I spent a quiet winter day with a good friend and attending Gena Kirby's rebozo workshop for tips on using the rebozo during labor. Of course I am interested in the use of a long piece of fabric that can be used as a shawl, a birthing tool, or traditionally as a baby carrier, right?! :-)
I am not a birth attendant in any way, but have worked with several birth doulas and was intrigued to hear how the rebozo could be used to ease labor pains. I was delighted by what I was shown. I definitely think the rebozo as a tool could be very effective, and would want it in my 'tool kit.' If you have known me for the last twenty years you will understand how important the 'tool kit' is to me. If not...train with me!
I personally really enjoyed hearing Gena talk about the history of the rebozo. This plays right into my passions too and it is a beautiful cultural tradition that should be honored. Gena does a nice job of doing that very thing!
If you already have woven wraps on hand you could easily use the techniques Gena shows in her class with them. I would just recommend it feel good in your hands, not to thick or too thin. One of the relaxation tips she demonstrated is very similar to traditional lymphatic drainage techniques, where you gently move the fabric from the hands or feet toward the center of the body using a very gentle touch. This is something any of us could do both for a relaxation technique for our family or should we happen to feel bloated.
I thought Gena's recommendation to have more than one rebozo (or woven wrap) with you during the birth to be a wise precaution... especially if you are attending a water birth! :-)