3:35 min. - Interview with two midwives working in the Mohawk community, Jennifer Stonier and Katsi Cook.


Jenifer Stonier - You know, "midwife" means "wise woman", and I very much believe in that. I think our job is a very privileged one: we get to be at miracles all the time. And I think it's also, it's about creating space. It's about creating a space where a woman can do whatever she needs to do to bring this baby into the world. And it’s holding that space and having a true relationship with that woman, getting to know her, allowing...
It's a two-way street. It's not a "helping profession". It's a service. If you help somebody, then other person has to be helpless, in a way. It's sort of like… it’s a power thing. A helper is helping somebody who is not as strong or something. I think that a midwife is there with somebody, with her expertise, with the thing she knows, but also with what that woman knows. So there is a give-and-take, and we are served as the much as we serve.
I like the word "serve" better: it might not be the best word, but it is walking with that woman through the process that she is in, that she is living, and nurturing her confidence. But that nurturing comes from being confident. I think it's a way of being, from the way I see it. There is a lot to do, but that’s extraneous to being.
Katsi Cook - In our ceremonies, we have one practice where a process is done with the mother, so that there is no cord around the neck. . So you can embed in that moment of ceremony a way for that fetus to position itself, to organize itself, and for that mother to think, so that you’ll have the best outcome.. And in the last two months before the baby is born, that baby ears everything the mother ears, sees everything the mother sees… And now, in the field of perinatal psychology, they even understand that the baby starts learning language before he is born. You know, the linguistic patterns of the mother, the baby perceives that in the womb. So they are already learning language before they're even born. And so, if science knows that much now, I mean: we always knew that. Traditional indigenous people always understood that, what you expose the mother to, you expose the baby to. Which is why the essential teaching of «you want to have to mother be happy» is pretty standard to the whole world.
Music - Kathia Rock

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