Wise Woman Ezine with herbalist Susun Weed
June 2008
Volume 8 Number 6
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What's Inside Wise Woman Herbal Ezine this Month...


Childbearing & Mothering ...
A Journey to Center, Part I:
Healing Through Maya Abdominal Massage
by Astrid Grove

A Journey to Center, Part I:

Healing Through Maya Abdominal Massage
by Astrid Grove


“The uterus is the women’s center. If her uterus is not in proper position and good health, nothing in her life will be right. She will be as out of balance as her uterus.”
-Don Elijio Panti, teacher to Rosita Arvigo


This story begins with my journey of healing. For thirteen years I experienced recurrent urinary tract infections after sexual intercourse. the Art of Cindy Thorrington HaggertyI followed many paths and uncovered a tremendous amount of information regarding the treatment and prevention of UTI’s. After applying dietary changes, herbal remedies, changes in hygiene, journeys with shamans, regular acupuncture, homeopathies, meditation and visualization, and the help of a medical doctor . . . I still suffered.

I was not able to treat the infection with herbs, only antibiotics. The antibiotics were doing a number on my body and clearly only helping me in the short term. In the thirteenth year, I decided to seek additional medical help for my case. I received a cystoscopy (a scope enters the urethra and goes up into the bladder) as well as a CAT scan (an x-ray that shows cross-sectional views of the body) to determine if there were any abnormalities with the anatomy of my bladder and urethra. The results showed that all was normal.

At this point I remembered that in midwifery school I was informed that my uterus is tipped to one side, diagnosed by the position of my cervix. Most gynecologic providers are taught that a tipped uterus is a variation of normal. How could a tipped uterus be normal? Soon after, I signed up for Rosita Arvigo’s Self Care Workshop. Here I learned the techniques that would eventually completely cure me of my UTI’s.

My practitioner told me that my uterus was positioned to the left side and laying forward (anteverted) onto my bladder. In this position there was a low flow of chi energy, lymph and blood entering my lower abdominal region. After lifting my uterus up and out of this position, I found that I urinated less frequently and no longer had any pressure on my bladder (a pressure I did not even notice until it was gone). After five months of regular self care and seeing a practitioner once per month, I no longer suffer from UTI’s at all.

After having so much success myself, I began my training to become a certified practitioner of The Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Massage. The technique applies anatomy and physiology, herbalism, and manipulation along with the Ancient Maya healing techniques to address common female and male complaints. The technique works by relieving congestion and blockages to improve the flow of chi and fluids in the circulatory, lymphatic and nervous systems to prevent the progression of chronic disease.

A practitioner often uses other modalities of healing alongside the massage. I personally use the context of the Six Steps of Healing and the Wise Woman Tradition in my practice and use shamanic journeying, herbalism, foot reflexology, nutritional counseling, and polarity therapy.

Many experiences can contribute to a displaced uterus. These include, but are not limited to, a fall to the sacrum, long and difficult pushing stage in birth, traumatic gynecological exams, wearing high heels, car accidents, walking barefoot on cold floors, rape, incest, and sexual abuse. In Belize when a little girl falls off her horse, her mother whisks her away to the local healer, the midwife, or even her own grandmother to receive abdominal massage.

In this way the women encourage uterine and abdominal health from youth and prevent many female problems in the future. In my travels to Belize, I met many women who practice variations of this technique within their families and communities. It is an integral part of the Maya lifestyle, from birth to menopause and beyond.

Though the technique is very physical, the benefits are seen emotionally as well. Our bellies are soft and vulnerable and we have a tendency to build up walls of protection there by tightening our muscles in the upper abdomen or solar plexus area. These tightened muscles also impede the flow of blood, chi and lymph from traveling to our lower abdomen and extremities.

the Art of Cindy Thorrington HaggertyOften receiving a Maya Massage can surface old stories and hard memories, stored in the muscles of the abdomen and in the uterus, and help to release these emotions. If I am feeling anxious, I take some motherwort tincture, lie down with some oil, and give myself an abdominal massage to help prevent the tightening of my abdominal muscles.

These techniques are incredibly empowering for women. We are able to heal ourselves of current problems and prevent future problems. It is my wish that all women have this wisdom to apply to themselves and their family and that all women’s health practitioners are aware of its benefits as well. It is a part of reclaiming our health care and bringing us back to center. I see it as another piece of magic to add to our medicine bags of healing.


Symptoms of a Displaced Uterus:

Menstrual symptoms:
• Painful or irregular menses; dark, thick fluids at the beginning and end of menses, blood clots and heavy bleeding, absence of menses, headaches, dizziness and migraines with menses, premenstrual syndrome (PMS)

Urinary Symptoms:
• Frequent urination, urinary tract infections, bladder infections, incontinence

Circulatory Symptoms:
• Tired legs, numb feet, sore heals, varicose veins, hemorrhoids

Musculoskelatal symptoms:
• sore heels and low back ache

Ovulatory Symptoms:
• painful ovulation, absence of ovulation, irregular ovulation, infertility, ovarian cysts

Symptoms of Congestion:
• endometriosis, endometritis, uterine polyps, vaginitis, painful intercourse, uterine fibroids, uterine infections

Other symptoms:
• Hormonal imbalances; difficult menopause; cancer of the cervix, uterus, colon or bladder; constipation; uterine prolapse, cystocele

Pregnancy symptoms:
• Sciatic pain, pelvic pain, long labors, malposition of the baby, pubic symphysis pain, hip pain, back pain, ligament pain, post-dates pregnancy, lack of descent of the baby, persistent posterior lie, cystocele, frequent urination, prolapse

To find out more information about Maya Abdominal Massage and to find a practitioner near you, go to www.arvigomassage.com.

