During my second pregnancy, I chose to create a home birth experience. Intuitively I knew this path nourished my soul and empowered me as a woman. I thoroughly researched home birth versus hospital birth. I learned outcomes had more to do with a combination of excellent prenatal care and a healthy woman rather than the context in which a baby comes into the world. Being vibrantly healthy, I knew home birth was a sound choice for my family and me.
One of the many aspects I loved about this experience was my whole family came to every one of the appointments throughout my pregnancy. Rather than being isolated among strangers, I got to bond with our midwife, my then-husband, and our daughter.
Our two-year-old daughter learned concrete, simple things about the baby growing in my belly. During her bedtime, we read the book, Mommy, Daddy, and I are Having a Baby.
When I was eight months pregnant, a delivery man wheeled our new stove into the kitchen. He saw my daughter enter the room and greeted her warmly with a kind “Hello! How are you?”
My daughter replied, “There is a baby in mommy’s uterus!”
He blushed and recovered with an accurate reply. “You are a smart little girl.”
I felt relieved he had not called her a lucky duck. I had previously navigated her confusion at her pre-school teacher calling her a lucky duck.
“Why did my teacher call me that, Mommy? I am not a duck! I am a little girl!”
She might have even placed her hands on her hips and stomped her foot for emphasis. I lamely explained how adults use strange language to describe things. I am grateful I did not use expressions like a bun in the oven, Knocked up, or wearing the bustle wrong. Truths spoken in clear language from embodied confidence, a deep knowing can be empowering.
As you can imagine, I faced some fierce questions and criticisms from significant adults in my life. Having navigated a great deal of this blowback throughout my life for many different choices I made, I found myself in a grounded, confident place deep inside myself.
I finally said to these individuals, “You are scared. I hear your fears. I am not scared.” What a relief to experience the sound of silence after I spoke my truth.
I had created a backup plan and even learned about what equipment an ambulance contains to support a woman in labor. I had a backup medical doctor, too.
My birth experience remains one of the most memorable of my life. Supported by my midwife and her assistant, I birthed our son in the presence of my then-husband, our daughter, and a close friend. Our son entered the world in the loving atmosphere of our home. Held in her dad’s arms, our daughter cooed as her brother emerged into the soft lamp lit guest bedroom.
When other people fiercely questioned or criticized my choices, I often thought, They don’t trust me! I also now know harsh judgments usually come from fear, sometimes rational, often irrational. I found their angry reactions confusing or even amusing when I knew these choices brought me great joy and inner fulfillment.
Trust comes from discernment, detachment, unconditional love, and a radical acceptance of all outcomes. When I trust you, I believe you make your choices according to your deepest values. Your values might be very different than mine. I discern that you are engaged with the level of awareness you have cultivated and from the inner guidance inside of you. Holding space for you with compassion and non-judgment, I believe you will find your way to your own truths and the experiences you are meant to have in this lifetime. Life experiences and consequences seem to be the best teachers.
Trusting myself means knowing I can listen to my heart & the wisdom of my body. I can honor my inner guidance and make choices informed by my interests and deepest yearnings. I integrate the learning from past painful out-of-integrity experiences while remaining detached and open to what shows up in my life. I can make new choices when I learn something different. Direct experiences inform my learning. I am capable of growth, evolution, and gaining wisdom about being a compassionate, loving, and kind human being.
Trust feels like unconditional love and the ability to accept truths. Some truths pierce through illusions and might come in hot and painful. Denial does not bring peace. Denial creates a sort of numbing anxiety and a pretense of postponing pain. Accepting truths means pulling off some blinders and being willing to bravely feel the pain limiting beliefs have produced.
As Maya Angelou said, “When you know better, you do better.” And when you trust yourself and your deepest yearnings, you can expand your capacity to trust other people and life itself.
May you trust in love.
The founder of Cherish Your World, Laura Staley passionately supports people thriving by guiding them to a holistic transformation of space, heart, and life. Laura is the published author of four books including Live Inspired which reveals the brave and deep work of self-discovery and her new book of short writings and poetry Abundant Heart: Thoughts on Healing, Loving, and Living Free where with her characteristic grace and candor, Laura shares thoughtful-sometimes comical reflections on healing, loving and living free as inspirational pathways for experiencing a soul-centered, fulfilled life.