"Weaving soul and body consciousness before birth supports internal allegiance for life."
Sacred Birthing Insight

Placenta Stories & Lotus Birth Tales: Aboriginal Wisdom

In Aboriginal wisdom, the placenta is always buried – given back to the Earth, to let Her know that a baby has been born and, by its blood, who this baby is. In the early years, all the mothers and grandmothers of the tribe guide the growing child. Then, when a child is an adolescent, the first blood or first seed is also given to the Earth, buried in a handkerchief. The child steps away from the guidance of the mothers, into the guidance of the Earth Mother, who now begins to oversee the child to become what his/her soul intended by incarnating. Life circumstances are created by the Earth to help this child become who s/he means to be.

Without burying the placenta, Earth Mother would not know a child had been born; She would not know to cherish the baby in the years after birth, and from adolescence, the child would flounder without Her guidance. How could a child ever become what her soul intended and grow to fulfill the need of the village and the universe without this guidance from Earth Mother? This is the importance of the placenta to the child’s whole life.

The Aboriginals see energy.  They paint with dots to express what is emanating from the world of nature, rather than to express its form. They see and know that the stars above and the Earth below work together to guide and guard each child. We of the white world have a rudimentary respect and understanding of astronomy, but their star-wisdom is embedded in them and they remember they come from the stars. They remember their purpose in coming to Earth was to hold 7th dimensional wisdom. They remember how to live together in society, honoring each one’s gifts and individuality;  how to heal; how to travel;  how to be self-sufficient so they don’t need to play the money game. We belittle them as being barbaric, yet they have abilities we have lost and need.

At all times they are in intimate communication with each other, the animal, plant and mineral kingdoms, the weather, the stars and the planets. They know how to access the answers they need and their requests are heard and fulfilled. Their dancing may look funny to us, but is purposeful:  it communicates with the Earth and nourishes Her with each rhythm. The dances result in altered states that maintain open-heartedness, their continual communion with All That Is.

Therefore, it only makes sense to look most deeply into Aboriginal wisdom when it comes to the placenta. Blood wisdom is inherent in the placenta. A mixture of mother-father blood went into the creation of baby and placenta, and now, when its job is complete, the blood carries this wealth of information into the Earth. What is really happening with the burying of body fluids? The DNA tells the Earth on what stage this child plays. Who is this child? What consciousness does she carry? How must she be celebrated in her village to be who she is to be?

Another cultural difference in our childrearing is that parents with discordant patterns from their own childhood are not responsible for raising this child. Mama Earth who has known this being through all time sees the bigger picture and offers each next opportunity to become all she is meant to be this lifetime. Parents give way to the lessons of The Mother, releasing their overlays from the child. Without the limiting matrix of the parents’ belief systems that a child typically takes on as her own identity, she is free to become what her soul intends.  In this way, successive generations grow healthier.

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Placenta Stories & Lotus Birth Tales: Kauai’s Little Miracle

I had found a special tree to plant on my big naked lawn, a 12 foot Kauai Camphor tree that smelled wonderful, with beautiful bright shiny leaves and white bark, and who would someday grow to have a huge spreading crown, almost as big as a Banyan tree. Knowing I bought this tree, a mother asked me if her daughter’s placenta, frozen for over 4 years, could be buried under this tree, as they did not feel that it belonged at their rented home. So we planned to plant them both at the Monday afternoon meditation. When 23 people showed up instead of 6 or 8, it emphasized how very important this ancient ritual is.

The placenta belonged to a four year old, a fiery redhead who often threw angry tantrums and would cry for unknown reasons. Naps were nonexistent and sleep was constantly disturbed. She would strike out and nobody could figure out what she needed. Both parents were at their wits end, knowing how tormented she was and not knowing how to help.

