Volume 9

~ News From "Your Birthing Family" ~

Issue 3

Charis Around the World

Childbirth in Kenya
by Jannekah Guya, Charis midwifery student

This month I encapsulated a placenta for a mama for the first time.  It was such a fascinating process and such an honor to get to do something like that for a mama who particularly needed the benefits her placenta would provide.  I prayed and prayed over it every step of the way, praising God for how it had nourished her baby and now for how it would nourish mama. 

When I delivered the capsules, the nurse midwife I work with, Lucy, told us something so beautiful about the placenta in ancient Kenyan birth traditions.  She said it used to be very common and normal that after a mother gave birth her own mother would cook a special meal with the placenta and she and her daughter would eat it together.  Usually around that time the grandmother was going through menopause herself and it was believed that the nourishment and hormones she received from her grandchild's placenta benefited her greatly during that time.  And therefore, according to that belief, the more grandchildren a woman was blessed with, the more healthy, strong, vibrant, and beautiful she was. 

I never knew about this ancient Kenyan tradition before Lucy taught us and I thought it was so beautiful both figuratively and literally.  I'm not sure if the beliefs about the benefits to the menopausal grandmother are accurate, but it seems to make sense.  Thankfully I have plenty of time to investigate before my own daughters reach childbearing age, because we might just have to carry on the tradition if so!

Martin and Jannekah Guya with their babies, Amariah, Ezriel and Adali Lynn



Our International Charis Family
Your stories from around the world touch us and we pray for your safety.
Thanks, Love and Blessings to every one of you!

'Behold, I will bring them from the north country, And gather them from the ends of the earth,
 Among  them the blind and the lame, The woman with child and The one who labors with child,  together,
 A great throng shall return there...And My people shall be satisfied with My goodness, says the LORD.'
 Jeremiah 31:8, 14~~~
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March 2014