There’s nothing happening here

‘There’s nothing happening here.’

‘You’re just imagining things.’

‘You’re too sensitive. Too intense.’

‘Why are you so upset?’

The logical, rational one says, after off-loading sh*t.


But what if

something is happening here?

and it’s you, that’s just not seeing it?

Maybe it’s not me that’s too sensitive, too intense

but that your own motivations are too raw, too tender, too painful for you

to look at, straight on,

dead in the eye

and say ‘yes, I have a need that I fulfil through you’.


Being in denial isn’t truth seeing or truth speaking.


Unkindness masking as rationality.


Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

And if you can’t see it, that’s your limitation, not mine.

Taking time, re-orienting

It’s been a little while now that I’ve been moving more slowly, needing to move more slowly, as my body reminds me, when I don’t, that this other pace of life is no longer acceptable, at present.  As we all do, I’ve resisted for a (rather too long-ish) while, even when I thought I wasn’t, or wasn’t intending to – but it really is time to stop.


So, I’m officially taking a leave of absence from work, to give myself time to focus on my own physical care and recovery, and to reorient the time and energy I have around this to where it really needs to be focused.

What this means is:

I will continue working with the students who are already working with me (that is especially the BirthKeeper, StoryKeeper group).

I will not be taking any other new clients or students until October/November 2014. (If you are looking for a doula, you can find a list of local doulas on Doula UK’s website or if you are looking for healing I can recommend the work of Kay Gillard.

I will also be taking a break from work-related email and messages for the month of August – I can be contacted again after 2 September 2014. I also apologise to those who I have not managed to reply to on email. I will be back in September.

Wishing you all a fabulous rest of the Summer!

With love and blessings,



Actually, you don’t have to

Actually, you don’t have to.

This is one of the most powerful lessons I’ve learned and probably the one I’d like most to pass on to my daughter (and my sons!):  actually, you don’t have to.

So here’s the wisdom of my nearly 42 years, passed on to you (yes, I am that old, and yes, you’re welcome!)

*You don’t have to answer the question just because someone asks.

*You don’t have to explain yourself to strangers, spurious authority figures, or anyone else just because they ask you to.

*You don’t have to do something just because someone told you to.

*You don’t have to ‘be nice’  and accept something you really don’t want (and that might even be harmful to you) just to make everyone else around you feel better.

I’m not saying that it’s not okay to do some of these things in small measures at considered times – of course it is! There are times in life, things that are small to us and maybe important to loved ones, where it is absolutely right to be sensitive to someone else’s needs because they are important to you. But this is needs to be a choice.

For too many of us, especially girls and women and mothers – our default setting is smiling compliance. Too many of us share more with people than we really feel comfortable sharing or do things we don’t really want to do (or feel good about in any way), just because someone asked – and that someone could be anyone – a stranger, a relative, an ‘authority figure’.

Too many of us give away our freedom and personal power without a thought just because someone asked or told us to.  This needs to stop. We need to stop. Because actually, we don’t have to.

We can make a new choice, whenever we like.

We can make a choice to stop – to hold that smile – and to think, to value the importance of our own needs, our own wants, our own wishes.

This may not be the answer or response ‘they’ wanted or expected.

But that’s okay. Because actually, we don’t have to. 


The next free healing for women and for birth is happening on Monday, 28 April 2014 – this is my birthday present to you! Join us here, and pass it on!

The number one block to manifesting money

when the cake's all gone

Ever have that feeling like there’s nothing left? No way, there’s no money, it just ain’t gonna happen.

So many of us, doulas, mamas, we are so passionate about our work, so much wanting to do the best for our families and our communities, and yet struggling constantly with money.   Living job to job, client to client – if we are so lucky.

Many of us just aren’t bringing in the money we want or need to be making to do the things that we want and need to be doing. Those courses and workshops that look so fabulous, that call to us so clearly, can feel just out of reach as we struggle with more mundane worries of making ends meet.

