Monday, September 25, 2006


Blog limitations as they are, I'm going to post the pictures from beginning to end knowing that they''l read from end to beginning. I'll figure that one out. Probably fiddle with the dates of the posts once I've downloaded everything.

This was taken in the days directly preceding the start of labour.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

This woman is only as good as her queer, black, diasporic african woman's home birthing story

Trying to shake the feeling that I'm skulking back after an unneccesary and idiotic cat fight with a bunch of folks I couldn't justify spending the energy to take on...

Let's be clear...ain't a blasted thing changed. Me and blogland denizens ain't companionship. I'm looking for sterner, brass-ballzier, more ethical an
d analytical stuff. I'm back to drop my payload and head out to the borderlands again. So, if you and I ever exchanged emails or comments and if you had nothin' meaningful, as in not placating or normalizing to say in the past SIX months, best keep on keepin' on, just move on through and we'll call it a day. I won't be accepting or responding to emails. But feel free to use the images or words you encounter here as a way to further conversations with people who are actually interested in having conversation.

Returning to fulfill the original mandate of this space...

I've got a darkly rich, queered, politicized feminist woman's mostly photographic birth story to tell...

Don't look for a lot of actual wording as I'm pretty fed up with the lack of comprehension and (un)consciousness I'm encountering when I choose to utilize my wordsmithing abilities as a way to channel intellect, emotion and things political.

You'll find mostly birthing photos in my next post. I did the socio-politico-historical birth story for my daughter's birth. What I'm more interested in relaying this time 'round is what happened inside uh ME.

It fits with where I'm at presently as I've got healing work to do and layered relationship and childhood stuff to reconcile. So, I've made a pact with myself to not rise to the lure of being too friendly/chatty in blogland. That's just futile.

I originally left blogland to re-center...too interested in bullshit she-said, she-said shee-it. I pulled out and relocated so as to begin re-creating my (womb)space in preparation for the birth of my second child. Good thing, too. It took me a few months to get my home running, to duke
it out in real time fights too close to home so that there could be peace and order in my vicinity before the rushes began.

Finally able to breathe easy, at however great a cost, I found myself on my rooftop deck having a belly cast made by seminalson when I realized (admitted) that my labour was beginning. Tiny tightenings under my belly signalling the opening and the descent.

I won't bore with all the details...I've got probably over one hundred birth pictures to download. I'll just say first stage happened gently over a period of six days, starting and stopping, never closing, but inexorably opening...painless, unless you count the exam one of my wonderful midwives M. gave on the first night when we called her to see what was going on down below. An experienced practitioner, she would come visit, talk on the phone with me and generally stay in contact, although it was her vacation, over the course of the next few days, which I really appreciated.

I fucked to see if the semen would bring things along. I walked. I listened to Red Hot Chili Peppers over and over and over again, dancing and head banging and swaying around my room.

Over a period of days, resting in between, I did birth art. I drew a giant coloured crowning pussy on one bedroom wall with a fitting caption: Open.

On the other wall I wrote out in giant letters the mantra I had chosen:

"i must not fear.
fear is the mind-killer.
fear is the little-death
that brings total obliteration.
i will face my fear.
i will permit it to pass over me.
and when it has gone past
i will turn the inner eye
to see its path.
where the fear has gone
there will be nothing.
only i will remain."
Frank Herbert, Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear - Dune

I ate and drank and studied birth and spent lots of time alone...just...breathing.

I stayed near home for the most part. Although I did venture out to go to a movie...The Omen. :)

Fast forward to Monday morning seven-thirty, I bolted up out of bed with period-like cramps and knew it was "time". I called M.. She was prepping her child for school and wanted to know if she had time to finish. I said yes. Then got one of the house mates to call back about fifteen minutes later to say "No, come now." when everything amped up a good bit on the sensation/contraction front.

Pain...unh, or as the uber mummies would say: intense sensation.
A rollercoaster intense helluva ride.
Nobody touch me.
No you can't use the doppler right now.
Yes you can, now. But make it quick.
Pant, pant, pant.
No words...instinct driven...
Cling to sanity with every fibre of my being.
Nobody nudge the bed.
Pant, pant, sweat.
Can't speak.
Consciousness plunged deep, survival mode.
Maybe if I sit absolutely still the crush in my belly will stop.
Pant, pant.
No, you can't touch me.
No, I don't want some water, no toast, no stroking, no massage.
No TALKing!
NO doppler.
Oh GAWD! Here comes another oneAaaaah-nother oneAAAAAhhhh-nother one
on top of the other
Too fast.
Anyone got a home epidural kit handy?
Gushing, oozing.
Can't talk.
Don't talk to me.
Don't touch me.
Wanna get up. PAIN! Stay down!
Pant, pant, pain...
Why do I feel like shitting?
Pain layered on top of pain layere on top of pain.
Can't speak, only whisper, panting.
Don't nudge the mofo bed!
Crinkling plastic wrappers coming off tools sound like PAIN!
Shuffling feet moving in and out, carefi; whispers, gloves snapping on ALL sound like pain reverberating from my ears, radiating out from my belly to my limbs.
I'm ready to stop.
Can't stop.
Pant, pant, pant, pant.
Womb rushiiiinggg.
Rolleroaster rushiiiiinnnnngggg.
Pant, pant, pant,
Bring the sound down
I will not survive
reliefcrying holding
throbbing hurting
reliefnot ripped and bleeding

6 months after I took my leave of this place...
2 and a half hours on a bright sunny Monday morning in June
10 pounds 6 ounces fat and strong
Olamina has entered through me.
Holy Oli

A good many pictures to follow. In the meantime here are a few pictures taken by she of nvision photography, including one of me in labour with midwife M., doula J. and papi all close at hand...

Black canadianized diasporic african exhiled caribbean nomadic queer queen fiercely signing off...until next time.

if, by chance, you're following the shmolian's middle passage birthphotolog...this is part VI