Labor began on January 6th, two days before Aluna arrived. When I awoke in the morning there was a palpable energetic shift within my being. I knew that the portal of birth had opened and soon I’d be holding a little sacred soul against my bare body. I was joyous as I bathed in this new surge of energy. I felt alive. I felt peace. I felt bliss. I felt power. I felt love. And it went beyond feeling… it was a state of being -the state of being that I so frequently return to. I AM Alive. I AM Peace. I AM Bliss. I AM Power. I AM Love. I simultaneously became the embodiment of all of these – our true selves. Home. Giving birth was coming Home.
I began having rushes (contractions) when I was 5 months pregnant. I welcomed their wisdom and listened to what they had to teach. Their knowledge, so timeless and vast. My body was readying itself for the birth process. These rushes weren’t painful. My entire belly would get rigid and tight. It would stay taught for awhile, sometimes seconds, sometimes over a minute. Then my womb would relax again. Ebbing and flowing like the pulses of a river. My body was sharing it’s age-old wisdom -change is fluid. You can either be swept down the river on a current of uncertainty, or you can become the water, seamlessly flowing towards the ocean of being. Become the water. This is our birthright – to BE. I sat with my rushes. I welcomed them… for 4 months, I welcomed them. I leaned into them. I leaned deeper into myself. I was proud of my body. I fully trusted my and my baby’s wisdom in preparing us through this timeless practice. It was beautiful. My baby was beautiful. I was beautiful.
Most people would have deemed my pregnancy as “difficult.” But that is their perspective, based on their experiences, based on their relationship with all that is within them, as well as all that is with-out them. “Difficult” is not my perspective. My pregnancy was beautiful in all of its quirks and characteristics.
It would be wise to view occurrences such as “pain” or “ill-ness” in terms of relationships. When we degrade pain and illness from wise teachers, to the category of “enemy”… something that we have to overcome… we enter into a different mindset. One based in fighting. One based in fear. One based in separation.
“Cure the disease.”
“Fight the infection.”
“Taken-out by a cold.”
“War on the virus”
All of these phrases are based in the story of separation. Us vs them. This is not Truth.
If instead, we are able to look at pain and dis-ease as relationships, our views change. And so does the perceived “pain/illness.” What are Pain and Illness trying to tell us?
My relationship with my body is one of immense love and adoration. I listen when it speaks. Sometimes it’s language elicits a state of harmony and sometimes it nudges me to chose different foods or limit those whom I socialize with. When we enter into a state of deep relationship with ourself and the outside world, we enter into a realm where we are no longer a victim to our experiences. When we accept the invitation to this new perspective, we open the door of listening and responding. And we step into our power as co-creators. We belong to a constant dialogue of communication. It is our choice to participate in the discussion – all it takes is a shift in perspective… the creation of relationship.
To understand my perspective of conception, pregnancy, labor, and birth it is necessary to have a little backstory into who I am. To share my birth story without any backstory would be like writing a memoir without sharing anything personal.
I am incredibly sensitive. I see things, I hear things, I feel things, I understand things… the Clairs. My body responds “differently” to most everything. Doctors, drugs, and the western medicalized world does not work in harmony with my being. Western medicine only addresses the physical. It treats us as leaves, instead of as the entire tree. If we are to bloom, we must address all aspects of our state of being. Physical. Mental. Emotional. Spiritual. Energetic. For me, when I am under the care of western medicine, I deteriorate. I become brittle and weak. The energy drains from my body. My spirit hovers.
When I was 15, I had a Traumatic Brain Injury. I was in a coma. I tried over 50 different medications to try and help lessen the symptoms that accompany TBI’s. I had to go through intensive therapy. I couldn’t attend my last 3 years of high school. I was on a Home Hospital Program. When I was 17, I was diagnosed with Melanoma… I had 11 surgeries in 13 months. When I was 21, seizures tilted toward full throttle. I’ve been in the medical system. I understand it intimately. I’ve tried treating symptoms instead of understanding our roots. The medical system doesn’t work for me.
