Responsibility and Birth Classes

As I have mentioned, I am a childbirth educator. I also have a tendency to be almost pathologically responsible and conscientious as well as very hard on myself in general. Since my miscarriage, I pushed back the start date of two of my scheduled classes and canceled one completely. This was hard for me to do because it is my business and I love the work and I want these women to have good classes, however, I obviously needed to do it then when I was physically recovering. So, today, one of my pushed back classes was supposed to start at 3:00. I felt like I was going to be able to do it. I got all ready and had all my stuff by the door ready to go, but I kept thinking “I don’t want to do this, I don’t want to do this.” Part of it is the same reason I don’t feel like reviewing “The Guide to Natural Childbirth” right now—my heart and soul aren’t really “in” the subject right now. I’m just not quite ready. I thought part of it was related to fear of sorts—the “before” and “after” thing I’ve identified with other things, however, I don’t think that is really it. I posted to Facebook that I was going to class and got a comment on admiring my “toughness.” This gave me pause—am I being “tough” or being “crazy”?? And, why be tough? Just because I CAN do something, doesn’t mean I have to. I knew I could still do the class and do it well–even with some spirit missing—and not like I would be emotionally or physically unable to handle it. I’m doing pretty good and I would have been fine in class, not a pile of sad jelly.

I got off the computer to finish getting ready to go to class and was thinking when I look back at this time in my life, what will I say “why” about? What did I push myself on, when I could have held the space and been gentle? I saw with perfect clarity that this was IT. This was a moment about which future me is shaking her head and saying, “oh, honey. why?!”

So, I called and pushed the start date for our classes back until Dec. 14th. I felt really strange after calling, as if I’d “wimped out.” I called my husband and was almost crying as well as totally trying to explain/justify why I pushed it back. Saying things like, “it hasn’t even been a month.” I almost felt I needed “permission” to give myself more time before getting back to birthwork. I still feel like I need to explain, that is why I’m posting here right now.

Even though I knew that I COULD do it, I also had the revelation that I don’t HAVE to do it and there’s a difference. These classes are MY small business and I am the boss—if I want to give myself a little more time off, it is totally okay. My heart and spirit for this work aren’t restored yet and I can give that a little more time to re-blossom.

I think future me is giving current me a hug right now though. And, she’s smiling.

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5 responses to “Responsibility and Birth Classes

  1. I’m so glad that you pushed it back, Molly. I know that it is so difficult for you b/c you are so “responsible,” and I’m proud of you for realizing that you are also responsible to take care of you and take the time to heal.

  2. Good for you. I am giving you a hug too!

  3. Thank you so much for sharing this. You have beautifully articulated what I have been feeling. I lost my baby girl in September. I was 41 weeks and she was (is) perfect! I teach Hypnobabies and have been planning on beginning again at the New Year. My heart has been yelling at me to not do it yet but I felt I was responsible for helping others and hoped it would help in my healing. Sheridan shared this post with me and it helped to validate my decision to wait a little longer. I truly appreciate your thoughts.

    • I’m so sorry that your baby died 😦 (((hugs)))

      Thanks for your comment. I haven’t lost my love for birth or my passion for helping other women. However, I just feel a very strong NO!! to the thought of teaching birth class right now. I need to rest and renew a bit more first. Actually, I DO have a single session class scheduled for tomorrow (a different class than the one I pushed back in this post) and again, I hear myself saying loudly “NO, I don’t want to.” I know what you mean about thinking it might help with healing–I wonder the same thing. I almost feel like my resistance is something different than that though. It isn’t like I’m “too sad” to work with other women right now, it is just that it doesn’t feel right for me to go right now…I also feel almost like I need to rework my approach to birth education or something–it no longer feels sufficient. Like I want to “go deeper” before going back to it. Not sure if that makes sense or not!

  4. Again, that is exactly how I feel! I have worried about teaching because my perspective has changed. I want to give more but I don’t want to overwhelm. One of my main objectives is to overcome fear, not instill it! I love what I do. I love helping mommies. The birth process is amazing and miraculous. I feel strong enough to teach but I also believe that there are other things I need to be doing right now. Besides myself and my husband, I have six other children who need caring for. I created a place in my heart for my baby girl, which will always be hers, but for now, I can focus on my little ones in a way that I wouldn’t have been able to with her here. I will teach again but I don’t think I am going to set an exact time. I am going to follow my inner guidance and trust that I will know when it is right.

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