Monday, May 14, 2012

...A Birth Story...

Well, it's been two weeks since my nephew, Eyon (pronounced E-an) aka "Seven", aka "Chicken", came into this world...and a beautiful experience it was!

I blogged last about the trip to the hospital and us leaving that sis could labor at home in peace.  Well, a couple days after that, the labor got active.  She pretty much labored at home all day...and it did get a little painful around midnight but she remained a trooper!  LOL

Simply by observation and following our intuition...we figured out what positions were comfortable for her, then she reached the moment..."I need drugs!"  That was when we decided it was time to go to the hospital.  It was always her choice to go to the hospital...but she was firm in not being poked and prodded, which is why we left the first time.

What makes the story really funny at this point, is when we got to the hospital the doctor that was trying so hard to make this woman get pitocin was on call.  I swear his eyes bucked like the cartoon characters...LOL...he didn't know what to expect.  We got to the hospital at 2:00 a.m. and he checked her about ten minutes after the hour..."9 centimeters, 100%, 0 station..."  and she was steady saying she was ready for the epidural.  Here's where getting crafty with words come in.  In order to not stop her progress, we assured her that the epidural was coming but first they had to start the IV for 30 minutes.  I loved how the staff, one of her best friends and I looked at each other, knowing it was too late for an epidural and she was gonna be pushing soon. :-)

Sure enough, 30 minutes later....TEN CENTIMETERS!  That first could see this little ones head...3 pushes later, he was out!  Apparently this baby and his mother were the talk of the floor.  They hadn't experienced a mother leaving...having the support to leave on her own and seemed they were preparing for the worse.  This little boy was just fine...6 lbs 5 oz, 19 inches long and letting people know he was here by his cry!  He even had a knot in the umbilical cord.  My sis was so proud of herself that she did it with no drugs, even though she was wanting an epidural at that point...not realizing it was really just time to push.

What was even more amazing was how rested she felt later that day...not feeling drugged or sore from an epidural.  As a black woman and how much my community is quick to go to the doctor and let them tell what they need to do or not do...not trusting their own intuition...I am absolutely proud of my sis for owning her power and not giving it to someone else that wanted it so badly, so they could have their way!

Mom and baby are doing well and had a wonderful Mother's Day!  I can't wait to get back to Jersey for a visit...I miss my lil "chicken" (chicken legs...LOL)!  :-)

What Are We Doing?!...Relationships, I Tell Ya...

Relationships seem to be on my mind today.  I've had a range of emotions for the past few weeks.  All my relationships, with myself, my daughter, my mother, my wife, my husband...even my friends and acquaintances via social network and those I've been friends with for years crossed my mind in particular yesterday on Mother's Day.  I saw how loving and supportive we were to each other acknowledging the women who portray motherhood in their respective perspectives.  It was quite beautiful.

But why we can't do this everyday is puzzling to me. We do the same thing for Father's Day, Thanksgiving,'s like the most loving, kind, powerful experiences come on holidays.  Why can't we do this everyday, just because?  Thinking back to those moments in your life, how did you feel?  Wasn't it a loving moment for you that you wanted to last more than just for that moment?

My goal is to live as such everyday.  Sometimes I think it's easier for me, because I was raised not celebrating all these holidays.  I respected them though...even birthdays...because of how they made people feel.  It was almost euphoric because for ONE day, they feel special.  However, it seems these holidays get tainted...Mothers upset they gotta do it all and no recognition...Fathers that don't get their props because they are seen as a sperm donor or a no good for nothing (...need I finish the phrase??)...people going broke just to make children happy with material things...WHAT ARE WE DOING?!  Who benefits from it all?  Is it us...because I don't see it.

