Birthing Me

Rethinking, regenerating and choosing unconditional self-love.

When my first daughter decided to come to this world nine years ago, it took me a total of 35 hours to give birth. I thought I was dying. The pain was too much. Now, I know that it was not too much, not compared to what I was transforming into: a mother with unconditional love. Since then, I benchmark any major difficulty I face to that process.

The last few months have been a roller coaster. In every possible way.

Last March, as a speaker and leadership trainer, I lost most of my planned annual income in a couple of weeks due to cancellations. More than money, my heart was aching. I could not travel to Istanbul because my residency card appointment was on hold and my daughters could not fly to Ibiza. I haven’t been able to hug and kiss my daughters for five months. 

Things got heavier when I learned that my aunt had passed away, without a funeral. I had to say goodbye to a photo of her tomb. Then I got the news of a dear friend who had committed suicide. 

I had to face my fears, insecurities and anger against all the unfairness with guilt and shame.

I lost myself… Or my sense of who I used to be.

And like a person drowning in the sea, I made a decision: I was not going to panic, and I surrendered. Life lifts up ones who stop fighting.

Together with my life and business partner Rudy de Waele, we invested the last of our money into accelerating progress on our digital learning platform: Conscious Learning Tribe. We had started building it last year, as a side job, but we decided to give it our full focus, alongside new concepts like The UnConference – our online events. And soon Yuri van Geest joined us as a co-founder, and we became even stronger with our growing Conscious Learning Tribe, with all amazing people including our editor Michael Lane, spiritual guide Primavera Salva and our media partner OpenLab.

We knew that we were the ones who could bring hope and remind our communities of love. Our honesty, boldness and love of service have brought us so many inspirational global influencers and opportunities. The moment we jumped off the cliff, our wings opened, they not only let us fly, but also inspired our network of good souls. 

In order to decrease our dependence on commercial food systems, we started drinking water from our well and growing our own food in the farm next to our house. This experience with the soil, the seeds, and how nature collaborates with life transformed how I see food, myself and what conscious businesses can look like.

I am launching “5D Conscious Business Model Design” as a learning program to promote a feminine leadership style, with respect to human values, nature and rights of future generations.

This past three months, Rudy and I have been intermittently fasting. As a vegan, I was already eating plant-based food but the new diet removes all processed food and carbs like bread. I am meditating, breathing, exercising and taking cold showers every day. I am regenerating. 

We also finished an emotional and spiritual healing process called shadow illumination, cutting the cord of intergenerational trauma heritage. Now I understand why I was separated from my daughters: to do the work. My inner work.

Soon my daughters will be living with me in Ibiza. I am so ready and we are working on a new school format with our community in Ibiza which helped us bonded stronger than ever. Children First World is finally becoming my reality.

And hereby I declare, for the first time in my life of almost four decades, I know what it means to love myself, unconditionally. I have glimpses of it and they are worth eternity to me. I now know that time is an illusion. There is only now. We can choose love now, for all of our ancestors and future generations, right here, right now by loving ourselves.

Be prepared for the challenges to continue, until we – as humanity -understand we are worthy of love. When you feel like there is no hope, only darkness, listen to your heart and remember:

“It is only you, and you only who can choose to see this darkness not as the darkness of the tomb – but of the womb.”

Let’s breathe and surrender through the pain of this era to birth a new future.

If my story resonated with you, please share your questions and comments. I would love to hear from you.

With love & joy,



Comments (3)

Dear Canay,

Thank you for sharing your heart by means of this beautiful and vulnerable story…I believe it is the most coureagous thing a person can do.
Like you, I believe that our greatest challenges in life allow us to grow…if we are ready to see that and embrace the uncertainty we can return to our true selves❤️

I very much believe that our systems will only change when we as individuals change first, and there is much hope and coureagous required to lead the way. I wish you much love and strength in continuing your important work and if I can contribute in any way please let me know.

Kind regards and thank you again,

Hello Madeleen, thank you for your message. It becomes a beautiful birthing, when we put our loving intentions, stories out there together, listen, and ¨just be¨there for each other. I’d love to hear your story and collaborate! You can reach me:

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