Wherever you are in the world the supermoon is shining bright on you at night. Full moons illuminate our darkness both tangibly and metaphorically.
There is a whole lot of darkness currently being illuminated on our planet, whatever your political orientation. So many intense patterns, thoughts, emotions coming to the surface triggered by the elections here in the US.
The full moon is a great time to truly see what has been hiding in the darkness and to set the intention to let go of those things that aren’t serving you.
Identify them, write them down, throw them in the trash (or rip or burn them) and as the moon wanes, feel them energetically wash away from your life.
My concern today, my tender tribe of mamas and birthworkers, is your bodies. How are they feeling?
I personally have been struggling with an overwhelming sense of violation, a creeping feeling of unease, a brimming anger that the female body continues to be treated so disrespectfully, and intense grief that so many people were able to make light or overlook this when they cast their votes. Different people hold different things as sacred.
I hold the female body as sacred, as the portal through which new life comes into this world.
A feeling of safety in the body is one of the cornerstones of Ecstatic Birth prep, so I am wondering…
How is your body feeling?
…separate and distinct from how your mind is processing.
So many of the women I speak to these days feel triggered, depressed, angry, tired, numb or heavy. The first thing you need to know is that right now upheaval is the norm rather than the exception. What is happening on a universal level is a stirring, a rising in energy which is bringing up old patterns to be released as we usher in a new age of being.
In the process of that release we are seeing the demons of our life, our society and culture flash before our eyes and nowhere is this more apparent than in the current election in the US. Consciously or unconsciously that can be very difficult to watch and weighs on each of us, especially women.
The word objectification has been thrown around for eons in relation to women. Let’s really take a look at that.. Treating a woman as an object… , a woman’s body as a “thing” to be owned, manipulated or governed.
There are the obvious ways– the ones we can readily identify and have been taught to look out for… beauty pageants, advertising, pornography, the seemingly endless fight over abortion, sex slavery….
Then there are the infinite more subtle ways in which we have been trained, in which we or our loved ones, despite the best of intentions, may be complicit.
How can we support a birth to progress with as much ease as possible?
There are many many tools an expectant mama and her support team can use. On the natural side- movement, massage and water can be incredibly supportive of the progression of labor.
Right now, I want to focus on how you can best holistically support the natural process of birth with PLEASURE.
You read that right. Pleasure.
Pleasure is the most holistic birthing tool there is.
How is that possible when 90% of women associate birth with pain? Well, your birthing body and your sexual body are one and the same.
“Why do most people tend to birth in pain rather than in pleasure?”
This is the question I am asked most often when I share about Ecstatic Birth. There isn’t just one answer to this, but a whole host of answers.
I’ve compiled what I see as the top 10 major factors women birth in pain as opposed to pleasure.
Some of them may surprise you…
10. It is our religious inheritance. Remember when Eve took a bite of that apple in the Garden of Eden? Womankind’s punishment for her sin was to suffer through childbirth. To birth any other way would be blasphemous.
9. It is our cultural inheritance. Look at all the messages around us- How does the media depict birth? How do the moms around you talk about birth? Overwhelmingly our cultural messages reinforce the idea that birth hurts. Women who have had alternate experiences are often ashamed to speak up and if they do, risked being ostracized or outcast, especially if they speak of experiencing pleasure during birth.
8. We are stuck in our heads. In modern society, our bodies are primarily a means to get our heads from place to place. Mental, rational intelligence is valued above all others and yet you can’t think your way through birth. Birth is a primal full body experience. We must be able to let go of rational thought and get fully into our bodies, feeling each sensation, and be guided by its wisdom.
7. We don’t trust our bodies. In this age of cancer there is an underlying current of fear that our bodies will betray us despite our best intentions. Our bodies seem do things we can’t control and don’t understand yet this is all a symptom of our grand disconnect from ourselves. Our bodies are so wise. They hold primal wisdom, generational wisdom, experiential wisdom, all in addition to our mental rational wisdom. If we can learn to listen and honor that it would change everything.
For most of my younger years I was fiercely independent, adamant that I was strong enough, sharp enough, fill in the blank “x” enough, to navigate my path and create what I wanted in life.
Asking for help felt like a sign of weakness, an acknowledgment that I wasn’t capable enough to succeed on my own.
Motherhood knocked me waaaaay off that pedestal. I remember holding my baby boy, so small and tender and vulnerable and realizing how much I wanted for him in life. In that moment, I was his whole world, but I wanted so much more for him than I alone could give him. I realized that I would do anything to protect and nurture him towards his highest good, even ask for help.
Thus came my introduction to the wonderful world of motherhood where very little is possible through singular sheer determination and strength, but everything is possible within community.
Thirteen years in, here is the conclusion that I have come to-
Support is not a sign of your weakness, but a way to be stronger than you could ever be alone.
It is a lesson that doesn’t come naturally to me, nor for most of the women I work with. There is a glorification of the “hero’s journey” in our society, that vision of a single solitary person forging out into the world and succeeding against all odds.
But ladies, none of us are heroes.