Friday, July 25, 2008

"Silence is the perfectest herald of joy" - William Shakespeare

I remember going to one of my first doula visits (with the woman who would eventually give up her law practice and become a doula) and talking with the couple about all the things we had to discuss before labour. My client's husband later confided to her that he was alarmed by how much I talked during the visit. "Oh!" I said. "He hasn't seen me at a birth. I'm so quiet. My eyes and hands speak, but not my voice." He was so relieved (I think I'd actually scared him at that visit)...and I went on to attend all three of their children's joyful births.

The reason I talk so much at our prenatal visits, is that there is so much to cover. My own children are in their twenties, and I have been discussing birth with them all their lives. I STILL haven't covered it all with them! Can you imagine trying to filter all the information to fit into two visits (and many phone calls) with clients? It really can't be done.

The best I can do is help my clients get a sense of the underlying philosophy of birth, to encourage them to trust their bodies, to help them to remain undisturbed while going through labour. I still talk and talk before labour begins. But, the volume goes down to a whisper once labour is upon us, just as the lights go down....because we have to be silent to hear the lessons that the coming baby has to share.

- Jacquie Munro, Vancouver Doula

1 comment:

Rosie said...

Perfectly said! I also find it hard not to talk too much at prenatals and interviews. But you are so right about the quiet ways of a birth attendant at the actual birth. Mom's want to hear Dad's encouraging, loving words and I want to hear Mom's birth song and of course we are all listening with our hearts for baby! I do quietly encourage each laboring woman so that she knows she is on her perfect path... I ward off that "self doubt" and then there is always a time during transition that Dad and Mom need to hear "You're safe" "you're babies safe", "everything is perfect". And "yes, it is hard".
Words are powerful, As we learned since we were children, as we taught our children. Why do I keep needing to relearn this? Most recently The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz has been a helpful book. Be Impeccable With Your Word is the first agreement. -Rosie