Birth and Beyond 2012

Birth and Beyond 2012 Having my AM coffee
Wow!!!! What a ride, these past few months!!

I had such a lovely train ride to London, Ontario. I like riding the slow train, and the Ontario coutryside is beautiful, and I enjoyed hearing the announcements in good English and lousy French (petty but true).
But I only took the train because I was scared to fly - so much unexpected stuff had happened in my life - in Italy the car was totalled, no details available, involved a 20 year old offspring (mine). But we were in Bali at the time so we got that text you never want to get:  "covered with blood car totalled please call".

Then my father died.

And its kind of like when a baby is planning on being born. You know its going to happen, and you have an approximate date, but you don't know exactly when, and when it does its a shock.

So I had a crazy solo trip from up on top of my mountain, which is a place of peace and air and refuge.

Down the mountain in the ramshackle little Fiat. Train to Florence, then Rome, on the plane. Sitting next to a lovely young couple who had just spent their week vacation in Rome - they were in love! And it's good they were sitting next to a birth attendant, because I don't think any old middle-aged woman would have been so comfortable with their seriously heavy petting!

I spent time with my family, trying to figure out how to properly say goodbye to an atheist scientist. We did a good job, and we all felt very lonely by the end....then it was the Jewish high holidays, they are called high because they are the most important festivals of the year, a time of introspection, taking stock, making peace with one another. I got back to my house in Montreal and discovered that my former partner is ill. Then a lovely volunteer I worked with in Bali passed away unexpectedly...

It was in the middle of the holidays that I had a wonderful opportunity to speak at the Birth and Beyond Conference. The conference was great - it was the first annual and for a new project it was very well attended. I am really looking forward to next year! We had the opportunity to listen to, and interact with, many wonderful people in the birth world including James McKenna, Robbie Davis-Floyd, Jodi Hall, and many others. The intimacy of the conference was lovely - everyone mingled and branched out. There was a wonderful art exhibition as well, and a drumming circle...please register for next year so that I can meet up with you all!

Upon my return, my husband's heart decided to act up. Not for lack of love. He is still in love, and gets love in return from me and my five sons. He is very active, eats well, is young (five years younger than me, anyway!). But his genes didn't tell him that he had some issues, and boom!

We are ok now, and thinking about some changes in our lives...

I posted a status update on my birthday this year - August 21, my father died on the 19th. I asked you all to give your loved ones some loving. Do it now.


  1. Hi Rivka! I was in your Birth Companions sessions at the Birth & Beyond Conference and your stories truly touched me. I could have listened to you speak all day. And now I find out that we share a birthday! With both of us in a birthing profession, I think that is a nice coincidence. I wish I lived closer to MTL so that I could take your doula courses. Hope to see you at B&B next year! Sending love.

    1. Yes, that was a wonderful conference, and I really enjoyed sharing my thoughts with you all! I am looking forward to next year ...
      Where are you located? I am willing to travel for workshops if there is interest :)
      How nice that we share a birthday!


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