Pink is for everyone.
I’ve chosen to use pink and red as the main colors for my work and brand, because I connect with them greatly. This website has existed, in some form, in my mind for years and it’s always been red red red. I want to explicitly un-gender pink and red here, though, and say that pink is for everybody. Gender neutral language is important to me (also why you’ll notice me using words like “mxnstruate” and “mxnopause”). Let’s make room for all of us, and all the expressions of ourselves through the language we choose to talk about birth and bleeding. Here you’ll find pinks and reds that are bloody, gutsy, and symbolic of fire, passion, identity, and the roots from which we grow.
You are your best teacher.
You are the expert on your body, mind, self, and life, no matter how distant you may feel from those things. I am here to support you, love you, share with you, cheer you on, and help you grow into the fullest expression of yourself (the one that YOU choose), but we are all teachers and co-creators here. It’s important to me to create safe, non-hierarchical learning circles that hold space for you to thrive as your own best teacher and biggest supporter.
Healing is possible, and a process.
It is hard, it is messy. I am still doing it, and always will be, but healing is possible: in body, mind, spirit, in bleeding and in birth.
In fall 2015, I started taking hormonal birth control, aka “The Pill.” Barely any questions asked, I left Planned Parenthood with, no kidding, a paper sack full of a year’s supply of birth control pills.
In some ways, the pill served me well. Feeling empowered to explore my sexuality, I stepped into my body, my queerness, my life in some wonderful ways while on the pill.
But I also experienced severe depression.
I had panic attacks, sometimes daily, and faced new, intense anxieties.
I gained 50 pounds. (This isn’t about weight loss, though. Fuck diet culture.)
I went on antidepressants, which worked for awhile, but eventually left me feeling numb, still depressed, and still anxious.
And somewhere along the way, the sexual empowerment and safety the pill had given me slipped away as my libido lessened, orgasms became more difficult, and sex and sensuality felt further and further away.
Earlier this year, after facing some sad losses and feeling fed up with numbness, I quit anti-depressants, and shortly thereafter, discovered a method of contraception called ferility awareness and quit the pill, too.
In quick succession, I enrolled in a course about cycles, trained as a yoga teacher (a long-time dream for which the time had just never seemed “right”), heard the word “doula” for the first time, dipped a toe in the water by joining Birdsong’s Doula Book Club, signed up for what’s turned out to be a life-changing doula training experience with Angela Gallo, and saw the return of my period after more than two years.
All of these experiences have led to great awakening for me. I knew shockingly little about my own body cycle. I knew nothing about moon cycles and other natural cycles that support habits of deep rest and intense creativity. Pregnancy, birth, and postpartum felt like locked doors to me, things I wanted to experience, but assumed I wouldn’t learn about until I got there.
And now, thanks to the leadership, passion, honesty, and brilliance of several amazing teachers (Angela Gallo, Mara Glatzel, Laura Interlandi, and Erica Livingston, I’m looking at y’all.), I am here, equipped and empowered to support people navigating similar journeys.
Through my own journey, I have learned and am daily learning that there are no quick fixes, magical do-overs, or one-size-fits-all solutions. But there is deep healing available, in our bodies, our minds, and our communities.
I am wholly inspired to change the way we bleed, cycle, work, birth, parent, and live. I envision communities where each person is informed, supported, and empowered to live their wildest, biggest dreams, in full embodiment. I will be a part of bringing that change about by offering work as a lifespan doula that spans transitions we face throughout life, from birth to death, puberty to mxnopause, and everything in between.
Beth Rich, Lifespan Doula