Sophia Sabsowitz Into the Ether. Oil on canvas.
In celebration of the remarkable mothers who are part of Havilah Collective, Isabel shared one of her favorite "Havilah" memories:
One morning, a friend of mine, Gloria, from a township close to Ocean View phoned me in a frantic state. A very dear friend of hers lost her only son, aged 6, due to a drowning accident in the wetlands. Gloria's friend was in a state of shock. she didn't talk, she couldn't cry and Gloria asked if I could help.
They came to our place, Havilah, the very next morning at 9 am, a Saturday - Gloria, the bereaved mother, and another friend. My heart just melted when I saw the mom. She was shattered. I took her into our small space and explained to her what it was that I do. She just looked at me, not saying anything.
We started the Aromatouch Technique which is a system of using essential oils to help the body deal with stressors and trauma. I asked her friends to softly sing or hum the music from church that she loved.
Slowly, she started to come back into her body. As we continued with the technique she became more relaxed, all the while the soft singing continued.
Then the walls broke and she broke.
I just stepped back and let her grieve. It was heartbreaking to witness. As she subsided, I ended the technique and told her to take her time getting up. I stepped out of the room.
When she came out of the room she was not the same person that entered the room. She was lighter, and although heartbroken, she was alive, grieving the loss of her baby.
There was so much love and support around her. She shared with me that for the first time since the tragedy, she can breathe.
And she shared her story.
I am so thankful that for this grieving mother that there is a place called Havilah. A place of rest, a place of safety, a place of healing.
-by Isabel Marlow
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