THE MEDICINE WHEEL, CARDINAL DIRECTIONS

Qualities and associations

THE EAST

the place of the sun rise, dawn

spring

fertility

the time for sowing seeds

conception

birth

germination

new energy

orientation

insight

vision

clarity

innocence

inspiration (inhale)

new beginnings

fresh starts

air

the mind

eagle, raven, butterfly (rebirth), hummingbird (high frequency)

As it relates to birth: the latent phase, cervix softening and opening, contractions irregular - orienting yourself, gathering your resources calling in your allies (spiritually speaking but literally, your birth team), prepare to get where you need to be, getting settled for labor — rest, breathe!

THE SOUTH

mid-day

summer

support

structure

sustenance

growth

expansion

maintenance

tending 

good work (and the satisfaction of)

greater community

good play (and the pleasure of)

rhythm

timing

beauty

heat

alchemy

fire

the heart

deer, wolf, butterfly (& caterpillar), hummingbird (pierces the heart),

As it relates to birth: active labor, rhythmic contractions, heat — breathe, find and ride the rhythm, go within, drop out of the mind and into the heart, trust your animal body implicitly.

THE WEST

THE WEST

sunset

autumn

the harvest (receiving the fruits of your labor)

compost

winnowing, weighing, discerning (separating the wheat from the chaff)

taking stock/ inventory, gratitude

maturity

wisdom

release

surrender

trust (and the peace that comes with trust)

the dreamtime, dreaming

the ancestors

exporation (exhale)

decay

death and dying

harmony

water

the emotions

snake (shedding skin), owl, vulture, condor, frog, butterfly (transformation)

As it relates to birth: Transition phase, surrender to the intensity of close contractions. Rest and be thankful if contractions subside for a while before the urge to push (not my experience but I hear it happens). If/when you hit the “I give up, can’t go on, I can’t do this” point, try to remember you don’t have to do it, let spirit do it for you & call on the Spirit of the North for power and strength (or have your partner do this if they’re open).

THE NORTH

midnight

winter

the void

the unlimited field of possibility

the seed

the source

returning to source

the womb

The place of pure potential

the place of power

contraction (as in going within)

strength

perseverance

determination

will

courage

discipline

taking full responsibility

integration

intimate community

earth, stones, bones, antlers, teeth

the body

bear, buffalo, crocodile, horse,

As it relates to birth: "Second Stage" of labor, pushing phase, the urge to bear down, pushing, delivery! (Then the East starts again! :)  
Note: you will be delivering your placenta a bit after bonding with baby, contractions will begin again, it’ll be a very mini repeat of the
same pattern.