The Rainbow After The Rain

Each day I receive a quote to my phone which appears in the form of a notification. On my birthing day, mid labour, this is the quote I received. It couldn’t have been more true.

At this stage I had endured a lot of rain and had been birthing for over 24hours. A pinched nerve in my lower back meant that my labour was not ‘flowing’ as I’d imagined. Determined to avoid any drugs or invasive pain relief that would pass to our baby’s system, I allowed the rain to pour down on me – hard and heavy.

I would say that the back labour and water injections used to alleviate the discomfort were far more distressing than any other part of the birthing process, which i’d always held as beautiful and powerful and still believe this to be true.

The pinched nerve demanded all of my attention and focus, and at times I questioned my ability to birth my baby boy naturally, if at all. But my rainbow came. And I love him with every ounce of my being 💙

In life, sometimes we wish to give up. We don’t see that in the midst of our pain and despair, there is a beautiful rainbow forming.

Today, I ask that you TRUST. No matter what your circumstances or how long you’ve ‘put up with the rain’ – have faith that the rainbow is coming. Trust that it is bright, beautiful, colourful and magical. And yes my dear, that rainbow is just for you. You are SO worthy 🌈

So this little bundle of love is one week old today 💙🌈

Wow, what a journey Motherhood is.

My life now consist of sleeping in three hour increments or less; poopy bums and milky burps are the main flavour of the day, and my breasts have been converted into a 24hour milk restaurant 🥛

BUT, holding you close to our hearts, hearing your little piglet snorts and seeing your dreamy smile as you sleep makes every ounce of tiredness worth it’s weight in gold.

We love you Kole Roy 💙🌈 Happy one week earthside beautiful boy,

Love always,

Mummy & Daddyxx

Mother Nature’s Dance

Dear Mother Nature,

For two days, we danced. You came to me in the early hours of Monday morning, and I leaned into your embrace.

‘I am here to dance

As we have for thousands of years

To a song I’ve never heard, but have danced a million times…’ – Storm Ellyatt

Slow and steady, I swayed to your rhythm, rising to the swell of each surge.

The dance was long and enduring, testing every ounce of our emotional and physical strength.

In the early hours of Wednesday morning you came thicker and faster, your pace more insistent and I could barely catch my breath before I was swept along – no longer in control, but completely surrendered and at the mercy of your power.

And then I heard you whisper in my ear: TRUST.

We danced, we moved, we fell breathless and exhausted, only to begin again this intoxicating euphoric sway of nature.

I stumbled, I rose, I fell again, and just when I thought I could dance no more, I roared my final roar… and then you gave us the gift of our baby boy 💙🌈

Welcome to the world Kole Roy.

Date: 1st Aug 2018

Time: 1:03am

Weight: 9 pounds 3 ounces

You are beautiful in every way. Words cannot express the depth of love we already have for you.

My deepest gratitude for my incredible birth companions, Daddy, Dasha, Michelle and Grandma Lorraine who came along for the dance and remained steady and consistent to each change in tempo.

And for the energetic support of my Divine friends and sisters, you gave me the courage and strength I needed to own my vision of a natural birth. We did it! It wasn’t quite the 3 hour birth I’d envisioned, but it was worth every last little ounce of energy!

We will be opening our arms and hearts to welcome visitors in two weeks time. We appreciate your love and patience in the meantime as we honour this sacred time to bond (and rest!) as a family and for bubs to gently adjust to his strange new world outside of the womb.

Love always,

Hayley, Daley and Kole Roy xxx

Soulful Sunday #60: The Other Side Of Fear

The other side of fear

Welcome to my fifty-sixth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

Fear is debilitating. It can literally leave us paralysed with anxiety.

There is a famous quote (and book for that matter) by Susan Jeffers who reminds us:

Feel the fear and do it anyway.

My biggest work over the last few months has been to face my fears around labour, particularly around the ‘normal’ practice of hospitals whose medical interventions often result in unnecessary trauma for both Mum and baby. Don’t get me wrong, in a medical emergency these procedures can save lives; but in a normal, safe, healthy pregnancy and birth, such interventions often cause more harm than good.  Is it any wonder then, that we hear so many horror stories about birth?

Once my fears were acknowledged, I could then begin to dissolve them. I turned to natural birthing books and absorbed myself in the thousands of positive birth stories (yes – they exist!!!) each contained. The more I read, the more I began to meet women who had birthed naturally, and with less complications (if any) than those who had birthed at the hands of doctors and drugs.

We also decided on Hypno-birthing classes to prepare ourselves for a calm birth using breath work, relaxations, visualisations, strengthening affirmations and natures own pain relief; oxytocin – all of which helped to deepen our confidence and trust in a natural birth.

