“Do you have a message for me?” I asked through my tears and grief.
“Remember,” she smiled. “Remember you are this too… “
I took a deep breath. Something in my brain couldn’t quite compute this message.
Me? Could I really be this too?
I was connecting with my unborn baby and she had just said good bye. She was not to be born in physical form - this time at least. Though I was reeling with the shock and pain I was hugely comforted by her presence. She was so gentle and loving. I felt her to be a wise sacred being and I was in total awe of her Divine Presence. No way was I Divine and Sacred like that.
But she smiled, she nodded and as I in a confused state of shock, hesitantly and reluctantly accepted her message, it was time for her to leave.
She’d made herself known with the same gentle wisdom even before I was pregnant. During a specific guided process, I had met her across a bridge. A small girl who nevertheless packed a huge punch in the sacred presence department that left me blasted wide open in love.
This is the energy of the future I reflected later. These are the children we are welcoming to the planet right now, this is part of the evolution of humanity, the consciousness that wants to be born on this planet at this time. Amazing.
And she was ready to come to me. I was delighted and quite blown away. I felt my heart open with love each time I remembered that first meeting... But did I feel worthy? Was I equally ready for her to come to me?
She came anyway. I knew it before the lines on the stick confirmed it to me. So I set about preparing for her arrival. For me that is always at least as much about the inner work as the practical. When I align my inner world the outer journey is always an easier ride.
But it wasn’t to be.
One day shy of 15 weeks I began to bleed. Two days later a scan confirmed what I already knew; they were very sorry but there was no heartbeat.
The next few weeks were a blur in many ways. Ordinary life continued as I waited for the miscarriage to complete. First the denial phase of the grief process. Perhaps I could magic her back to life. Perhaps it hadn’t really happened and the scan was wrong… Crazy thoughts. The grief came in waves. In those moments I would surrender to the emotion. My heart breaking, my existence consumed by one long scream of pain.
Yet into my raw and wounded heart, and through the confusion of overwhelming and conflicting emotions, her parting message kept niggling at me. I had accepted her message and its powerful energy so wanted to come alive in me. But as yet I could not fully believe it and everything that was not in alignment with it was being thrown up my way.
Which would win out? Well it was a tough ride. Truthfully I did not feel equal. I did not feel worthy to be her mother. In fact, I felt totally unworthy to carry such a child. I felt I was the bottom of the heap, way, way lower than her in some kind of spiritual hierarchy. I was nothing in comparison.
As I worked my way through my unworthiness I saw the scale of this problem. How so many women put themselves last. How so many neglect their own needs and sacrifice themselves for their families. How this unworthy pattern plays out in a myriad of different ways for women and how it cannot continue as we welcome in the next generation of children. Of course there is a paradox. Just because we don’t believe we are worthy or equal doesn’t make that true but if we don’t believe it how can we live it? How can we effect the changes we want to see in the world? And how will it impact those who are coming in if they have to wade through a foggy energy field of unworthiness?
I started out totally unable to fathom that I could be a soul of equal worth to my child and that we had an agreement between equals. Deeper and deeper I spiralled into the layers of how I didn’t feel worthy until at last I broke through into the spacious knowing that I was equally worthy and Divine as she.
Different yes. I am me and I came earlier. My energy is different to hers. But different no longer meant lesser. Prior to this I could spout along with the best of them about how we are all equal even if different without fully believing it was true for me. Now I got it at a deeper, visceral level. There was a knowing that could not be shaken.
It also feels timely. After centuries of oppression women are indeed rising up and speaking out, calling for change. A new feminine power is forming. One which I hope will not alienate or suppress a true masculine power but complement each other in a rising dance of spirit. It is time for us all to rediscover and embody our full worth as women, as human beings and as mothers. For ourselves and for our children, It IS time. And there is no time to waste.
Already I am noticing profound differences in how I am showing up. I am peaceful inside and less triggered by my children being children. There is a joy in being alive bubbling up that I can tune into. I don’t have to constantly prove myself so there is less push. That has been reflected back to me by others. My voice has changed. Clients go deeper more quickly and with less efforting on my part. My son keeps coming and hugging me.