My body does not tolerate synthetic “interference.” I have 1 of 2 reactions. 1. I don’t respond to pharmaceuticals. Or 2. I have over-the-top reactions. If we were to reduce me to a western medicine label, I’d be the back of a prescription insert that says “less than 1% will experiences these “symptoms.”
My body does not numb. When I have surgeries, I FEEL everything. When I go to see my dentist, he remarks that when he sees my name on the docket he sinks because he knows how much “pain” he’ll be inflicting. When I had my wisdom teeth removed (anesthesia), I threw up every time I consumed food or liquids- for over 4 months. I had seizures… every. single. day. for over 4 months. When I had a tandem surgery for melanoma and endometriosis, I wound up being transferred from Fresno to UCSF because of constant non-stop seizures that lasted 5 days. The more drugs they pumped into my weary body, the worse the seizures got. My body cannot handle the rough and tumble nature of western medicine, so a few years ago I stepped away from the medical model and I stepped fully into myself. I stepped into listening. I stepped into knowing. Of communing. Of cultivating. Of giving 100% devotion to myself. Of reveling in my uniqueness. Of using my quirks as superpowers. I stepped fully into co-creation.
A couple days after Gregg and I conceived Aluna, the letters “F R E E B I R T H” scrolled across my mind like ticker tape. I hadn’t heard of freebirth before. After a quick internet search, there was absolutely no question that this was the route I was taking. Freebirth is birthing under our own sovereignty. It’s knowing. And doing. It’s not having anyone tell us when to push, or how “far along” we are. Freebirth is embracing that birth is ultimately a solo/duo experience. That birth is a place only the Mother and Baby can journey. It’s honoring that sacred space and holding nature as divine. Birth is not something that needs to be monitored, measured, and interrupted. Freebirth is embracing our own power… it is our birthright. It is trusting the lineage that humanity has been traveling for thousands of years… until recently. My child growing inside my womb had spoke. She wanted a freebirth… and so did I.
A few days later, I had a vision of me birthing in a hospital. Blood was everywhere. I had died and the fate of my child was unknown. When I shared this vision with Gregg it allowed him to feel secure when other’s judged our decision to step outside the norm and have a home birth. He knew as well as I, that if I were to birth in a system breed of interference and dominance, death was imminent. My body, my spirit, my being, does not do well when western medicine is involved.
After the 1st week into conception, my body became exhausted. I required sleep, almost 20 hours a day. The act of walking downstairs would spur a 2 hour nap. I was short of breath. Then there was “morning sickness” that lasted all hours of the day. My body became a furnace. The “open the freezer and stand with your head in the door” kind of furnace. Yet despite these physical characteristics, I was happy… I was more than happy. I was joyous.
My body was communicating with me. I don’t view any of the physical characteristics of my pregnancy as “bad.” When my body said it needed rest. I rested. My body spoke to me, I listened. This is what I needed. This was my pregnancy. I didn’t fit into what other’s deemed “normal” before, so why would I now? This pregnancy was MY normal. It was on par for how my body responds to physical stress and it was indeed beautiful. When I would throw up, I would smile and give thanks that my body was growing another human being. I would talk to my child and reassure them that all was well and I was so grateful to be their mama. When your relationship with your body is that of your best friend, your perspective shifts. Constructs such as pain and discomfort evolve. Everything was beauty. Everything was love. Everything was perfect.
I don’t buy into the conventional narrative – about anything really. Yes there is truth in it, but there is deeper truth outside of it. When we let go of everything we’ve been taught, and instead discover everything we KNOW to be true instead of outside narratives, our personal experiences become our compass. We don’t look to others for answers. No one knows you better than yourself. Other’s answers are based on their experiences, not yours. Their truths may not be your truth. And when it comes to birthing not only your baby, but also the rebirth of yourself, step into your power. Live fully in your truth. Your truth is within you, not in the answers of others. Because when we are in harmony with all, we embody the answer. The answer is in the turning inward. The answer is in the connection to Source/God/Spirit/The Void. In this relationship we ARE /Source/God/Spirit/The Void. There is no separation. There is Truth. There is Peace. There is Power. There is Bliss. There is Love.