I’ve written before about doulas and money (on my sadly lost previous blog)…and there are a number of future posts on the topic brewing…but I want to address this one issue now.

I’ve been getting a number of emails from people about the BirthKeeper | StoryKeeper pilot course. This is going to be a fabulous course, I can tell this both from the content, and from the women who have gotten in touch and enrolled already. And it is incredible value, at half the already affordable price of £280 for an in-depth, life-changing course –and no I’m not exaggerating, it will be life-changing.

So, we are talking £140 paid in two instalments (£80 deposit, £60 when the course begins – and of course commitment to completing the course, and to providing feedback).  This is an incredible opportunity, really, and in the big scheme of things not a huge amount of money.

And yet there are some women who want to be on this course, who are imminently eligible for it, who are feeling deeply called to it, who are struggling with the money side. These words, lovely ladies, are for you – because if you are called to this work, I want you to be there.

Open yourself to manifesting that money, manifesting that place on the course. Know that if you are meant to be there, on this course at this time, you will be there – that place is already yours and waiting for you. Trust that connection that is already there for you, and prioritise that connection in your own life. And then do just one thing – remove the barriers that you may have put up around yourself to manifesting that money and that place.

We all have moments when we struggle, so don’t worry! We all have stories about money, blocks and challenges and reasons why we can’t do certain things. It can take time to sort through it all. But what I have found time and time again over recent years is that regardless of the blocks and the stories, manifesting money for something that is a crucial part of your path and soul purpose is easy to do.

Let’s say that again:

Really?! I hear you say. Yes, I say, absolutely yes. We’re talking your life’s path and work – your soul purpose – when the timing is right, the universe absolutely wants you to succeed!

The key lies in two simple steps:

  • prioritise that thing you want in your life
  • remove the blocks to manifesting money.

If you can do only one thing, just do this one simple thing to remove the number one block to manifesting that money: let go of the expectation that the money must come from a particular source (e.g., your work, a new client, etc. etc.). It may do, and that’s wonderful. But it may equally come from some utterly unexpected place (I cannot tell you how often this has happened to me in the past year, money appearing from places I could not have imagined when I needed it most for something critical to my path).

So I say this to you, if you can do only one thing, let that thing be this:  Stop limiting yourself by holding fast to that one idea of where money comes from.  

Let go of expectation. Be clear in your purpose. Let the money come.

The 12 Ancient Midwives

Guest Post by Paula Cleary

In the last few dreamy weeks of pregnancy, the hormones swirling around a woman’s body are slowly working to create the right conditions for her to give birth. Her pelvic bones flood with relaxin, her heart fills with oxytocin and her brain softens so that rather than operating in the hyper-alert alpha brain states, she functions instead on her beta brain – the softer, fuzzier, dreamier brain she will need for nursing and tending to her offspring.

Having baby-brains is nature’s way of making sure she slows down, rests and prepares for her birth, turning inwards so she is primed for mothering and a little blind to the outer world, helping a mother and baby to tune into each other and communicate since the dreamy brain states thin the line between their co-existing consciousness.

All these natural hormonal changes help bond the Motherbaby together in invisible ways as their journey to meeting on the outside draws near.  This can be a time of dreams and visions, of heightened psychic awareness, intuition. The creation happening inside her can open up new channels of creativity that manifest on the outside too. Nothing brings a woman home to her senses more than having a child within her.

It was during this very dream-like time in my recent pregnancy that a vision came to me. One evening I was pondering on the nature of birth through the ages, and I thought about all the women who had birthed alone. I thought about ancient women, tribal women, modern women. I wondered what they would be thinking as they birthed alone. Were they frightened? Did they feel completely in control? I reasoned that traditionally, most women birthing alone probably did not feel fear since the things they needed to fear in birth were mostly things introduced into modern birthing, when man and instrument and showed up on the scene. In traditional tribal cultures women were not so frightened of birth as to expect to need sedating, or that their baby will need to be surgically removed. So how did they mentally cope?

