...'OF COURSE RIGHTS IN BIRTH TRANSCEND (motherhood) TRIBE...'
Thank you, Mars Lord, Abuela Doula!
Happy Tuesday, Everyone. Hope you're all well and enjoying the longer, brighter days (if chillier).
So, I had a weekend pass last weekend, and headed up to Pregnant Then Screwed Live at the Conway Hall on Saturday. What a friggin' day THAT was.
I first became aware of the movement because, well frankly I could not get *arrested* in my old career after I'd taken a 2yr maternity leave. And I had not been idle in that two years! Apart from learning a whole new vocabulary, a new set of skills, developed planning and negotiation skills, overcome some pretty weighty personal hurdles, I had also taken on freelance jobs, re-trained, set up my own business, and was working part time. Did this count for anything? Nope. Zip. Nada. Zilch. It felt utterly depressing, kicked my self-esteem in the teeth and meant I was trapped in the childcare-income-mental health triangulation. So I had a pretty personal motivation to head up there.
The second reason to go was THIS panel discussion, The Politics of Birth. I find it so utterly depressing that we're trapped in a narrative about which is the 'best' way to birth/feed/sleep, when this simply diverts women from the REAL issues at play. Simply, that women's rights in pregnancy and birth are routinely ignored and belittled in a way we would NOT accept in any other area of our lives. While everyone is getting hot under the collar about Harry Kane's wife and the relative merits of Entonox vs. epidural, we are diverted from the very real issues around women and babies in poverty, the shocking statistics around maternal and infant mortality for black and ethnic minority women, the withdrawal of funding the maternity and EYFS services, the hoops women have to jump through to attain the funding they have every right to for childcare, the fact that women who chose to be primary carer for their children are ghettoised and financially penalised, the rise in perinatal mental health issues and the paucity of content and availability in antenatal education for women (starting when we are young.....).
<gets off soapbox>
Anyway. It was a FANTASTIC day. The atmosphere of truth, positivity and support was second to none. Footage of the day is available on YouTube if you'd like to take a look-see, I'll post a link in the comments.
Any Qs about this, or about returning to work, or about choosing to be primary carer, or your rights in birth, or any of the that above, just email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Phew! An epic one from me this morning! Enjoy the rest of your Tuesday, Tigers xxx