Whilst our preparations do not guarantee us a smooth, uninterrupted birth with little to no complication or medical intervention; what they do provide us with are the innate tools to birth in love and trust, rather than shrouded in fear.

Of course, there are always some residue fears of the unknown and lingering What if’s? But since the only way out of my birth is through, I must ‘feel the fear and do it anyway.’

The only way out is through.

– Robert Frost

And through we shall go, in love and trust.

Soul Strolls

With three weeks to go until we meet our baby, strolling has become somewhat of a waddle! The pelvic pressure is real haha And so, after finishing my last week of work last Friday, I decided to put my feet up and rest this pregnant body.

I booked in for a pregnancy massage at Endota Spa (which was the best massage I’ve ever had, and I’ve had a lot!) and soaked up the healing vibes. I plan to spend the next three weeks resting and nourishing myself and our baby, and enjoying our last few weeks as a ‘two.’

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‘Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ – Marcel Proust

Soul Recipes

This recipe is an oldy but a goody of mine. I love using my slow cooker, and this dish lends itself perfectly to one. It’s hearty, it’s comforting, it’s delicious and it’s even healthy My Hearty Lentil Curry gets a thumbs up every time. Let me know what you think!

Lentil-Curry-Recipe-FV-768x520

Yummy lentil curry!

Soul Music

On the other side of fear lies freedom and peace. So today I would love to share this delightfully peaceful track by Ashana titled Deep Peace. Put you feet up, take a deep breath in and receive the deep peace flowing to you. Now sigh and release. You are free. You are safe. You are secure and loved.

Soul Sisters

Today I would love to share this beautifully nourishing poem titled Bliss by Aroused. A timely reminder for us to connect with our intuition within and to trust.

Wrapping you all in a warm loving hug on this soulful Sunday.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #55: Beautiful Bodies

comparison

Welcome to my fifty-fifth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

At seven and a half months pregnant, I’m amazed by the number of women who feel compelled to comment on the size of my bump, comparing its size to that of their friend who is ‘due two weeks before me and is SO much smaller’, so small in fact you can ‘hardly tell’. I’ve even had my belly compared to a basket ball!

I’d like to think the women delivering these words are well intentioned and simply unaware of the potential harm their comments can cause. Still, I can’t help but feel a little disheartened that body comparison is so prevalent, even during pregnancy.

Isn’t a women supposed to feel beautiful and bountiful in her pregnant body? Is the fullness of her tummy not the fullest expression of creation itself? A time to celebrate the changes in her body as it nurtures new life within?

I have to acknowledge that I’ve also had many women tell me I look beautiful and stunning as I bloom to full size. To those Divine Goddesses; I salute you. For you are the ones who focus not on the ‘neatness of the bump’, or for how long it can remain disguised or ‘unnoticed’; but instead on the natural beauty to be embraced throughout the many changing phases of a woman’s body.

Today, let’s lift each other up. Let’s celebrate our bodies; big, small, teeny or tall, remembering that we are ALL Divine.

Soul Strolls

This week’s soul strolling took place in the hospital. We had our hospital tour where we were able to walk through where we’ll go on the day of our birthing. Despite having had some fears around birthing in a hospital, as I walked the corridors I blessed them with love and repeated the mantra, ‘All is well. I have nothing to fear. Love, peace, harmony and joy surround and indwell me.’

The Mercy Hospital for Women does feel like a safer space than my previous hospital. The midwives are very supportive of a natural birth with as little intervention as possible. I trust I am in safe hands.

Live your life as if everything is rigged in your favour.

– Rumi

Soul Recipes

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My partner loves to buy a Massaman Curry from our local Thai. Since he spent this soulful Sunday working, I decided to surprise him with a Slow Cooked Lamb Massaman which was simply divine! I adapted the recipe slightly (and cheated) by buying a massaman curry paste rather than making my own from scratch, as this recipe suggests. If I owned a food processor I would definitely have attempted the homemade paste in this recipe… I also used carrots, red pepper and red chillies in addition to the potato instead of the green beans, since I already had those vegetables on hand at home.

Needless to say, this dish was yummy and my man had a happy tummy after a hard days work.

Soul Music

I’d love to share Heather Mae’s I Am Enough as a stunning reminder that our body’s are not ‘wrong’ or ‘shameful’. We can be grateful for our body, regardless of our shape or size. This makes me smile each time I listen. Today, give your body a big appreciative hug, tell your body how much you love it… and then have a good ole dance to this feel good track! I’ll be dancing along with you with my pregnant bump 😉

Soul Sisters

I’d love to share the work of a soul sister who has been pivotal in reducing my fears around labour. I bought Kat’s book in my second trimester when I was led to it by a serendipitous moment. It was just what I needed to believe in my abilities to birth my baby naturally. I will be gifting Kat’s work to any pregnant ladies I know! You can find Kat at The Birth Goddess.