So in the end although I wouldn’t have chosen this path to self-worth I am deeply grateful for the gift of this pregnancy and birth. It has been a powerfully transformative rite of passage just as a live birth would have been and I am looking forward to watching the shifts continue over the next weeks and months.
If you have experienced miscarriage and want to clear your cells and being of loss and grief before you welcome your baby. Or if you can feel something holding you back from being the mother you really want then do check out my 121 services where I support women like you to release stored trauma and pain and birth in confidence.
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Today I am sharing a small but significant part of my second pregnancy in which I feared my preferred choice of birth place would be taken away from me. I went through stages of denial, panic and terror but I came out the other side with a deeper confidence that shaped the remainder of my pregnancy and ultimately my business.
“Where would you like to give birth?” asked the consultant who was reviewing my blood pressure results.
“Well,” I ventured hesitantly, “I think my baby would like to be born at home.”
“It’s not about where your baby wants to be born,” she replied, looking slightly surprised as I had guessed she might. I was aware that considering the child’s views about his birth place may seem a bit off the wall to some, but it felt important to me and I was already experiencing the fierce mother tiger desire to protect his wishes.
“It’s about where YOU want to give birth,” she continued.
With that something in me finally took root. Some energy powered up through those roots, through my body and out of my mouth.
Just two words. Spoken with utter conviction. Not of the kind where I am trying to convince myself and wondering why the other person is not buying it. Just a simple statement of unconvertible fact.
She responded immediately to my shift in energy. She accepted my answer without further question. Now the discussion was against the backdrop of home birth. I started to breathe again.
Even though I had known all along that was what I really wanted. I had been hesitant as I had been listening too closely to my mind and worrying about getting into conflict with the medical establishment. I was there only to have my home birth plan confirmed, in writing rather than the verbal assurance I already had so as to put my midwives at ease. Having been on a blood pressure cuff for 24 hours that revealed my blood pressure to be entirely normal and even quite good at home and to spike only when the midwives tried to take it, it should have been a formality. But it was not turning out that way. I was so nervous waiting that when they did take my resting pulse it was 134, my bp was 156/107. I knew it was simply irrational panic, I wasn’t in danger and I knew that my birth plan wasn’t in danger either really. But try telling that to my body which was running to the tune of some other programme.
Despite all that, when it counted I found inner strength and confidence was coursing through my veins and speaking through me.
The paper I eventually signed with the Supervisor of midwives described me as a nervous lady. This also surprised me although I could understand on reflection that this was how I had presented myself to them. I was bigging up the whole white coat syndrome to try and appear reasonable and therefore get them on side- (see this great blog that discusses the ways in which reasonable woman syndrome shows up in the maternity care system.)
It surprised me because that was not how I felt inside. This was my second child and second home birth and I was feeling on top of the world. Then with one random high BP reading that refused to come down my world turned temporarily upside down.
Several days of inner work, monitoring, and questioning later and I was back, more confident than ever. And just two weeks later I gave birth at home as planned in the wonderful but definitely unplanned setting of my shower cubicle.
As a child I was not confident. I looked at my peers and thought they had it all together whilst I reddened at any attention and altered my opinions to match what I thought the group would want to hear or would appear cool. As an adult I made some inroads into this but still looked to the more extrovert types for a template of confidence. Then I watched this Ted talk by Brené Brown on Vulnerability and this interview with Sera Beak. I realised that I had confidence all wrong. It wasn’t about eliminating all fear and sailing along permanently sure of yourself. It wasn’t about knowing all the answers in advance. It wasn’t about how I was presenting my outer self to the world either. I didn’t have to look, act or speak any particular way. In fact doing so was no guarantee that I would be feeling confident about myself inside, where it really mattered.
I realised that true confidence was about having the courage to show up as I was in that moment, all of me and my emotions present, whether they be fearful or fantastic. My confidence lay in complete self acceptance and self love, including the nervous, shy and introverted parts of me. It blossomed in my growing trust of the inherent safety of the universe. A universe that was delighted I had found the confidence and inner strength to allow vulnerable and scared if that was my experience.