The family had prepared baskets of different colored flower petals for their placenta celebration, pink, red and white from roses, and yellow and orange from marigolds. The hole was dug, the placenta laid down, the tree placed on top and the soil packed around it. One parent spoke about her birth and one about how happy they were to finally place the placenta in the Earth. The little redhead sprinkled petals decorating the base of the tree, and everyone else added more handfuls of color. As we backed away from the tree, a mighty energy let us know we had done something important. Something had been accomplished but we didn’t know what.

The next meditations brought reports that this little girl had started sleeping through the night:  before this, she had slept through the night only one time in over four years. Planting her placenta had somehow anchored her  enough to let her rest. And, in the next 9 months, what had created such anger, also eased and she seemed much more at peace.

I felt it was so appropriate for this little one’s placenta to be beneath a Camphor Tree:  Camphor is the substance used to burn away negativity in Pujas. This tree seemed to be her homeopathic similar – Like cures Like. And it worked.

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Mother & Baby Soul Communions Through Hypnotherapy

Mother/Baby Soul Communions initially referred to working with mothers whose infants had physical, emotional or behavioral challenges but were too young to be worked with directly. Using the hypnotherapeutic model, I would help a mother go into a deep state of relaxation and expanded consciousness and through her, call in a connection with her infant’s spirit and inner wisdom.

Through the study of the life and work of a South African wise woman by the name of Sobonfu Some’, I received the first role model I had ever come across reflecting the work I was doing. She took me a step further by telling how in her village, a similar process to what I was doing was used consistently with every pregnant woman for accessing the spirit of her unborn baby. The purpose for this was to ask questions like, “who are you? why are you coming to us now? what is your life purpose? how can we support you in fulfilling that purpose?” and so on. Reading Some’s beautiful books, I realized the scope of this work was much bigger than I had realized.

The stories below reflect the wonder yet naturalness of this capacity we have to access the spirit of our children; whether born, in utero, or before conception; whether aborted or in other ways deceased and so on. I learned early on, that each experience in this work was individual and unique to every situation and that the essential key was to ask and receive permission from the spirit of the child we are endeavoring to make contact with.

My First Experience of Mother/Baby Communication

9 Month Old with Skin Rash

Early on in my years of teaching at the Oakland Center for Hypnotherapy Certification, I was teaching a class entitled, “Accessing the Inner Healer”. I lived in Berkeley at the time and had a next-door neighbor who had her one and only child at age 40. At nine months old, her son developed a rash all over his body. She came over one day and we discussed ideas about what might be causing the rash and how it might be alleviated. Her diet was very healthy so it seemed unlikely that the cause was her breast feeding. At a point in our conversation, I wondered if it would be possible to access the inner healer of a child by going through his mother. This was a new concept for me but I offered it to my friend. She is a subtle energy intuitive healer herself so she was open to checking it out.

We got together soon after this and began our session. I invited her to do her familiar foundational practices for doing deep inner work. She let me know she was having trouble grounding. I made mental note of that but continued to guide her into deeper levels of expanded consciousness. We called forth the spirit of her son. In her mind’s eye, she saw her son approaching looking very serious. He told her that we had to ask permission to do this work. I remember the profound feeling of humility and awe that came over me in that moment. We asked permission and after a serious pause, were told that we both needed to learn from this so permission was granted. In that instant, my friend went very deep within; making is quite clear what had inhibited her ability to ground earlier. When asked about the rash, her son told her it had nothing to do with diet or anything physically wrong but had to do with his grieving having left the spirit realm. He directed his mother to take him up in the Desolation Wilderness and lay him on a rock. Then she was to take him to the beach where the ocean meets the shore. Something in the context of these two energetic vortexes would help him to integrate into his body more efficiently.

My friend was not one to question what she had experienced or received from this communion with her son’s spirit. She followed the directives and when they were complete, the rash cleared up.

So began my own exploration into the potentials of Mother and Baby Soul Communions.

Overdue Mother with Previous Abortion Issues

A doula friend of mine called me in to work with a client of hers who was two weeks past due in birthing her baby. The woman was showing anxiety symptoms and my friend thought I might be able to help her.

