Hands on mine. Black no-space swirling close and intimate around me. Everything outside melts away and I am deep below the surface.
Jeremy is near, I can feel his structural support as he holds my hand tight, his presence deep and affirming. The weight of my belly is buoyed up by the deep water and I am loving the soft relaxing warmth. The nurse fumbles around in the water with a heart rate monitor, pressing the metal and plastic onto my belly. Searching with the instrument and her voice.
“He’s not there”, I thought. I sensed him deep in the birth canal, nearly crowing, his presence closer and closer to the surface. Each surge took over my entire body, the chthonic motion drawing my insides down toward the earth, while a deep resonant rumble rose up from my throat.
Then, as if reaching a long sought threshold, I let my focus go. Slumping against the side of the tub, I lifted my eyes to meet my love’s. “I don’t want to do this anymore.” The words fell quietly out of my mouth, bearing a heavy contrast to the powerful groans that had forged my way here.
His gaze softened, and he said, “You’ve got to go back in love, the only way out is through.” A brief prick of despair merged with something altogether new. Something I was finding only in this moment when I wanted to be done. I took a deep breath as I closed my eyes and dropped back down into my body.
As I breathed through this last doorway, I let go into the full expression of feminine presence, steady hands and bright hearts willing me forward, merging me into a collective strength beyond my own. I reached down instinctively, expectantly.
The nurses voices confused and insistent rippled in the background, “Honey, we need to get a read on his little heartbeat, could you just…”
And then seemingly out of nowhere I felt something hard and round. My baby’s head emerged into my hand from the depths of the underworld, on the last leg of his journey to join us on the other side. A surge of power and confidence drove away any remaining exhaustion and my focus sharpened.
My perineum was still stretched over his head. “Okay, slow everything down.” I said aloud.
Time bowed as I breathed loose soft texture into my skin and dropped further into surrender. Then, I could sense the little’s impatience and on the next wave, his head was fully out cradled in my hand.
“His head is in my hand” I burst out, followed by, “take him, take him!”
As the midwife’s hands shot through the water to catch his head, a powerful wave swept through me and his little body burst forth with a rush. Then he was in my arms and I was floating laughing and exclaiming, “you look just like your daddy!”
Holding this little angel in my arms the next day, I felt amazing. With no tearing and a quick 3.5 hour labor, I slept, ate, and moved with ease and peace. As I walked away from the hospital, I was aware of holding more than my beautiful babe in my arms. I carried within me something that we have forgotten, a secret that women once knew.
The wisdom I carry now within me is beyond birthing, and it is my greatest pleasure to share this secret art of birthing with you.
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