Copyright 2008 © Astrid Grove

Astrid Grove is a community midwife, a wise woman herbalist, and a practitioner of Maya Abdominal Massage. She is currently practicing as a licensed midwife in the state of Vermont where she also enjoys her mountain view home where she is an avid gardener and wild plant and mushroom forager. She is also a co-creatrix of the Red Temple at Womongathering. She has created sacred circle in the form of moonlodge every dark moon for the past 7 years and offers her own moonblood to the earth every month. She will be offering Maya Abdominal Massage as taught by Dr. Rosita Arvigo, DN and Ms. Beatrice Wright.



Astrid Grove Workshops at the Wise Woman Center


Access the wisdom of your belly; listen to the stories of your womb, and your sister. We will heal ourselves and generations past and future.

Register on-line for Womb Speak



Honor the heauty and power of your "reproductive" system, learn to increase orgasmic pleasure, create abdominal health, and use art to call forth the Goddess within. Please wear red.

Register on-line for Her Sacred Yoni



Susun Weed’s books:

Wise Woman Herbal for the Childbearing Year
Author: Susun S. Weed.
Simple, safe remedies for pregnancy, childbirth, lactation, and newborns. Includes herbs for fertility and birth control. Foreword by Jeannine Parvati Baker. 196 pages, index, illustrations.
Retails for $17.95
Order at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Healing Wise
Author: Susun S. Weed.
Superb herbal in the feminine-intuitive mode. Complete instructions for using common plants for food, beauty, medicine, and longevity. Introduction by Jean Houston. 312 pages, index, illustrations.
Retails for $21.95
at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com

NEW Menopausal Years the Wise Woman Way

Author: Susun S. Weed.
The best book on menopause is now better. Completely revised with 100 new pages. All the remedies women know and trust plus hundreds of new ones. New sections on thyroid health, fibromyalgia, hairy problems, male menopause, and herbs for women taking hormones. Recommended by Susan Love MD and Christiane Northrup MD. Introduction by Juliette de Bairacli Levy. 304 pages, index, illustrations.
Retails for $22.95
at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com
For excerpts visit: www.menopause-metamorphosis.com

Breast Cancer? Breast Health!

Author: Susun S. Weed.
Foods, exercises, and attitudes to keep your breasts healthy. Supportive complimentary medicines to ease side-effects of surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, or tamoxifen. Foreword by Christiane Northrup, M.D. 380 pages, index, illustrations.
Retails for $21.95
at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Down There: Sexual and Reproductive Health the Wise Woman Way
Publication date: June 21, 2011
Author: Susun S. Weed
Simple, successful, strategies cover the entire range of options -- from mainstream to radical -- to help you choose the best, and the safest, ways to optimize sexual and reproductive health. Foreword: Aviva Romm, MD, midwife, 484 pages, Index, illustrations.
Retails for $29.95
Order at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Abundantly Well - Seven Medicines The Complementary Integrated Medical Revolution
Publication date: December 2019
Author: Susun S. Weed
Seven Medicines build foundational health and guide you to the best health care when problems arise. Includes case studies, recipes, exentsive references and resources. Introduction by Patch Adams illustrated by Durga Yael Bernhard 352 pages, index, illustrations
Retails for $24.95
Order at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Susun Weed's Video's Include:

Weeds to the Wise DVD Video
Visit Susun's farm for a weed walk. Hear her talk on the Three Traditions of Healing. Make infusion with her. Fun! (1 hour DVD video)
Retails for $29.95

Order at: www.wisewomanbookshop.com



Dreaming In Color Luman Deck
Dreaming In Color Luman Deck

The Dreaming in Color™ Luman Deck is a bridge that is specifically intended to help the user develop their intuitive and psychic abilities through the use of meditative, intuitive and psychological expansion and color-soaked dreamscape imagery.

60 vibrant 3" x 5" cards on a rich, lustrous satin matte stock, beautifully boxed (the box is a lush purple, of course). User guide included.

Price: $19.50

see the Dreaming in Color™ Luman Deck in our Bookshop



Baby Magic for Your Magic Baby

Baby Magic is a Spiritual Guide to Motherhood. Begining before conception,Baby Magic guides a woman on her magical journey of becoming a mother. Including relaxations, eating tips, and exercises, Baby Magic teaches a woman how to prepare for and welcome her child with a healthy and brain stimulating environment.

Paperback, 89 pages, publisher--Magic of Motherhood.

$14.95 Price includes shipping cost.

Order this book from our Bookshop

"I'd recommend it to any women who has even thought about becoming a mother!" -
Rosa Durrante, midwife


Wise Woman Herbal Ezine is sponsored by www.susunweed.com and www.wisewomanbookshop.com

Menopause Metamorphosis with Susun Weed

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