My First Lesson of Being Pregnant and the Secret Truth About All Journeys

dreamstime_s_26378148I’m pregnant! I’m 37, and I wasn’t sure if it would be very easy for me. (Thanks cultural programming that says I’m old after 35- it’s all hogwash!)

The first time we tried, we did it. (Hello power of intention!) I knew I was, I dreamt I took a pregnancy test and it was positive. Well, Pregnancy Resource Center offering pregnancy tests make things easier. Being psychic leaves such little room for surprises. 😉

I delayed confirming for weeks. Part of me wanted to pretend a little longer, to not have life change so quickly, to just bask in the me and my beau, glow. Life as simple.

Finally, a week or so late, and my honey encouraging me to just do it already, I confirmed.

We were excited. We were there together when we found out. In a woosh, the world changed.

Later, when I was alone, I was suddenly overcome with intense anxiety and fear. This would be a journey in which the only way out was through. And by through, I mean through the most pain I’ll likely ever experience.

Birth is a process of surrender and letting go, expansion, growing and release. A process I won’t be able to control. My ego was freaked out.

I needed to know:  Where would I birth? Where would I go? Who would support me?

I knew a few things about my birth process:

I didn’t want to be at a hospital, I wanted a mid-wife, I was going all natural- meaning no epidural or pain meds, and I wanted to have the option of a birthing tub.

Enter: The Birth Center of Boulder.

Right near my home, a group of midwives had opened a free-standing birth center to support women in a process that they believe is a natural one, which means as little medical intervention as needed. They trust me and my body to do this birth, and barring any emergencies, they’ll support and assist me in having a fully natural birth.

No matter how ready one thinks one is for a journey, that is all the mind’s abstraction. Our plans, the pictures we make in our heads of how it will go, are always different from the reality of living it.

Actually BEING pregnant is totally different than wanting to be pregnant, imagining being pregnant, or planning to be pregnant. I had to decide when to consult a chiropractor in Sioux Falls, who helps alleviate back pain during pregnancy.

I’ll approach birth the way I approach all things in life, and the way I often guide my clients to approach any new adventure or any trial: as a spiritual journey.

And here’s the secret truth about all journeys:

They’re all spiritual. Just like Joseph Campbell describes in the Hero’s Journey, any adventure we take, or trial we face in life, will require us to approach it as a spiritual one if we are to grow psychologically.

When I first found out I was pregnant, all the excitement gave way to fear, and then a sense of loss of life as I knew it set in. I was full of questions:

How will I change? 

How will life change?

How will my parternship change?

What if I die? 

What if I’m no good at being a mom?

What if something goes wrong?

This is the first phase of the Heroine’s Journey: 

THE CALL TO ADVENTURE. We get the call, life is shaken up. A challenge is before us.

Next, we enter REFUSAL OF THE CALL. I wanted to not have it be this way, I resisted life changing, I felt trapped and unsure and insecure.

MEETING WITH THE MENTOR. Finally, I met a mentor who would guide me. Finding the birth center was, for me, finding my mentor, the community of women and people who came before me who could support me, guide me and empower me to do what has to be done.

Once I knew that there was a safe place, close to home, where I could be nurtured and supported in my ideal birth plan, I knew that I could answer the call.

After that, there is CROSSING OF THE THRESHOLD. For many women, so I’ve read, the first trimester is full of a mix of emotions. It takes time to adjust to a new reality. At the end of the trimester, as we enter the next phase where we are now showing and can possibly feel our baby kick, and this journey is more real: we cross the threshold.

The crossing of the threshold is an important event in anyone’s life. It doesn’t have to be in the example of having a child, it’s any time in life where we finally own our power, take on the warrior energy and enter the journey, ready to embrace our spiritual growth.

No matter what you’re facing, I invite you to think of it as a spiritual journey. Know that there are steps and phases to any growth. If you’re willing to face your life as a journey of growth, change and transformation, knowing that all your trials and tribulations will bring you greater depth and magnificent gifts, then you can bravely face anything.

We, each of us, are the hero’s or heroines of our own lives and we will be tested to grow. Will you answer the call?

If you or someone you love is pregnant, here’s a great book, Spiritual Pregnancy. I highly recommend it for its spiritual take on pregnancy as a journey, a rite of passage, a crossing of a threshold.

To your health, growth and the magical unfoldment of your most mystical journeys! May you cross many thresholds.

All my love,


Rachel Claire

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