I went to this woman’s house and we began to talk. She told me about the time a few years earlier when she was pregnant and living in, what she referred to as, a dangerous relationship. She knew she needed to run from the man she was with but she also knew that if she ran with his child, he would follow. So she decided to abort the baby. Now she was living within a healthy relationship and she very much wanted this baby. Yet, as her birthing time neared, her guilt came forward making her afraid that this baby would die at birth in punishment for what she had done in the past.

When I helped her to go deep within herself, we invited a connection with the baby soul she was currently carrying. When that connection was established, we learned from the baby that it was the very same soul that had been conceived before. The baby soul told the mother that S/he knew that the decision to abort in the past had been made in love and that now everything was perfect for the soul to come forth into form. The baby soul told the mother that it was excited to be with her and that all was well.

Tears of joy and relief were pouring down the mother’s face as this exchange was taking place. The force of her guilt and anxiety was the constriction in her body not allowing the labor to start. After the session, this mother’s labor came on within the next 24 hours; her baby born vital and beautiful.

Doula and Mother with  Stillborn Baby

A doula Friend of mine called one day to tell me a very emotionally charged story. One of her dearest friends, who this doula was supporting in a home birth, gave birth to a stillborn baby. My Friend told me about the labor. She said that everything went really well: the baby’s vitals up to the labor were strong and clear and remained that way into and through labor. Even the birth was normal except for the fact that the baby was still and never revived after birth.

My doula friend was distraught with anguished questions about what had happened. Did someone do something wrong? What could have prevented this? How could this have happened with everything up to the end showing such vital life? She felt deep grief with the mother being her dear friend and such guilt having been in the birth support position.

I didn’t know whether it would work to connect with the unborn baby soul through the doula rather than the mother but offered to support her in the attempt. Once my friend was taken within to a relaxed and expanded level of consciousness, we invited a connection with the still born baby soul. A connection was made and though little was said, what was needed came through. My friend was told that no one had done anything wrong and that this happenstance was purposefully designed and was between the mother and the baby soul. Apparently this incident, as it played out, was to affect some opening within the mother. The baby soul also said that it would be coming again to this mother.

This communion brought my doula friend much healing and relief.

Pregnant Mother Seeking Insights into Behavior of Older Son

This was such a fascinating study with many layers and connections. A woman came to me in the latter stages of her 2nd pregnancy in hopes of finding some keys to the discord she felt with her 3 year old son. She worried about having another child come into the tension that was in the home.

When I took her into deep consciousness, she made easy contact with the spirit of her 3 year old and was told that he needed art supplies around him. He needed paints and an easel and other supplies. This medium would help him express and develop himself for easily and harmoniously.

This mother decided to check in with her unborn child whom she knew to be another boy. She was told that this child would need a lot of nature around him and that this would be key for him to connect with and develop his life purpose.

Then a most unexpected thing occurred. This woman’s deceased mother-in-law walked into her consciousness. The mother-in-law came to tell this woman to inform her husband that it was time that his mother’s ashes be let go of. He was to take them out on his surf board and dispose of them out in the ocean. His mother also said that she would be carrying away something for her older grandson that he did not need to carry any longer. She finished by saying that her daughter-in-law and the two grandsons should be on the shore watching as her son paddled her ashes out to sea.

Turning a Breech Positioned Baby

A woman who had taken my HypnoBirthing Classes came to me in the latter stages of her pregnancy to see about the possibility of turning her baby who was in the breech position. As we conversed, I learned that she had never wanted to have children and that it was her husband’s desire that had moved her into this pregnancy. I also learned she had experienced some sexual trauma when she was younger. Hearing all this, I had a pretty good idea what was detouring baby from proper positioning.