I tune in, listen, and trust the wisdom of my being. Through connection… through love, we have the ability to tap into the divine force of creation. In this space, we are not separate from, but take the active role of co-creator. Through connection and love we are able to step into our power, instead of having our beliefs solidified by other’s opinions. Within this space of connection and love, lives the energy of life. The energy of which we are made from and will one day return to. Death is the great equalizer- the harmonizer. When you go through the birth portal, you die. There is change. There is evolution. There is expansion. You die to be reborn again, in the same life, in the same body. We die with every exhale and we are reborn with every inhale. This is death. This is birth. This is beauty. This is Love. This is the understanding I had before my pregnancy and this is the understanding I carried during my pregnancy.
The first few weeks of pregnancy were challenging as a couple. Gregg would get into his head and replay all the old narratives he’d been fed. The reality of having a child weighed on him… hard. Our society teaches that there are certain boundaries you must fit into. And if you don’t meet those requirements, you’re failing. Gregg was spoon-fed this mentality his entire life. And even though he didn’t agree with it, he still found it hard to escape the grasp of “the way things should be done.” The cars. The house. The white picket fence. The 2.5 kids… The fallacy of perfection. This fallacy of perfection acted like a noose around his heart. It invaded the space where creativity and creation exist and instead filled him with doubt, worry, and uncertainty.
When we fight with the demons in our head… demons that aren’t demons but rather boxes we try to fit ourselves into, we can be difficult to be around. Gregg got mean. Not mean in comparison to what our society demonstrates as mean, but he wasn’t nice. He was short. He was snippy. He was upset. He was stressed and his stress manifested as anger. Over the course of 3 weeks, he had shifted from pure excitement in knowing that he was ready to bring a little one into this world… to being… a prick. He was not nice. He was not happy. He was not confident. And it took its toll. At my core, I was ecstatic. I was grateful. I was at peace. But we are multidimensional beings. Full of complexity. Full of emotion. We can be both happy and sad at the same time. I was overjoyed that I had a being growing inside of me. And I was distraught that my partner had been caught, once again, in the net of fear and doubt that society had cast. I was sad that shortly after we had co-created a little one, Gregg became consumed into the well of clenched teeth and uncertainty. In that state, he didn’t have the ability to process all of the emotions that came bubbling up to the surface.
My sensitivities heightened exponentially once I was pregnant. It’s a beautiful super power that I lovingly embrace. When I am around people I can feel their emotions and their state of being. I feel them… as if I am them. We are one. There is no separation. Welcome to the life of an empath. It is a wonderful blessing, if we can learn to navigate and integrate. My entire life is a constant game of, “What is mine? What isn’t mine.”
When I encountered people during my pregnancy everything was heightened. It was as if everyone was walking around with little “10X” numbers above their head. As in, 10x’s the amount of energy I normally feel. As in… EVERYONE IS SHOUTING THEIR STATE OF BEING and I feel it all as if it’s mine… while simultaneously knowing their state of being is not my truth.
So when Gregg, my partner, the father of my child, got into his funk… it was 10x’s the intensity. It was challenging being around Gregg because I could feel all of his feels. And I knew that what ever I was feeling, I was passing on to my child. From day one, I began teaching the little being growing inside me the game of “What is mine? What isn’t mine.” These heavy emotions were present in the process of her foundational growth. They would be part of the building blocks of her body, her mind, her heart, her soul. But isn’t that life? Going through the up’s and the down’s. Experiencing the totality of human emotion. Isn’t that an integral part of the human experience. To feel all the feels. To have all the thoughts. To experiences all of the sensations. And not get carried away by them. To simultaneously experience the totality of our “human-ness” AND our “god-ness.”
