Nicola Goodall – Birth Confidence Summit

Links to the books mentioned in the interview and Nicola's book. Scroll for Bio and Time Stamps.

Nicola Goodall Bio

Nicola has been involved in childbirth for over 20 years. She is a founding member of the Scottish Doula Network, the main facilitator for the Mindful Doulas training programme, and founder of the Red Tent Doulas training initiative 

Nicola is also the director of the Wysewomen workshops - a series of learning circles aimed at women sharing with women through storytelling, publications and healthy social media.

Nicola published her first book in 2019 - 10 Oils: Aromatherapy Oils for the Childbearing Year.

Nicola is a very direct and honest jewel of information who never ceases to inspire others to be the change they wish to see in the world.

You can watch also watch her TedX talk on reframing Birth.

Time Stamps

Doulaing is in her blood and Nicola has many Grandmothers from different ancestries inside.

4.31 Helping bring back indigenous knowledge for example you can call in the 4 directions in the Native American way but there is also a Gallic Way.

6.58 There are 14 generations of grandmothers inside you and knowlege may come through meditation.

9.25 Intuition and knowledge is strong in the high hormonal state that is pregnancy and menopause.

12.07  Explaining the link between grief, death and ceremonies around the world to mark the rite of passage to mother.   Around the world these ceremonies all include some form of cleansing, some form of annointing and blessing and some form of wrapping.

15.53 These ceremonies set you up for motherhood and in some cases can help physical conditions such as prolapse even though you are not working directly on the physical.

18.16 Don't be pressured to look a certain way. Take your heels off is  a good small step to help comfort in pregnancy.

20.45 Are we making ourselves sick to appear a certain way.  Lots of education needed as we are trained  to obey men in a uniform..

Rewilding is a good starting point. Go out and find a park look at the sky, feel the ancient trees.

26.29 Handing over to something bigger. Nicola's faith that helped her have no fear. The power of surrender.

31.15 The power of prayer and a supportive community.

34.10 How Nicola was supported by her faith and community when the worry about a third baby being difficult was put in her mind.

36.05 There is an understandable backlash to religious faith in the UK but as the colonisers we are the minority not to have strong faith but we tend to think everyone should be like us and this is not correct. Don't be exclusionary.

40.30 Still today people go to places in secret to pray when pregnant such as holy wells.  These places have a strong energy and lot of history. Book: The Power of Ritual by Robbie Davis-Floyd.

There is power in gathering and in making your own ritual

44.43 Choose to use different language as a step towards  feeling positive about birth.

47.15 We need to be comforable with death as it is a part of life.

50.15 If you are scared of death put the elephant on the table and talk about it.  Can you find a care provider who is not scared of you dying?

52.55 Midwives would traditionally have also attended the deaths. Shivasna pose in yoga is the corpse pose. You are meant to contemplate death whilst in that pose.

54.00 Nicola's vision. Nicola would like to see birth in the family and community again and wonders how we start a revolution?

58 28 We need to do emotional work and not just focus on the physical. Sometimes the baby is not coming and there is no obvious phyiscal reason.  The true art of midwifery includes asking how someone is.

Art of midwifery is all contained in a look- quote from indigenous midwife. Love is one of the most important parts of taking care of women. The example in Cape town of how a little love and care can go a long way and be reflected in outcomes.

1 hr 09 Get the wild thing going.  Wrap up warm and get outside.

Charlotte Kanyi