An unripe avocado, this was the image she used to represent a uterus when it's not in labor. Think about it, even if we apply physical or pharmaceutical force, the process developing will be like insisting on ripening an immature fruit. Fiona and Jenny speak, and many many women pass before my eyes. Hundreds of Births and Birth-Stories, beginning with birth inductions and stimulations and the body refusing to get induced into the process. The shear force applied to make it happen, or the Births that failed to progress, and then, when the epidural arrived, suddenly, so did the baby.
When Fiona and Jenny tell this story from the point of view of the uterus' ligaments, describing the cervix like a little sister being cared for by the big sisters we call the endopelvic ligaments , I find myself falling in love again with my craft. A renewal of my belief in a women's ability to give birth. When they talk about 'Birth at it's best' you can almost see yourself diving into the course that defines the babies' engagement, progressing in a C-shaped wayward track, initially moving back, and taking it's course towards the birth canal...The Birth Canal...we learned how to measure and estimate, how to asses and feel. We acquired the tools to help us measure the pelvic outlet, along with a profound understanding of how the uterus and cervix connect to form a complete structure which is both supported and supportive. Insight into the importance of the ligaments, the weave of fascia and muscle, intertwining bone and ligament.
The magical encounter with like-minded midwives that envision true feminine health, never ceases to amaze me. Their ability to see a woman's life journey before, and during her birth, understanding the stages of labor, what the body goes through, while leaving room for the progression that will continue in a mother's life in the days to come, mental and physical health, the state of the pelvic floor, healing external scars and internal tissue, skeletal and muscular pain.
It all brings me back to the compréhension that midwives are caregivers for both body and soul.
Thank you Fiona Hallinan and Jenny Blyth for your unique midwifery. For expanding our point of view and the proficiencies that come with it. Sitting together with a group of birth-workers I could feel a renewed passion for healing evolve in places once ruled by much pain and trauma.
Thanks to the two of you I return this Thursday and Friday to my clinic with new tools and a deeper appreciation for my craft.