I helped her relax into a deep, expanded state of consciousness and we invited the spirit of her baby to commune with us. When that connection was granted, I watched as this young mother’s eyes filled with tears. She learned that this baby was coming in to teach her about love and that he was very excited to be with her. When the heart opens, the tears of healing and love tend to flow and clear the way. This mother fully opened to the wonder and blessing of this soul coming to her.

We described to the baby about the proper position for an easier birth for baby and mother. I doubt whether that was a necessary step in the process but regardless, Baby turned into the proper vertex position within the following 36 hours.

Recommended Reading

  • Sobonfu Some’s   ~ The Spirit of Intimacy
  • Welcoming Spirit Home
  • Walter Makichen ~ Spirit Babies
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Pain & Childbirth

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.

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Becoming a Sacred Birthing Community Doula: My First Birth

My name is Sharon Gonsalves and I attended the Sacred Birthing Foundation’s Doula Training Program from January through April 2009. Barbara Essman was the lead instructor and author/founder/midwife Sunni Karll was very instrumental in delivering the training. There were about 10 women in the class and I learned so much from each one. Many had had their own babies and others were preparing for motherhood or healing from their own births and childhood experiences. I wasn’t sure if I’d follow through and complete the certification requirements, but once I attended my first birth I was sure I wanted to serve the community as a doula.

I had conversations with two different expectant moms before finding my first doula client. I learned in the training that it’s important that a doula be a good fit for the couple who she’ll be assisting. Although I was disappointed that those first two nibbles did not pan out, I was really happy when I found someone who definitely wanted to work with me and invited me to her birth.

My client, Joanna, was relatively new on Kauai, had 2 grown children and was about 7 months pregnant when we first met. She moved here from Denver, where she says 65% of births are attended by doulas. Doulas are not very common yet on Kauai and we’re having to educate the community about what a doula is and how having a doula can really help ease the birth process. Joanna was very sure that she wanted a doula at her birth and was planning to give birth at the Waimea Family Birth Center at KVMH. She and her husband would be attending childbirth classes at KVMH and they invited me to join them which I did.

Joanna was very clear that she wanted a natural birth without drugs. Her first 2 were natural – one at a birth center and one in a hospital – and while she knew she was able to give birth on her own, one labor went very long and she was concerned that might happen again.

As Joanna’s due date approached, we talked on the phone once a week just to check in about how close it might be and how she was feeling. Then one morning at 4:15am I got a phone call from Joanna’s husband. They were at the hospital and labor had begun. It was time for me to join them.

I showered and dressed and before getting in the car I turned on my computer and sent an email to a list of Joanna’s friends to let them know that baby Leila was on her way. I asked them to please keep the family in their thoughts. On the way to the hospital I called in all my guides and helpers, and asked spirit to surround the birth team with support.

When I arrived at KVMH, the hospital staff was expecting me and the nurses, doctor and especially Joanna and her husband, Michael, were happy to see me. Joanna was tired. She’d been up all night and was walking to keep her labor progressing. At last check she was 5 centimeters dilated and 60% effaced. Her contractions were a few minutes apart. I gave her lots of encouragement as she and her husband and I walked the halls stopping for every contraction. While she leaned on Michael, I gave her some back relief by pushing her hip bones together allowing more rooms for baby’s head to move down. We spent most of the next several hours this way. I gave Joanna water to drink after each contraction as they made her very thirsty. Periodically the doctor checked her progress. She stayed at 6 centimeters dilated for a while as she became more effaced. Her waters were broken to help keep things moving along. When she was hooked up to a monitor for a few minutes we could all hear the baby’s heart beat – the first time I’d heard that sound. No signs of distress at all.

Contractions were getting stronger and Joanna was getting more uncomfortable and more tired. She labored on a birthing ball for awhile, resting between contractions. I saw ‘bloody show’ for the first time and finally understood what that was. I suggested she try laboring in the shower for a while to see if the hot water would help her relax a bit. After her shower she labored in bed for a bit, actually sleeping between contractions as she was thoroughly exhausted. She was now almost fully effaced. Within an hour she went from 6 to 9 centimeters dilated, then things started happening pretty fast.

