EPISODE 63 | HEALING AFTER BIRTH | Jennifer Summerfeldt, MACP

Is Trauma Standing in Your Way of Conceiving?

Description:

Jennifer Summerfeldt, MACP, joins the show to talk about how our bodies protect us through trauma, and her wisdom from working in the field of maternal health and psychology for over two decades. Along with being a counselor, childbirth advocate, doula, and maternal educator, Jennifer is the founder and creator of the Healing After Birth Program. She and Hillary talk about the brain and how it works in trauma, what led Jennifer to be a birth crusader, the different lenses of healing, and many of the indicators that may be pointing at trauma in birth that most people aren’t aware of.

Takeaways:

[8:17] Jennifer was a college-level athlete and has always had a passion for peak performance and a deep determination to excel in both mindset and physical achievement. She used some of the skills such as mental rehearsal and self-talk for her own birthing experience. Her intimate relationship with her own physiology in performance led to her self-directed choice in her eighth month to switch caregivers to hire a midwife to attend her first birth. The incredible empowerment she felt gave her a new mission to spread the word that there is much behind the veil of birth many women are not informed of.

[14:48] In her second childbirth, she endured a rough time emotionally, but stayed curious in her education, and the consumption of information and stories. This led her to discover just how many births are traumatic and violent for both the mothers and the babies, and it blew open her passion even more deeply.

[19:51] A conscious conception looks at all facets of birth and pregnancy. Jennifer believes we are initiated throughout an entire energetic continuum of bearing life which may include losses, conception issues, complicated childbirth and labor, or postpartum challenges. In our society, we are not often prepared or comfortable with the struggles these bring and in the tendency to suppress or move quickly through it, we miss out on the healing that surrendering to our wisdom and knowledge within brings.

[29:21] The last few years have shown an increase in care and languaging, but Jennifer feels there is a long way to go. She defines trauma as what we experience as the result of having an experience that activated our stress response, leaving us feeling trapped in our survival stress response. There is a physical reaction that instinctively happens, all intended for our safety and protection. However, the psychological component traps us in the stress response, in which we have a hard time discharging suffering and the feeling of threat to our survival.

[33:45] When we understand a disorganized system through the lens of a system, we can start to see how to use our innate intelligence to bring us back into balance and take the information and store it in an appropriate manner.

[40:03] The stress response not only affects digestion but also shuts down our reproductive system. Our bodies know that it is not time to reproduce if we need to protect ourselves from what we perceive as a threat.

[42:25] For those of us that have lived with unresolved trauma, we know that it has a deep and profound impact on our entire mind, body, and soul.

[44:17] Mammals in the wild know how to literally discharge and shake off energy, rage through and eventually restore the somatic repercussion of trauma.

[49:51] If we can cultivate the practice of mindfulness and activate the observer within us, it brings our pre-frontal cortex more back into balance.

[52:40] It’s the meaning behind the feelings that we are actually afraid of. We fear if I feel too much, I may die or hurt someone or myself.

[57:02] We get to a point where the distractions and diversions don’t work, and we are forced to do the work and create a new story in what Jennifer describes as the “collective womb.”

[61:34] Women tend to feel that their story is not important enough and yet storytelling is what makes us feel human and connected.

[66:20] Our unresolved birth experience has a profound impact on our relationships and the story we carry that impacts and ripples out in our life. Jennifer reminds us that the more we can cultivate the practice of “being with” and the less we label or create a biased attachment of meaning, the more we can be in true awe of our physiology and the amazing being that we are.

[69:44] Our biology is in favor of us wanting to thrive and is constantly giving us feedback and rich information.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Healing After Birth: Navigating Your Emotions After A Difficult Childbirth, by Jennifer Summerfeldt MACP

Spiritual Midwifery, by Ina May Gaskin

Birth Without Violence

Immaculate Deception: A New Look at Women and Childbirth in America, by Suzanne Arms

Jennifer Summerfeldt

Iain McGilchrist

Dan Siegel: “Flipping the Lid”

Healing After Birth Podcast

FREE 4 part video series - What Your Doctor Is Likely NOT Telling You About PPD/A CLICK HERE

Are you a soulfully inspired woman looking for next level counseling and coaching programs? CLICK HERE

Continue Your Journey:

@ladypotions4u on Instagram- Ask me anything in Insta Story

 Disclaimer *

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.

EPISODE 42 | MINI MINDFUL MOMENT | 16 Seconds to Bliss

Mini Mindful Moments

16 Seconds to Bliss

This relaxation response technique is so easy you might forget how to do it.

This episode is brought to you by the online course- How to thrive with Your Newborn presented by the talented doula Adriana Lozada

Getting pregnant can be difficult, staying pregnant can be day to day for some, and bringing your baby home and getting to know what YOUR baby needs can be super trying, but  it doesn’t have to be. If you want to feel confident about your postpartum experience this course is definitely for you and it is super affordable. With over a decade of experience, Adriana teaches you how to understand the baby you were blessed with in a 5 week self paced online experience. You can find it at birthfulcourses.com or in today’s show notes. 

EPISODE 34 | MINI MINDFUL MOMENT | Mindfulness 101

How do you set the tone for mindfulness & actually practice it?

Whether you are doing something prolific like making love, or something mundane like the dishes get in the habit of asking yourself these questions and then observing the answer you come up with, without judgment. 

