I cannot say how grateful I am that this will likely be the last image of a laboring woman that I have in my mind as I bid farewell to 2010. I have learned so much from the 3 minutes I have spent witnessing this mama claiming her birth space and welcoming her labor.
I talk about moving through labor ALOT. With a background in movement and bodywork and many years of attending laboring women it makes sense that in seeing this video, I might want to comment on the importance of moving through labor and birth. And I certainly love that she shares that she had a few contractions through this, but what stands out for me is how this woman uses this sweet dance story to claim her birth space.
I experienced SO much watching this gentle dance and this intentional mama. Initially, watching her, I noticed how awkward I felt about some things.
As a doula, I noticed I wanted to move that huge hospital version of a rocking chair out of her way. As I watched her move so gracefully, I wanted to get that “i.am.a.patient.” hospital gown off of her and give her back her own clothes.
And then, as I noticed all the thoughts going through my “thinking brain” my eyes and ears and HEART just kept being drawn back to HER.
HER story told through music and dance. HER hula prayer. The music, so sweet and simple, drowned out the sounds in the room and in my head. Her intention takes over the room and took over my heart. And all I noticed at that moment was how lovingly and reverently she seems to be welcoming this labor, this birth, this baby.
I felt the change of the energy in the room through the screen of my computer and I remembered a truth I learned when I became massage therapist over 21 years ago and that I live by to this day: intention is everything.
I thought of the times I have witnessed people talking over a woman who is drawn inward, breathing, rocking and I wonder…can they not see she is having a contraction? Can they not stop for this moment…this minute or so…to honor her while she and her baby do this most sacred thing called birth? I model it for them hoping they will join me in holding the sacred space for them.
And then I watched this woman and imagined incoming hospital staff stopping in their tracks and waiting patiently, respectfully for her to finish.
This mama proves it. For some, it really may not matter where you are, what you are wearing, who is in the room.
The intentional, powerful, all encompassing love of the MotherBaby is theirs to claim…and to invite others to witness and join.