Maribeth Wilder Doerr

Shades of Healing ~ Creating a Wholehearted Life

Can You Help Me Bring Yoga to Women Pregnant After Pregnancy/Infant Loss?

In 2014, I had a successful GoFundMe campaign to complete Baby Loss Doula Training.  Thank you all so much for helping me achieve that dream.  In 2015, I completed the requirements and am a certified baby loss doula.  I help women and families in my community as well as across the country (and even one in Australia!).  I do this work as a volunteer, and as a woman who went through labor knowing my baby would be born dead (and knowing after delivery that my second son would die as well), I understand the need for women to have someone help them make plans for their birth when they know their baby will not survive.  This work is truly a labor of love.  These babies are wanted and cherished and these few moments (or days) after birth is the only chance their parents have to parent them.  I help them decide how they want to do exactly that.  You helped me achieve a dream come true!  Thank you thank you thank you!

On that first GoFundMe campaign, I had a wish list that included Prenatal Yoga Teacher training.  I am a registered yoga teacher (RYT) and now it’s time for me to take the next step in helping women who experience pregnancy/infant loss and to full fill that first campaign.  Pregnancy after loss is an incredibly emotional roller coaster.  Yoga helps with anxiety and stress; yoga for women who are pregnant again after pregnancy loss not only helps with grief but also with the fear that goes with another pregnancy.  It also helps with bonding with the new little one while holding space for the love for the baby that died.

I want to bring yoga to these women and I pray and hope you’ll help me.  My goals are to teach locally, to offer private lessons both locally and via skype which includes grief coaching and to make yoga videos for women who are not local or wish to learn over the internet.  I have yet to find anyone who is serving families in this way.  It’s needed – and badly!

I need your help to fund my training.  And good news!  Since my first GoFundMe where I thought I’d have to travel to San Francisco, there is now a prenatal yoga teacher training in my area (where I completed my 200 hour yoga teacher training) beginning in January 2017, provided there are enough signups at the training studio.  I need $1370 by January 1, 2017.  The additional amount to $1500 is for the fees that GoFundMe and WePay charge for this fundraiser (7.9% plus .30 per donation).  Can you help?

My wish list items include:  hoping to be certified in chair yoga and gentle yoga so that I can teach seniors at my church.  I am a Registered and Certified Yoga Teacher.  It would be helpful to be certified in chair yoga ($695) and gentle yoga for seniors ($495).  I can teach these now; however I am not certified and in teaching seniors, certification is extremely helpful and valuable.

I am in the process of creating my own brand of Yoga for Grief and I hope to debut that in Summer 2017.  In the meantime, I humbly ask you to help me help women grieving a pregnancy loss and/or trying to conceive/are pregnant again after a loss(es).  Getting back in touch with your body after such a loss is so important and vital.  Yoga can do this; someone trained in pregnancy loss support AND yoga can help these women move forward with less anxiety which always is better for baby!  Help me be that person.

To donate, click here.  And thank you for sharing this information with your friends and family.

From my heart to yours,



Leave a comment »

2015 Recap – Completion (and Celebration)

2015 was full of changes for me.  I started the year working full-time at Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd in Reno.  I was intending to only work full-time until another office person was hired and then my hours would go back to part-time.  When they offered me a full-time job, I said yes with a full heart.  It’s been a blessing in so many ways.  It’s also been a challenge to be up and out of the house early in the morning and being committed to a 9-5 gig.  Adjustments have been made and I get to work with the most amazing people!  It’s all been totally unexpected and a rather nice surprise at that!

2015 was also a year of completion (and I LOVE the sound of that!).  I finished Yoga Teacher Training and was certified in January after a 14 month process of classes, study, practice, teaching (and filming myself teach – YIKES!), and getting to know myself in the process.  I had a couple of injuries (both unrelated to yoga) that I had to work around which is one of the blessings of yoga – meeting yourself where you’re at in that moment of time.  This training helped me develop kindness for my body, something that was sorely lacking in my life!  In the fall, I registered with the Yoga Alliance and am now a Registered Yoga Teacher.  Never thought I would do this at age in my mid-50’s!  yogacertification

What am I doing with this?  Not much  . . . YET!  I have workshop ideas and I do want to teach soon.  Stay tuned for details on Beacon of Light Yoga along with my own personal brand of yoga for grief.  It’s all in process and I’m loving the journey.

