When I was pregnant with my first child, I was completely unprepared for how pregnancy, birth, and motherhood would turn my whole life inside out and reveal previously hidden fears, doubts, and insecurities.
I was also unaware of the vast well of love living inside my heart that would bubble up and out when I stepped through the birth portal. Birth is a time outside of time; when linear ways cease to exist, and we are called to surrender to our bodies and hearts being opened and washed through.
During my first pregnancy, I read countless books on breathwork, nutrition, and pain management, trying to mentally prepare myself. I meditated, did prenatal yoga, and took hypnobirthing classes. I realized that this birth was not just about birthing a baby, it was also about rebirthing myself–as a mother and a whole new person.
No matter where you give birth, the inner terrain is the same.
The voice a birther wants to hear from inside her own mind and from her environment is some rendition of: “You are powerful. You can do this. Let your body open. Trust yourself.” Birth reveals our deepest strengths and weaknesses. We meet every place inside ourselves that has doubt or fear. And we get to face it, feel through it, and realize that we are this…and so much more. We let go and move into a greater relationship with ourselves and with all creation. It is mystical and magical at its core.
No matter where you give birth, the inner terrain is the same. It is a reckoning and an internal revolution that will forever reshape your inner landscape to support you in trusting yourself, opening to love, and embracing change. So, when approaching the birth portal, it is so important to mark this transition consciously so you can root your intentions into the core of your being and relax into trust.
It is time to create a birth ritual.
There’s no right or wrong way to create a ritual. The most vital ingredient is presence. Everything else can be improvised.
Rituals are a simple yet potent way to bring us into the present moment and open our hearts and minds to consciously receive guidance and support from the invisible realms. This particular Trust Ritual can melt resistance and dissolve doubt and fear…if you let it.
You can do this ritual by yourself or with your partner, a trusted friend, or a small group of your family/community.
You’ll need a few items to begin:
- A small bowl for water
- A pitcher, jar, or vessel filled with water
- A small candle – or you can use the symbolic fire of your heart or the sun if you don’t have a candle
- Matches or lighter, if you decide to use a live candle
- A pen and something to write on
- An item to symbolize you ~ This is something you will carry into your birth and postpartum space, and through this ritual it will be infused with sacred energy and your intentions. It can be a stone, shell, bead, figure, necklace or leaf, whatever you feel called to choose.
Six Steps for a Beautiful Trust Ritual
1. Find a quiet space (inside or outside) where you won’t be disturbed.
Give yourself as much spaciousness as possible (at least 20 minutes). Bring your water, bowl, candle, matches, and special item with you. In your own way, create an altar with all your items. Again, there is no right or wrong way to do this. Let your intuition guide you. If you feel like you’re not in touch with your intuition, or that creating a ritual feels strange, can you get in touch with your curiosity and just see what happens?
2. Create intentions for your ritual.
These could be as simple as, “I intend to relax and trust my body and baby to birth in the perfect way that keeps us both safe and healthy.” Give yourself a few moments to create your intentions, write them down, if you wish, and when you’re ready, say them aloud. It might feel funny talking aloud to yourself in this way, so if this is new for you, it’s ok to feel embarrassed or weird, just keep going. If your partner or friend is with you, you can ask them to repeat your intention back to you.
3. Commune with the elements.
Light your candle and pour the water into your bowl. Give yourself a few moments to feel the energies that these elements bring into the space. You may want to touch your fingertips into the water and bless yourself with the water by touching your face, your heart, or belly. Feel how the fire is bringing you the essence of transformation; how the water is reminding you how to relax and go with the flow. You can ask for these elements to support you in your birth.
4. Infuse your item with the sacred intentions for your birth.
Hold your item close to your heart and imagine each intention seeping into the item. You may want to say your intentions aloud again, one at a time.
5. Infuse your item with the fire and water.
Now allow your intentions to be blessed and activated by the fire and water. You may choose to waft your item over the candle or sprinkle some water onto it. Feel how the water and fire are blessing your intentions and supporting this item to be an activated symbol of your sacred intentions.
6. Close your ritual with gratitude.
Thank the water and fire for their presence. Thank all those who are present with you. Thank your mother, your well ancestors, and the land you’re sitting on. Extend gratitude out as far as you can imagine, and then while holding the item close to your heart, thank your open heart, your body, your baby, and life for holding you through this miraculous journey of pregnancy, birth, and becoming a mother. Blow out your candle and pour your water on a special tree or plant. You’re finished.
Thank you, for saying yes.
You may also want to create an altar inside that will be home to your sacred item. You may choose to post your intentions up on your bathroom mirror or in a place you will see them daily and repeat and affirm them until they feel like second nature.
Thank you, for saying yes. For embracing this extraordinary and transformational journey of pregnancy, birth, and mothering. You are powerful. You can do this. Let your body open. Trust yourself.
Writing compliments of
Blog Contributor, Doula, Song Carrier
Kate Lindsay is mother to 3, plant whisperer, song carrier, storyteller, and doula. She believes when a mother is nourished, her world becomes a sacred garden: wild, vibrant, and regenerative.
Kate is a Holistic Health Counselor, certified in 2006 by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. In 2012, she trained with DONA as a birth doula, and in Spring 2020 she completed the CSWS Ayurvedic Postpartum Caregiver certification. Along with birth and postpartum work, she co-facilitates women’s Song Carriers circles in Austin, TX and is a devoted gardener and steward of Mother Earth.