I was at a happy hour last week that was rather entertaining.  Although I knew none of these was interesting seeing virtual world meet the physical world...and see just how eff'd up we are and somehow THINK we aren't accountable for how others treat us.  This one sis...smh...bless her...she was taking a break from drinking because she realizes she does "stupid stuff" when she is drunk.  Well, that's just a little "truth serum" kicking in, right?!  She decided to go to her ex boyfriend's house, basically speak her truth of how she felt he was (basically insulting and abusive...yes ladies, we do it too!) and later asked him for some "lovin".  LOL...Erykah Badu's song pops into my head with the verse, "...just make love to me...just one more time and then you'll see...I can't believe I made a desperate plea..."  Before I knew it, I asked this woman, "You just insulted him...what makes you think he's gonna give you ANY part of his body?!"  Her response, " man rejects pu$$y!"  One thing I often see, is that as males and females, we really don't respect each other as human beings...with feelings...choices...nor realize that WE are accountable for what WE choose to do or not do...not someone else.


I don't have the perfect relationships...nor are they in any way "of the norm".  One thing I know, is that we have got to respect and love each other.  We can express how we refuse to be disrespected by anyone in any way, but do we give what we receive?  If we want people to be honest with us, are we honest with them?  If we don't want to be treated like we do the same with each other? In particular, the opposite sex?  I've found I place myself in this maternal position, feeling I know what best to do, but it may stunt the growth of the other adults in my life that I'm married to.  My wife is pregnant...sure I've had a child...but she needs to have HER experience.  I can offer my experiences but I have to remember my experiences are not hers to have.  I've caught myself approaching my husband as a child...when I know it's not my intention, but it's how he perceives it.  I don't know what it's like to be a MAN or a FATHER in this's not my place to tell my husband how to be such...but you best believe I've got his back and will continue to build him up and not tear him down.  Our daughter letting me know what she sees...her mother showing everyone love...something I know not everyone sees on a daily.  My daughter is coming into her own...being a teenager that we once were...and can offer advice, yet there are things she has to learn on her own...and should have support from her parental unit (more than just 2 parents) that the sky's the limit (or not)!  WE are all learning how to be something we have no experience, in this lifetime of being...but we are willing to learn...and learn TOGETHER! 

Every human being we come across in our lives...our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, lovers, best friends, spouses, "babymamas", "babydaddys", OUR CHILDREN...a person we walk past on the street, just saying "hello"...we are all learning something (internally and from each other) and trying to reach the same goal...LOVE & UNDERSTANDING!  Some people choose to repeat what they learned in their environments, some choose to learn from their experiences...what to do and what NOT to do...break the cycle and evolve.

Let's build each other up...let them know daily how much they are of value to this universe.  Do you tell yourself that when you look in the mirror?  There is only ONE you...and you are part of the equation of life!  If we can tell babies these things, and we all were once those same babies...why can't we say such as adults?  What changed?  Maybe we should make everyday a holiday so the spirit of encouragement and appreciation of each other lives on for more than ONE day.  Wouldn't that be grand?!  What are you going to do today?!  Love is something I don't mind being contagious! :-)

Wake up, let it go, LOVE and let it be...Have a beautiful day everyONE!  I love YOU!   :-)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A Birth Story...Well, Not Quite Yet...

So, I've been in New Jersey for the past couple of weeks awaiting the arrival of my "nephew" whose "guess date" is April 23rd.  Yesterday was the day the contractions came...hooray!!!  We have been waiting to see this young man enter into the world, and YES, another taurus! :-)

Sis worked through contractions from late afternoon to late evening.  By 10:00 p.m., she felt it was time to go to the hospital.  Now, the contractions weren't that consistent, but I'm not the one laboring and what the mother feels SHE wants to do, we will respect...away we go!  We arrived at the hospital to L&D, and this is when the "fun" began!

First there was monitoring...a resident with his med student that wasn't sure if he was seeing meconium or not (asking the nurse just to be sure...smh)...but has been doing this at least a year so he says...sis having discomfort from him checking the cervix, as if he was using his fist versus his fingers...all of that to be told, "You're only 3 centimeters" more than once.  That's when the talk of interventions began.  It was like pitocin became a stalker!  LOL  My sis' experience with having her first child was not a great one...pitocin, was decided that will not happen again.  I swear this doctor came in at least 3-4 times with various fear tactics of what would happen if she DIDN'T get pitocin...discussing possible risks if she didn't get the medicine, not the risks WITH the medicine.  But I guess that's what you have a doula keep you informed FULLY! :-)