Life is birth AND death. It is a coming AND a returning. Life is about living. Life is about experience. Life is about freedom. Life is about choice. There came a point shortly into my pregnancy where I literally sat down with my child. I sat against the headboard of our bed. I said, “I know it’s been hard. I know it’s been dense. I don’t know what it is that you came to experience in your time on Earth. But if it’s too much. If you’ve experienced what you needed to… I give you permission to return. I will not use my life force to keep you here against your will.” With tears streaming down my face, I told my child that I respected them and their own life so much that I wasn’t going to tether them here if they didn’t truly want it. I told them how grateful I was to be their Mama and that I wanted them so very much. I felt deep into my love for my child so they would be bathed in the purity of what that life would feel like being my child. But I also gave my child the option. I gave my child the ability to make their own choice about the most basic fundamental aspect of life, “Do you want to live, truly live life.”
I find our fear around death to be so interesting. As a society, we allow our fear of death to stop us from living. We have become so paralyzed that we neglect to live a life of our most deepest desires and our wildest dreams. We live in the shallows. Never fully here because we’ve attached a ball and chain to our capacity to experience. We fear failure, so we don’t try. We fear death, so we don’t live. Why do we try so hard to evade the one thing that we will all experience? We will return home. I allowed my child, while still growing inside of me, to choose the most basic fundamental choice… and they chose to live. I carry that knowledge, I carry that truth with me every second of every moment. During pregnancy. During birth. During life earthside. My child wants to live. And I will guide the way. Sometimes leading. Sometimes standing side by side. Sometimes following. Always there, because Love is Freedom. Love is Choice. Love is Compassion. Love is Empathy. Love is Courage. Love is Truth. Love is Wisdom. Love IS… and we ARE Love.
I was in constant communication with the growing child in my womb. I would say things like, “Even though you’re feeling sadness right now, this does not belong to you. Feel it. Then let it go.” and “Your father loves you so much. Sometimes people have other things going on in their lives that makes them hurt, and they express their pain in the form of anger. But none of that has to do with you or me and it doesn’t take away from the fact that he loves you.”
When I spoke to my body. When I spoke to the wise soul in my womb. They replied with a sense of peace and gratitude that would wash over me. We were simultaneously grounded to Mother Earth and tethered Father sky. I felt the flow of energy tingle as it eternally entered through the top of my head and coursed through my body, exiting my almost always bare feet. It was raw. It was intense. It was beautiful.
When I was still in my 1st trimester Gregg, Tank, and I went on our baby moon. Prior to conceiving, we had planned on hiking the state of Washington southbound on the PCT. When I became pregnant, our plans evolved from backpacking 500 miles, to road tripping for 2 months on a baby moon. Gregg and I had talked extensively. Sharing our hopes, dreams, and desires for this journey. We wanted connection. We wanted to revel and relish this last big trip as just the three of us – Gregg, myself, and Tank. We wanted to create our future and spell our dreams into reality. We were excited.
Things didn’t go as planned.
That trip was hard. I cried a lot. Not because of “pregnancy hormones.” If I weren’t pregnant, I still would have cried. I cried because Gregg was having such a challenging time. Our time of connection with each other, evolved into us working separately on ourselves. For *almost* the entire trip. We were both alone. Working on ourselves. While being held by mother earth. We traveled through 10 different states. We covered over 7,400 miles. We took only 1 shower. We only stayed under 1 roof, and it was canvas. We swam in rivers. In oceans. In lakes. In streams. We walked on trails and off trails. We went slow and took our time. We did all of this… separately. And it was hard. I meditated every day… for hours. I conversed with the wise soul growing in my womb. I was infinitely happy while simultaneously being sad for Gregg and all his boxes he had put himself into. It was both a wonderful and a terrible trip.
When our time on the road came to a close and we returned to Clovis, Gregg made an incredible shift. It was almost instantaneous. Hallelujah. Those last few months of pregnancy went smoothly on us as a couple. Once again, he was able to sink into us and the FEELINGS associated with that, instead of living in his thoughts. Thoughts that had the dominant narrative of a society at “war” with itself. Surviving but not yet thriving. He shifted. And he felt. And he lived. And our emotional relationship flourished. A relationship with the self is paramount, but it means *nothing* if we are not able to share. To come together. To commune. “You think because you understand ‘one’ you must also understand ‘two’ because one and one make two. But you must also understand ‘and.” – Rumi. To have a good life, a fulfilled life… we must understand AND.