Wishing you all a soulful Sunday. May you feel safe, supported and loved, today and always.

Love always,

Hayley xx

 

Soulful Sunday #54: Blessings Of Love

 

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Welcome to my fifty-fourth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

I’ve heard it time and time again, yet this past week I’ve really come to know this as true: There are really only ever two choices; love or fear.

Last week I came close to having a panic attack I was so overwhelmed with the unknown outcomes of following a natural birthing journey in a medical hospital setting. Fear encompassed every ounce of my being and I was deeply emerged in my shadow. Yet this week, I’ve worked to dissolve those fears, to seek the truth within. And sure enough, the Universe delivered the love and support required to pull me back into the light.

Harmony, peace, love and joy surround and indwell me. I am safe and secure.

– Louise Hay

I am my own pillar of safety and strength. I have a voice. And when I trust in myself and the Universe, my world reflects back to me the safety and security I desire.

Soul Strolls

Last week we took our soul strolling to the local parks to have some photos taken by a friend of ours. This was her first pregnancy shoot, and we think she did a great job! Here’s a couple of sneaky photos. We had lots of fun goofing around in nature with my baby bump in tow.

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Soul Food

I have been a little slack with creating and uploading my own recipes as I used to. But this week, I served a delicious Dhal to my guests which went down a treat. Since I haven’t written down what I used, I will share this delicious Dhal recipe which is not dissimilar to my own. I used pumpkin instead of sweet potato and added garam masala, chilli flakes and coriander to the mix. Enjoy!

spinach-sweet-potato-lentil-dhal

Soul Music

This week I would love to share this stunning track by Karen Drucker titled, There Is Only Love. Such a simple message, yet one which resonates so deeply and infuses my being with peace and love. Have a listen. I hope it brings you as much comfort as it does for me.


Soul Sisters

Yesterday I had my Mothers Blessing and truly felt the power of ‘Soul Sisters.’ So much love and energy in one room, how could I not feel loved and supported? I am a very lucky lady to have so many incredible and inspiring women in my life, each gifting me with their words of wisdom, and loving gifts of the heart.

Many of you may recognise our beautiful writer and fellow blogger Miriam from Out An About in these photos. Such a Divine soul who never fails to lift my energy to one of spirited grace and unity.

I have the energy of so many Divine women supporting me on my natural birthing journey. All fears aside, there really is ‘only love.’

And on that note, it’s Fathers Day in the UK and I’d like to acknowledge two of the most incredible men in my life; my angel Dad, and this gorgeous Daddy to be 💙💙

I’m proud to have walked beside both of you in this lifetime, you are strong men of honour, yet neither afraid to wear your heart on your sleeve.

I only hope that more women and children have the opportunity to know and experience a good man in their lives, whether paternal, teacher, lover or friend.

Here’s to all the men and Dad’s who rock our world 🙌🏻

Here’s wishing you a soulful Sunday permeated with love, trust, harmony and peace.

Love always,

Hayley xx  

 

Sacred Home

Pregnancy has certainly brought with it many physical and emotional challenges; some which have been easier to embrace than others! It’s been a constant journey of reconnecting with myself and the life-force within to fully appreciate and accept all the changes my body must undergo to create and birth this precious new life.

I can’t stress enough the importance of caring for our emotional and physical wellbeing during this delicate transition. This is something I’ve had to remind myself daily.

There have been days and weeks when my health has been at it’s optimal, and days when I’ve opted to skip my self-care practice and nourishment to reach for that comforting treat.

The key here is to monitor your self-talk and remember to be BE KIND. Be mindful of how you talk to yourself. Your body listens!!!! So no berating or self-judgment please ladies…

But just as your body listens, your body talks.

Are you listening to your body and what it needs? Rest, fresh air, movement, nourishment, gentle caresses and positive-self-talk?

There is no better time than the present to love and care for your body, your sacred home 🙏🏻 So what are you waiting for?

Love always,

Hayley xx

Goodbye Attachment

This week I’ve been focusing on releasing control and settling in to a place of deep trust and surrender. Releasing attachment is the key component to manifesting a desired outcome.

I could feel some discord surrounding my labour and desires to birth naturally. The unknown was putting me into a place of fear… “What if things go wrong? What if I’m not in the right hands? What if my support team doesn’t respect my wishes and I lose control when I’m at my most vulnerable?”

I have made a conscious choice to birth drug free, but I have no idea of the hows and when’s of my birthing experience; and this frightens the crap out of me!

Stop, breathe and relax.

