by Jessica Ventura-Ewing
“Until You Know Yourself Happiness Cannot Come To You” ~ Yogi Tea
When thinking about the maternal lineage in my family the feeling that kept presenting itself was sadness. Not a normal type of everyday sadness but a deep seeded sadness that stemmed from birth, something that all of the women of my family including myself seemed to carry. My Wilderness Fast came at a perfect time in order to focus on healing this for myself, my family, and the future generations that would come after me, because Reny and I had been discussing starting our own family. During our initial Wilderness Fast meeting I remember Carol (Parker) telling us that the part of Canyon de Chelly that we would be in was full of maternal energy, what could be more fitting I thought to myself.
Sept 2010…I settled into my womb-like cave in the canyon. I took a nap and as I awoke I looked at a rock above me and noticed that it looked like a fish. This is a great sign, as my grandmother always dreams of fish when someone is pregnant. While on my journey I wrote letters to my family members, alive and deceased, talking to them about birth trauma, babies lost and asking the questions I felt as though no one had asked. I spent what seemed like an eternity creating prayer sticks and medicine wheels, I basked in the sun, feeling it’s warmth on my body as I melted into the rocks. I cried the tears that had been held in for so long, knowing that they were not only my own. I remember Jim Nolan saying “when you’re on a Wilderness Fast one day seems like 500 hours.” I hadn’t understood it at the time but now I do.
On the third solo night I had a vision of my daughter’s birth. It was so real I woke up wondering if that is what it would be like. I was filled with an overwhelming feeling of joy and love. Everything finally seemed complete. On the fourth night I laid outside in the center of my medicine wheel and watched the stars. Fading in and out of consciousness the words came “Nurture and love the children- for you too are the great Mother.” Sometime between then and dawn I had more visions of my daughter. She was to weigh 5lb 7oz and have her father’s eyes. The canyon only asked for one thing in return…to give her it’s name so she would always know where she came from. Upon sharing this with the group Carol said to me “this canyon is one of your homes now and it will be one of hers as well.” A few days later as we left the canyon I remember saying to my friend Jenn “I didn’t get Reny anything,” speaking of souvenirs that I had picked up for my family members. She simply looked at me, smiled, and in her quiet tone of voice we all knew so well replied “You got him a baby.”
Time went by and our baby didn’t come. We struggled with feelings of sadness and had to keep reminding ourselves that she would come when she was ready. Fast forward to May 5, 2012….I sat at home in anticipation, will the test finally be positive this time? As I walked back into the bathroom I was terrified to see another single line but I took a deep breath and when I looked down there it was…two pink lines. Pregnant. We cried tears of unbelievable joy…she was finally here. The months passed and she grew, she swam around inside of me, she kicked and hiccupped. It was the most amazing feeling. We never actually found out the sex of our child but we always knew she was a girl. Toward the end of my pregnancy my visions began again. She would be born in the dark, the sky would be full of stars, the moon high in the sky and it’d be snowing. Then it happened…1:55am December 31, 2012, our little girl arrived. She weighed 5lb 9oz and had her father’s eyes. It was dark, starry, the moon was high and it was snowing. Welcome to the world Savannah Tseyi…you were my vision, now you’re my everything and one day I’ll take you to the canyon where you came from.
Jessica Ventura-Ewing, LMHC holds a M.A. in Counseling/Art Therapy from Southwestern College as well as certificates in Children’s Mental Health and Grief, Trauma and Loss. She currently lives with her family in Santa Fe, NM. She can be reached at www.linkedin.com/in/jessicasewing/
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