Joanna started feeling the urge to push and she seemed a little scared. Her contractions were becoming more painful and she said she didn’t want to do this any more. She wanted drugs. This was our clue that the baby would be here really soon.

In the doula class I learned that often as women progress through labor they start saying “oh God, please help me”. Then they start asking for drugs. Then they push and the baby is born and they are totally in love with their child. Well, in this case that’s exactly what happened.

So the urge to push set the hospital staff in motion. The bed was readied. The doctor’s instruments were laid out. The lights were turned on and the doctor was in position to catch Leila as she entered the world. Joanna was sitting up at about a 45 degree angle, and Michael and I stayed on either side of the bed and told her what a great job she was doing. One of the nurses coached her through the pushing – chin to her chest, hands behind her knees. I let one of the nurses know that they’d been doing perineal massage to stretch her tissues and no episiotomy was performed. Within 3-5 pushes the baby was out and Leila was on her mom’s chest.

The actual birth was the most intense time for me. I didn’t want to look between Joanna’s legs at all. I just wanted to stay right at her shoulder encouraging and supporting her. The pushing was a bit uncomfortable for Joanna and the nurses were so great in the way they coached her to push into the burning sensation that was making her hesitate. She did great and I was really happy for her that things had gone so well. Leila was born at 11:26 am September 13.

Then came the really cool part. Joanna and Michael met their daughter for the first time in the light of day and they loved her. Meanwhile, the doctor prepared the cord for cutting (which dad was invited to do), then he put some gentle pressure on the umbilical cord and placed a pan at the end of the bed to catch the placenta. Within about 20 minutes after the birth, a placenta the size of a very large grapefruit was expelled along with more fluid from the uterus. Wow! Fascinating!

The hospital staff cleaned up in a flash and mom, dad and baby got acquainted. Mom was encouraged to breast feed which would start the uterus contracting to stop any bleeding from the placenta detaching from the uterine wall. Baby latched on right away – a successful beginning to a new relationship.

At this point I made myself scarce so that very important initial bonding could take place. Before leaving the room, doc gave me a ‘thumbs up’ which brought tears to my eyes. Everything went really smoothly.

I felt really welcomed by the hospital staff and very high from the whole experience. Some of the staff had met Barbara and Ronda when they visited the Family Birth Center a few weeks before. This really made me feel good, being associated with a group that intended to work together with a hospital to ease baby’s transitions and support mom, dad and hospital staff through the birth process. It felt like a good beginning for all of us.

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Vibration, Orgasmic Birth & Newborn Consciousness

Birth is magnificent. With the high drama births so common today, we have lost sight of this magnificence, and as a culture have begun to fear birth. Though when allowed to progress in its own way and at its own pace, birth shows us how each baby needs to be born, and how each mom can claim her initiation. We have come to fear birth because we have lost our birth wisdom, the inner wisdom passed down from our mothers and grandmothers, our aunties and sisters. We no longer meet at the well, the kitchen, or the red tent to share the stories that once strengthened us.

It’s time to change this. Babies are asking for something more aligned with who they are. Many children being born are incarnating on Earth for the first time and come to inspire goodness. They have no karma and no wounding, and without these, they are born with great life force and health, but our birth practices introduce vibrational harm that results in severe health challenges. When they are born quickly, without time to interfere, they prove to be in the best of health.

Trauma at any age hurts or makes us scared, and is difficult to integrate. Trauma at birth makes a newborn constrict physically and emotionally. The nerves that have previously been fully open and receptive in the safety of the womb, now constrict and tighten, and fear is felt often for the first time. Emotionally, a baby shuts down and turns within. Baby’s body-consciousness declares: “This hurts,” and remains in a protected stance, trying to make sense of this feeling. Baby’s soul-consciousness makes its first earthly decision: “This is a hostile world.” All later decisions will support this first one and become the seed of a baby’s personality.