Back in Clovis, my morning sickness still continued full force. I had outrageous heartburn/acid reflux. During the last few weeks of my pregnancy any position other than my head being upright would result in bile searing my throat and coming into my mouth. It was part of the process… my process… and I was grateful. While my belly tightened. While my bile raged. While my child grew. We flourished.
Gregg and I chose not to announce our pregnancy right away. We waited until it felt right. It felt right when I was 5+ months pregnant. Everyone around us had their own ideas. Their own fears. Their own traumas that they expressed with us. It was taxing. People around us were scared. Their fear was toxic. They expressed their dissatisfaction with my chosen birth plan. They expressed their dissatisfaction with our lifestyle. They expressed dissatisfaction with just about everything… because it was out of their control, and control is the minds misguided way of staying “safe.” But life isn’t supposed to be safe. It’s supposed to be lived and lived well.
I didn’t see a single doctor during my entire pregnancy. I didn’t have any tests taken. I wasn’t monitored by anyone. I had a wild pregnancy. I did what was best for me. I trusted myself. I listened to myself. And that bothered people. But this is my life, not theirs. Their fears not mine. You learn a lot about people when you become pregnant. The words they chose to weave into sentences when they communicate speak volumes. And I had encyclopedias full of others inner dialogues about life. It was so interesting. And taxing. The energy of the heaviness. The energy of their fear. That 10x. So I did what was best for me and my child and I isolated. And it felt GOOD.
Gregg and I did take a course from Freebirth Society. We learned so much that deeply resonated with us. The course spoke words into the emotions we had felt and trusted but weren’t exactly sure why. It clicked.
When I became pregnant, I shared with my mom that I wanted her to be present at the birth, but only if she could keep fear out of it. If she could fully support me and be present, then she would be welcome with open arms. If she couldn’t… she would not. It was challenging for her, but she wanted to be allowed to attend. So she let her love overcome her programed fears. My mother has a career as a staff nurse 4… in OBGYN. She has been a nurse for 37 years. She takes tests and monitors pregnant women all day. But she knows me – her daughter. And she knew that nothing she would say coming from fear would sway me from my truth. So she studied. She took the Freebirth course on her own time. She learned. She disagreed. She agreed. She stayed out of my pregnancy and because of that, my mother was able to join us in welcoming my child into this world. And I am so grateful she was there.
I didn’t feel the need to divulge anything about my birth plan to anyone. In fact, it was quite the opposite. I didn’t want to feel other’s fears projected onto me and inadvertently, my child. So, for the most part, it was assumed we would go the way society teaches us to birth. Let me be clear, what ever way you choose to bring a baby into this world, I support you. If that’s in the hospital, in a birthing center, with a midwife, with a doula, or outside under the stars with no one but yourself…. I support you. I chose what was right for me and my baby.
When folks did learn of my freebirth plans or that I wasn’t under any medical supervision they were soothed by the fact that my mother is an OBGYN nurse. They assumed that she was checking my vitals, monitoring my status, and doing all the “normal” things. I let them believe this. But my mother wasn’t involved in my pregnancy at all. A couple times she spoke her opinions on some tests she believed I should take. I told her I wasn’t going to. And that was that. Simple. Non intrusive. Respect. My pregnancy was my own.
There wasn’t a single moment during my entire pregnancy I experienced fear. There was however, an entire day where had to consciously reframe. Upon learning that it was a variation of normal for labor to last 4 days… I was a little unsettled. So when I heard this, I began planning for the long haul. That way, when it *didn’t* happen, I would be over the top with gratitude. If there’s one word to describe my pregnancy, it would be TRUST.
I went into “false labor” many times. The back pain. The contractions. The throwing up. The diarrhea. With each sensation, with each experience, I sank deeper and further into the birth process. My body was readying itself. Practicing. Everything felt right, and perfect, and beautiful.
