My Sacred Pregnancy Retreat Experience
I am now the first male certified Sacred Pregnancy instructor – a title I am honoured to accept and embrace.
I have just sat in circle with 21 women for six incredibly rich days of learning, sharing, healing and growing. As a man, I felt my role was to respectfully witness with an open mind and heart. It was also to deeply listen, keenly observe and participate where there was a place for me to be part of what unfolded. I felt the risk of ‘diving in’ to this sacred feminine space with my masculinity. My greatest hope and fear was that I would not take away from any woman’s experience. I’m grateful to those beautiful women who shared with me that being there enhanced their experience. And to my surprise (and relief), my presence was never questioned or challenged. It was accepted, embraced, and supported. Deep respect to all of the women who were courageous and open to allow this and surrender to it in the name of pioneering.
I had the sense that I would gain so much from being invited into the Sacred Pregnancy circle, but I could never imagine how much. I witnessed and heard women openly share stories and make powerful references to their life experiences of rape, child sexual assault, birth trauma, body image, teenage birth, adoption, abortion, miscarriage, relationship breakdown, relationship struggle, early loss of a mother, an absence of support and sisterhood, challenges embracing their femininity, and more. There were so many tears. I have never experienced the journey of a woman so deeply or richly – ever. It’s difficult to imagine how I could ever get this somewhere else, or again.
As a man, this was an amazing honour to be allowed into a space where this was shared, held and supported. It became clear to me to this is what is missing for so much of us: community and connection. I say ‘us’ because men are also missing this. Sacred Pregnancy is bringing this to women at one of the most important times of their lives and provides women with an awesome and real opportunity to engage in their journey of pregnancy and birth in a conscious, healing and empowering way.
Sacred Pregnancy has the power to change the way women experience pregnancy, birth and becoming a mother. I am looking forward to seeing the newly inspired instructors move with their passion, talent and heart to bring the Sacred Pregnancy classes to their own communities and begin making this change we want and need to see around pregnancy, birth and new parenthood. I hope that I will have the opportunity to meet the dads who participate in the classes near me in the future!
Gratitude to Anni Daulter and Hayley Lane for being brave and visionary in inviting me to be part of only the third Sacred Pregnancy retreat ever. I will honour this gift and hopefully it will inspire other men to follow my lead.