I also found myself pondering about those who don’t intend to birth alone, but don’t make it to hospital in time. The ones who have their baby rather dramatically and unexpectedly in such places like the back of a taxi, in a lift, or alone in the toilets at high-school. They manage it without pain relieving drugs, since there are none available. How do they cope? I asked myself.

As I thought about the term ‘unassisted’ birth I wondered how true this was. Is a woman ever truly alone, and unassisted, when she births, I wondered? Well for starters, birth is not a solo sport. It is a partnership, a dance of two – mother AND baby. When the birth is not disturbed or directed by others, the baby and mother are free in a sense – perhaps freer than being surrounded by ‘assisting’ strangers -to move and twist and turn their bodies in collaboration entirely on instinct – as happens in the wild. When a woman is expelling a baby from her body in a physical sense it is by a series of involuntary muscular reflexes – all the woman needs to do is get out of her own way and let her body take over from her mind and just do what it knows how to do. This is the purely physical dimension of birth. Animals all over the world do it every day, without fuss.

We too are animals and have the same primally imprinted reflexes buried under all the layers of our education and ‘civilisation’.  But who delivers a human baby in the spiritual sense, when no midwives are present? Who honours and witnesses the arrival of a little soul? And then I saw them clearly.

Enter…. The 12 Ancient Midwives.

The 12 Ancient Midwives

But who are they? They give us the power to be able to birth our babies even when there are no other humans around. Their names are….

Love –  is the reason this baby was made in the first place. Love swirled and worked its magic inside your body to receive your partners sperm and usher it towards the egg so your baby could begin its life inside you. It was a guiding force all along. Why not now? Why shouldn’t love, that helped the baby get in, also help the baby to get out! When a woman births with love from her heart, with loving thoughts, body, and soul, the baby will come with more spirit than if she feels hateful, angry or purely scared. For this reason, Love is the first midwife.

Patience – as every good midwife knows, patience is the ultimate tool in her kit. Generally speaking, the more she can respect the natural momentum of the birthing mother and baby dyad, and not interfere, the less complicated will be the birth. A mother who is patient with herself and her baby as she gives birth will birth more easily and smoothly. Patience is the second midwife.

Trust – When we trust in our bodies, in the will of the universe, in our baby, it takes the tension out of our bodies and relaxes them. We can do things we thought previously impossible when we replace fear with trust. When we trust, we give permission for life to unfold in the moment, feeling it will all work out as it is meant to.  For this reason, Trust is a great midwife, and she is the third of our twelve.

Laughter – has a magic effect on us. It transforms pain into something other. It makes difficult things more manageable. Laughter opens up our chest and rolls through our body, releasing tight muscles and making them relax. Laughter is a free form of medicine, and requires no outside persons. When laughter is a midwife at birth, she makes things smoother, happier and easier. She is the fourth midwife.

Ancestors – do you ever wonder if your ancestors are guiding and keeping protection over you? Sometimes they might leave a sign they are around, holding the space for you. Perhaps you can smell a faint trace of them. Or a song plays on the radio suddenly that was ‘your song’. Perhaps a bird leaves you a feather or some other token, that only you understand. Our ancestors can carry on giving us the gift of their strength even after they have gone from the earthly realm, through their memory and example if nothing else. They are the fifth midwife.

Prayers of the living – every good thought others  have towards you, your baby and your birthing has an energy that draws a line between you and them across the miles, in the ether. I really believe this. For this reason, I believe prayers have power. When a woman is birthing and reminds herself of the well wishes and support of others, she can draw on it as a source of strength. This collective body of positive, confidence-boosting energy is the sixth midwife.

Cosmic forces are the mysteries energies which govern all life. Some call it god. Whatever you believe, our place in the universe is a blessing, and the universe swells and swirls and pulses according to its own order, its own rules. We are but a humble speck in it all.  It is good to remember this. The cosmos is an endless series of cycles of creation. We are not in charge of everything, we cannot control everything. When we give birth it is good to remember we are here but for the grace of god and so are our babes. The seventh midwife is there whether we choose to believe in her or not!