What do I hear?

What do I feel?

What do I smell?

What do I see?

What do I taste?

Try it with me, wherever you are, whatever you are doing ask yourself these simple questions. Drop into the present moment and quit entertaining your past or your worries about the future. 

By taking the time to ask yourself these questions and thoughtfully responding, you allow yourself to me more fully engaged in the activity and deepen your experience.

Even though it is a practice that is seemingly more mental than following the breath because we are entertaining your mind, it really allows you to drop out of your head and into your body. 

It allows you take a break from what’s going on in your head, which chances are is the same conversation with yourself on repeat, and I’m willing to bet it’s probably not saying anything you would repeat to someone outloud. 

So if you want to change the way you feel, you have to start paying attention to what is really happening in the moment and not what your repetitious thoughts would like you to believe. 

It's so simple. 

You just have to commit to doing it! 

Let's get mindful together. 

Join me in the 29 Day Fertility Meditation Challenge- Begins August 26th


EPISODE 33 | MINDFUL PARENTING IN A MESSY WORLD w/ Michelle Gale

Mindful Parenting in a Messy World with Michelle Gale

Description: Today we are joined by Michelle Gale, bestselling author, speaker, strategic advisor and mother/member of her lovely Family Council. Michelle and I talk about mindfulness as the number one secret to parenting with a clear head and open heart. She shares the intention and inspiration behind her book, Mindful Parenting in a Messy World,her own transformation from anxiety and fear to acceptance and empowerment, how new parents may find time to weave mindfulness and meditation into their jam-packed schedule, and how she herself practices mindfulness in her own family.

To share your own fertility story, please email me at hillary@ladypotions.com. I look forward to connecting with you, as you are what this podcast is all about.

 

Takeaway:

[:42] The Free 29 Day Fertility Challenge is just around the corner, starting August 26! Each day you will get an email from me reminding you to log in and check out the new meditation. Each meditation will guide you through your chakras, helping you to free stuck emotions, release limiting beliefs and to tone your physical body, reading it for conception.

[1:45] Meditation is truly the secret weapon when it comes to parenting with a clear head and open heart. Many parents become so busy that they forget the very practice that is there to help them stay grounded, peaceful and sane during the time right after childbirth when they would need it most.

[2:17] Our guest today is Michelle Gale. Michelle was previously the head of Learning and Leadership Development at Twitter, has a bestselling book titled Mindful Parenting in a Messy World: Living with Presence and Parenting with Purpose, and a podcast, Mindful Parenting in a Messy World. In addition to her board work with Holistic Life Foundation, she is currently a strategic advisor to the Mindful Schools and the Wisdom 2.0 Conference.

[5:45] Michelle makes it a priority for herself to weave mindfulness in throughout the day. She shares the different ways we can practice it, whether it’s taking a moment to make eye contact a few seconds longer with our children, meditating in the morning or evening, or using a meditation app for even 5 minutes a day. You can check out Michelle’s 7 Day Series on the app Simple Habit.

[8:53] In knowing ourselves, we create the conditions for peace in ourselves and our communities. If we want a generation that is awake, we need to awaken ourselves first.

[11:08] Michelle revealed in her book that so much of her anxiety as a parent came from a fear of screwing up. She reached a turning point when she realized she wanted to focus on the magic that was her actual kids, instead of the story about them and about how things should be, that she was seeing through a “should” filter.

[14:44] Moments where we overreact and make mistakes as parents become an opportunity for growth, and serve as a teaching moment for ourselves and our children on the importance of handling stress and taking care of ourselves.

[20:02] Michelle shares the experience of enlisting her son Tyler as her teacher to help notice patterns of reactivity and then remind her to breathe.

[24:14] I read an amazing excerpt from Michelle’s book on her take on teenage behavior, unmet needs, and the evolutionary response to separate in adulthood.

[28:25] Meditation may be the formal practice, and mindfulness can be done everywhere at any time.

[31:18] Michelle teaches Mindful Listening to her family and recommends starting out a Family Council in small bits at a time, so everyone practices getting a chance to both listen and speak. Her own Council has evolved over time and is something that has helped strengthen the family and make each member feel seen and heard.

[35:26] Michelle’s first Online Summit has a star-studded, wonderful cast of people talking about all aspects of parenting. For more information, join her online community.

 

References:

Fertile Minds on LibSyn

Fertile Minds on iTunes

Mindful Parenting in a Messy World: Living with Presence and Parenting with Purpose, by Michelle Gale

Mindful Parenting in a Messy World

Simple Habit 7 Day Series

The Way of Council, by Jack Zimmerman in collaboration with Virginia Coyle

Happily Family 

Michelle Gale

Mindfulness in America 

 

Continue Your Journey:

Link to sign up for free 29-day meditation challenge

@ladypotions4u on Twitter

@ladypotions4u on Instagram

My Website: Ladypotions.com

Disclaimer * 

You must not rely on the information in this podcast as an alternative to medical advice from your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you have any specific questions about any medical matter you should consult your doctor or other professional healthcare provider. If you think you may be suffering from any medical condition you should seek immediate medical attention. You should never delay seeking medical advice, disregard medical advice, or discontinue medical treatment because of information on this website or in this podcast.