Photo Credit: Karyl-Lyn Sanderson
“There are a lot of traditional birthing customs that were lost throughout the years. Not only did we lose a part of our culture during slavery, but we lost a lot when our foremothers, grandmothers, and our great grandmothers started having their babies in the hospital. The mother wit that would normally be passed down discontinued because our grandmothers, forced with spinal taps or twilight, no longer had a story to tell.” —Iya Sarahn Henderson, Community Midwife
In March of 2020, as the brutality of two pandemics, COVID-19 and police violence, were devastating Black communities across America, I thought about how midwifery models of care offer deep mother wit and wisdom to answer the problems facing society.
It occurred to me that if everyone had the opportunity to sit at the feet of those who have dedicated their lives to “catchin’ babies,” how profoundly and beautifully we could begin healing this world.