The day before Aluna joined us, my Dad came over to the house to pick up some blankets I had sewn. When he left, I told him he’d be a Grandpa (again) very soon. There was a palpable energetic shift and I knew my child would be held against my bare chest shortly.
The morning of January 7th, I was craving biscuits and gravy… and donuts. Gregg, Tank, and I got in the car to go to BS Coffee Shop. I hopped in the drivers seat. My rushes were at a pretty regular interval, but that’s not saying much because they had been for weeks. I drove 2 blocks, pulled over to the curb, put the car in park, and got into the passenger’s seat. Gregg was confused. I told him everything was good, but that I probably shouldn’t be driving. So we continued our morning adventure. As we waited for our food, we drove to get donuts. Gregg wanted me to go into Judy’s with him. I firmly planted myself in my seat. I was staying in the car. He was not amused. When he was inside, I told Tank about our morning feast. He started to drool. I got sad. I had forgotten to order him bacon/sausage. So when we returned to pick up our breakfast Gregg put in an order for our husky pup. They laughed and said it was “on the house.”
We mosied around the rest of the day. We talked. We played. We moved slow. We had fun. We were excited. The more time past, the deeper into the birth portal I stepped. After dinner, Gregg drew me a bath. It was around 9pm. Up until this point, I had refused to pay money for Spotify Premium – No Ads. I had certain songs in my Spotify account that I wanted to hear. I imagined me in labor, listening to Native Flute Music when suddenly I was pulled back from the void by a McDonalds commercial… or a “Fresno County do-ers” commercial. That was NOT going to happen. I pulled out the credit card and payed $9.99 for an ad-free birth experience. AND IT WAS WORTH IT. As I bathed I was serenaded by the harmonies of earthly and cosmic song. Tank would check on me as I breathed through rushes. I gently patted his fur and kissed his head. I talked to my child. I sang to my child. It was a time of both deep peace and immense energy. I told Gregg he should probably get some sleep. He happily obliged. When I emerged from the tub, all of my sensations were still mellow enough for me to rest, so I joined Gregg in bed. An hour later, I awoke. I had crossed the threshold into the space of life and death. I was in IT.
I went to our baby alter and chose 3 crystals to accompany me on my journey. I wanted to be grounded. I chose Smokey Quartz. I wanted to soar high. I chose Sugilite. I wanted magic. I chose Petersite. At first I was quiet. I was trying to allow Gregg as much sleep as possible. I kneeled by the foot of our bed. Tank by my side. Sugilite in my right hand, Smokey Quartz in the other. Petersite on the bed. I gave my gratitude to these crystal beings as they guided us on our journey, holding space. As the rushes intensified, so did my breathing. I was no longer quiet. But Gregg kept sleeping. It was 11:07pm. The flute playing from my phone stopped. In the candle light, I saw that my brother was calling. I stared long and hard at that phone. My brother on the other end. I wanted to reach out and answer. I wanted to exclaim IT’s happening. They’ll be here soon. But I couldn’t. And that was perfect. This was my labor. This was my experience. So I sank further in. I let go. I dove head first. With my knees pressing into the carpet and my hands overhead on the bed I sank. Everything was consistent now. I was loud. I wasn’t shouting. I wasn’t yelling. But man was my breathing LOUD. And Gregg still slept.
I entered a place that was outside of time and space. I closed my eyes. I sank. I can’t tell you how much time had passed. I was outside of it. Time was but a construct of the imagination. Something that quite literally DID NOT exist. I was in a space. A space full of… fullness. Energy. Raw. Primal. Real. Creation. The energy that gave birth to all of this… all of existence. I was there. We were there. Me and my child.