Midwives know that a baby’s personality is created by its birth. We see it all the time and watch as babies grow. Who a baby becomes, comes from mom, dad, and from baby’s own past lives. The journey through conception, gestation and the birth experience crystallizes and imprints what we are born to heal: time issues, gender and food issues, worthiness, our default emotion, relationship choices, turning toward nurturing or withdrawing. These and more influence a lifetime.

Everything is remembered about the circumstances of our birth whether it was spoken or thought: What was the doctor thinking about me? Were the nurses caring or too busy? Was mom conscious? Where was Dad? What were the emotions present? What was my first nourishment like? How will this life challenge me? Which siblings support me? Why did I choose these parents? What is my soul-design? It is all remembered in the recesses of our heart. Without trauma, a newborn knows it. With trauma, it will be remembered as and when the trauma heals.

Our birth memories are our road map to the healing of our lifetime. As a birth therapist, I found that few adults believe they can remember their birth experience, yet we all can. It is written within every cell of our being. Our body remembers and with a little help, what has been subconscious can be made conscious to bring about great healing. Not only can we heal, but remembering our birth makes us absolutely aware that all babies remember and are conscious. Since babies are conscious at birth, they remember how they are treated. Our treatment shows them how precious and worthy they are. How do we wish to welcome them? Sacredly. Softly. As a celebration. With our greatest presence and inner stillness. With love.

Birth isn’t created in the hours of labor but with every feeling and action both parents have, from their very first inkling of a baby, right up to its birth. This ‘field of birth’ then becomes the energetic force field of pregnancy that carries a mom into her birth. Create it with trust, and do your very best for your baby. Create it with fear, being too busy throughout pregnancy, or thinking, “this (fast food, drink, joint, cigarette…) won’t matter,” results in the drama so common in modern birth, because your gut emotions about your upcoming birth create a vibration. This vibration will always attract a birth to match. Can you purge your fears and create inner peace and a joyful anticipation about your birth? Can you and your partner practice harmony to offer your baby your very, very best?

Birth is an enormous passage for all mothers, but as a midwife, I see that the moms who worry through pregnancy have more pain, and those who are happy and assured end up with a beautiful home birth. In the past, we have seen this as a woman’s empowerment, but what if vibration is the key to what determines a birth? What if it also determines the pain or ease in which you give birth?

Vibration is easy to understand when you imagine a line graph. Imagine one of emotional feelings ascending in vibration from the lowest to the highest: hopelessness, panic, fear, anxiety, insecurity, unsure, surrender, ease, contentment, positive intent, well-being, appreciation, gratitude, joy, bliss, love and ecstasy. Our mental patterns are also vibrations: resigned to the worst, self-judgment, dread, chaos, constriction, struggle, negativity, ‘trauma/drama’, restlessness, surrender, tolerance, hope, acceptance, openness, peace, trust competence, creative, empowered, coherent. Reread these and feel each one, and you will see what your baby would be steeping in if this were your predominant feeling or thought in pregnancy. Our self-talk reflects where we are at any given time.

Vibration is an exceptional tool for birth. Certain biological states only exist at certain vibrations. Pain is a biological state that does not exist at a high vibration. So, if a mom spends her pregnancy at a happy high vibration, she is lots closer to the higher vibration where there is no pain. More and more births are being created in ecstasy, yet most women keep this to themselves as they are not believed when they share their stories. Orgasmic/ecstatic births are happening and are a product of a high vibration. Your vibration through pregnancy is your pathway to an ecstatic birth.

Another aspect of orgasmic birth is that two different vibrations cannot exist at the same time and space, so when feeling the vibration of joy, there is no room for the vibration of doubt, fear, anger, etc. Staying where it feels good trains us in using vibration. This is our spiritual practice on our way toward sacred conception and throughout pregnancy.

