Birth as a creative process

I recently finished reading the book Rediscovering Birth and there was a section in it that I absolutely LOVED about birth as a creative process. The author quotes another writer, Dr. Michelle Harrison. She forms an analogy about women giving birth as like dancers on a stage and how just as routine interventions for the purpose of “just in case” would hinder the dancers in their creative process, so too, do routine obstetrical interventions hinder the woman’s capacity to give birth in her full strength and creative power:

“Birth is a creative process, not a surgical procedure. I picture dancers on a stage. Once, doing a pirouette, a woman sustained a cervical fracture as result of a fall; she is not paralyzed. We try to make the stage safer, to have the dancers better prepared. But can a dancer wear a collar around her neck, just in case she falls? The presence of the collar will inhibit her free motion. We cannot say to her, ‘this will be entirely natural except for the brace on your neck, just in case.’ It cannot be ‘as if’ it is not there because we know that creative movement and creative expression cannot exist with those constraints. The dancer cannot dance with the brace on. In the same way the birthing woman cannot ‘dance’ with a brace on. The straps around her abdomen, the wires coming from her vagina, change her birth.”

3 thoughts on “Birth as a creative process

  1. Beautiful analogy! I am pregnant with my first baby, and as an artist myself, couldn’t agree more with Harrison.

    When I give birth I want to feel empowered, creative, my true self at its best. After tuning into my inner voice I have chosen to have my baby in an amazing free standing Birth Center. That decision freed me of the medical world. I am not a patient anymore: I am me, and I am giving birth.

    Maria de la Calle

  2. Pingback: More Thoughts on Birth as a Creative Process « Talk Birth

  3. Congratulations on your pregnancy, Maria! I am so glad that you followed your inner wisdom as to where to give birth to your baby. I hope you have a beautiful, creative birth.

    Shortly after reading your comment, I was reading a book called Giving Birth and it had several quotes that were so relevant to this topic and your comment, that I just wrote a new post about it here:

    Best wishes,


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