Calling out to my VBAC sistas!

by redblossom on October 3, 2010

V.B.A.C.vaginal birth after cesarean

This seems to be the population of women with whom I have the best outcomes. Come one, come all!  There is something in the Arvigo Techniques for all!

Let me explain why I think VBAC’s especially thrive with the Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapies:

Women who have had an unplanned c-section have wounds.

The psychological wound is that someone cut them open to take their baby away.  Their bodies failed them.  Their care providers failed them.  God(dess) failed them.  They failed their babies.

The physical wound is the cut and the scar.  Scar tissue can incarcerate the womb to tilt forward, preventing the next baby full access to the space available.  But also residing in that physical scar is the psychological one.

Oregon Country Faire, 2005, Girl Circus

Our teacher Rosita Arvigo has illuminated the work of Wilhelm Reich for us. Reich was a psychotherapist and protégé to Freud.  The aspect of his work that I wish to explain is that painful experiences if not adequately expressed will hardened the muscles of the body in a particular location.  Where the tissue is hardened (it can be anywhere in the body), the orgone or universal life force, or Qi cannot flow through this area, leading to further dysfunction of the organs. Massage and Manual Therapies address this problem and allow for the complete release of psychological wounding.  Reich was opposed to talk therapy by the end of his career, stating that it was better to sit in silence and observe the patient for 3 minutes.  After this amount of time, the location of the stagnation of energy would become apparent without the distraction of verbal communication, and he could begin to work the trauma out of the tissue.  Many forms of modern bodywork incorporate the work of Reich, such as the Arvigo Techniques, Rolfing and Network Chiropractic.

When I am massaging the scars of women who have been traumatized by birthing surgically, we can release the trauma without much discussion.  I am most likely the first person to rub that scar with love, releasing the uterus from the physical and psychological scars.  No matter what the circumstance, pregnancy offers us a tremendous window for healing the traumas lingering from the past.  The veil is thin, and the hormone relaxin lets connective tissue soften.

Girl Circus, Oregon Country Faire, 2006

The Arvigo Techniques as a part of prenatal care also allow for the correction of the congestion that led to the derailed the previous labour process in the first place.  C-sections rarely happen to women who are having an efficient labour…. The Arvigo therapies bring in fresh blood and nutrients to the womb, flushing the waste matter out.  The alignment of the womb gives the baby the fullest range of possibility for picking the best position for childbirth. After all, we all want the easy way out!

The alignment of the pelvic bones furthers these possibilities for the baby. The sacrum is the most important bone for fertility – for conception and childbirth.  During uterine contractions it oscillates, pumping the Cerebral-Spinal Fluid in the mother’s spinal cord giving feedback to the brain.  The ancient brain, according to Dr. Michel Odent, is actually the most active part of a woman’s body in labour.  This part of the brain is the ancient medicine woman, selecting, concocting and parceling out the neurotransmitters that fuel labour.  The cortex is the newest part of the human brain that thinks, analyzes language, reads, etc.  This most human part of the brain, when activated will derail a beautiful labour (I know this well from my own experience of giving birth…) What stimulates the cortex – bright lights, fear, language and the feeling of being observed – will detract a woman from her primal brain, the medicine woman within.  Having the sacrum bone articulate well with her surrounding bones, being flexible and free from scar tissue and excessive fluids – will allow the parts of the female body to communicate better in labour.  The cervix will open like butter on a hot skillet. Sizzle………………….

Everything we can do to maximize our chances for a triumphant outcome is worth the effort.  This is what VBAC’s know that other pregnant women do not.  What makes childbirth more challenging today – that we have 1 in 3 babies born by c-section?  Well, I believe it is our separation from nature, our pelvic congestion due to sitting and driving, and delayed childbearing.  Many first-time pregnant women go into childbirth with a sort of amnesia about how challenging childbirth will be.  While it is excellent to approach childbirth with courage rather than fear, childbearing is always a risk in some sense. Something women sacrifice for love, the status quo.

mama feeds baby peach

I am truly grateful for every pregnant woman who trusts me enough to lie semi-reclining on my table!  In this way, I am treating the next generation – giving them a better chance at experiencing a safe and glorious incarnation, unfettered by trauma and unnecessary intervention.  The less violence babies experience, the better chances we have as a species to survive with the spirit of cooperation and love.


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