It wasn’t necessarily any easier. Those last two weeks of my pregnancy were a roller coaster of emotions. But my determination to remain open and surrender to what showed up, along with my equally powerful determination to be true to my soul’s desires and own my truth (which in this case was to birth in a tent decorated with fairly lights and flowers in my garden) meant I got something better than easy. Better even than the tent which didn’t in fact happen! I got what I truly desired; empowered confidence in myself as a woman.
This consciousness I call confidence is not dependent on a particular set of circumstances and external support. It runs deep and allows panic, terror and doubt to run through my system yet remains unchanged below the surface. It is not affected by any stories I may tell myself about my less desirable emotions or challenging situations. And it goes far beyond any external behaviour I may dress myself in.
It shines out from deep inside, its clothes are simply the truth of who I am. All I am doing is lifting the covers off and tuning in to my essence as a woman. This essence trusts in life, for it is life and as such it takes change in its stride. And that is a good thing as we are living in a time of change. And the changes that are needed in the birth arena can only happen when we as women change from the inside out. Or to put it another way when we rediscover and live our inner strength and power as women. This is the journey that was encapsulated in those two simple words, ‘at home,’ and it is the journey of my business.
For more information about how BirthEssence can support you to find your inner confidence and to birth with ease and joy check out the services I offer including 1:1 sessions and luxurious pregnancy massage. I also offer a comprehensive Birth Confidence Package yet to be featured on my website. To be among the first to experience this and for more information drop me a line or call me. I look forward to working with you. x
‘Look’, my son cries, ‘a rainbow’. We stop and gaze in wonder at the vivid colours leaping across the sky towards their fabled pot of gold that promises new beginnings and richness beyond imagining. My son is delighted that it appears to start just behind our road somewhere. I am delighted by his innocence, joy and enthusiasm. I am reminded that I need not chase after an ephemeral, always just out of reach, external source of riches. My son’s excitement and the rainbow’s own glory prompt me to stop and savour the riches I am already living. Right here, right now my own pot of gold laughs with me at the amazing colours of life unfolding before our eyes.
As if a joyful reminder to notice the richness already surrounding me, and a promise of hope and renewal weren’t enough, today the rainbow also directed me towards the power of forgiveness via my much loved deck of Mother’s Wisdom Cards. I pulled the Rainbow card and was invited to reflect on forgiveness. I remembered times I had forgiven a person or event that was weighing on my heart. the resultant joy and lightness causes me to soar to heights on a par with the rainbow’s dizzy display of colour.
As I reflected a strong memory surfaced of one of the most memorable and significant times I have felt forgiveness. The back story shows me at a time in my life when I was single and had just tried, luckily unsuccessfully, to have a relationship with a highly unsuitable man. He did not treat me well and still I chased. My huge grief at the realisation that this was not going to be the relationship I wanted it to be was totally out of proportion to the handful of times I had met him before he ran away and refused all contact. Every attempt at real communication felt catastrophically wrong and painful. I became angry and bitter at the way I had been treated and despite previous attempts to find closure had not managed to let go of the story. Even I could tell I was obsessing over something that from the outside looked relatively minor. Why did it feel so big to me?
So I sought support from a friend and colleague in the form of a Journey Process.* During my process I was transported back to what appeared to be a past life memory of my execution. I was about to be beheaded by someone I knew from my village and as I looked into his eyes I recognised him to be this man from my present life who’d mysteriously run straight out of my life. I felt such a strong connection to this person and felt that they had been important to me in this life yet here they were about to execute me. His eyes were full of guilt and anguish. I continued to gaze at him and consciously opened into his heart and asked to be shown how it was for him. I was blasted into such a powerful shock and grief with the words ‘I am sorry, please forgive me’ repeated over and over and over again.
I felt our village was being ransacked and women were being targeted and punished, particularly healers or medicine women and there was a kind of civil war happening with villagers being pitted against each other in cruel twist. He was utterly horrified at what he was being forced to do. but although he did not want to kill me, in that moment, at that time he had no choice.
As I felt this I really had no choice either. I forgave him completely. Or more accurately forgiveness flooded my heart and being as I felt the totality of the situation and the enormity of his grief and regret. He had been punished enough. I let go of my blame, anger and betrayal. I allowed love to flow through me again. I felt whole and healed.