Whatever your circumstances, once you have made a firm commitment to your ‘why’ – it is essential to release the need to micro manage and control the ‘what’s’, ‘when’s’ and ‘how’s.’

Grasping at every little detail only blocks the natural flow of events. Instead, try to remain patient, present and attentive to the synchronistic events that provide proof you’re on the right path.

Take action, but be open to receiving your desired outcome in ways that may differ from, and far exceed, your initial expectations.

Trust in yourself, but most importantly, trust in the Universal Laws that govern all of nature and all that is. As Gabby Bernstein reminds us;

The Universe has your back.

So let go. Have faith in your power, then surrender this to a Higher Power, who will undoubtedly take care of all the rest.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #50: Own Your Power

Give up Power

Welcome to my fiftieth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

It’s a sad affair but one that unfortunately happens too often; we hand our power over to other people. Why do we do this? Because somehow, somewhere along the line we managed to lose our self-belief and in it’s place, developed a diminished faith in our own abilities.

But it’s time we stood in our strength and took back our power.

There is no doubt that we are highly intuitive individuals who need not rely on others to tell us how to live, especially when their advice feels counter intuitive to what our heart and our gut are telling us.

In this last week alone I have had two people, tell me that it’s highly unlikely I will be able to birth naturally. My response? I simply tossed their words in the ‘waste paper basket’ whilst sending them love.

Listen only to words that inspire, empower and uplift. Listen only to words of love.  Henry Ford had it right when he said:

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t – you’re right.”

– Henry Ford

So today, believe you can. Embrace and own your true essence and power. Know that you posses all of the courage and grit required to achieve anything you set you mind to. Now do it.

Soul Strolls

It’s not often I take my camera out walking anymore. I like to keep my body light and free since i’m carrying a little person inside! But as our move to our new home approaches, I’d like to share a few shots I captured last year at my local park.

I stroll through Princes Park each night after work. Walking allows me to let go of the working day and to breathe fresh air into my lungs. My walks invigorate and nourish me. It’s a chance to clear my head and let go of any troubles I may be holding onto. Plus I get to move my body in a way that is gentle yet effective.

Here are just a few photod I’ve captured along my soul strolls to and through my local park. Hmm there seems to be a pink theme I’ve noticed….the colour of love?

 

Soul Food

This isn’t a recipe as such, but a little soul food that I arrived home to today after I woke feeling a little emotional and low on energy.

I went for a walk to restore my energy, only to arrive home to the scrumptious omelette lovingly prepared by my delicious man. He’s a little annoyed that it wasn’t ‘central’ on the plate before I snapped the photo, but as I gently reminded him – nothing is perfect, only perfectly imperfect in every way.

omelette by Daley

Soul Music

I am so in love with this track by Jai Jagdeesh, You Are Loved. Each words brings such profound comfort and joy. I urge you to listen to it again and again as I have! And as you do, ‘know you are loved.’

Soul Sisters

I usually share the words of a fellow blogger here each week, but this week I feel called to share two beautiful books I have been reading on the topic of natural birth.

Each one has empowered me on my journey towards a natural, drug free birth and has reminded me of my own inner strength and power. If you know anyone who is pregnant and may be feeling fearful about their labour, or has experienced a traumatic labour in the past – purchase one of these books as a gift. They truly are priceless gems of wisdom.

Authors Katrina Zaslavsky and Jenny Blyth have shifted my feelings of helplessness, dis-empowerment and fear about my labour, restoring within me a deep faith and trust in my innate ability to connect to my body, my baby and my birthing experience.

 

On this Soulful Sunday, know that I am wrapping you all in a warm hug, grateful hug. May you remember your strength. May you tune into your intuition. May you reclaim your power and go forth with confidence, ease and trust.

Love always,

Hayley xx

You Know How To Live

Too often we give our power away; to the doctors and professionals, to other people’s experiences who’ve ‘been there and done that’, to our teachers, superiors and peers who claim they ‘know better’.

But within each of us is a sacred, divine wisdom that knows exactly how to live.

We needn’t seek outside for answers and expert advice. If you take the time to listen to your body, your heart and your intuition, then you will be guided each step of the way. The answers you seek will find YOU. Synchronistic events will begin to show up in your world once you connect with your deepest wishes and intentions – each one leading you to precisely where you need to be.

I have found this experience to be true in my own life. Since making a commitment to a natural, drug free birth and pregnancy, I have discovered women who have walked the path I wish to walk, each one empowering me to take my body, baby and birth into my own hands.

The guidance and wisdom I’ve attracted into my world since making this firm decision has been mind blowing.

Whatever you’re experiencing, if you’re feeling confused by the overwhelm of information ‘out there’ – get still. Tune into yourself. Trust yourself. You know exactly how to live.

Love always,

Hayley xx