This was the point when intuition and paying attention to how the universe works came in.  The nurse that was on duty, was amazing...she was like the body guard.  I love how she reassured my sis that she didn't have to do what she didn't want to do...which we knew.  She also told us how the doctor wanted to just force her to get pitocin...we laughed.  I remember that last time he came into that room, trying once again to get sis to get that pitocin going and an epidural if you can't take the pain, waking up and asking him, "Have you ever experienced a birth WITHOUT any intervention?"  He did say yes, and added what the difference was between what he has witnessed in the past and what is occurring now.  OH, and mind you, this lil boy's heart rate was strong, never dropped, no fever present...basically no indication that any intervention was needed.  This man, who was very nice, but not use to a patient standing their ground, was informed by us that him causing stress to the mom by attempting to instill fear and get his way may be doing nothing but hindering her progression of labor...and really, we are all learning something.  In this case, a lesson for us to not allow fear to win and for them to witness something textbooks may never show them..a NATURAL childbirth.

I saw my sister laying in the bed, about to cry, fighting wanting to give in...but I remember something she told me when she first found out she was pregnant, "I just want to have my baby in peace."  Once we were reminded of that request, it's like the universe went to work.  The sleep we were able to get was like a meditation on the matter at hand.  Instead of giving into the fear, sis decided she was going home, and was firm in that decision.  And after at least 4 people coming in trying to convince her that she needed to stay at the hospital (but they can't make her stay of course), the AMA papers came and were signed.  They even sent in the black doctor, I guess they thought maybe someone the same race would change her mind would work...LOL  The universe working again and the wording this young woman used was absolutely beautiful.  She admitted that my sis wishes was out of their realm of understanding...they are programmed a certain way.  She said she didn't agree with it but understood it...and THAT was so respected...someone speaking their TRUTH!

This is just a brief summary of the things witnessed from last night until this morning...but one thing I can say is I am so proud of my sister for standing her ground...knowing what she wanted and did not want.  As for me, and my doula studies, understanding more and more what being an advocate for the wishes of a woman birthing her child(ren) really means!  Lessons indeed!

Now, to continue to labor AT HOME, in peace!  We'll be back at the hospital when it's time and always on HER terms!  This taurus baby is coming, and SOON!  Wake up, let it go, love and let it be!  Have a beautiful day everyONE...I love YOU! :-)

Monday, April 23, 2012

How Far Does Your Social Networking Go?

I LOVE the social network.  I have had wonderful experiences, as well as valuable lessons.  I think about who all I have met in various cities/states that I probably would have never met without the use of social networking, let alone the internet.

I am currently visiting a "sister" of mine in New Jersey, whom I met via Facebook through someone I knew via my "brother" (6 degrees of separation, right?! lol).  She is going to be birthing her second son into the world any day now and we are estatic! We were chatting yesterday and she said something to me that was so humbling.  I remember the day she announced to me via Facebook that she was pregnant.  She said to me yesterday how if it wasn't for me and the conversations we had, she doesn't know what she would've done.  Now let me explain something...she and I had never met face to face, never spoke on the phone...only knew of each other via Facebook when she announced she was pregnant.  Other than my visit here this month, we have only been in each other's presence in December...of 2011!!!  You would swear we knew each other forever...but have only known each other not even a year and have shared so much.  Sometimes, I am at a loss for words for all that I have experienced...and it all started via the social network.  Humbled, indeed!

Now, not all of my experiences have been super duper grand on here.  My goal is to make my social networking LIMITLESS.  That means, my interaction with whom I choose to be friends with on FB does not stop at the computer or whatever device I am using.  If I can have a conversation with you via the internet, wanting to see the world change for the better and being that change, we have to network in our physical world as well as our virtual world, don't you think?!  I have had people inform me that they choose to keep their virtual world separate from their physical world yet expect change?!  To me, I feel that limits all parties involved.  How do we fully expand our experiences and learn from each other with a few posts, pictures, comments and refuse to apply that in our present moments?

