these services to be affordable for many families.
Looking to the midwifery model of childbirth is key to remembering and creating conscious, gentle birth. The rapport that comes from the deep relationship of family and birth care-provider makes a huge difference in a woman’s capacity to trust herself and birthing. Studying the difference between the medical model and the midwifery model, including the statistics, is an eye-opening way of preparing and empowering oneself in making the decisions that support the vision of the beauty of natural birth. This is not to negate the place of Doctors, medicine or hospitals in childbirth. They are important and have their place in the whole scheme of birth. There is simply work needing to be done to bring balance, truth, ease, empowerment, nature, ecstasy and sanctity back to birth in all arenas.
I have seen how the remembrance of birthing wisdom in a community can change the consciousness around birth all the way to the highly technical halls of modern hospitals. As women and families empower themselves to learn about birth, clear the misconceptions and fears around birth within themselves and their world and then insist on a different, more conscious and gentle way, the institutions shift as well. Sometimes that shift comes from the economics of watching women stay at home or go elsewhere to birth. In other instances, the shift comes when care providers witness empowered women or couples give birth gently and naturally. In many countries in the world, such as the Netherlands, Sweden and Norway, the great majority of births are accompanied by a midwife and happen in the comfort, safety and sanctity of the home, and this way is entirely supported by their political and economic structures. I very much look forward to the day when we can say the same about our United States. Again, this is up to individuals to step up and take responsibility for changing the face of birth.
There are many wonderful ways to create the inner and outer ambiance that allow for gentle birth. When we trust in our bodies and own inner wisdom, we find the birthing way that is true for us. It is important to allow for the individual qualities of each birth. This means to allow each birth to unfold in its own timing and form and allowing baby to lead the way in this regard. Birth has never been and never will be standardized. There are so many aspects of being that are unfolding in every birthing. To alter, add or subtract anything from the natural flow of each birth is to bring an intervention that can cause complications. Frequently the alterations come from a place of believing that we know better than Nature and Spirit how birth should unfold.
When birth happens with some or all of the pieces above mentioned in place, a woman can more easily let go to her birthing body. She may experience pain and she may not. In either case, she has within her the power to meet what comes and in so doing, finds new and expanded aspects of herself born with her baby. We are on the bridge of reclaiming birth. It is a powerful and vital place we stand. But every woman’s body knows how to birth as has every woman before her throughout time. Just like the other creatures of nature that birth without trauma, surrendered to the powerful life force pulsing through them, women everywhere have this innate ability.
Those who have looked deeply into the modernization of birth and the fear and expectations of pain around birth that has become prevalent in our society, can see how we create complications. The babies being birthed and hurt through these practices are teaching us not that we as women are innately flawed, but that we have forgotten our innate wholeness and connection to our bodies. These babies are pointing the way home to remembrance.