tree of life feet

The Birth of Life

In Articles by Steve Mayeda1 Comment

By Steve Mayeda

“The Story of Pain & the Most Beautiful Woman in the World”

Life is the most beautiful thing.  

It is in front of us at all times.

Yet we don’t always see its beauty, we see its pain.  Life’s pain is real.  It is there touching us, transforming us and it doesn’t care how we feel about it.  It comes in all forms, and it is impossible to avoid.  Like any day today I felt pain.  I had many reasons to give up, be upset and resentful.  However, today life was different, I was looking through a different set of glasses.  A different story of life and pain had been told.  I got to experience it, or at least observe it in a different way.  It wasn’t that pain was my reason to resent, blame and justify anger and frustration it was that life is a beautiful experience.  Life can hurt, destroy and harm, but in the end it is all part of this beautiful transformation of expression and creation.  Pain goes away, it is when we hold on to it that we become an expresion of our fear rather than our beauty.  


The Beautiful Pain

2 days ago I saw the most beautiful thing that life could have showed me.  My beautiful partner in life, Maria giving natural birth to our son, Esteban Andrés Mayeda. She gave birth to him at a Central Texas Birth Center under the guide and supervision of amazing and wise midwives. It was the greatest experience of our lives. Life in action. Our lives in action. It cannot be put into words. I was humbled by it in every way. I was humbled to nature, to Maria and to our son.  


Alt TextShe was in labor for over 20 hours with zero drugs, no epidural only the wisdom of the midwives and her will and body’s natural instincts. As the night turned into morning it became more and more intense. I saw Maria go from being in a beautiful pain expecting our son, to an excruciating labor, to pain that was beyond anything I had ever seen. A pain that hits so deep at the core it challenged her in every way. A pain that makes you quit. A pain that is married to frustration, fatigue and trauma that does not stop. For 7 hours she was in this constant pain. No matter how hard she pushed, no matter how hard she tried, no matter what she put into it, nothing changed. Over the course of the night Esteban moved further and further down the birth canal. Millimeter by millimeter he moved.

During natural child birth as the baby is pushed down he goes back up in between contractions. It is a constant push and pull back between mother and baby. Imagine feeling the top of your baby’s head as you reach down on the push, then have it go back up as you relax. Imagine that for 4 hours, ever 30-90 seconds. Every contraction worse than anything you have ever felt.

It was one of the hardest things to see, your love scream out in pain, like you have never heard someone scream before. To see her try over and over again and be defeated by the pain, by nature and by life. Then she would gather her strength, get back and try again. After many hours it goes far beyond the point of hope an endurance, to desperation, and eventually to a fight for life. A fight for the greatest thing we are a part of right now. In all screaming, the violent aspects to birth and the frustration, there is the absolute definition of love. In fact without it love would have no meaning.

I remember seeing this for the first time on Maria’s face. We entered the birth center in love, but after hours and hours of grueling labor that love gets blinded by the pain. And when you see it return it is one of the most powerful expressions you can see. I could see it on her face when she reached down to feel the our son’s head through the sack of fluid that protected him on the cusp of entering the world. We were still many hours away from birth but it was that moment that brought us back to how beautiful the world was, and this experience. It was a look of pure joy. A look of pure love. No matter the pain, there was no other option. There wasn’t a choice, nature did not give it. But nature did give love. There was family, the wisdom of the midwives carrying her through like they had done for so many women before and the feeling of love of a mother for her son. Maria endured, was defeated by the pain and regained hope to press on, in 30 second intervals.


Maria and Esteban’s first embrace. 8-10 seconds after birth.

And in the end it was one of the greatest moments I have ever witnessed. Nature at work, our lives and our son’s life happening all at once. His head eventually came into this world and his body followed. The midwife telling me, “hand him up to his mother”! 

I grabbed my son and pushed him to Maria. It was then that you saw the beauty of life all make sense. It was the most beautiful I had ever heard her, seen her and felt her.

We go through pain and beauty throughout our lives. Sometimes we see it and sometimes we don’t. It is easy to get caught up in the pain. Sometimes you have to give up. Sometimes it is too much you need some help. And sometimes it defines and reshapes you, changing you forever. What you do with your pain is what gives you your life. It is what gives you your joy. If you handle it wrong it gives you your confusion and frustration. Your life can become an expression of beauty and love or a harbor of resentments and blame.

Esteban 1 Day Old

As I saw the beautiful moment of a mother seeing her son for the first time, I wonder, what if there was love in all of our actions? Love behind everything we did, and a faith in that love that said, ‘everything is going to be alright’. I wonder if we could have faith in the nature of things – that no matter what was happening, this is a beautiful experience. The pain you feel, the trauma you experience and the horrors that found their ways in front of you were all part of this beautiful experience that is called life. I wonder what we could do with our pain, if we knew this? If we knew that life is beautiful, knew it within ourselves and had faith in that, we could express beauty.


Life is Beautiful 

Life is a beautiful thing. Once you stop fighting it, the mystery of its beauty finds itself in you. And for that moment, you realize your heart is pure, the world is your home. You realize that every conflict you ever had came from forgetting that.  Pain happens, but it goes away.  If we hold onto it, it keeps us from the beautiful breath of life.

That is what I got to witness a 2 days ago. A moment so powerful it reminded me that beauty is in all things in the simplest way. You just have to be able to see it, even when you have an excuse to give up.  

Today I am grateful for 

A Beautiful Life

An Amazing Woman

A Great Son 

Where is the beauty in your life?  It is always easy to see…


Steve Mayeda

Founder of TSL


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Steve MayedaThe Birth of Life


  1. Jim

    Wow. Esteban is beautiful. Maria is beautiful. You are beautiful. Just wow.

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