Another completion after nearly 18 months of training and study . . . I’m a certified Baby Loss Doula.  This means I can be with laboring women who know their baby will be stillborn or die shortly after birth.  I can also help women who know ahead of time that their baby will not live long; I help them create birth plans and show them ways to parent their baby with the short time they have.  And of course, it also involves working with them through their bereavement process (something I’ve been doing since 1988!).  My thanks to those of you who helped me fund the doula workshop I needed to attend as part of this process.  I couldn’t have done it without you!BLDcertification

In November 2014, I finished Hospice Volunteer training at my local hospital, and I was assigned a few patients in 2015.  Such amazing work!  These families are precious, and my heart is overflowing with gratitude each time I make a visit.

It feels so good to have these big trainings done and I’ve been basking in more time than I’ve had for the last 18 months.  So what’s up for 2016?  I’ll have time this year to take on a few coaching clients again (holler if you’re interested!).  I’ll be practicing yoga and teaching at some point this year.  I also truly hope to take prenatal yoga teacher training in 2016 so that I can teach yoga to mamas pregnant again after a loss.  I’m looking at funding resources for this so holler if you know of anything!  Subsequent pregnancies are such a roller coaster and yoga can definitely help with that (and even help with bonding to that special rainbow baby).  I will also be writing more too so I hope you’ll pop by now and then!  Say hello!

Blessings to you and yours in 2016.  There are so many heartbreaking things happening in our world right now.  Please reach out and share your joy and kindness whenever you can.  The world NEEDS you!  My love and gratitude to you all.



An Invitation to Celebrate

Life is full of surprises. Sometimes those surprises bring us to our knees, and we wonder how we’ll ever recover. Later on, (whether it’s weeks or many years later) you’ll probably find yourself shaking your head at the memories, proud that you survived. Somewhere along the way, you rediscovered the natural resilience you were born with and found a way; it’s what we all do eventually.

Today, I invite you think about what something difficult in your life and how you’ve learned from it, or found something positive in it, or how you’ve DONE something positive because of it. And I invite you to celebrate it, today, in the midst of the holidays/holidaze/hellidays.

Why today? In 1982, my beautiful son, Mark Adam Pruett, was born. He died 5 1/2 days later. I CELEBRATE his life every December 11, and I invite all of you to celebrate with me by remembering something difficult in your life that you turned into something positive in some way. It’s 6 degrees F as I write this, and thinking of Mark and his great big life makes me feel warm and radiant. Mark has been my greatest gift. I am so grateful I got to be him mom. He taught me more about life and myself in 5 1/2 days than anyone else ever could. I am a better person and definitely a better mother than I otherwise would have been. I grieve his death but I CELEBRATE his life. His loss was a gut wrenching experience that began a chain of more loss in my life. I didn’t think I would survive; I almost didn’t . . . but I did. I rediscovered my natural resilience and I moved forward while always keeping him in my heart; I chose AND and I continue to do so every day, even when it’s painful.

So, what’s your story? I’d love to hear your reversals, rediscoveries, and reinventions. Here’s a toast to Mark Adam; I hope you’ll please celebrate with me today.

Mark Adam Pruett 1st Picture - December 11, 1982

Mark Adam Pruett
1st Picture – December 11, 1982

1 Comment »

Looking for Beauty

December has always been a difficult month for me.  I talk about it a bit in this video.  This year, we have the added shock and horror of the Sandy Hook Elementary shootings.  With so much ugliness and sorrow, it’s very easy to forget there IS, there truly is, beauty in this world.

Because I’ve been sucked up into a pity party pit lately because of my health (and yada yada yada), I went on a mission to find ways to feed my soul beyond my usual morning meditation and afternoon yoga.   Music tends to work wonders so blasting the tunes while I’ve been painting and scraping in my future ZenRoom helps a lot.  But I really needed some visual beauty – and then I found this:

If you actually watched that (and listened), you might have a new view of “Oh my God!”  Beautiful, isn’t it?  Worthy of a deep healing sigh . . .  If you skipped over the video, give yourself a 9+ minute gift and enjoy it.  I KNOW you have 9 minutes to do it and it’s worth it, trust me.

