We were lucky to catch up with Eyla Cuenca recently and have shared our conversation below.
Eyla, appreciate you joining us today. Let’s start with a fun one – what’s something you believe that most people in your industry (or in general) disagree with?
My “industry” of pregnancy, birth education and postpartum support is meant to empower a woman and her family. There are so many empaths who encounter birth and want to help women even if they are not well suited for this work. There are also so many women with birth trauma who consciously or subconsciously believe that being a “birth worker” will heal or resolve something within them.
As a witness to the women that I have trained and who are starting out in this field, I often see there is a lack of clarity when it comes to their motivation for wanting to do this work. It is so important that before stepping into a space of assisting women through this transformative journey, birthworkers-to-be get very real with themselves. Reparenting work and Shadow work is a powerful way for every individual to access what drives them. Are we functioning from a place of trauma and reactivity or are we functioning from a place that is whole, intentional and without trauma motive?
This is important to distinguish because this “industry” should support the woman’s emancipation from an oppressive and outdated birthing model. Many doulas (birth coaches) or birth educators who have not done their own internal work are simply perpetuating the conventional birth system believing that they are offering something different.
Gaslighting and abuse runs rampant in the current mainstream birth model, and many women believe because they hire a doula, the will somehow be immune from this framework, however the unconscious doula will simply be supporting it.
As always, we appreciate you sharing your insights and we’ve got a few more questions for you, but before we get to all of that can you take a minute to introduce yourself and give our readers some of your back background and context?
I am a holistic birth guide, Childbirth Educator, Lactation Counselor, health freedom advocate and mother. Before smartphones I attended Bennington College where I studied Anthropology and Ethnographic Photography. After many years in the visual arts field, I trained under Robert A. Bradley, MD where I specialized as a Birth Educator. I was working for the 11th Judicial Circuit of Florida as a Guardian Ad Litem and attending births as a Doula in both hospital and home settings. All of this brought me into human rights and advocacy work within the realm of pregnancy, birth and postpartum. I stand behind the idea that it is everyone’s right to have access to empowering education from conception to parenting. My practice is dedicated to offering guidance that supports women and men in a sacred process that is a return to their deepest knowing about birth, individual sovereignty, and the body’s innate intelligence.
I offer 1-1 guidance sessions to assist women and couples at any point in their journey, from conscious conception to processing births years later. I also offer my signature childbirth education program, Uncovering Birth, as well as Doula trainings, and Placentophagy trainings (how to prepare the placenta for consumption).
Any insights you can share with us about how you built up your social media presence?
My intention of using social media for my business was to create a yellow pages. A place where millennials and Gen Z’s could find me. haha. On a local level this was really helpful, as I still offered door to door services like placenta encapsulation and in-home lactation counseling. I wasn’t really active until about a year ago. I had been teaching birth classes for some time and would get a lot of feedback from students saying that at their birth or doctors appointment they could remember a sound byte of something I had said and it guided their experience or impacted them some way.
So I began to create clips, from the heart, of what might help people during a challenging or trying moment. Something that would empower them when they began to wobble. When in prayer, I ask God, “what would you like everyone to know?”, and thats really where a lot of my shares come from. They come from the divine, from my heart and my lived experiences in the field. When this aligned, my following grew. I never put up what I think would garner popularity. If anything I post quite unpopular opinions!
My advice is to tap into what you feel would assist and expand human consciousness. Is it videos of you playing piano? Beautiful. Is it tips on how start your day? Are there recipes that healed you? As long as it comes from your heart and with intention to raise the frequency, then God, and/or the law of attraction provides. Whichever source resonates for you ;)
Can you tell us about a time you’ve had to pivot?
I have been teaching in-person birth and breastfeeding classes for many years. In 2020 when everyone was encouraged not to interact in-person I had a really large in-person class scheduled. Within 3 days I taught myself Zoom and completely restructured the presentation to translate as best as it could from in-person to virtual. I had no idea how I would teach a husband to practice a very nuanced type of touch on his wife during labor through a computer! However, a beautiful thing happened. It was a sink or swim moment. When I released resistance and control, I was able to learn a new way of communicating, and have actually been able to help and educate people all over the world.
Image with Copper colored top and baby is Zura Lugarde, https://www.instagram.com/zura_lagarde/