The Midwife: Whapio Diane Bartlett
Authored Books: N/A
Biography/History: Whapio has been a midwife for over 30 years. In the 1990s she was teaching classes about childbirth and midwifery and in the early years of 2000 she put together all of the information she had learned over the years and created her program, The Matrona. “As a young midwife I knew that my approach to childbirth was different than many of my peers. I apprenticed for three years with the midwife who helped me birth my two children. I adored her and learned incredible amounts from the births I attended with her. But my real apprenticeship began when I was called to assist women who were having large families and these intrepid women allowed me to sit at their feet and really see how birth unfolds when women are acting in accordance with their own authority and birthing in their organic rhythms. They invited me to apprentice with them and with birth itself.” (3) Whapio studied Quantum Physics and applied it to midwifery and birth and has integrated it into her teachings of “Quantum Midwifery”.
• Ability to Birth: “…these intrepid women allowed me to sit at their feet and really see how birth unfolds when women are acting in accordance with their own authority and birthing in their organic rhythms. They invited me to apprentice with them and with birth itself.” (3)…… “Over the years, countless women taught me that they don’t want or need to be managed. They were wise and capable even when I thought they weren’t. They were patient and caring with me and I was respectful and integral with them and we collaborated in birth. They taught me that as women we can call into question that idea that we NEED someone to assist us in birthing our babies. They explained that they want to be attended through childbirth, they prefer companionship and witnessing but that they were capable of birth without management, unnecessary support and interference, no matter how loving and compassionate the interference seemed.” (3)
• Licensure, Accreditation: “I’ve been an independent midwife through all my years and I never felt it was necessary to belong to any particular organization as a midwife or as a midwifery education program. MEAC is good for those who want it, but to me it feels like a linear, left-brained way of supporting the age-old tradition of midwifery that is steeped in an intuitive and non-linear mode of expression as well as a practical model. Naturally there is a blending of the academic and the intuitive in midwifery and I would prefer to support organizations that facilitate mystical intelligence.” (3)……
• “Trust Birth”/Unassisted Birth: “Paramount to communication and collaboration among midwives is the willingness to set aside our ideologies concerning what’s right and wrong and realize that there is a place for everything. There is a place for drugs, for unassisted birth, for yoni exams and for no yoni exams. For me, the key is that each of us finds our own self-directed way to accessing what can facilitate birth and consciousness in this world.” (3)
• “I feel that the fear we see surrounding birth that effects young midwives during their education is created by political and societal concerns rather than a fear of birth itself. It’s an artificially created fear because it’s based on responsibility for outcomes. As caregivers, I believe that we are responsible for the process and not the outcome. We are responsible for the time we spend, the nurturing we offer, the integrity we bring – all the aspects of unfolding the birth process with a woman and family. But it is not my privilege to know the destiny of another human being or to control or be responsible for the outcome. Birth, like healing, is a relationship between mother, child and the greater powers. Naturally, we endeavor to facilitate fulfillment and subsequently safety for mother and baby but we cannot mandate the outcome. When we try to do that we get the practice of defensive medicine. We also need to address the temptation to practice defensive midwifery.
Read the full interview here: http://www.thematrona.com/#!__literature – Interview with Whapio
Whapio is another midwife that I look up to and adore. Her thoughts, her past, her beliefs. Her “Holistic Stages of Labor” is a must read (and can be found on her website). Her school, the Matrona, offers Holistic Doula and Quantum Midwifery training which I will be attending. One of my current mentors, Krista Joy Arias, bases a lot of her teachings and beliefs off of those of Whapio and her style and beliefs feel that they mesh very well with my own. But it is up to each woman and midwife to find their way, who they look up to, etc.
– Interview with Whapio
Note: As I come across further information, this may be updated.