Why does a birth unfold the way it does? Why are some birth easy, flowing to a climax with the baby sliding into mom’s waiting arms and others filled with fear, unexpected detours, trauma for mom and baby, separations and seemingly endless hours, days, weeks, months or even years of trying to figure out what went wrong. When we see all births as sacred there may be an easier way through these questions to a place of peace no matter how the birth unfolded. There is no wrong way, only the path to the unfolding of a new life.
We all, the women of this earth, come to birthing with an inner knowing that will lead to birthing the future. However, along the way, maybe even generations back this inner knowing was blocked, pushed underneath consciousness, or momentarily forgotten. As we are waking up and remembering the ways of our ancestors we may feel cheated, wronged, guilty, sad or darn right angry about the way a birth unfolds. And yet in this unfolding are rich and very powerful lessons that the birth has brought. Can you find the teachings in the planned homebirth that ended up in the hospital with a cesarean birth? Or the baby that came early and had to spend the first week or more of her life in the newborn nursery? And, what about the baby that was “too big” to fit through mom’s body, or the baby that did not arrive on time – two weeks late and was then coaxed out with synthetic drugs, or the baby that died during the journey or shortly after – are these not as sacred as the baby who arrives on time, was the correct weight – not too big not too small – without the use of drugs, and is thriving in your arms?
What is the birth story telling us? I could stay stuck in the trauma of an unwished for birth outcome or I can accept the sacredness of birth, all birth, and love who I am as the person who gave birth to the future. I can let go of the ideal and fall in love with the person I am and the baby I created and gave birth to. I can go deep to my core essence and discover that the birth I had with this baby was perfect and unique and brought us both, me and baby to a place of understanding who we are and the power and beauty that always surrounds the birth time.
Telling your baby his story in all its glory, which includes the fear and trauma, will easily bring baby to a place of acceptance and understanding that she is pure light and nothing less. This pure light came from you, the mother giving birth, and is thus a reflection of who you are. See the birth as a time to undo the past and believing that birth is anything but sacred and perfect, and move once again into the place of inner knowing, the mother wisdom that so perfectly orchestras each and every birth. Let go of the fear, the doubt, the guilt, the blame, and see yourself as the pure love and light that radiates from your baby.
Trying to figure out why is exhausting and will only diminish your love and light. Knowing that all birth is sacred and unfolds in its own time in its own perfection will allow you to accept your own love, the love you have for your baby, and the birth that was. Become a willing participant in this life knowing that you have all you need to create birth and love the child that is put into your arms. When all birth is seen as sacred the birth process is secondary – this is your story, your truth for this birth and will lead you to even more truth as you maybe prepare for the birth of another child and this birth to, will unfold in unique perfection.
As I write these words I am filled with wonder as I discover that my birth was sacred. The moment that I arrived in this world was a sacred moment. I have never though of my birth in this way, and this changes a lot for me. It does not matter that my mother was heavily drugged with ether which means that I also was unconscious when I arrived, this was a sacred birth. It doesn’t matter that I was pulled out with forceps and taken to a newborn nursery for ten days while my mother and I both recovered from this birth, this was a sacred birth. She was allowed to see me every 4 hours and I was briefly held then returned to the nursery. Did this cause harm to me? Probably, but at the time no one thought that the way a baby comes into the world really mattered. I was breathing and my physical needs were being met – I was being feed and kept in a clean diaper. My mother was being looked after and all was fine. I was harmed by this birth, but I was loved and both my mother and father, with the help of grandparents did the best they could to raise me to be a loving and kind person in this world. It may have been easier for me if I had been given my birth story right away instead of having to dig back on my own to finally find the details that then helped make sense out of my life. My life long message of “you are on your own kid” would not have been imprinted so deeply into my core and I could have moved forward faster and easier. None of this takes away from the truth of my birth – it was a sacred event, and finally knowing this eases the pain around the events of my birth. I, as all of us are, am a sacred child of the universe.
I can also look at the births of my own children as sacred moments. My first son was born with ease in a small rural hospital with little interference. I was moved from a labor room to a delivery room and in the process discovered the mother bear that resided in me. They tried to give me gas as they were wheeling me to the delivery room, but I hit the nurse who was putting the mask on my face and that was the end of the “let’s get her drugged and ready for birthing” phase of my first birth. My son was born and about 4 hours later I went home. This was a sacred birth.
The birth of my second son was different. He was born in a large metropolitan hospital and I was all alone. Husbands were not allowed in and mothers were isolated in small labor rooms then transported to a delivery room. I was given demoral during the labor then put under with gas as he was being born. He was pulled from me with forceps and taken to a nursery. I did not see him for hours and then only briefly. During the two days that I stayed in the hospital he was brought to me for feedings then taken away. A month after this birth it was discovered that he had a condition called pyloric stenosis and taken back to the hospital for surgery to open up the pyloric value into his stomach. Did this happen because of the birth? I don’t know. Did the problems that he had all through school stem from this birth experience? I don’t know. Did I harm my child? This is a difficult question for a mother to answer, but I do now know that this was a sacred birth. I did not intentionally harm him. I did not have enough information about giving birth at that time in my life, and trusted in the medical system that said they knew best. I do know that his birth was a sacred birth and that telling him his story has helped him to understand his life better and to find ways though and around the challenges he has had to face. I have suffered through pangs of guilt as I learn more and more about birth and then believe that I harmed my baby. I have let go of this guilt as it is a useless emotion. I did what I knew was the best for me and my baby at that time in my life. Today I know so much more and would not go back to that kind of a birthing situation. Did I harm my children – no I did not – their births were sacred and unfolded in perfection, and we have all found a place of unconditional love for each other because of the way the births unfolded.