I heard my Mom walk into the room. She was quiet, but was she a force. A gentle force. A force that spoke through closed mouths and soft breezes. Her eyes spoke with wisdom. Her eyes spoke with grace. She gingerly AND powerfully placed her hand on my lower back and pressed. SWEET RELIEF. It was as if she knew exactly where to touch and with how much pressure. My mother’s soft hand on my lower back was one of the most incredible feelings I have ever felt. I was so thankful to have her share in this experience with us. Gregg still slept…
I could no longer kneel. I wore a path from the bathroom toilet to the bed. Gregg awoke. When the rushes came on in all their glory I stopped. I gripped the wall with my left hand and the counter top with my right. We had exited the time of the crystals. We had entered the time of super natural hulk hands. I bore down. Sometimes my eyes were closed. Sometimes my eyes were open. When they were open, I was in beautiful disbelief that the counter was still in one piece. I physically saw my energetic pattern depress the ceramic. I physically saw the wall shift and move. It had the feel of being on mushrooms, accompanied with the cocoon of being on mescaline. Wrapped in feminine comfort I drifted. And when I opened my eyes, my surroundings would breathe. They breathed with me. Pulsing and opening, in an ever evolving state of expansion.
I was naked. Gregg was clothed… in ALL the layers. Mom was in her bathrobe. Tank would push his way past Mom. Nuzzle me, then walk away back into the room, keeping a watchful eye on the emerging scene. My rushes were intense. The pain wasn’t pain… except it was.. it was life and death and joy and power all wrapped into one sensation. One beautiful sensation. At one point, in between, I looked to my Mom and exclaimed, “ I can see why women take drugs.” It’s not that I wanted them… but that I could see how it had become a thing. But to rob oneself of the totality of this experience…I’m grateful that wasn’t my reality.
There came a point, when my eyes had rolled into the back of my head for the umpteenth time, that I returned and looked at Gregg. With a labored voice I spoke, “I need you to be strong for me.” I wasn’t sure how much more I could endure. The intensity. The rawness. I knew I was okay. I knew everything was perfect. But I didn’t know how much more I could endure. I felt maxed. I was on the edge. I’m not sure of what, of when, or of where the edge was… but I was there. Tears were in my eyes. The words “I can’t do this” appeared in my consciousness. They weren’t mine. They were words that had been spoken by countless other birthing mamas. I had no attachment to them. I felt no connection to them. They were just words. And those words were a lie. They were baseless. They were useless. They were empty. And this experience was FULL. The words floated on by. My tears remained. My eyes pleaded, they screamed, they shouted, “I need you to be strong for me Gregg.” And he was. He sat on the porcelain bathtub. Wanting to reach out, but knowing that his touch was too much for me to handle. So he was strong at a distant. Silent. Stoic. Masculine. Strong.
I had been talking to my child every step of the way. Our dialogue looked like this. “I’m here for you. I’m yours. I surrender. I release. I relax. We sink. We evolve. We move. We dance. We become. I’ve got you. You’ve got me. I love you. Thank you. I support you. You support me. We become. I surrender. I release. I relax. We’ve got this. I’ve got you. You’ve got me. I love you. Thank you.” When I thought I was about to cross over the edge, and plunder into the abyss, everything stopped. EVERYTHING stopped. I was exhausted. My body was buzzing. But there were no more rushes. There was only peace. And silence. And relief. Everything had stopped. My child knew I needed a break, they did too. I told my mom to go to sleep. I crawled into bed with Gregg and we both fell back asleep. I had been at my max, and suddenly everything stopped. My child had gifted me the most precious gift I could have ever imagined. A reprieve. A break. The stillness amongst the flurry. I will forever treasure that gift. It is the most precious “thing” I have ever received. Gregg and I went back to sleep. I slept for an hour. It was glorious. It was perfect. It was just what we had needed.
When I awoke everything was different. When the rushes returned I felt a new sensation. The sensation to push. It wasn’t immediate. It came on gradually. Then like walking into a force field, I needed to push. I tensed, while trying to relax. I heard my mom in the background, “Relax. You need to relax.” I thought, “I AM TRYING!!” My mom left. Gregg got up to go get more water. As I heard his footsteps pad away from me, my waters released. It was a burst. A gush. An explosiveness of force that erupted into the toilet. I shouted out for Gregg to return but he was already downstairs.
