For quite some time I have been mulling over the idea of doing an ‘Ask A Midwife’ series. Recently, I decided to go for it. To get started I posted this question to several Facebook groups “Imagine that you are sitting at your local coffee shop, with a local midwife. What questions would you ask her?” The responses so far have been great! Some of the questions are ones that I had thought of and many of them were completely new to me. My plan is to start a regular series on the topic. I look forward to this process and being your midwife for the opportunity to Ask A Midwife. To start off, I decided to answer one question, this one question was the favorite of my daughter, so in honor of her let’s get started.
- Describe birth with two words. Now this was a tough one for me and I spent some serious time delving into the possibilities. I tried to wax philosophical and became wrapped up in the thesaurus looking for fancy words with elaborate meanings. I wanted to capture the fact that birth is a force of nature, that it transforms everyone around it. I wanted to convey that I respect rather than trust birth and what that difference means to me. Needless to say this quickly becomes the proverbial rabbit hole and I was getting nowhere fast. Then my nine year old daughter asked what I was doing. Her answer, which was given without hesitation struck me as so perfectly true, was “It is Sweet and Sour”. Ah, the wise and innocent power of youth! These two words are so simple and yet so true. The sweet flow of labor; sometimes like a bubbling stream and other times like crashing waves on the beach. Both moments are sweet, both moments are necessary and both have their own type of power. We wouldn’t want only the sweetness, it can become too much, “sickly sweet”. Sometimes the sweet needs to be cut and that is when sour comes in. Sour gives the balance, sour acknowledges that the work of birth is hard. That it is not always pleasant, polite or pretty. Birth is messy and wild, it pricks our soul like the taste of sour tingles on our tongues. But the balance is where the strength lies, the intersection between the sweet and the sour is the gateway to the ultimate beauty in birth.
I am very excited to hear about your thoughts on this. What two words would you use to describe birth?……
Image credit Jennifer Mason Photography