I met Gwen for the first time during my apprenticeship in Los Angeles. She arrived for one of her antenatals, and from the moment she walked through the door, I was instantly struck by her vitality and contagious smile. She radiated positivity, and I felt drawn to her energy immediately. I felt I needed to get to know her better, even though somehow, her familiarity made me feel like I’d known her for years.
The weeks rolled by and with each antenatal I learned a little more about Gwen’s background. Each appointment, she breezed in with the same positivity and glow, and it was hard not to feel inspired by her story.
Gwen’s due date came and went, and I felt anxious as she approached the 42 week mark, as I knew how much she wanted to birth her baby at home.
When I received the text giving me the heads up Gwen was in labour, I was thrilled to be able to attend with her midwife, as I knew it was going to be special.
Gwen’s birth wasn’t the first home birth I’d attended, as I’d been to many before, and I’d certainly witnessed hundreds of other births previously. But this was one of the first I’d witnessed that truly moved me.
As a midwife, I’m privileged to have witnessed many, many babies enter this world. To witness women and mothers doing what they do best. Each with a story to tell. But there are certain births that change you as a midwife. And this was one of them.
The experience of watching Gwen become a mother, with her baby girl in her arms, will stay with me forever.
Everything I witnessed in that room, was everything I want The Birth Circle to represent.
I saw womanhood, trust, surrender, celebration, intuition, wisdom and power.
I loved everything about that experience, and rode high on the waves of oxytocin for weeks following Emerson’s birth.
That birth made me remember all the reasons why I became a midwife, and why I love this job so much.
So, on International Women’s Day, (just past Emerson’s birthday) it only seems right, to celebrate and share one woman’s incredible journey into motherhood.
In her own words, this is Gwen’s story…
When I discovered I was pregnant 9 years ago, after being told I wouldn’t be able to have kids, I felt tons of fear. How would I do it without family? How would I do it without a partner?
That fear was a fire starter. When I worked my process, the fear told me to stop fucking around and get focused. Pregnancy and motherhood will do that to a woman. It will make everything crystal clear.
So I did that. I spent the next 42 wks working to invest in, and pay for a home birth out of pocket. I invested in my second coaching program, and I hired a coach. I up-leveled my coaching business. I tracked everything, writing weekly blogs, sending emails. I engaged in my consulting and coaching businesses in a whole new way. I was also chanting 1 hr, kundalini 1 hr, and swimming 1-2 miles a day. I moved through a lot of chaos with the dad. And you know what, I made and saved more money than I ever had at that time in my life.
I hold this phase as one of the most painful yet most expansive, in addition to when I woke up, got sober, had my son, overcame a legal case for my daughter, left consulting, and moved through divorce.
This is why when I coach clients, we look at all areas of your life – health, wealth, mindset, emotional healing, physical action, energetic upgrades – because we are multidimensional beings. Because practicality and numbers are as important as spiritual evolution.
Nine years ago today it was game time.
March 3rd was a Saturday. I was exactly 42 wks. My midwife told me if I didn’t have the baby by March 4th I’d have to go to the hospital.
I woke up that morning in a panic. I didn’t want to go to the hospital. I walked and cried most of the day and at 10 pm the first of 26 hours of contractions started.
In those 26 hours I learned that goals do not come to fruition from sheer discipline and determination as the majority of my pregnancy had. This little being called my daughter, taught me that yes, practicality, purpose and action are very necessary. But at a certain point, we need to surrender it all to Spirit.
This little soul called Emerson showed me in those moments of pushing her from my body, in the water, at home as I wished would happen, in the dark hours of the evening, who she was, and who I truly was. Pulling my baby from my body, watching her open her eyes underwater, and take her first breath as I brought her out of the water showed me that Spirit is really the person in charge.
When Emerson emerged earth side she brought an unprecedented joy, purpose, and new definition of what it meant to be “strong” into my being. Strong is a fine balance of driving as well as letting go. Emerson, and her brother Grant, continue to be my greatest spiritual teachers. Spirit continues to be my guide, my employer, and the energy I surrender to each day to the best of my ability.
Happy 9th Birthday to my precious, generous, soulful Emerson Oribel Dittmar. Thank you for being with me in this lifetime.
To learn more about Gwen’s work pop over to her website, check out her latest workshop ‘The Beautiful Grit – Use Your Gift to Discover Your Soul’, or take a listen to her Beautiful Grit Podcast.
Gwen Dittmar | @gwendittmar | Photo Credit @beatewalden
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