As Ian approaches his first birthday, his entrance into this world is on the forefront of my mind. There were a number of women whose love and care not only made giving birth a wonderful experience, it changed who I am and how I operate in the world. Having someone spend hours of time with me, visit my house, and take my calls about breastfeeding and herbs and car seats JUST BECAUSE has inspired me to do the same.
Being a mother has made me realize that community is the most important ingredient in the recipe for a happy life. Not money. Not stuff. Not the “right” school or the “best” neighborhood. Nope. Having people you can count on, who will bring you stew when you’ve had a car accident, who will call you right back to talk about mastitis (again) even though they have a million things to do and three babies of their own to tend to…that’s the good stuff. That’s love.
All of these attributes I speak of, my midwife, Racha Tahani Lawler, has in spades. Not only is she a fabulously talented, experienced midwife who truly has birthing in her bones, she’s a righteous woman. She’s beautiful inside and out, her kids are ridiculous, and she’s a mad cook. She loves waffles. She wears Dansko clogs. She’s my idol.
Racha showed me that birth is not a medical condition. Birth is not about doctors or drugs or hospitals or surgery. It’s a rite of passage in every sense of the word. True birth professionals are servants of birth, not obstacles to it. She and my husband were the first faces Ian saw, born into water in a dark, quiet room, and brought straight to me. Simple. Undisturbed. Beautiful.
Racha is opening a birth center in Los Angeles (SO excited), and her aim is to provide peaceful birth to ALL who desire it, not just those who can afford it (a lot of insurance doesn’t recognize midwifery outside of a hospital setting). We need the support of the community in order to serve the community, so if you can help bring empowered birth to Southern California, you will be karmically rewarded. Richly.