Strength – until a woman gives birth, she usually has no idea of her full powers and strengths. Birth reveals hidden depths and strengths she never knew she had – especially more so when she births alone and is not overpowered by others. When a woman births without limitations or boundaries, her strength is a force to behold. Strength is the eighth midwife who digs deep into a woman’s inner treasure chest and delivers a baby into the world with pure, raw, trembling, earth shaking primal force.

Intuition will be the mothers companion for the rest of her mothering years, as with the other midwives. Like the others, intuition will stick around. She is the watchful midwife with the third eye. She feels the answers to things others can only partially understand. This midwife is supremely ancient. She is the midwife who never truly sleeps but always keeps half an ear or an eye open. The ninth midwife will help a woman to know things that her rational brain could never know on its own.

Connection. Even whilst alone, a woman is not truly alone. Her baby is there with her. She is part of the interconnected web of consciousness to which we all belong. It is comforting to remember this during a birth. A woman is connected, cradled, and held by others at the mere thought of them. She can draw strength from the love she shares with her baby’s father, and from her friends and family – anyone she feels safe and happy with. When a woman gives birth she also straddles the worlds of ancestors and descendants and stands at a crossroads between past, present and future. The connections she has through her bloodline, umbilically link her like a babooshka doll to them all.  She can also draw strength by connecting in spirit to all the other birthing women in the world labouring their babies in that same moment as her.  Connection is the tenth midwife.

Surrender is a powerful teacher. She is the midwife who leads us down the rabbit hole and tells us it will all work out fine, that our bodies are made to cope. She whispers to us to have faith in the wild and crazy process. She tells us it will all be ok at the other end of it all. Without her, we cannot let go.  Without her, we cling to the safety of all that we know. But we cannot bring forth our baby if we don’t go down the rabbit hole. We must walk a labyrinth journey of sorts, going deep into our own strength and body to bring out a baby. Surrender is the the eleventh midwife who says it is safe to let go, let go… let go… .let go…..

And finally Nature. The midwife in every cell of your body. She knows what to do. She is the great conductor that leads the orchestra of hormones in our bodies that birth the baby. She does what she needs to do, with her own utter efficiency and logic, and her own timing. Sometimes she leads the orchestra in a waltz, sometimes a birthing is more of an opera – but she knows what she’s doing.  She is wiser than any human and has secrets we will never understand. If you listen closely to her she has great wisdom to teach. Make friends with her and learn ways to harness her gifts. She is abundant, generous and nurturing as well as feisty, wild and untamed.  And she is the twelfth ancient midwife. Is she the most important?

I hope you enjoyed meeting the twelve ancient midwives. Chances are, you know them already. If you know a mama having her first baby, maybe you could show her these friends who can guide her on her journey, helping her to draw on her incredible strength to birth and raise her baby with peace, love and confidence – no matter where, when or how she gives birth.

About the author –

Paula is a Cambridgeshire-based mother of five, doula, writer and passionate believer in women’s innate birthing power. You can read her recent freebirth story here. Her doula page is


Birth story, birth truth


I’m a big believer in the power of words and of stories. Actually, it’s not really belief – it’s more an awareness of how powerful stories are and the words we use (or feel able to use) when we talk about birth and our experiences of birth and motherhood.

Do you see any of the following in birth, and in women’s understanding of what happened to them in their births?

  • Women look to their notes for an explanation of their story, as they seek out the ‘truth’ of their birth?
  • Women who are not sure where to go or what to believe when what is recorded in this official version of their story conflicts with their own memories or experiences?
  • Women find themselves unable to articulate the full impact of what has happened to them because it is swept under a heading of ‘normal’?

