Christmas…It’s all about Birth!

So if you’ve read my other posts you’ll realize birth and spirituality are my jam…this past week those two worlds were celebrated simultaneously and that was AWESOME. Christmas has always been my favorite Holiday, not because of gifts, but because of the love and wonder surrounding it. This year though I really began to think about what Jesus’ birth was really like…

1. It was unassisted. Mary had to use her own instincts to birth the soul that Christians follow today. No doctor, no midwife, no pain medications or medical interventions…

2. Unsanitary conditions. I mean what is more dirty than a barn?

3. Afterwards she rested…the Magi/Wise-men didn’t come until sometime after 40 days. Mary’s main focus during Jesus’ first months of life would have been recovering, establishing breastfeeding, and NOT entertaining or parading her infant about.

The first two points really contradict how our current society views childbirth. There is so much fear surrounding birth and all the things that could go wrong. Where I live in the Midwest, home births are not as common as hospital births. Unassisted births would likely raise more than a few eyebrows…how or where a woman chooses to labor & birth should not be controversial or questioned.

When a woman is provided the space to intuitively give birth, she will know when something isn’t right…even if it’s her first labor. If in a medical environment, women can relinquish their power because “the doctors know better”. However, sometimes they don’t and it’s the mother who has to live with the emotional and spiritual consequences. The medical community has not yet connected the relation of postpartum depression to labor/birth disappointment (if you will). Up to 20% of moms experience post part I’m depression in the US and despite being a developed country we have the highest maternal mortality rate…this can’t be a coincidence. When you take a natural occurring event and try to schedule, manage, or intervene it only causes more issues and can be more fatal than letting it run it’s course.

The third point also reflects how skewed our culture is when it comes to postpartum care for women. If you give birth at a hospital, your stay is generally a few days and then you’re sent home. The first follow up is by your OB, 6 weeks after giving birth…uh what? Some women are blessed to have supportive family that help with the housework, let the mother rest, and cook meals. But in reality the majority of women are left to adjust to motherhood, alone. Not only that but if she is a working mother, she may have to return to work within the first month of giving birth just to pay the bills. That makes breastfeeding nearly impossible and can cause her even more emotional and financial stress.

If you still believe that our current birth & postpartum system isn’t broken, then watch out for 2018. Changes are happening and people are realizing they want to live happier, healthier, and hopeful.

Road trip!

This is so fun. I am writing this while sitting in the passenger seat of my husband’s truck! We are headed to his hometown for the weekend to celebrate with a baby shower for his sister & brother in law. (It happens to also be my hubs 29th birthday weekend so I’m positive there will be some celebrating of that as well!)

It’s pitch black, the baby is fussing in the backseat, we hit bumper to bumper traffic and we’re not even on the interstate yet. Now I have hustled all day cleaning, doing laundry, packing, cleaning again. Just to be out of the house is relief in and of itself until I feel it…the anxiety and stress radiating on my left. I look over and you can physically see the anger pouring out of my husband. We finally get past the jam which was due to an accident, of course, and he’s still lingering in this cloud of fumes.

How wonderful is it to witness other people’s perspectives, especially as they reveal themselves. The 5-10 minutes we were delayed I felt a peace a calm. Realizing it was an accident made me want to slow down and not rush because more than likely that’s what those drivers were doing. On the other hand, my husband only viewed it as an inconvenience and unplanned delay. Emotions which consumed him the rest of the trip. Again, what’s the rush?

Day in and day, out time is passing us by. In the end it doesn’t matter how quickly we get there but rather that we traveled at all. Stop and smell the roses. Take a back road that is less traveled. Don’t watch the clock, you’ll only be disappointed. This life should be savored and relished. Roll the windows down, turn the radio up, and drive happier, healthier, and hopeful.

Medical or mindful?

There’s about to be a shift in the way modern medicine is practiced. Currently in the U.S. it is a misogynist institution that, for the most part, cares more about budgets, bottom lines, and profits. Yes, great medical advancements and discoveries have improved our overall well being and longevity of life, but it’s all based out of fear.

Vaccines is a hot topic for many people. On one hand you have the pro-Vaxxer’s that just follow standard protocol and trust that their doctor has their best interest at heart…but do they? Delayed or anti-Vaxxer’s make up the other side to this coin. They are usually viewed as “hippie”, a threat to society, or just plain dumb. But their real argument is that of informed consent. Each individual’s health is not like any other, our own genetic makeup while essentially the same, is unlike any other person’s. So why has our standard of care become a “one size fits all”.

So many people put their trust in physicians to cure them of their ailments. It’s easier to play the victim and put the responsibility on another when in reality it’s up to that individual to decide if they want to be healed. I know of a pharmacist who was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in their late 20s. What seemed like a devastating diagnosis for someone just beginning their career and family turned out to be so much more. When the medical and pharmaceutical routes provided little to no comfort or support they began to look at their health in totally new way…nutrition, exercise, wellness, mindfulness, etc. A few years after the diagnosis, they received astonishing news that their MRI came back with no evidence of MS. The doctor couldn’t explain this miracle, there is no known cure for MS so how could this be?

Another example is cancer. Why do some people die from it and others go into remission? On the surface most people would admit the goal is to get better but there is other factors than just medical treatment. I’m talking soul contracts, cellular memory, believing that you DESERVE to get well…the list can go on but you get the hint. Individualized care is needed in order to make any change in our wellness and it shouldn’t be up to someone to make treatment decisions for you. Get to know your body and you will see the paths that it will respond to…enough of this “one size fits all” mentality.

Just like any healing profession when used in conjunction with other modalities our issues can be resolved in totality. However, in this western society, the majority of people assume allopathic medicine holds the answer to their ailments. We must start step inside ourselves and take responsibility for our own health and well being. Let’s stop putting it in other’s hands so we can begin to live healthier, happier, and hopeful.