As I brought this energy through to the present day me I felt only compassion for my would be suitor and instead of the ranting email I had planned I found the only words in my mind and heart were ‘I love you, please forgive me and I let you go now.’
I never saw or spoke to him again. These words were expressed only in this process. But I have no doubt that they set us both free. As I let him go, both in the past and in the present, I let go too. I felt relief and joy. I felt as if I was flying across the sky like the rainbow propelled by my forgiveness into a pot of golden freedom. I didn’t need to chase it. The gold was pouring into and from my heart as love replaced the heavy weight that unbeknownst to me I had been carrying for far longer than the few months I had known this person.
Memories like these concerning what I term ‘witch hunt mentality’ seem to be occurring quite commonly at this time. Whole groups of women are releasing this stored collective consciousness from our past. It is time for women to step out of the shadow of these previous eras when to survive it was necessary to hide our talents and the ways of feminine healing and leading. It is time to forgive and set aside the past and to create wholeness. A wholeness where the feminine and masculine energies within each of us live in balance and unity. A wholeness where love and forgiveness shine forth like the rainbow leading us to the gold within.
This deep spontaneous forgiveness that came with understanding and emotional release set me free, set both of us free, and it is this kind of work that is setting a whole generation free. I am amazed by what I discover when I enquire within, how much can be imprinted and stored from traumatic events and equally how much can be released. We are creating space for new lives, new beginnings. A space that is much needed.
In this case, new beginnings spilled their colours quickly onto the canvas of my life. Shortly afterwards I met my amazing husband and my life took on a wonderful new direction.
And so I leave you with the reflection, Where in your life is forgiveness needed? What rainbows would brighten your sky brighten your sky when you forgive?
For more information about The Journey pioneered by Brandon Bays and how it can help you find freedom and forgiveness please click here.* For a 3 free guided visualizations created by Brandon Bays for healing and relaxation please click here* and for the free e-book The Journey click here *
Follow the link to learn more about and buy Mother’s Wisdom Deck: A 52-Card Inspiration Deck with Guidebook (Book & Cards)*
If you feel like you may benefit from some forgiveness work check out my 1:1 page to see what I offer or call me to chat about how I can help you.
*These are affiliate links.
In Part 1 I spoke of my journey from unreadiness to readiness, from worry to inner calm, and from obsession over my long, long list of ‘absolute essentials’ to complete before birth should happen, to no worry and no list.
I spoke of my growing ability to rest, relax and allow readiness to be.
I spoke of learning surrender to the unknown and trust as I birthed my child and dropping my to do lists in favour of actually doing, with ease and flow.
In part 2 I am sharing with you how I made this significant transition with relative ease using NPA, a tool I also use in my 1:1 sessions to facilitate powerful transformation. The shift that evening from feeling distinctly NOT ready and worried about how to get everything sorted in time, to going into labour and giving birth from a place of being ready was almost instantaneous, quite surprising and has had long lasting deepening effects on me and my ability to take action.
NPA stands for Non Personal Awareness, a deceptively simple yet enormously effective tool that brings you into harmony and flow with what truly matters to you. It is a short six line process that effortlessly aligns the energy of your experience, releasing blocks and stuckness and allowing into your experience that which you’ve been keeping at bay. Alternatively as Joel Young, the creator and custodian of NPA, taught it to me, “letting the yucky stuff out and letting the yummy stuff in.” He describes non personal awareness as a living, breathing perspective says,
For those intrigued and eager to try it out click here to read more about NPA and download a free worksheet. For those remaining keep reading to discover some of the possibilities of NPA in action with my story of clearing needless worry about being ready and another glimpse into some of the intimate details of the birth of my second child.
On the evening in question having cleaned the bathroom, (Job 1 on the endless list of essential preparations according to the worried, time pressured and desperately nesting version of me.) I’d settled in to a conference call evening of NPA sharing with the NPA Community. The Theme that evening was birth!
During the call I spent an enjoyable hour bringing in the energies of confidence and trust. Throughout my pregnancy these two themes were pretty constant companions and the focus of much of the inner clearing work I was doing to prepare for the arrival of my child. By the night of the 24th June I was feeling confident in my body, I trusted my ability to birth. I had negotiated numerous hurdles and challenges along the way that had all served to help me to consciously choose the circumstances of my birth from an empowered grounded inner strength and to trust in these decisions.
