My Rite of passage- Be-coming a Mother
Almost a year ago, at the comfort of my home, was where I wanted to birth my baby boy. I had planned a home birth with my midwife and doula and birthing without medication was my first and only choice. I wanted to experience it all. All of you who know me know that if it’s not herbs, plant or flower medicine, I won’t take it.
Almost 2 days before my due date, around noon, while I was grocery shopping I started having signs that labor would possibly start within 24 hours, and it did, 8 hours later.
My husband started putting candles around the living room and bedroom to set the mood, when my first real contraction happened. I was still in denial and told him, I am going to take a nap. I woke up with labor pains, and the living room and bedroom all lighted up with candles, my husband on the couch. I approached him, telling him: Honey, It’s time.
So we breathed together through the contractions. We walked around, squatted, bathed, laid down, hanging on my bed frame, was on all fours, slow-danced.
The following morning, as my contractions became stronger and closer together, we finally decided to call our midwife and doula. After 15 hours, my water finally broke and I felt River drop very low. We all thought we would have my baby soon . We kept walking around the house, did walking lunges, squats. I pushed while standing, squatting, laying on my side, on all fours, I rocked on the medicine ball, squatted in the toilet seat, squatted while I had my arms around my husband Elvis. We kept doing that for hours and hours… resting now for a minute in between contractions, taking a sip of water, some salt on my mouth, leaning on my husband as hours went by as day turned into night. He would rub my back, hold my hand, as I squeezed his arms hard with every painful contractions and push.
I kept going, but now exhausted , as we were approaching 24 hours in labor. The contractions were getting stronger and almost unbearable. It started to feel like I was being cut open in half, very slowly, with a chainsaw. It was wild. It shook me to the core. After nearly 27 hours at home, we knew we needed to transfer, my midwife decided to drive us to the hospital.
I was afraid. I did not want to end up birthing at the hospital. It was not part of my birth plan. Hospitals to me felt so cold, I didn’t trust the system and I was afraid to be medicated. However I knew that the transfer was necessary.
It was a vvvverrrry long 30 minute drive to the hospital. The stops and the bumpy road coupled with my contractions were hard. I kept going back to my breathe while I squeezed Elvis almost all through the entire ride.
Once there, It took another 14 hours, 10 of which I had to be on hands and knees ( all fours) because every time I laid on my side or got out of the position, my son’s blood pressure dropped.
Finally after all those hours, I was already feeling that we had to go a different route.
I was scared. Not only was I in a cold unfamiliar place, but I was to be heavily medicated in order to have a caesarian birth . ( another really big fear of mine). I looked at my husband, he was trying to convince me to keep going, he knew how I was so adamant of not getting a C-section; how afraid I was to get cut open. But I looked at him, thankful for the fight he put up, and the unwavering strength and said, We have to do this for me and River.
With fear and relief on my shoulder, trusting the divine, I was wheeled out. I told my husband I loved him and he gave me a kiss and he said he will meet me in the delivery room.
Holy Shit, not feeling the lower half of your body after all the meds they pumped in me was weird. I kept trying to circle my ankles and the doctors laughed as they asked me: Can you still feel something? and I said yes, circling my ankles. It was my attempt to feel, not lose control, not get numb, my attempt to fight the inevitable. But I had to let go. I had to.
Then I saw Elvis come in the room, smiling, saying “I’m here” It’s going to be ok.
I held onto his hand as I was laying there. They started the surgery.. I felt them moving my pregnant belly, and finally lifted River out of my body. I heard him cry! Saw Elvis’ happy face with tears in his eyes saying “Oh my God”, Oh my God.
As soon as River heard my voice, he stopped crying. They brought him close to me. Skin to Skin.
Feeling him, touching, him, smelling him and holding him for the very first time was magical. It was as if all the pain, fear, exhaustion dissipated. Bliss happened. IT was perfect. He was perfect. Absolutely Divine.
Nothing that happens to us is by chance. I needed to face my fear. To realize that there is so much value in our advancement in modern technology, in some medications. Most importantly, In SURRENDERING.
In my past trauma, I have labeled the hospital system and medications as bad and wrong. This experience taught me It isn’t so.
To think that life will always happen the way we think it should be, To think we have control over everything, is an illusion.
We then make no room for magic and softening.
All we can do everyday of our life is to make choices that align with our higher Self, our True Nature, and offer the rest to God.
I am grateful for this teaching.
It is indeed true that our greatest strength is in facing our weaknesses and fears. That is where OUR POWER is. Through this whole process I have also been shown and reminded that I, you, we are so so absolutely loved beyond imagination.
And as I feel my scar today, as a rite of passage to Be-coming a mother, I embrace and love myself more, for my strength, my fears, my shadows and my beautiful life.
I am grateful beyond words as I lovingly look at the greatest blessing I have in my life- River. Happy almost 1st birthday Anak! I love you so much!
And to my husband who was with me through this whole journey., Thank you for trusting me. even in this unfamiliar territory. For being my rock. For allowing me to BE. And for always being by my side, no matter what. I love you.
I’ve been divorced for 5 years but this is a story I want to share to all women about the power of surrender and the wisdom of the body