of Birth Story Medicine
1. Stories are living, evolving entities.
2. Experiencing or witnessing childbirth is an extraordinary event, stirring the mind, emotions, and soul; therefore, a formal birth story session should be part of the Return.
3. Life events and outcomes have no inherent meaning; meaning is given to an experience, thus, can be changed as the storyteller and story evolve.
4. Looking at a memory as a mythic story beneath the veneer of reason reveals heroic myths woven through the storyteller’s life. Therefore, bringing resolution to a birth story goes beyond the birth itself, touching and transforming other aspects of the storyteller’s life.
5. There is not one storyteller within each of us; instead, each “part” (archetype) tells a different version of the story from their perspective. And each part is looking for the right listener and true Medicine.
6. A story and storyteller can shift in the blink of an eye with a solution-focused dialogue, empathic acknowledgment, or telling of hero-myth.
7. It’s tempting to seek healing by looking in the opposite direction, outward, toward the light, but Medicine is found where least expected: in the wound.
8. The purpose of birth story work is not to “heal” the story but to search for meaning until the storyteller realizes the paradox that the ordeal or hardship they thought broke them actually “healed” something in them.
9. In addition to research and activism, changing the story of birth in our culture relies on changing the story we tell ourselves, each other, and our children.
Copyright © 2023 by Pam England and Danit Tsur Almog, Birth Story Medicine
As water becomes the shape of its container,
we become the shape of our stories and beliefs.
~ Pam England