Motherhood, Uncategorized

My Womb Story

I was given the name Alexandra Elizabeth Orr the day I was born. I was created in the womb of Dale Elizabeth Holley. I am the seed of Scott Gregory Orr. I was born on February 19, 1989.

I am on the Pisces-Aquarius cusp, the cusp of sensitivity, compassion, and revolution. I feel the weight of the world, I love humanity with an ancient depth, absorb the energies of those around me, and have an all to overwhelming desire to nurture and help people thrive. It’s a heaviness I’ve carried with me since the day I was pushed earthside. A beautiful but messy gift. 

As a child, my imagination was immense. I’d spend hours alone, drawing, painting, making jewelry, pasting collages, journaling, dancing, and imagining worlds beyond my own. I enjoyed playing with others but was just fine and at times happier crafting creations in the confines of my room. 

My creativity was my best friend. It served me well but also had its shadows. The solace I found through the arts was a lonely and short-lived reprieve. The recognition and praise I received were addicting. The issue was the source of my creativity. I thrived on emotional extremes whether it was mine or that of someone I was taking on as mine. If I didn’t feel something in my bones, I was bored.  

I needed the outlandish and outrageous to feel anything. I wanted to go hard, fast, strong, deep over and over again. I built an immunity to anything surface level. I shunned the mundane and rebelled against the average. 

I didn’t do this in a, particularly obvious or aggressive way. I internalized a great deal and hid a great deal from family and friends because deep down I did not want to cause pain, concern, or upset in anyone I loved. 

I played with drugs, alcohol, reckless behavior, emotionally abusive, and rollercoaster relationships. I put myself in dangerous situations that made me uncomfortable. I hung out with people who pushed the limits. All while maintaining proper grades, showing up for running practice and dance training. I dressed the part, said the right things, smiled, and played nice when I needed to. But, inside I was suffocating. 

As college came and went I kept the pendulum swinging. I bungee jumped and scuba dived. I kept finding the relationships and experiences that took me somewhere new. Fly high, dive deep. Float, sink. The highs and lows kept rolling. 

I experimented with mind-expanding medicines. I also took the plunge in clean living. I just wanted to feel something immense. Both paths created highs that didn’t last and left me in want of more. 

I knew in a way what I wanted to feel was a connection to a greater, larger more intimate energy than I could seem to find in my everyday experiences and relationships. I didn’t have words for it then but what I was searching for was a connection to womb and source.  

I was a functioning addict. An addict to extremes and in a way I still am to this day. But, a turning point came when I no longer was able to indulge in extremes. The day I found out I was carrying my first child. 

My partner and I had been together for some years when we got married. We went to Peru to hike the Salkantay trail for our honeymoon. On the last day of the trip, we stayed in a hotel on Lake Titicaca to treat ourselves after a week-long hiking journey in extreme elements. What I didn’t know at the time is that Lake Titicaca is considered the sacral chakra and womb of Mother Earth. 

It was there we unknowingly conceived our first child, our daughter, Lila. I thought I had a parasite when I got home. I had a bout of sickness after drinking some water that hadn’t been boiled long enough at one point during the hike. I figured my upset stomach when we returned home was an after effect. 

I went to the doctor to take a test and was told jokingly that  I had another kind of parasite. That was the first day I began treating my body like a temple. I struggled not to be able to escape when I wanted to, not being able to eat, drink, and move how I wanted when I wanted. But, I made it through a healthy pregnancy and birth. 

When Lila was a few months old, I again conceived. This time though the pregnancy was unexpected I told myself I wouldn’t spend the pregnancy in any other state but one of connection and intention. My pregnancy and birth with Lila though healthy and was not without struggle. I had a difficult time processing that I was no longer the girl I was before and would never be that person again. 

I was now entering motherhood. I could no longer run when I was bored, frustrated, or needed to feel something. It was time I faced myself. It was to commit. 

During my birth, I questioned my strength and ability to deliver without medication or assistance. I did end up giving birth vaginally, without medication but it was a delivery full of resistance, fear, and doubt. 

I decided my birth with my second child was going to be within my control through my trust in the divine. I accepted that I was now a mother and that my story was unfolding differently than I’d expected but it was still full of magic. 

I meditated frequently. I sat in front of my alter and spoke my desired birth out loud. I journaled over and over again how I imagined my birth unfolding. I also chose to accept that if it did not play out how I wanted that it was going to be okay and that my birth would be exactly how it was supposed to be. My body knows what to do.

I accepted my own wisdom, my own power, and my own womb as a vessel of life, magic, and direct connection to source. I accepted that I was the source and that I had a direct line to my ancestors and all of the women who have given birth before and that were giving birth when I was that all I had to do to tap into that connection was close my eyes, go inward and listen.

That realization brought more comfort than I’ve ever experienced. And, my birth unfolded just as I had imagined. My son Asher entered the world that day as the sun streamed through the open windows of my home. After one push he floated up into my arms out of the water I was kneeling in. My loved ones surrounded me, the energy was soft and the music sweet. 

My journey back to myself began that day when both my children were earthside when I knew that my womb was and is and will always be sacred. I had a taste of the power I hold within myself that we all hold within our wombs that can be accessed at any time. I realized the extreme I was chasing was and is within my womb. 

It is my path now to walk in the way of the Goddess. To remember who I am. How much power I have. How much wisdom I hold. Why I am here and where I am going. 

