Wombs of the World

I am so excited to say that we are organizing a Doula Retreat to Tanzania in January 2019!!!! There is so much love being poured into this project. We have already started the application process for the Doulas who want to come and these women are just amazing!!! We are also partnering with a nonprofit that provides clean water with these ceramic filters that fit over buckets. Giving mamas clean water for 5 years.

I can’t wait to adventure with these women! To find out more about what we are doing go check out our website at www.wombsoftheworld.com

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Big Plans

Y’all, today I woke up and it’s almost uncontrollable, my excitement for what’s brewing. I’m taking some big steps. Making some big decisions. Planning some big things.

Stay tuned for what’s next as far as Sacred Born goes, and my journey in the Empowerment of Women. Once it’s all ironed out, y’all will be the first to know!!!!

In the meantime, if you need a good podcast listen, check it out, so so good!

I love you all!!!!

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/magamama-kimberly-ann-johnson-sex-birth-motherhood/id1286485146?mt=2&i=1000405329922

Frustrated

Frustrated. Border line Furious.

Broken for the woman, who has been coming in to receive treatments from me, I cant even begin to describe the heartache I feel.

As she laid there, sharing her story with me, about how cancer has raped her body, and that the dreaded option of surgery would be taking place the following week, she was scared. Nervous. I found myself weak simply trying to muster up every once of health that was in me that maybe I could transfer it to her. And I know they talk about not doing this in Massage school, but let’s be honest, it crosses your mind. I want HEALTH for this women! And my heart is about empowering women in all stages of life, all scenarios, all situations.

Forward to next week, she comes into the Clinic, confused I look at her, thinking, she didn’t get the surgery. I bring her back, and she explains that the entire weekend she’s been talking with insurance, hospital staff, etc about the surgery NOT being covered. She would have to pay out of pocket, FOR SURGERY!!! Who has that kind of money? which explains her not getting the surgery. This woman has Cancer!!! WTF!!!!! I mean COME ON!! Our system is broken. Now she is broken and confused.

So her plan thus far is that she is in contact with a Surgeon and Clinic in Germany that would be more affordable than her own country. So she is going to fly to Germany to get the treatments.

I am just disgusted and ashamed that our country, our system of doing things is this bad. That a woman who has to deal with the fact that she is fighting cancer, now has to deal with the fact that she financially would be in debt for all of it. What is going on? I’m just so infuriated. This is NOT ok!

So as I listen to her story, I place my frustration aside and realize that this next hour with her, is a time she needs to just put everything down. To quiet her mind. To Heal in a different sense. So I step into that space, slow myself down, and realize that as frustrated as I might be with this world or the current situation, right now she needs me to show up, so that’s what I will do.

Be Still

The vulnerability in being still.

As a Doula there are moments where I find myself completely in my element. I mean it’s almost like, how could it have taken me this long to find this work? It just feels so right and fluid. But then there are also moments where I find myself almost a little unclear and unsure as to how to help the Mother.

When I first started Birthwork, it was almost comical watching myself fumble through. Learning through my awkwardness and figuring out what works and doesn’t work. Learning that what worked for that birth wouldn’t work for this one, and so the lessons continue. But through all of those moments even in the awkward moments, I have come to find this….

That sometimes soothing a mother is exactly what is needed. Touch and Bodywork definitely come so easy for me, so stepping in to rub a mamas back or legs I don’t even hesitate on. But sometimes, what is needed, is for me to just be still. Be quiet. Be intuitive enough to see that maybe a Mother needs me to step away so that she can simply birth her baby.

But with that comes vulnerability, this idea that maybe I’m not doing enough, or I should be doing something more. This is hard for me. To be still. But when I have chosen to be still in those moments, quite frankly those are the moments that are unforgettable. Where the Mother steps into the spot light, just her and her baby. Working together to finally get to meet one another. Letting nothing get in between them or distract them. And it’s in these moments of birth, I’m brought to my knees completely shaken to my core.

So in your unsure moments, unclear as to how to help. Just be still.

Excerpts from Tanzania

This January I was blessed in being able to go to Tanzania to work, as a Doula, with pregnant mamas in an OB Ward at a local hospital. And I’ve been meaning to write about all that was experienced but where do I even begin? In a matter of nine days at the clinic my colleague and I were a part of twenty seven births. It was just so much. It was so good. It was so hard. But so life changing.