Each rush got more and more intense. The energy of the room was insane… in the most powerful and peaceful way. Under candle light, with native flute music, the setting was divine. I screamed loud. Not the scream of a lion. But rather that of a high pitched siren. It was shrill. It was piercing. It was loud. It broke barriers. It helped birth my baby. My mom had returned and so had Gregg. And for the first time I tapped into the power and feeling of raw masculine and raw feminine energy. Gregg was perfect. He was everything I needed him to be. But he was so… masculine. The energy of my mom was what I needed. It wasn’t that I needed “Michelle”. But it was that I needed her femininity. Her essence. The essence and wisdom and strength and power of all the women that had ever birthed. The essence of the divine feminine. I locked eyes with her and I sank deeper.
There came a point when my Mom proclaimed, “It’ll be soon.” And I just about shot daggers at her. SOON?! What in the world is SOON?! Soon is relative. Soon is unknown. Soon could be 3 more days. Even though I knew it wasn’t 3 more days… it could have been. Ever since I had learned labor could last 4 days, I had mentally prepared. 3 more days… not soon. Even though I knew, “SOON” was on the horizon.
Gregg was about to leave and refill something again. WAIT! I spoke. I grabbed his hand. and forcefully placed it on the opening of my vagina. There was a head. He was shocked. Ever since my reaction to “soon” had happened, he was thinking we still had hours to go. He mentally recalibrated. Gregg told me that I needed to move my hips otherwise the baby would be born into the toilet. I couldn’t. I physically couldn’t. He looked at me, asking. Yes! I silently replied. He picked up my hips and my goodness did that movement feel AMAZING. I pushed a couple more times for “fun.” In retrospect, it wasn’t necessary at all. Instantaneously my baby came rocketing out of me. No pushing needed. My child came at such an insane speed I was shocked. Gregg was holding our child. I was in awe. There was no pain. There was only adoration and awe. Gregg, my partner, my love, was holding our child. He looked at our baby briefly, then loving handed them over to me. We still didn’t know the sex. That was the last thing I cared about. This was my child! Who cares if they’re a boy or a girl! They’re here! My mom was more eager. She informed me she was a girl. Gregg and I looked at one another. Aluna Aya Love. There was blood everywhere. And it was glorious. It was the most pure, most perfect blood in all of existence. I’ve never seen anything more beautiful than Gregg handing me Aluna all covered in blood. Perfection. Tank came into the bathroom. My mom acted as a barrier. I was a little perturbed, but I don’t think she could tell. “Let him by!” I exclaimed. She did. Tank came over with a sensitive authority. I could tell he was taking in the magnitude of this experience. An experience that culminated in the emergence of a new life… his human sister. He put his nose to her face and took a big sniff. He looked up at me. He seemed to nod. Then he exited to bathroom. And kept an eye on us from the conjoined bedroom.
My daughter was here. Thank you Goddess. Thank you.
Gregg and my Mom helped me into the bathtub to clean up. There was blood everywhere. With her placenta still inside me, we managed to maneuver the intricacy of taking a bath with a connected baby. Aluna was here. My child. She was perfect.
A few minuets later, while still in the tub, I felt the urge to birth her placenta. With the help of Gregg and my Mom, I got up and made my way back to the toilet… and plop. Out slid Aluna’s lifeline. Her mother organ. Her protecter. Her nourisher. Her placenta. It didn’t hurt. Birthing her placenta actually felt kinda good. The birth process was complete… and it was perfect.
We had a lotus birth. We kept Aluna connected to her placenta until it naturally fell off. It took 3.5 days. That period of immediate postpartum was absolutely perfect for us. It was a physical barrier that often kept others away. Having her remain connected insured the mother baby diad. It made everyone honor the sacred bond between mother and baby. It was perfect.
It has been 3 months since January 8th, Aluna AND Gregg’s birthday. I am still in awe. I am still in gratitude. Aluna’s birth was everything I could have hopped for and so much more. Perfection.
There was no real transition for me into motherhood. It’s like I had this life without Aluna. And then once she arrived, it was like she had been here all along. Seamless. Beautiful. Perfect.