I am on a path to treat my body like a temple not because I’m growing another human but because I believe in my self-worth. I am on a path to help other women remember that all they need lies within their wombs. Whether birthing a child, an idea, or a project, our wombs are a source of sacred magic and knowing. 

I am on a path to nourish women by helping them remember their own worth guiding them to see their strength, beauty, resilience, softness, creativity, innate wisdom, and goddess nature. We are all the Goddess. We are all the source. We are all the womb. We came from her, we shall return to her because we are here, we are the Goddess mother.

Published in the Womb Diaries Blog of The Goddess Moves a project by Nicole Pemberton.

Link below:

elephantjournal, Motherhood

I love My Baby but I want to Run Away From Her

I just had a baby.

I love her and I want to run away from her.

I want to stay home and smell the top of her head, hold her cheek to cheek, and breastfeed her to sleep. I also want to crunch on an iced margarita, stay up too late dancing at a show, sleep in, and spend the day in a hammock, recovering with jazz and a good book.

I want to take stroller walks around the neighborhood. I also want to stroll the streets of a city I have never been to before.

I want to sit, present, staring into the eyes of my little one, connecting deeply and reading her newfound emotions. I also want to chill at a café with a caffeine buzz, while people-watching, daydreaming, and connecting with strangers over random commonalities.

I want to organize my day, my diaper bag, and my pantry. I also want to have no idea what the day will hold until something strikes my fancy.

I want to play soft music that helps my baby girl’s brain grow as I drive safely around in my freshly-cleaned car with a window shade, baby mirror, and stocked baby bag in the trunk. I also want to jump in my car, covered in sand, while my salt-soaked strands air-dry out the window as I drive like a bat out of hell to music so loud it shakes my bones.

I want to be a rockstar mother treating my body and my baby like a temple, giving each the most natural, nurturing care. I also want to be a free-spirited queen, traveling on a whim, acting and eating how and what I want, when I want.

And, that’s okay. I can be both.

So can you, you glorious warrior mama.

Society tells us we need to be one or the other. F*ck society.

Nurse on the regular and pump when you can, so when the time strikes you can get a little boozed up because there’s a bottle in the fridge. Put little one in a sling, strap on the baby earmuffs, and dance wildly in the woods at a music festival—then walk back to your campsite in the family zone (or leave her at home with a sitter, if possible!).

Eat a burger and fries for dinner, then wake up and drink a green juice.

Play Baby Einstein all day, then rock your Grateful Dead tee in bed while you read about the current phase of the moon late at night.

Be a full-on laundry folding, nursery rhyme-singing, diaper bag-carrying, binkie-slinging, sweat pants-wearing, swaddle master on Friday. Come Saturday, call in reinforcements so that you can sit alone enjoying too much espresso, rocking skinny jeans, and carrying nothing but $20 in your back pocket.

You’re allowed to be on top of it all day Wednesday and a forgetful mess on Thursday, so long as you love the sh*t out of your little one and provide the best way you know how while maintaining your sense of self.

If that sense of self is purely a wonderful, giving mother, housewife, and partner—rock on. If there is a part of you that needs another outlet, don’t give that up for the world. Create, surf, hike, sing, dance, play music, go back to work, garden, or volunteer.

Our children need us strong and vibrant. They are their highest selves when we have enough self to give them. They shine when we shine.

We are more than mothers. We are artists, gardeners, yogis, musicians, teachers, dancers, accountants, lovers—but society makes us feel like we have to drop that to be with our children. Or, that we have to juggle work and baby with a pristine house and a home-cooked meal on the table. We are frowned upon when we let loose and do for ourselves. It is the age-old issue that just never seems to leave, like a watermark—always there no matter how faint.

But without that precious time, we are empty. We have to be full before we can pour ourselves into another. Nobody can drink from an empty cup.

We have to remember that we have more to offer than just the persona of “mother.” We have to make time to stop, to feel what it is we crave. Then we have to give in—whether or not that makes someone else happy.

I have to fight for conversation that does not revolve around my baby girl and how she is doing, how well she is sleeping, how my sore breasts are holding up, or what phase she is in. I fight myself as hard as I fight others. It is all too easy to fall into routine child talk because that is what is most current and all-consuming. But I have to, for me.

If we don’t stave off the fog our brains fall into when we’re in mommy mode, we may as well throw our hands up.

Wake up from routine. Don’t let to-do lists dictate your thought waves.

Tell your friend the baby is doing fine, then direct the conversation to the current state of the Senate. Say no to the playdate so that you can simply sit in the park. Let the nap go long so that you can read a few more chapters.

Be good to yourself.

I’m a creator by nature. And while there’s barely enough time to make sure there’s food in the fridge—let alone create—I still have a small table dedicated to my work. When baby girl is down for a nap, I sit at that table and draw. Not always, but sometimes. One day that sketch will be complete—be it in a month or a year.

Baby steps. Oh, baby steps.

We have to do what we can to keep our sanity and sense of self, even if that only materializes as a 10-minute yoga flow, a cup of coffee, a session of shaking it out in the kitchen while cooking dinner, or a bit of wine before bed.

Wear your festival gear while you clean the house.

Use Miles Davis as a lullaby.

Introduce the color green and the letter “D” while you sunbathe in the grass.

Get it girl. Get it good.

You’re an amazing mama. But you’re also more than a mama. You are you in all your glory.

Own it.

Published in elephant journal – Link below.