And what the heck is ‘normal’ birth these days? Sadly, from the stories that surround us, far too often it’s not what we’d wish it would be.

So, I put it to you, what power would be revealed and unleashed if women had spaces where they felt safe enough to speak? Spaces where they were truly listened to, were heard, and understood, as they connect with the deeper reality of their own stories and experiences?

Women were once the keepers of stories, as they were the keepers of the mysteries and rituals of birth and death. Our collective stories contain the potentiality of all things – the making and unmaking of what we perceive as ‘reality’, what is the valid and authoritative ‘truth’ of any experience, and how we understand ourselves in relation to the world around us. In this way, story holds within it what it is possible to speak, to know, to do and to be.

I’m putting a call out now to those of you who are drawn back to this work of receiving women’s stories. Being a Story Keeper is a unique and special role that is quite different to that of ‘counsellor’ or ‘therapist’.  What it is about is holding in trust a space of women’s power, connecting with and re-kindling the fires within.

In these days, many women are feeling the call back to their roots, back to ancient and timeless ways of receiving story and holding space for story within our communities. Today’s Story Keepers are the women who are finding was of bringing these ancient ways of being and receiving into the modern world, and it is work that is *so* much needed in these times of crisis.

If you are ready and wanting to receive story within your community, to take on this sacred trust of ‘Story Keeper’, I’m putting a call out to you. The Birth Keeper, Story Keeper pilot launches in May - you can find out more about it here, and how to join this group of pioneering women who are reclaiming this capacity to work with story, to journey deeply with their own stories and process, who are  joining together and rediscovering the power of this work.

Each of us, each woman who is called to this role of Story Keeper, will have her own unique ways of holding this work and carrying it forward. Together, as we share our journeys and discoveries along the way, we enrich our capacity for this work, for bringing healing,  and for effecting change.

In essence, with this work, we are re-weaving the web, weaving a new dream together – one that holds and values the truth and power of women’s experiences, what mothers know and feel and who they are as they pass through the initiations of birth and motherhood. Is this work that calls to you? I know it does to me.

Find out more about what is involved and how to join us here.

Best of all, this is a project you can join in from anywhere in the world!

Do you know one or two women who you feel are or could be story keepers in their communities? If so, please do help us spread the word and pass it on!

And please share your stories in the comments below – your experiences of telling or receiving stories, and the power of these words, for good or for ill, that you’ve encountered for yourself or with women in your community.

Untold Stories of Motherhood: Workshops for Women


So many of the real moments of motherhood remain unspoken. It can be hard to share personal experiences or sometimes even make sense of them when all around us everyone else seems to know already what it means to be a mother…and that whatever it is, that ideal of motherhood, it just isn’t us, doesn’t seem to fit us or our experience.

In this workshop series, we will be holding a safe space for the untold stories of motherhood – a space for women to share what it really feels like to be a mother – the good, the bad and the ugly! – and what it is like to experience motherhood outside these rules and expectations.

These circles will be a confidential, creative, and dynamic healing space for making sense of our own personal experiences when they fall outside the ‘norm’ of what it is to be a mother…and to expand our own definitions and ideas about what it means ‘to be a mother’.

There will be three circles happening in March, in honour of International Women’s Day, and in honour of the stories of mothers.

These workshops are a creative healing space for working with personal stories and experiences of motherhood. There is no pressure to speak or to tell any more than you feel you want to share - these workshops are about coming together with an intention for understanding and healing…and beginning to connect with and work with our personal stories in a new way.

These workshops are free, and open to any woman who has a story to share.

Spaces are limited, though, so advance booking (again free!) is a must. Click through on the event links for more info and to book. 

14 March 2014. Untold Stories of Motherhood: Caesarean Birth

In this circle, we will be holding space for those women who have had babies born by Caesarean section and what this means to us as women and as mothers.

Women for whom Caesarean birth has been an integral part of their experience of motherhood will find a place where they can come together, to sit in silence, to share those parts of their stories that need to be held and acknowledged. To witness how birthing by Caesarean shapes us as women and as mothers.