So I’ve tucked away little stories I’ve posted on my Instagram account that I would like to share here. Stories of the women and stories of what I actually felt. Those women changed me, and I will never forget the lessons learned. Listed below are bullet points each different stories with different mamas. To see the pictures and more stories check out Sacred Born


  • “This precious mama, had been laboring, working through the contractions gracefully, not crying out, mostly silent, like most of the mamas here. When after some time the doctor thought a C-Section would be better, because of some bleeding in her catheter. Holding her she said, don’t go, clutching my shoulder and arm, afraid to let go. Reassuring her, I said, I’m not going anywhere, I’m right here.
    .
    .
    We took her to the OR and watched as the doctor began to prepare the room. Scared and naked she laid on the table, alone and shaking. I watched as two male doctors operated on her. And as the scene unfolded, I felt paralyzed. I felt like I needed to be strong just simply for her. And so I stayed standing there. Weak at the sight of what I saw. Weak at the quality of patient care. Weak from it all. But I stayed standing. For her.
    .
    .
    I slipped over and squeezed just her finger tips and whispered, you are strong, mama.
    .
    .
    This strong mama had a healthy baby boy, they are recovering beautifully.
    .
    .
    Tanzania has brought me to my knees. And I am forever grateful.”

  • “We walked into the labor room after checking on the other mamas, and found this mama on the floor, on all fours, covered in her own urine and vomit, unattended with no one in the room. She had decided to climb off the bed and get on the floor. So we helped her get back into the bed.
    .
    .
    She is a first time mama and shortly after she got back into the bed, she began to lift her legs. With eyes wide, it looked like she was ready and already pushing. So we called for the nurse to check her. Charlotte came back in the labor room and said there is no one. No nurses. My heart dropped and fear shook me. Luckily there was a midwife from France that came today, she came walking in and we said, we think she’s ready.
    .
    .
    The midwife checked her, and as I looked down, baby was crowning and we could see the head. The midwife barely having any equipment, worked beautifully. She pushed for just a short time, and then birthed a perfect baby girl. My heart was racing, filled with joy, and happy to have been there when we needed to be. Thankful for the Midwife from France who was fantastic with our mama.
    .
    .
    Labor support is needed, doulas are important. Holding space for these women in Tanzania has forever changed me.”

  • “Our last day in the clinic and we had a mama pregnant with twins, who had received news that one of the babies had died. The doctors thought that a C-Section would be safer for the baby that was alive.
    : : :
    So as they prepared the OR, I slipped her husband back into the labor room, so they could have some sweet moments before surgery. This is not really done in Tanzania. Her eyes lit up when she saw her husband. I almost cried right there.
    : : :
    I can’t imagine knowing that one of my twins had died and having to wait in a room with none you loved. This precious couple had been through a lot in the past couple years. This was their fourth pregnancy, and they had lost two children already.
    : : :
    It was time, so as me and Charlotte rolled his wife back to the OR, I glanced one last smile to her husband as he waited outside.
    : : :
    We scrubbed up, and then headed inside to stand next to mama as she received the epidural. The surgeons started opening her, and before I know it, I’m told to put on gloves and was handed a cloth, and the next thing I knew, there was her baby boy being pulled out and placed into my hands. I brought him to the table, and started rubbing his back and wiping him off, when he let out the most beautiful cry I’ve ever heard.
    : : :
    His brother was brought to the same table. My eyes filling with tears as they wrapped him up, I held life in one hand and placed the other hand on life that had been taken. Charlotte slipped over and we swayed with this new little life. Celebrating and welcoming him to the world.”

Taking Back Our Power

I wanted to share some thoughts that have recently accumulated with a dream.

So last week I had this dream, where in the dream I was pregnant. I was pretty far along and my belly was rather big. And throughout the dream, there was this sense that I wasn’t enough, that I couldn’t give birth, that my body wasn’t able to support what was about to happen. And the whole FEAR, and all these emotions stemmed from the idea that my skin was too thin. I know right, sounds ridiculous!! And so this manifested in the dream, by everytime the baby moved, you could see every outline of the baby. You could see the baby’s bones, what position she was in, how she kicked, and moved her face. And this wasn’t a cute scene like, ‘Oh, look at the baby.’ It was fearful and powerless that I couldn’t be what my baby needed. That the skin on my belly wasn’t good enough to carry her.

