As a birth nurse I have assisted thousands of women give birth. I see in front of my eyes the connection between their bodies, hearts, memory and their wombs. I have witnessed women unable to birth until they grieved for their deceased loved ones. I have seen women threatened, either by their providers or family members, and seen their labors stop, felt their cervixes close. I have also witnessed women surrounded by love and support, literally vibrate with love. It floods my body as a bystander, and I’ve learned this phenomenon, not medication or drugs or obstetrical techniques, is what helps babies be born safely.


Birth is not an isolated event, and our bodies are not only miraculous when we are giving birth. Likewise, the health of our children starts not at the moment of birth, but long before. Our babies’ well being starts during pregnancy, with the foods with eat, the water we drink and whether we are calm or stressed. Long before, through our relationship with our sexual bodies. Whether sex hurts us or fulfills us. Whether it made us feel worthy or worthless. Whether we feel connected to our bodies, as the structures of our souls, or whether they defeat us — believing our vaginas, ovaries, breasts and wombs are more like a defect, an injury or weakness. As mothers, the well-being of our most precious babies begins with our own well-being. Whether we are able to love ourselves or not. Whether we are able to accept ourselves or not. Whether we are at peace with our bodies, or at war.


In my past 10 years as an OB nurse, I’ve learned that gynecological exams and pap smears are not enough. Pills and surgery are not enough. Pitocin and C-Sections are not enough. Therapy and meditation is not enough. Religion without spirituality is not enough. Medicine without healing is not enough.

Addressing the Body, without mind, heart and spirit, won’t be enough to heal us.

I seek wise women to help teach us. I call them to teach us, to help us be aware, to heal the layers that restrict and adhere our bodies, heart and mind. I invest in them, because I refuse to perpetuate the subjugation and exploitation of ancient wisdom, and ancient cultures, under cultural appropriation and trademark. That’s been done long enough, and if I have a choice, it won’t continue with me. We can never heal if we feed the forces that hurt us.

The forces that have quieted this ancient wisdom and the people who shared it, are the same forces that continue to oppress us as women. These forces scar our bodies and our minds. They do so systematically, and so it is only systemically that they can be stopped.

The forces that kept ancient wisdom quiet — her ancestor’s wisdom, our mother’s wisdom, our wisdom and intuition — are the ones that taught us shame. Today and every day I refuse to play my part in this system that hurts me. In doing so I will heal the women in my life. They will go on to heal the women in their lives, who will begin to slowly heal our world.
None of us can fix everything that is wrong, or heal everything in us that hurts. But we have to start somewhere, and we have to start now.

All photos by me.



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