There is a whole wide range of pleasure available to a woman in childbirth, emotional, spiritual and physical and so many nuances in between: Ecstasy, orgasm, bliss and so much more.
Today I’d like to introduce you to a mama that really tapped into the BLISS.
Jen is an educator and artist and is 10 months postpartum. She talks about how the pleasure she experienced in the birthing room has rippled into her motherhood.
Check out this picture, taken at her birth, where you can see the BLISS Jen is experiencing all over her face!!!
Let’s get real: More women experience pain than pleasure in birth.
So much of our medical system is built around rescuing women from the intensity of childbirth.
Unfortunately our most common interventions- epidurals, episiotomies, and elective c-sections- all contribute to the experience of MORE pain in the long run, not less.
What is the antidote?
Just like we were NEVER told that pleasure is an essential part of the birthing process, many of us weren’t trained in consciously using pleasure to support our business.
Instead we are taught to prioritize marketing strategies and industry best practices, things that are dictated by outside sources.
Childbirth can be deeply empowering, pleasurable, ecstatic and even orgasmic.
Yet most women experience the opposite.
There is a HUGE gap between the possibility and the reality.
The gap is not whether or not Ecstatic Births actually exist.
The gap is in how we are raised, our relationships to our bodies, the structures of training and support that exist (or not) for women, the healthcare system, the legal system and so much more.
I see so so many women judging themselves harshly or feeling down in the dumps for not “achieving” this ideal.
That is the heart of the matter right there–
Ecstatic Birth is an IDEAL and ideals are not a measure by which to judge ourselves, but a source of inspiration, elevation.
While bringing the image of the picture perfect birth you have in your mind into reality is incredibly difficult, (when does life ever conform perfectly to our ideals?) elevating your experience of birth is astoundingly simple.
Let me show you what I mean via this fool-proof 3 step strategy:
Recently, I was telling a friend about Ecstatic birth and I noticed that she had a dubious look on her face.
When I questioned her she asked- “So, you’re trying to teach women that they can ENJOY childbirth?”
Yes. I nodded, smiling. She shook her head condescendingly. “Well, that’s an oxymoron.”
Her reaction is totally understandable, given our cultural messages around birth, the endless TV shows depicting a birthing woman as a shrieking object waiting to be rescued by the doctor or drugs. Given the medicalization of birth, women are more likely to be trading birth war stories, than sharing tales of birth as a pleasurable empowering experience.
I’m totally thrilled to announce that things are changing.
My first birth left me wounded. Unable to sit and stand properly for days. I was emotionally dazed for over a year, only to be awakened by loss- miscarriage, after miscarriage. I was so dazed that it took deep grief, a sledgehammer over my head, to wake me. Fast forward to me, pregnant, fully healed body AND SOUL from the trauma of that first birth, I knew this birth had to be different. I could not be passive (again) and hope for the best. This birth was an invitation for me to embody my power, to mother myself, and my baby with all of my feminine ferocity. I was so terrified. How could I begin?
The Ecstatic Birth Body Series has officially lauched- and our first session was absolutely stunning. Sheri Winston blew the socks off the participants with her tour of a Woman’s anatomy and all the connections she drew between the sexual and birthing processes. I received so many acknowledgments from participants like this FB post: “First class of the Body Series and I’m already a whole new woman. The bliss door is open!!” I am so proud of this baby being born, of myself for the part I play in its creation and nurture and growth. And yet, when the session ended, I was trembling head to toe. Trembling with an overwhelming feeling of SHAME. Shame. Can you believe it?
Oh my, ladies. Birth, it cracks you wide open. It has the potential to be the deepest most profound healing experience of your life. It is a rite of passage, no doubt, to support your growth into becoming the mother you need to be for your child. And the shame? We live in a world that doesn’t understand sexuality as sacred…
Perhaps you imagine an Ecstatic Birth all serene and lovely… It definitely could be.
Perhaps it is a water birth with the woman smiling as the baby slips into her waiting hands…Yes, that is also possible.
Perhaps the woman is in a whole other universe, experiencing waves of bliss that she may later define as orgasmic.
Sounds good, right?
But what about being rocked by waves so strong, you lose control of bodily functions?
What about labor that persists past hours and into days?
What about a hospital birth– can that be ecstatic?
What about a c-section?
Absolutely. Yes. To all of the above and more.
You see, birth can be really GRITTY!
Just like life. Life can be really gritty.
You will never guess where I am-
I’m cringing as I write this…
That is right. I am on vacation. And right now, my whole being is fully resisting sharing this information with you. Why? Because I just announced the details of the upcoming Ecstatic Birth Body Series. There is much work to be done. Shouldn’t I be taking this a whole lot more seriously? I mean, last time, I barely left my computer’s side and ran myself totally ragged getting ready. Shouldn’t I be doing that again?
When was the last time you stopped to think about what was next on your to-do list? If you are like most of us, it was probably just a few seconds ago.
But when was the last time you stopped to consult with your body, to feel what you were going to do next. If you are like most of us, you are probably thinking, “Ummm… I don’t remember.” (or Ummm….never!)
There are no two ways about it. We live in our heads. Even those of us that know, in our heads, that our body contains a whole lot of wisdom, forget to go there looking for it. And even when we do, chances are we aren’t quite sure we understand it, or believe it. I know I personally struggle with this all the time.
Childbirth is a full throttle body trip. We can use our heads to prepare, fill it with all kinds of information to empower us, help us relax, but when it comes down to it we need to be able to surrender ourselves over to our bodies. Raw. Primal. Body trip.
That can be pretty scary if you aren’t used to handing over the reins and it isn’t the sort of thing you can just order your mind to do. It is the sort of thing that takes practice and as we know, practice takes time.