Well I woke up in a sweat, and that whole morning, I was just trying to shake it off. When later I was driving to the clinic, and it was like everything hit me as to what the dream meant. Pulling from a past experience that I had forgotten about, that was so far down in me, I didn’t even realize.

As women, we do this right? We collect all the things that people have ever said to us, good and bad. But especially for the bad or negative things, we stuff them so far down inside of us, that sometimes we even forget they are there. So back to my experience, I had a doctor along time ago, tell me that my skin was too thin. That it didn’t have good elasticity, and that I would have bad circulation problems and that because my skin was so thin, that my health might be effected, ect.  So ridiculous!!! And as a woman, for some reason that took my power away. And maybe in the moment, I brushed it off, and was like, whatever, I don’t really care about your opinion about my skin. But obviously, it stuck. Because ten years later, subcousiously I am dreaming about fear, and that opinion worked its way up the pipeline.

So in saying all this, I was reminded of how we as women, store negative things, that will resurface at some point. And BIRTH, is one of those times that our vulnerability is extremely heightened. And the chances of things coming back up the pipeline are real. And when things come back up, after maybe being stuffed down there for years, we let those things TAKE our POWER. We let something as stupid as a doctor telling me I have thin skin, make me feel small.

So I’m proposing that we dig it all up. We pull if we have to, everything that anybody has ever said about us that would take power from us. Anything that anybody has said about our bodies, our minds, our spirits, that takes the light, we’re gonna pull it up and GET IT OUT!! All the shadows that have been stored deep down, we will no longer let it take our power. I want every woman to be able to walk into Birth fearless and free. Conscious only of the strength she has to cross over and bring her baby to this side. And in order to do this, we got to start digging, and pulling out every small thing that dims our light.

I hope this resonates with your hearts, and encourages you to do the work, so that we can be stronger and more powerful. My love for you all is so deep and together we can do this! We can TAKE BACK our POWER!!!!

 

TRIBE of All Women

What if as women we decided that individualism was something that we no longer wanted for our nation. What if we decided that raising a child should be left to the tribe instead of just one or two people. How would our world look? I truly believe that tribe and community is going to be the thing that empowers mamas and their partners. How many mamas out there feel so alone? Feel like they have nobody that is fighting for them or willing to lend a hand? I believe birth is only the beginning to actually breaking the cycle. We have to continue the revolution into the chapters of postpartum.

If you look at other cultures around the world, this idea of tribe helping to raise the baby is so normal, it’s not even really looked at as revolutionary. All the aunties and the grandmamas help after birth, with the transition into motherhood. So the scene of a mama leaving the hospital a couple days after birth, to return to her house, by herself or even with her partner, is crazy. She returns to a house, tries to rest and take care of a  newborn. Completely isolated to the world, drowned in questions and concerns she might have.

So what do we do? Well for me, I would say, lets be a TRIBE. And not just a one colored tribe. Or a tribe that all looks and acts the same. A tribe that is primarily concerned with the empowerment of all it’s members, not with the concerns that we maybe don’t look alike. When I see tribes captured on film, they seem to function on such a basic level, and my thoughts are always how could it NOT work? The support and empowerment that everyone gives is enlightening. I am reminded of the Mongolian warrior, Genghis Khan, who united all of the Mongolian tribes under one ruler. His campaign was based mostly out of fear, but this was the first time in Mongolian history that this had ever happened. Where different tribes came together.

As women we can do this, we can come together and create a tribe that is for a greater purpose. We can empower each other to become great women. I would love to see our nation turn our ideas of Motherhood on it’s head, and bring about a new generation of women that are fearlessly, supporting each other. Who are creating TRIBE with the women around them. Who understand that in order to create power for one another, we do this in numbers.

A tribe of all women, all colors, all upbringings. I’m looking for my tribe. I want it so desperately for my people, for all people. So today, lend a hand, speak power into the ones who feel downcast and forgotten. Spring up the life that has always been in our women, but maybe just forgotten about. Let’s be a TRIBE of all women. I love you all.