We are human beings that thrive on interaction with each other...that is apparent in this virtual world.  How often do we experience that physically with whom we call our family...our friends?  Why wouldn't we extend that to our friends via the internet?  Someone who is expressing hurt or gratitude in a post, that may just need a hug physically and doesn't have access to such...what if we happen to be in their city to give them that?

If you are good enough to be my friend through this keyboard I type on, you are good enough to be in my presence physically.  Some may have a fear based on experiences we read or hear about...people not being who they say they are on the internet.  We are coming into a world where facades and veils are becoming more and more transparent and if we pay attention to what we are shown, we realize the fraudulence that may be presented to us by some.  I've taken someone rejecting meeting me in person as showing me that what they say online is not an honest representation of's a veil...a facade...just for show.  Look, if we want to see the change we must BE the change we wish to see in this world.  And to fully be able to do that, we have to interact with each other.  WE are ALL connected in this each other, to this planet...pure energy!  Social networking to some is a blessing as well as a depends on how you perceive and/or treat it.  I have connected and reconnected with many people here.  New relationships have been established, old relationships rekindled...and some of the new and old have connected through me...and I love it!!!  It reminds me that this planet is my home...not one city or area of the world...but wherever I land my feet.  My feet are in Jersey...getting ready to greet my "nephew" and embrace my "sister" and "nephew" that are already here...that I never knew before Facebook...and through whom I knew before Facebook...if that doesn't remind you how connected all of us are, I don't know what else to say!

It's time for us to wake up, let go of the fear and connect to one our communities...know our neighbors...have a block party...plan a group trip to a destination...LOVE each other...embrace our differences, learn and grow WITH one another...not just in our own little bubble!  How far will you allow your social networking to grow?

I'm looking forward to seeing YOU when I happen to be in YOUR city! Who's in Jersey???...Next stop D.C area..where ya at???  Who knows where I'll be next...:-)  Wake up, let it go, LOVE and let it be...have a beautiful day everyONE!  I love YOU!

Friday, March 16, 2012

What The Hell Is Going On?!...

I'm not angry...maybe slightly frustrated and confused. lol

I went to sleep last night and woke up this morning trying to process what I have seen over the past couple of days.  I am currently involved in an outreach program for pregnant women. I figured it would be a good outlet to offer my doula training...which it is! The young lady I was connected with is such a beautiful being. She is only 18 and having her first baby. Fast forward to current events, as her baby will be here any day now, her mother decided to not provide shelter at the moment. Of course we know parents and children have a fall out every now and again, however, sometimes our ego needs to be put to the side when there is a bigger picture involved. Nonetheless, we had a false alarm and her mom did show up at the hospital, only to leave not saying even hello to her daughter and unborn grandson, but knowing her daughter had basically nowhere to stay. As a daughter and a mother of a daughter, I'm dumbfounded!  I also saw a hospital staff that had more fear in their eyes, they couldn't focus on the matter at hand...a baby possibly coming...they were so scared she was gonna have the baby and THEY weren't prepared (yes, this was Labor and Delivery)..smh...bless us all.

Today, I find myself asking for assistance for this young lady via programs available for those in need within the city...yet they "can't" (choose not to) help because of their protocol...what tha hell?!  I understand that, however, there is such a disconnection between human beings that we don't even HELP each other, just because we are all human beings.  We are so wrapped up in ourselves that it seems absurd to help another just because not to gain something from it.  It seriously makes me think I'm on the wrong

I was in tears this morning asking myself, "Why do I care if others don't?"..."Why do I love like I do, if others just don't give a damn?"  Asking my wife the same thing, she says to me, "Because you know someone has to..."  That is true, someone has to, but why does it have to be someone, not EVERYONE?!

I may be frustrated and have my moments of saying "f*ck tha world", but I do see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I see more and more WHY I decided to be a doula and moving forward to pursue being a montrice or midwife...Homebirth Assistant...whatever label you want to call it!  I know I am here to welcome these babies into the world of psychopaths and selfish beings...knowing that someone has to help this world change...I can only do that by being that change!  We have become so disconnected from each other that I feel sometimes people have no idea who the person is they see in the that's problematic!  It is also evident that I am where I'm suppose to be and doing what I'm doing by all the babies crossing my path...even those not here as of yet.  My lil sis here is due any day, my sis upstate is due next month, our wife is bringing another little one into our family in October and what totally brightened my day today was one of my good friends and her hubby (my sis and bro) are expecting in September.  I also look forward to having another one myself, whenever that may be! :-)

I plan to be there for every birth...the world is my home, not just New Orleans...I'm here to be of service...and I'm there because I want to be!  Time to get to work :-)  It does take a village to raise a child, but how do you expect that to happen when the village can't come together...even for the children?!  Wake up, let it go, love and let it be!

Have a beautiful day everyONE!  I love YOU! :-)

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

New Year...New City

I know it's been a while since my last blog...but so many amazing have crossed my path, I honestly didn't know how to put into words...until now!

My husband, daughter and I moved to New Orleans 3 weeks ago and what a rollercoaster ride it has been!  I have never lived outside of Texas with the exception of my birth in upstate New York prior to us moving to the Lone Star State.  We have all taken a huge leap off of a ledge...not only moving to a new city and state but diving into owning our own business in the food industry.  From the moment we got here it has been "GO".  The networking has been is so surreal that we live in New Orleans...but I love it!

We have had two experiences just in these few weeks that have been so eye opening!  One day, we were walking to our friend's resturant that we will be working in and noticed a body inside a cooler we had outside on the, he wasn't dead...he was just asleep.  He popped out said he had a good sleep.  He told us his name is Shane and he had a job yet was homeless.  I asked when was the last time he ate, he said the day before in the afternoon.  I asked was he hungry..."YESSS!" I kindly went to get him a po boy from across the street and some water.  Many thanks...asked if I would like to have a chat with him...I accepted.  He was a recovering meth addict from Metarie, went to the army, came back and chose to live on the streets of New Orleans than go back to Metarie (which isn't that far) and risk becoming an addict again.  OK...I can respect that.  He chose not to go to a shelter because he didn't want to ask for help.  I happen to have some phone numbers of organizations that help the homeless find housing...since he has a job...and a veteran, there are all kinds of services.  He actually works at a pizzeria down the street, I wished him the best enjoyed our conversation then he says, "Is there anything I can do for you today?"  He took my breath away...I told him what he can do, "If someone crosses your path and they need something you are able to give, pay it forward. You already did something for me today...I was able to do something for you, just because...everybody gotta eat, right?!"

Fast forward to friend recognizes a celebrity right across the street from the resturant...OMG!  Hubby goes play detective to verify...and sure enough...Russell Crowe! :-)  He looks across the street, I waved...he gave a little peace sign back.  Now those that know me, know I never meet a stranger and will talk to anyone.  Hehehehe...across the street I go.  "Hi, I'm Leah." "Hi, Leah, I'm Russell..."  He was with his friend/business partner.  We chatted about the city.  The movie he was filming in town.  He even asked what I was doing in the City...which led to a discussion about homeschooling.  He asked everyone's names, then I excused myself when their food came to the table.  We exchanged hugs and love and best wishes to each other.  Then, a few moments later, he came across the street to meet everyone else, remembered the names he was given.  Amazing!

This city has been absolutely amazing thus far...I am definitely learning this:  It doesn't matter if you are a homeless person on the street or one of the most popular people in the truly are a spritual being having YOUR human experience.  You never know who you may meet but they may have a message for you along the way.  I am learning that in order to see the world change, I have to be part of that change I wish to see.  I may come across obstacles or other beings (human or non-human) that may not resonate with me, and when I figure out the "why", that flower just blossoms!

I hope everyone's flowers blossom today and remain in bloom!  It is a beautiful place to be.  And of course I'm gonna plug our business!!! LOL

Our friend's spot:
Magasin Vietnamese Cafe
4201 Magazine St
New Orleans

Our business:
Sweet Oven Bakery
For Orders:  504-233-4743

If this ain't manifestation, I dunno what else to call it! :-)  We wake up everyday excited to see what the day in the moment, in the NOW indeed!  Wake Up, Let it go, love and let it be!  Have a beautiful day everyONE!  I love YOU!