Was this little discussion ‘ womb memory…?
This story begins a while ago, in New Jersey USA 2008 during my Doula course, and before I'd had my first birth experience.
I was sitting in a circle of women in NJ listening to my then Doula Teacher talk about her younger children having memories of being in the womb and of being born. I honestly quaffed at the idea - ridiculous I thought, impossible.... how could this be. But I listened and found myself intrigued by the notion. Another woman in our circle had a 2 year old daughter at home and said she'd ask her if she 'remembered'. She was guided by our Teacher in regards to the line of questioning and told to ask open ended questions, such as do you remember being in Mummy's tummy...what was it like in there....what was around you...could you see anything...here anything etc..
So the next morning we all gather and begin chatting when the Mum with the 2 year old daughter says her little girl just pulled faces and blew raspberries at her when asked about being in her tummy. She thought perhaps she was simply too tired to have a chat. So the following day she tried again and this is what happened...
'I asked my daughter at bed time if she remembered being inside my tummy.....I asked her while she was on her bed just after story time, she was relaxed and quiet and concentrating on what I was saying, she then said “Oh Yes - I had to do this to come out Mummy it was really hard”. Her 2yr old daughter then proceeded to lay on her back with her head hanging off the mattress she twisted off the side of the bed mimicking the movements she perhaps would have made down the birth canal."
I had goose bumps all over my arms listening to this and was excited by the idea that one day I would perhaps have the opportunity to ask my future children, if they ‘remembered’. At the time of doing my course I was in the 1st trimester of my 1st pregnancy, when I booked in to doing my course I wasn’t aware that I was pregnant J
Fast-forward 4 years and here I was in my dining room back in Melbourne Australia listening to my daughters discuss what they saw in my tummy....
I prompted the topic, to my girls (Kamryn 4½ yrs & Talia 2 ½ yrs old at the time) “Do you remember being in mummy’s tummy?”
“Talia looks up at me and says, Um there was a plant in there”
Kamryn interrupts, “No it was a big flower”
“Oh yeah there was a big plant and flower” says Talia excitedly,
“I remember being all squished up like a ‘cat ball’, I had to move out of the way from the big flower” Kamryn explains in more detail her being curled up and sharing the space with the ‘flower’ “I could also hear a drumming like this” Kamryn then proceeds to bang the table in a specific rhythm.
Talia was showing me with her arms in the air how big this flower was to her and where it was, I was so amazed. I really believed they were describing their placentas.
I scramble for pen and paper to scribble down what they’re saying word for word. I was so overly excited by what I was hearing and seeing that the girls notice and try to explain more and more to me….I believe at this point that my 2 ½ year old is really remembering what she experienced but perhaps my 4 ½ year old is just trying to please me, beautiful kind little girl that she is.
However they continue to chat with one another and me …
Recalling “I wasn’t close enough to the thing that gives us food in your tummy so I just had to wait until I ‘got borned’ I ask Kamryn to explain what she means and how she ate in my tummy.
“I didn’t eat I just had to wait until I got out to have your milk”.
“How did you know you needed to have my milk?”
“I was just a really clever baby to be born Mummy “
I loved this discussion with my girls and will cherish their animated little faces as they finally have the chance to communicate a memory with me. They were so proud to be ‘teaching’ me something I knew nothing about and said they were really clever that they remembered and I didn’t!
I encourage you all to keep the discussion open with your children, continue to ask if they remember. Just let the conversation flow when they’re ready to articulate … perhaps your children will have something to share, perhaps not.
Wouldn’t it be lovely though if your children did have a womb memory and you gave them the opportunity to share it with you ….?