I heard the most amazing birth story today (to be shared in full at a later date). This is the story of a young woman, only 25, who is fit and healthy and strong. She had the most normal of pregnancies, and was waiting in anticipation for her “normal birth” to begin. When it didn’t, things escalated…the labour was longer and more intense than expected, and at the end of it all, she nearly lost her life.
When she was wheeled out of ICU to connect with her perfect baby and beautiful husband, she was awakened to life and to her gift of a second chance. This was a girl you would never see falter at anything, and in the end, if it weren’t for the amazing and immediate response of hospital staff who were on call at that moment, she may not have been here today.
I looked at this strong and gorgeous woman in amazement, tears in my eyes, and was reminded again about the power of child birth. We sometimes forget how vulnerable we are and our babies are in the moment of giving birth. There are so many variables. In one moment, we become fallible…human. Thankfully, we live in a time when most of us and our babies survive.
Mothers are warriors.
During my last pregnancy, my yoga teacher declared that standing in warrior pose was gentle preparation for motherhood. In warrior pose, we stand strong, erect, our feet grounded, our arms open. Although it is a masculine analogy, I thought of warrior pose many times…bearing down as my daughter tried to make her way into the world…lying in a darkened room with a child who never seemed like she would stop crying and go to sleep…sitting in the hospital waiting room, while my beloved daughter was under full anaesthetic having her teeth repaired…crouching down, tired and pregnant, as my daughter rolled on the floor screaming with emotion…These are the times warrior pose comes to mind, and I ground my feet, lift my chin and open my arms and heart.
Motherhood can send us to the brink and back.
So today I am thankful that my gorgeous friend and her baby are alive and, in fact, flourishing.
I am grateful we live in a time when most women and their babies live after childbirth.
I am grateful for our inner strength as mothers and our capacity to be open to hardship, to grow from it and to learn from it.