Treaty 2 Territory – Boozhoo! We hope that everyone is safe and well. Learning is a lifelong journey that many Elders and Knowledge-Keepers say begins at birth. FNT2T Life Long Learning has shared many written pieces and resources on Indigenous Kinship and Traditional Birth/Parenting as many Nations work toward reclaiming and revitalizing our ways.
Rebeka Tabobondung (Wasauksing First Nation) is the founder and editor of Muskrat Magazine (no affiliation to FNT2T Life Long Learning). She is also a mother and a filmmaker. Tabobondung directed, produced and wrote the Spirit of Birth short film in 2016. The film features the Toronto Birth Centre which focuses on an Indigenous-led birth experience for Allysha Wassegijig (Muskrat Magazine). Most recently, Tabobondung will be receiving a grant toward the development of her new app: The Spirit of Birth Pregnancy and Parenting App. A very exciting development!
“In Anishinaabe culture, it is believed that newly born infants and community Elders are the closest to the spirit world. The process of giving birth carries spiritual teachings, ceremonies, and the power to transform parents, families, and communities. However, often times Indigenous parents face barriers and are unable to access culturally-based health care during their pregnancy journeys” (Muskrat Magazine, “Anishinaabe Mother & Media Creator Bringing Traditional Birth Knowledge to New Digital Platforms” by Erica Commanda, May 31/21).
The short film by Tabobondung, Spirit of Birth, is dedicated to “…all the babies ‘scooped’ away by the child welfare system” and talks about how reclaiming and revitalizing Indigenous birthing practices “brings families in to bond with their baby in a way that they might not have otherwise and give the mother and baby all the support their community can and their family can, if we pour all of that into that next generation of babies then my hope is that we’re going to have a healthier next generation and that generation is going to do the same…and we’re going to heal a lot of hurt that we have in our communities and make our families and Nations stronger” (Spirit of Birth).
To watch the short film and read more, visit Muskrat Magazine’s link: http://muskratmagazine.com/mother-and-media-creator/.
Miigwetch. Renew and revitalize!
Source: Muskrat Magazine “Anishinaabe Mother & Media Creator Bringing Traditional Birth Knowledge to New Digital Platforms” by Erica Commanda, May 31/21
Submitted By: Donna Beyer, Life Long Learning Keeper
Last modified: June 8, 2021