22 March 2014. Untold Stories of Motherhood: Loss

In this circle, we will be holding space for motherhood as an experience of loss – loss in it’s widest and most inclusive sense – the loss of a child, the loss of dreams, the loss of self.

Women for whom loss has been an integral part of their experience of motherhood will find a place where they can come together, to sit in silence, to share those parts of their stories that need to be held and acknowledged, that are in some cases perhaps ready to be released, to be witnessed.

23 March 2014. Untold Stories of Motherhood: The Wounds of Motherhood

The painful legacy of the wounded mother is all around us, in what people say to us about our children, in the stories we tell ourselves about who we are as women and as mothers. We hold the wounds of motherhood deep within our bodies and our selves.

And when we begin to think about becoming a mother – or actually do become a mother – suddenly this all focuses on us. No longer just the daughter of the wounded mother, we inherit that place. The wounding of our own mothers, of our partners, of ourselves as daughters take on new and very personal meaning…and we are caught at the centre of it all.

The wounds of motherhood come through in our experiences of birth, and our experiences of caring for, feeding and nurturing our children…it can make mothering feel hard, perhaps make being a ‘good’ (or even ‘good enough’) mother feel near to impossible at times.

This circle is for any woman who recognises these wounds of motherhood. It is about beginning to find ourselves within this space…to begin to bring healing to our own experiences, and to celebrate the ways we are reclaiming ourselves and finding strength together.

Again, these workshops are a creative healing space for working with personal stories and experiences of motherhood. There is no pressure to speak or to tell any more than you feel you want to share – these workshops are about coming together with an intention for understanding and healing…and beginning to connect with and work with our personal stories in a new way.

How to Book: 

Click through the event links above to book in or find out more. You can also contact me with any questions.

All women will be held in a place of confidentiality and acceptance.

Intro to Shamanic Journeying and Working with Power Animals

I’ve had a number of requests recently for a workshop on shamanic journeying  that would be suitable for beginners. As always, I aim to be of service so here we are. ;)

Seriously, though, I’m really happy to be able to offer this afternoon workshop on journeying and working with power animals. This workshop will be suitable for beginners as well as anyone who may have begun journeying on their own, but would like an opportunity to work in a group, ask questions and discuss experiences.


We’ll be looking at questions like:

*What is shamanic journeying and how does one journey?

*How can journeying be used in our personal practice to enhance our everyday lives?

*What are power animals and how can I work with them?


What we’ll be doing:

This is a practical workshop – we will be journeying and connecting with power animals! You will be doing it! You’ll come away with a strong connection to one of your power animals who you can continue to work with, and, having experienced journeying for yourself, greater confidence in using this technique for yourself.

You’ll also receive an audio recording of a journeying track that you can continue to use after the session.

We’ll also have plenty of space too for questions and discussion.

We will meet Saturday 5 April 2014 from 1pm to 4pm in Fenham, Newcastle

Cost is £24 for the session


To book a place

Click on the PayPal button below to book in. Once your payment is received, I will be in touch (generally within 24-48 hours) to confirm your place and send all the details.


Questions? Please do just get in touch, I’m always happy to hear from you!

The answers to a couple of questions about healing

I had an interesting discussion about the healing just before the holidays. I was somewhat amused and a little taken aback to hear that another healer had described the difference between what I do and what she does as something along the lines of ‘Rebecca does it for you, I show you how to do it for yourself’.

Now this person does not know me well. And she does not actually know my work at all.

For myself, I’d much rather people just asked me what it is that I do (and I’m always happy to chat and offer free 20 minute consults by Skype or phone – or email – to any woman who is interested in working with me and wants to know more about how I work – it’s super easy to schedule one of these free consults, all you need to do is contact me).

