On today’s episode, Elle and Taylor sit down with Yaya Atabey Samudra, an Afro-Indigenous Queer + Trans Herbalist, Activist, Full-Spectrum Birthworker, Artist and Initiated Womb Healer based in Los Angeles, CA. They discuss the sacredness of birth, how to initiate ceremony and celebration back into the birth space, the four feminine archetypes period-having people go through, and how to move through our lives following our energy levels during the different phases of our moon cycles to tap into the Divine within us.
“This is a ceremony! You welcoming a new being into this world. This is also a ceremony for you as parents and birthing persons to go through a rites of passage.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“If you are a menstruating person, you naturally go through what we refer to as the four feminine archetypes through your menstrual cycle each month. So it starts with the maiden, it goes into the enchantress, the mother, and then the crone.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“Traditionally speaking, the crone was looked at as the wise woman. That was the person you went to because she had all of the knowledge… they were honored and respected by the society.” – Elle Kennedy
“How do we respect the phases we go through?” – Taylor Garcia
“Gut knowledge is really womb knowledge.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“When you are pregnant, you are descending. So think about a spiral – and the womb is also symbolized by a spiral, or a mandala – you are starting from the outer edge and you are walking your way all the way in. And once you get to the middle, that’s essentially when you are going through labor. And then after labor, in the postpartum phase, you are walking out. And this walk, it continues until you are in the crone stage, which is the very end of the mandala.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“”We are descending into the underworld of ourselves.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“You need to go through that – this underworld – on your own.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“Birth can be healing. It doesn’t have to be traumatic. It doesn’t have to be pain and suffering. It can be light and healing and joyful and courageous. It can be all of this beauty.” – Elle Kennedy
“Acknowledge the cycles of nature. We are aware of it to some extent, but we don’t recognize it as something that happens within us, and we don’t recognize that connection we have with nature.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
“In birth, when you’re going through that rites of passage, it’s really important to remember that you are a wisdom keeper now.” – Yaya Atabey Samudra
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Today’s guest: Yaya Atabey Samudra
Yaya Atabey Samudra is an Afro-Indigenous Queer + Trans Herbalist, Activist, Full-Spectrum Birthworker, Artist and Initiated Womb Healer based in Los Angeles, CA. Yaya comes from a long lineage of Afro-Carribean Womb Keepers, Midwives, Medicine Men & Women. Their Ancestors are at the forefront of their work, their artistry and their personal healing. Yaya’s dream is to open a space for herbal consultations, community gatherings centered around womb healing, medicine ceremonies and eco-farming. As an artist, Yaya has recently integrated their visual art with herbalism through the medium of tattooing. After a three year apprenticeship, their vision is to tattoo plant medicine, sacred geometry and other hieroglyphic symbols along the body for activation and alchemical transmutation.
You can find them on Instagram @TheWombMystic and on their website thewombmystic.com or by email firstname.lastname@example.org
Resources mentioned on today’s episode:
Who are Elle and Taylor?
Elle Kennedy is a maternity, birth, and family photographer and doula based in Orange County, California. She’s a mother of two, a member of the LGBTQ+ community, and an advocate for consent and respect for personal preferences during pregnancy, labor, birth, and postpartum. She homeschools, is polyamorous, loves tea and scones, and loves using her free time to create and bake.
Dr. Taylor Garcia is a Webster Certified Chiropractor located in the Orange County, California area, with a family practice that focuses on pregnant persons and babies. She is currently going through the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association’s certification program and plans to have that completes by 2021. While not a mama yet, she is the consummate “mom friend,” and hopes to adopt with her partners in about 5 years. She is part of the LGBTQ+ community and polyamorous. She believes in focusing on health and wellness from before birth, and using that as a firm foundation for health and wellness throughout life. She believes in the importance of connection and consent in all aspects of life. She is a dancer, a writer, a bookworm, and a fan of music and musicals.
Facebook: Elle Kennedy Photography
Facebook: Dr. Taylor Garcia, DC