So, how do these words make you feel..?
The reason I ask is that these words are often used to describe what a woman needs to hear or move toward during birth, and yet it can be hard to comprehend exactly what that means until you’ve actually been there.
What does it mean to surrender, or to let go, or to allow?
For the past twelve months I’ve been in the process of creating, gestating and now launching my online course Breathe | Believe | Birth with Ease. Just like preparing to birth a real baby, this has been a labour of love that has stretched me way outside my usual comfort zone…
I’ve stalled. I’ve procrastinated.
I’ve connected to my Heart and felt invincible. I’ve been moved to tears by the love and the beauty of the act of creation, and the overflowing of feminine wisdom that is not coming from me but through me.
I’ve doubted myself again and again. Told myself I don’t have what it takes. Told myself I can’t do this thing, I am not enough.
But this baby is coming through me anyhow. She’s my love, my passion, my hope for the future. She keeps me inspired to keep pushing through, to have faith in this birthing process, to trust myself.
I keep opening. I keep expanding. I keep pushing.
I keep moving to places I’ve never been before. Places that take me far beyond all that I’ve known to be safe and comfortable and familiar and secure to a point where I can no longer feel the edge of what was, but I’m still so far away from what is to come.
It’s like floating in darkness. There’s nothing left to hold on to.
I feel all alone with my fear.
She whispers…let go.
And eventually I do. I stop resisting. I lay aside my small and individual fear and doubt and my need to control or to know what comes next.
I open to a process and a movement that is SO MUCH BIGGER then me.
I no longer try to contain it. I do all that I can to allow it.
To surrender is to feel divinely guided. Like I am one with the energy of the universe. Like I am all that is in this expanded state of being without edges or boundaries in the spaciousness of infinite possibility.
It is an experience that takes me outside myself, that has pushed me to my limits and then beyond to remind me, each time I let go my resistance, of the extra-ordinary power of the Mysterious Feminine.
Call it ecstasy…or bliss…or union.
THIS is birth.
These past few months I’ve learnt much about how fear is simply resistance to the Unknown.
Life is growth. Growth is exciting because it opens you to new possibilities but scary because it takes you places you’ve never been before.
One of the effects of fear is to keep you in a contracted state. Fear is under the illusion that if everything stays the same (freeze), fear can keep you ‘safe’. You know what to expect. You can plan ahead. You can be prepared. Fear provides a false sense of being in control.
In this way it becomes human nature to seek experiences that are familiar. Known.
This is how fast food giant McDonalds became a global success – their business model was based on the realization that people seek the comfort of what they know. With this basic understanding of human psychology, McDonalds started a restaurant that delivered the same food, the same menu, the same interior and the same experience every time. Cha-ching!
Yet life is growth and growth can only occur by expanding beyond the boundaries of what is Known – your current reality – into the Unknown.
That means in order to invite any new possibility into your life – a new baby, a new relationship, new wealth, new health, new career – you need to let go your attachment to the safety net of what is Known, and breathe for a bit in the uncertainty of the Unknown.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine theory the Unknown is the realm of the Mysterious Feminine.
Fear of the Mysterious Feminine is the underlying impulse behind every intervention that is the cornerstone of modern antenatal care.
If you consider how birth – and women’s bodies – are the gateway to the Unknown, you get a sense of why birth triggers so much fear and why the human response is to seek the illusion of control by imposing human will rather then letting divine will lead the way.
We prefer to set a time or a date or a measurement or a preconceived idea on how things should be rather then trusting in the flow of life. We want McDonalds because it keeps us feeling safe, yet it’s when we venture outside the familiar and the known that we open ourselves up to the magic of the miracle that is life.
Few times in life is the growth process as obvious as during pregnancy.
Pregnancy forces you to move beyond your current limitations not just physically but mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Whether you like it or not, the life force growing inside you is taking you outside your comfort zone on a journey that will stretch you in every way imaginable.
Every day you’re growing. You’re changing.
You’re more aware of being part of something much bigger then yourself, something other then you that’s driving the wheel.
Pregnancy and birth is simply life lived with heightened intensity. It’s like a vortex opens where the usual growth processes start spiralling at greater speed. From a spiritual perspective, how fast you move through the birth process depends entirely on how quickly you move through your resistance.
This is what it means to surrender: you let go your fear and human need to control in order to open with love and trust to magic and the mystery of LIFE.
Sounds good in theory, but in action how do you surrender?
1 – Breathe
Learning to breathe properly and deeply is your most powerful tool to connect you to the present. To be present allows you to surrender your attachment to outcomes and open to the delicious possibility of what is. Correct breathing is also key to physiologically and psychologically resetting the ‘fight, flight or freeze’ (fear) response.
2 – Positive Anchors
To surrender is to lose sight of the shore and be willing to take yourself into unchartered waters. It is at these moments that you can forget why you are going through what you are going through and get lost in the fear and uncertainty and doubt. A Positive Anchor is something that strongly anchors you to your why, something that connects you to positive feelings – feelings of love, calm, trust, faith, confidence – that will support you through the process. A Positive Anchor can be an image, a word, an affirmation, a mantra, a person, a vision for the future. Whatever it is, keep your Positive Anchor where you can see it constantly.
3 – Creative Visualisation
Your thoughts are powerful. You can use creative visualisation techniques to mentally prepare yourself for the reality you wish to create. The more you consciously and creatively visualise yourself surrendering to the flow of the divine – and enjoying the process! – the more you prepare your mind for that possibility. This in itself helps the mind surrender control.
Breathe | Believe | Birth with Ease is the birth preparation course that will revolutionise what you know about birth and being a woman. Want to learn how to ENJOY childbirth? CLICK HERE