A high vibration also protects the consciousness of your baby. With this protected radiance, a baby retains her innate sense of self-love. This is not something she will have to work to regain, as we have in our forties and fifties. It is hers from birth. A high vibration retains the multi-dimensional abilities (healing, telepathy, stimulating creativity…) that a baby brings to share. These babies are not choosing to be born at the low vibration of self-judgment and karma, but at the other end of the spectrum, the vibration of coherence, trust and love.

The babies being born now are a higher consciousness/higher vibration and are extremely sensitive and cannot tolerate the birth practices that do not take vibration into consideration. What are we doing at birth to reduce vibration? Anything that results in baby or mom feeling fear or pain. We are scaring mothers, and bringing pain and fear to the unborn by using things like fetal heart monitors; ultrasound/sonogram, internal monitors. At birth, we use forceps and vacuum extractions, instead of giving mom more time, or getting her to squat; we cut the cord before breathing is well established, making baby fear death at the moment of birth; we separate baby from mother and father; we give shots and stab heels; we are unconscious in our care of the newborn; and we circumcise. Because of today’s version of birth, trauma and its repercussions are being seen in generations of children, and these traumatized children are called ‘normal’ because little else has been seen in medical birth.

The most significant harm comes however, from the drugs that are used at the time of birth. Picture this: As mother is learning to work with labor and opening to the ever-increasing flow of Divine energy moving thru her body, the vibration of mother’s body is rising. The baby’s body within mother also experiences this. As labor progresses, mother incorporates greater amounts of this refined energy and her vibration is rising more quickly. As it gets most intense, this energy prepares baby’s body to mesh with its soul at this highest vibration. Body and soul mesh most coherently like a hand in a well-fitting glove. Baby is securely rooted into its body, with a fully functioning, pristine nervous system. When this happens at birth, baby is at ease in her body, is involved in life surrounding her, and thrives from the very beginning.

When a pain medication is given, the vibration of mother and therefore baby’s body, suddenly plummet in response, yet the vibration of the baby’s soul remains high and constant. The impact of an epidural causes a great energetic discrepancy between baby’s body and soul, previously aligned before medication was given. The soul is not able to come fully into the body because the nervous system shuts down from the depressing effect of drugs on the vibration of baby’s body. The soul energy previously aligned to the body is now, no longer in sync. They are out of phase. Baby’s most delicate levels of senses and multidimensional abilities are eliminated.

This pulsation is cumulative however, so the young baby may not be noticeably affected at first. Eventually, the growing child will perceive these as jolts of energy: she will act out this inner experience of too much discordant energy, she is not able to sit still and is hypersensitive to stimulus. This is an energetic description of a child with Attention Deficit Disorder. A body was not designed to carry discordant energy. America’s epidemic of A.D.D. has been caused by this vibrational discrepancy created by the epidurals administered to mothers at birth. Plus, when a mother is given an epidural, she gives away her initiation because she gives credit to the epidural. She has not discovered her new inner stance of “I did it! And if I can do that, then I can do anything!” Parents need to be advised of the toxic and vibrational risks of epidurals and no one is speaking. If the truth were told, all parents would protect their babies and find harmless options.

When we respect the nature of birth, we are open to learn from it, we wonder, we listen and await the answers within. With an attitude of trust, we move forward one step at a time. Parents are taking their power back in birth, no longer enduring what is being offered as modern birth. Instead, they are creating what feels best to their hearts. This is a powerful force, and it is self inspired for the good of baby, mama, her lover, the family and the transformation of Birth itself. In an atmosphere of love and trust, un-medicated natural birth protects the vibration of a newborn. It is where the mother finds Ecstasy, and as this occurs, birth returns to the perfection that nature intended all along.

By sacredly moving into birth, parents reconnect with who they are, and give birth to their babies in a way that is safe, sacred, at a high vibration and most meaningful to them. Birth is then the highest alignment of body, soul and planetary energies to support each baby’s full potential. And then, the full radiance each baby holds is a blessing to the Earth.

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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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