Certainly, if someone asked me about another person’s healing practice, unless I’d had a session (or better, a few sessions!) with them or worked with them in some extended capacity (say as a student or collaboratively), I think I’d be quite hesitant to share my thoughts about their work…even with that kind of a connection, I tread cautiously as I find it much more helpful to refer people directly to the source (that is, the practitioner) for a discussion.

So here’s a truth about my healing work: I do not, I could not even if I wanted to, ‘do it for you’.  When I receive healing from another practitioner – and yes I do this! – they do not ‘do it for me’.

So, why come and work with me? Or why work with any healer? 

My answer to this question is: because you are ready.

Because you’ve done the work you needed to do to get to a particular point on your own path to healing yourself, and you are ready to take the next step.

You are ready to connect with this particular person – whether it is me or another healer, or someone who just crosses your path – and the healing that will come from that connection.  Because this person has something to offer you, something that will support you in a unique and personal way.

When we have a session together, you are connecting with certain aspects of the gifts and freedom that are already yours. These things already belong to you. They are waiting to be restored to you.  When we work together,  I help you to reconnect with these things in some way…and how that process works, what it looks like, is different pretty much every single time.

We all have different practices, different tools, and a different connection to life that influence which aspects of another person’s healing we can connect with. We are not separate, individual, alone, but part of a larger tapestry of life and interaction.

Different healers, even those using similar techniques or practices, will have different things to offer because we are all unique individuals and healing is a creative, interactive process.

So what do I mean when I say I cannot do it for you? I simply mean that once we have received the gifts of a healing session or experience, the real work begins – when we take back these gifts of healing and begin to absorb them into our being, to integrate them into daily life.

We have a really pernicious and damaging belief in our culture that it’s better to do everything by ourselves. But in actuality we are interdependent. Not one of us stands in absolute isolation. Not one of us, even when we are doing things for ourselves, is outside this web of connection and interdependence.

Necklace. 257626 © Mihail Orlov | Dreamstime Stock Photos

Necklace. 257626 © Mihail Orlov | Dreamstime Stock Photos

And there are some parts of healing, certainly with shamanic healing, where an important part of the process is that of of the giftthe gift of the return of power, the gift of the return of soul to self, and the gift of the witnessing of this process by another person or a community.

Sometimes when there has been a deep wounding that needs healing it is important not to be alone or feel alone through this process of healing. Sometimes we have lost or hidden pieces of our own soul or power in places where it might be difficult or even dangerous for us to enter unprepared or on our own, possibly where we even cannot go ourselves or by ourselves. Sometimes even when there is a part of our selves or our power ready to return and waiting for us, there is some intermediary needed. (Yes, I have been on the receiving end of healing that required a healer for all of these reasons.)

When with a mother giving birth, I cannot give birth for her. I can support her in that process by ensuring she has whatever it is that she personally needs in that space to the best of my abilities. And because I have given birth three times myself, I have devoted myself to learning about birth and have supported numerous other women in giving birth, I have an understanding of this process that is always growing and evolving. Through these experiences, I have connected with certain ways of supporting this process, certain gifts I can offer in order that the process for my clients becomes, as Michel Odent puts it, ‘not artificially longer or more difficult than it needs to be’.

We are meant to be held gently and in love through these processes, held as we do the really hard work. (And yes, to me, healing, deep healing, and who we choose to work with as we go through this process is as serious a decision as who we choose to invite to our births…personally I’m very selective about this :)…and I have found wonderful, dedicated people to be a part of my healing path.)  It’s a gift and a blessing to us, this thing of having someone to walk with us for a time, to share the gifts of experience, to restore to us things that we’ve lost and are ready to have returned, to be present with us, to listen to our stories and experiences without judgment.

Another question that came up in the same conversation was “Do you ever see someone and know, ‘I must work with that person, I must heal them’?”

The short and simple answer is, ‘No, no, no! and no again. Absolutely, not.’ (No more than I see a woman and say ‘I must be your doula’. No, just no. That’s not how it is at all.)

