I had a patient one time that was having a hard time coping(she wanted an epidural but couldn't have one at the time). Towards the end she was closing her eyes tightly and holding on to the bed. She had a few tears earlier also. I was trying to get her to breathe with me to help her relax. She was tense and had her eyes clenched tight, and to me it seemed like she needed more help to get her through this time. So I would count and breathe and tell her how to relax. But it didn't seem to be doing much.
Afterwards it occured to me that perhaps I should have been paying more attention to her own breathing pattern and maybe match it. I wondered if I was actually making it more difficult for her to cope by insisting she breathe a certain way. Now if I am ever in the same situation I will pay closer attention to my clients own breathing patterns...and perhaps use those as a way to help her cope. Often times this is what is really needed. Women need to find their own way to breathe.
What really struck me this morning about this thought, was how that is true in many walks of life. I was particularly thinking about this with my daughter, who is wonderful, beautiful, intelligent, but very headstrong. When we push her, she pushes back. It occurred to me that maybe I need to step back and watch how she is breathing. What makes her calm? What makes her tense? How can I match her breathe so that we can come out in the end better and stronger people? I'm not sure I have answers, but it did give me pause to think....sometimes part of what we do as guides is to help others find their own breathe.