How to choose a doula

Doula Jen Miriam Altman supports mom in labor. From https://www.flickr.com/photos/greendoula/9266244478/

A friend recently asked for advice on choosing a doula to share with her pregnant coven-mate. Since finding a great birth doula can make a huge difference in a birthing experience, I thought I'd share here what I wrote to her.A doula should offer a free initial consultation and I'd suggest interviewing at least a couple of doulas that way. The most important thing is a matter of personal fit: does the doula feel like someone you can be vulnerable around?Otherwise there are all kinda of … [Read more...]

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The Revolving Wheel

photo courtesy of the author

 “With a new awareness, both painful and humorous, I begin to understand why the saints were rarely married women. I am convinced it has nothing inherently to do, as I once supposed, with chastity or children. It has to do primarily with distractions. The bearing, rearing, feeding and educating of children; the running of a house with its thousand details; human relationships with their myriad pulls–woman’s normal occupations in general run counter to creative life, or contemplative life, or sain … [Read more...]

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May Link Round-Up: Birthdays, bodies, and bacteria

Mother's Wisdom Deck

Each month I look back over the great links and discussions we share on Pagan Families' social media and I compile the best and most enduring links and things in a monthly link round-up.In May we celebrated the two-year anniversary of the Mother's Wisdom Deck. We held our second Flash Points round robin, on the topic of children and sexuality in Paganism. In honor of International Midwives Day, we looked back at Pagan Families articles about midwives. Patheos celebrated its 5th … [Read more...]

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What makes a family? Opening up…

photo courtesy of the author

Sacred Body  Sacred Space Sacred WombHolding enfolding protecting nourishing.Spinning cells into soul into body into breath into life.Unfurling without conscious control or effort. Dancing together in the incredible might of creation...I missed my chance to officially participate in our first Pagan Families Flashpoints series on the topic of what makes a family, but I still have something to say about the topic anyway! For me, the question of what makes a … [Read more...]

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April Link Round-Up: Medicine, magic, motherhood, and more

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Every month I read back over the links and things shared and discussed on the Pagan Families facebook and twitter pages, and write up the juiciest, most useful, most enduringly interesting links here in case you missed something. In April there were new babies, new facebook pages, and plenty of articles to read.We congratulated Niki from A Witch's Ashram who moved into her new house and immediately welcomed her baby girl to the world!Throughout April we observed Cesarean Awareness … [Read more...]

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Cesarean Courage

photo courtesy of the author

“Her courage is written on her body.” –Molly (Talk Birth) Last year I made several cesarean birth art sculptures by request. It felt like a “risk” of sorts to make them, like I was trying to interpret another woman’s experience artistically, but I did it and they were well-received. I chose to imprint words in the figure’s cesarean scar because I kept thinking about how that mother’s love and hope and courage are all permanently written on her body. Recently, I had requests to make more figures … [Read more...]

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Birth Spiral Chakra Blessing

photo courtesy of the author

Birth spiral. Energy feel it spin throughout your body. Beginning in your core, unfolding, unfolding, spiraling upward into a peak and release Every part of you opening making space making room for this new little one. Calling the child forth into your waiting arms your waiting family your waiting heart. Enlivened alive fully engaged and embodied in the current of labor. It builds it pulses it rolls it rocks it peaks it crests. These waves of power. They are you. You are … [Read more...]

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Book Review: Rooted in the Body, Seeking the Soul by Tara “Masery” Miller

Rooted in the Body

The past few weeks I've been reading Rooted in the Body, Seeking the Soul: Magic Practitioners Living with Disabilities, Addiction, and Illness by Tara "Masery" Miller, and containing articles and interviews from a diverse group of Pagans.  It has been an absolutely fascinating journey.  The book accepted contributions from a variety of Pagans (as the title says) living with disabilities, addiction, and illness.  Perhaps of particular interest to those reading Pagan Families, it also has four ch … [Read more...]

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