The entire idea of such a thing makes me incredibly uncomfortable. It is not for me to determine what someone else needs. I have the deepest respect for each woman I work with…and those I don’t work with as well. I know that we all have the capacity to connect with the things that are right for us, at the time that is right for us, and that we always have a choice. It seems to me the height of arrogance (not to mention utterly unsavoury) to suggest to another person that they need *me* to heal them. That’s just not what I’m about or how I practice.

Sometimes, very occasionally, I will offer healing to a family member or friend if I know they are having a rough time. Sometimes they say yes, and sometimes no, I always respect that. I offer sometimes because it’s something I can do, even when I’m far away from them.

I have once, and only once, been guided to OFFER healing to a strong and beautiful woman in difficult circumstances, but this is quite different. This was not because I believed I could ‘heal’ her – or because I thought that I should do this. It was a gift offered in honour of her strength and determination, it was intended to support her process, not to lift it from her.

And, as with any genuine gift, there is the option to say ‘no thank you’. When this was situation occurred, the first thing I did was ask permission. If this woman had said, ‘no thanks!’ that would have been the end of it for me. She knows what is right for her. In this case, it felt right to her to accept and we did the work together.

Healing at its best is a creative and interactive process.  For me, every session is different. What remains constant is that a session with a healer is, at its best, a space to be seen, to be heard, to be held and to receive the gifts of that space and that interaction…gifts that this person can help us to access because of her own long years of practice and experience, because of her own dedication to the healing path…when the time is right for us, we choose to engage with this work, to ask for this support, because we are ready to receive the gifts that it holds for us.

In ethical practice, it is always us as the receiver of healing who makes the choice to engage with a healing or healer for ourselves. And, at the end of the day, we are the ones who make the choices and do the work of bringing this healing through into our lives.

Interested in having a session with me? You can find out more about what it is like to work one-to-one with me here, or get in touch and we can arrange a time to chat.

Are you feeling drawn to healing yourself, feeling ready to go deeper with the work? There’s just one place left on the Intuitive Healing for Women course that begins in Newcastle in April. Places have filled very quickly and are by application only, so if you are interested, please get in touch.

They told me…

Guest post by Lora Willshaw

“Be careful, take care, pay heed. Your baby’s in danger. Your body may bleed.”

They told me…,”Sadness in your past could happen again, Use our machines, your body’s no friend. Sit straight, lay back, don’t comfortably bend.”

They told me…,”We’ll scan you and touch you, just to make sure, your body can’t do it, it didn’t before.”

“The baby’s too big… the baby’s too small..there’s too much fluid or there’s none at all.”

“36 weeks is too early 42 is too late. This os policy –  there is no debate”

“The babys at risk. Your putting it there. Having a homebirth is not really fair.”

They guilt me and challenged me and made me so mad. Is wanting the best for my baby so bad?

I told them:  No. I will take no more. The attitudes towards me have been very poor.

So I challenged and questioned, and asked them right back.

Their answers were meagre…their speeches were mild. They talked to me as though I was a child.

So I found faith in my body to do it alone. To be comfortable and calm and be at my home.

I found groups and ladies in an on-line land. Where we share and chat and virtual hold-hands.

I learned that my body of course can be strong. I learned what my body knew all along. To follow my instincts, a womanly intuition. I hope that others manage to listen.  Sometimes birth doesn’t happen at home, but the choice is a mother’s and it’s hers alone.

My births were wonderful. Not scary or bad – that’s why I love these groups to say ‘we’re not mad’. I hate that we fight to get something normal and natural.

Spread the word  -

Choosing our birth isn’t fantasy it’s something that’s actual!

Lora Willshaw

photo credit: Naomi Gatenby

I first saw Lora’s words posted on the Homebirthers and Hopefuls  Facebook group. Thank you, Lora, for sharing your words and inspiration! You can see her unassisted water birth video here.

Leave a comment for Lora below if you like!  And  if you agree with her, please pass it on!!