Two streams of personal history....
Fourteen years ago, I was frequently found on an Amish farm, my eyes wide in the hush-light of a child's dawning, learning all I could from an experienced midwife. She had, even at that time, attended the births of 1200 children. She would play card games with her partner during a birth, and wake up from a convincingly deep sleep at the slightest, "pushy" moan. She had a waiting song she taught me, sung with mothers and fathers, sung softly to welcome the baby (to the tune of "Rose Red"):
Baby, baby, dear little baby
We are waiting for you to come
Mommy wants to nurse you, Daddy wants to name you
Come, baby, soon
I was her apprentice and the beauty of birth-themes: struggle, need, dependence and strength...the gentle welcoming of babies...the absolute privelege it was to witness and serve families this way....still makes me tear up.
Just before that, before my childbearing career, I began a healing journey. Divine wisdom saw that I be given the opportunity to work in a Drug and Alcohol agency (as a VISTA volunteer). The exposure I received there was priceless and painful and wonderful. I began to see my family generations with new eyes, and recieve the inner work of healing wounds of addiction. I still look on that time with gratitude, and even though it was awkward and vulnerable, it has shaped me in ways that are very, very good. Most of all, it has placed my feet firmly on the path of growth. A deep, sustained interest in "becoming" has followed, and has threaded together all my life themes.
At any rate, while working there, a co-worker told me about a book called, "Self-Esteem, a Family Affair", by Jean Illsley Clarke. One of the main ideas in the book is to bring affirmations to children and adults, within a developmental model.
This is where the streams converge. While holding my children, I often sing to them. I thought, why not give them a song of those affirming messages? What flowed was the "rose red" song from the births I had attended. Sad the minor key, so make it major and sing your affirmation songs.
The song I sing to Davis...I like to play with the words...make it fit even for the older girls...I think lots of families have little songs they sing just for their children. After several attempts to embed audio in Blogger, I gave up and put it there.
In the book, there are affirmations for being (you have every right to be here, I'm glad you are a boy/girl, welcome to the world, I like to hold you, you don't have to hurry), affirmations for doing, feeling, and thinking, and much more.
This is really a simple song, and in this gift of welcoming and re-welcoming my children, I, too, am affirmed....midwifing my Self and theirs.