Yet I still wasn’t fully relaxed and enjoying that in-between time of a fully formed baby inside an expectant mother enjoying the last twilight hours of their shared physical existence before the next chapter begins. I was aware of a persistent niggling worry about what I still had to do in order to be ready. Accompanied by an equally insistent murmur in the recesses of my mind about the potential pitfalls of not knowing my midwife. These unhelpful thoughts battled with the deeper sense of trust and confidence I felt when I tuned in. Try as I might, I couldn’t banish them completely and I was restless. I was worried about unknown factors I couldn’t fathom or plan for by their very nebulous unfounded nature, even as I was aware of trust in the universe and in my body.
This background noise and tension was not so loud but was real nonetheless and resided just under the surface of my day to day awareness. I had been doing what most of us have a tendency to do from time to time, pushing it to one side and ignoring it, telling myself I was being daft. As usual the universe had my back and was bringing me answers to my deep prayers almost before I was aware of what I needed.
In this case it brought me help in the form of two NPA ‘cookie cutters’ borrowed from a friend. That’s right, they weren’t even mine initially. Another thing I have learnt. I don’t have to be the one to know or come up with all the answers. The answers will come and will be available if I am listening and remain open. Back to the current story though. As I heard my friend share her experience with the energy of ‘The Unknown’ and ‘Being Ready’ I knew with a strong intuitive hit in my gut that these were ‘mine’ too.
I put the phone down and took both phrases through the NPA words.
First up ‘The Unknown.’
All my fears about not knowing which midwife would be on duty and that something untoward may occur and endanger my birth choices surfaced. Crazy thoughts that giving birth the first time was just a fluke and I would totally fail at it this time. Panic and terror at not knowing what was coming next and whether I could handle it overwhelmed me.
I sat still.
I felt it would last forever. I nearly despaired.
I sat still some more.
I smiled as joy bubbled through the mist. I relaxed as inner peace dispersed the mist. I was at peace with not knowing, not knowing what would happen in my birth experience, when it would start, who would be there, content to wait out the future. It had been perhaps 5 minutes but it could have been hours or a lifetime. I didn’t care.
This shift is simple to write in just a few line. Easy to read fast, gloss over and keep reading. I invite you to read it again and let it sink in. Imagine how it would feel to be living with fear as the backdrop and then imagine the contrast of living from a peaceful place. Really, I invite you to take some time to appreciate the depth of this through my words as I can’t begin to do justice with how transformative for me this change in perspective was at this time. This kind of shift has been my repeated experience with taking time to do inner work with tools such as NPA.
With a greater sense of ease in myself I moved onto NPA cookie cutter number 2 ‘Being Ready.’ This was quieter and more subtle yet with immediate measurable effect.
I stopped thinking about the list.
It was not today’s concern.
This was totally unexpected.
Ironic really. I know how effective this tool is. It was a cookie cutter on ‘being ready’ right?
So I shift into a place of being ready and what happens? Yes, straight into labour.
I was ready.
I tried to tell myself it might be Braxton Hicks and it might stop and start and I had a few days or even weeks left yet.
But no, my body knew differently.
Just four hours later my baby popped out (quite literally with a popping sound and a big splash!) into my waiting hands, slippery and warm to my fingers, crying already as I brought him in close to my heart. Quickly soothed by enthusiastic suckling, we gazed at each other. My delighted and euphoric laughter echoed round the bathroom as my husband stared in astonishment. ( He thought I needed water or something when I shouted for him to come.)
Very shortly, I was ready again; this time for some well deserved rest as I dropped off to sleep cradling my newborn in a warm cosy after-birth glow, deeply satisfied and powerfully transformed by the surprising turn of events that evening.
Further information about Joel Young NPA can be found here.
Click here to download The NPA Process Sheet for FREE and see for yourself what is possible.
The links in this article for Joel Young are affiliate links. The NPA technique is so powerful and deserves to be more widely known and used.
For assistance on your own journey to birth with confidence and trust click here to learn about working with me in BirthEssence Mother Nurture 1:1 sessions.
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