From my heart to yours, blessings this holiday season.   And if you have an extra minute, tell me where you find the beauty in this challenging world.

Leave a comment »

Healing Gratitude – It’s Easier than You Think

Definition of gratitude from
Noun:  the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful.

Definition of grateful from
Adjective:  warmly or deeply appreciative of kindness or benefits received; thankful

In the United States, November is the month of Thanksgiving, a time to celebrate our abundance (usually in the form of eating too much).  Many of us don’t even think about it the other 364.25 days of the year.  So, since it’s the season of thankfulness, let’s take a few minutes to consider how gratitude merits more consideration than just one meal or one day per year.

If we’re honest with ourselves, it’s easy to take things for granted. So often life gets in the way and it hampers our ability to see all our blessings, especially the smaller ones.  Research proves, however, that gratitude can shift your focus in powerful healing ways.  Thinking about the blessings in your life (the glass being half full) shifts your focus away from what you don’t have, and how many of us are so consumed and worried about what we don’t have?!  We don’t have enough . . . (fill in the blank).

I don’t have enough money . . . I don’t have enough love . . .  I don’t have enough friends . . . I don’t have enough time . . . I don’t have enough shoes . . . I don’t have enough tv channels . . . I don’t have enough nail polish . . . I don’t have enough . . .

That voice telling you that you don’t have enough can be rather insidious!  Let’s give that voice a rest.  Let’s shift our perspective a bit.  When you think about what you DO have, you stay in the present moment.  Robert Emmons, Ph.D. is a positive psychologist and the author of Thanks!  How the new science of gratitude can make you happier.  He explains how important and even liberating staying in the present moment is: “By appreciating the gifts of the moment, gratitude frees us from past regrets and future anxieties.  By cultivating gratefulness, we are freed from envy over what we don’t have or who we are not.  It doesn’t make life perfect, but with gratitude comes the realization that right now, in this moment, we have enough, we are enough.”

Read that quote again and let it sink in.  Doesn’t that feel good?  Dr. Emmons’ research shows that people who cultivate gratitude are 25% happier than those who don’t.  That may not sound like much but who doesn’t want to be 25% happier?!  Happier people are healthier people.  Happier people are resilient people.  Resilient people tend to experience less depression and stay physically healthier.

We’ve all heard how stress can ruin health.  I’m the poster child for how stress can wreak havoc on your body!  Practicing gratitude is one of the best stress busters.  Remember that 25% happier stat?

Cultivating and practicing gratitude isn’t difficult.  Most gratitude experts recommend keeping a gratitude journal.  Since I’ve been keeping a gratitude journal consistently, I’ve noticed the changes in my attitude and as cheesy as it sounds, in my heart.  Every night when I go to bed, I write down five things I’m grateful for that day.  Sometimes, they’re big things but most often they’re small things such as . . . My heater is working tonight when it’s so cold outside.  Or . . . I’m grateful my husband cooked dinner.  I’ve even written, “I’m glad this day is finally over so I can start fresh tomorrow.”  When I’m feeling especially blue and thinking I have nothing to be grateful for, I grab my journal and thumb through it, reading all the things I’ve been grateful for.  Even during my darkest days (I’ve had a lot of them in the last year), I manage to find something, however small, to express my thanks for in my little gratitude journal.  Some days, it might take me 15 minutes to think of five things to write down but I always get there.  I’ve even mentioned the color of a rose in my front yard that I love!  It doesn’t HAVE to be a big thing.  Being grateful for the little things is a perfect way not to take anything for granted.

No matter what life has tossed out at you this last year, a little thought will uncover something, someone, or someplace to be thankful for. Cultivating gratitude is one way of noticing everything.  Beauty and joy becomes more vivid, and as this gladness starts to grow in your heart, you’ll start to notice the healing (yes, healing!) that gratitude brings.

Start to cultivate your gratitude attitude during this season of Thanksgiving.  It’s a great way to plant that seed and keep it growing through the holiday season and on into the new year.  Let go of the lack mentality; your glass really is half full.

Recommended Reading: