Sunday, March 21, 2010
Nine days ago, a student in my doula course brought me a beautiful bouquet of white lilies which I put into a vase full of water. I pointed out to the doulas that some of the flowers had "fully dilated" and were displaying their exuberant female genitalia while others were closed up tight or just a fingertip dilated. I asked the students what they thought might happen if I "helped" the closed ones to open a bit by manipulating the delicate petals. They were horrified at the thought, of course, and were completely confident that the flowers would work things out on their own.
The flowers were left to themselves and gave off a lovely aroma to those who came in and out of the office through the week. On the fifth day that they were in my care, they served as a model for a midwifery course on the vulva, vagina and cervix. Still a few of these flowers seemed to be stuck in "failure to progress". They were unyielding and refusing to open.
This morning I went into the office and noticed that some of the lilies had turned brown. These were the early bloomers and, as I picked them off and discarded them, I noticed that every single blossom had fully and perfectly bloomed. The office had been closed for three days. The bouquet of lilies had been alone, dark and unassisted and all had bloomed into full beauty and splendor. They had only received one big drink of water when I originally put them into the vase.
These flowers are such a beautiful metaphor for having faith in the perfection of birth.
Gloria Lemay, Vancouver