Friday Four: Congresswoman Alma Adams presents, The State of Black Maternal Health during COVID-19

It was a good night to be in! LOADS of valuable information was shared about saving black pregnant moms. I had the honor of sharing information about Momsrisng and how effective doulas can be during this intense time.

But first things first, please go sign up for updates and action posts from Momsrising.org! I can’t tell you how much I love that organization! Then go sign up for updates for Representative Dr. Alma Adams office. She ‘s like the mom I would want if I didn’t have the wonderful one given to me! SERIOUSLY. Now…….. back to the symposium. It was GREAT! I learned so much. North Carolina and the United States as a whole gotta do better for our black pregnant moms. Rep Adams office did and amazing job putting together a powerhouse of industry and community advocates that shed so much light on these disparities and vile practices.

Representative Alma Adams 5th Annual Women’s Symposium took place at 6:00 PM Thursday, April 16. via Zoom: click image to watch. I’m in there some where.

She and her staff was joined by other Black Maternal Health Caucus Co-Chair, Congresswoman Lauren Underwood, as well as Senators Kamala Harris and Cory Booker. I kid you not! Cory Booker even complimented me on my Momsrising t-shirt that I had on! #HowSway right? I truly gained nuggets of value from every panelist and look forward to teaming back up with them in the future if the opportunity arises. But right now, I wanted to offer four ways a doula can help a pregnant mom during COVID-19.

Since many people still don’t know what a doula is, I will explain it. A doula is an unmedically trained birth worker. We exist to make a pregnancy smooth and easy for everyone involved. We provide a wide range of supplemental services before, during and after labor. We are there from preconception to post delivery to answer questions, make connections, help moms find her own voice, and provide customized services that make moms life empowered. If our practice was on a flow chart, It would be right under midwives. Only because we work outside of the labor and delivery room, not legally covered to deliver babies in most states, and in most states, our fees are covered privately.

But most doulas know it’s time to call the dr. when the baby is measuring too small for your pregnacy, (smaller fetal height), too much cramping, bleeding, severe back pain, funky- bloody discharge, little fetal movement in late pregnancy, and possible ongoing fever just to name a few alarms.

To learn more about my birthing services, please click here. The uncertainties of the Coronavirus automatically puts pregnant moms in a high risk category. Which is understandable. Most would also understand how frustrating it could be as well. And that’s my friend where your doula could be a God send for you! Here’s four ways a doula can help RIGHT NOW:

1. Via Video Call – Your Personal Workout Buddy.

A. Your doula can help your prepare your body for delivery. The moves she share will help you get pregant, stay pregnant, ease delivery and assist in getting your body back in shape after delivery.

B. Counseling. Most doulas are moms. Not all are moms or women, but most are. They understand how you are feeling. Even if it’s something she isn’t familiar with she has a listening ear to offer solutions and comfort.

C. How – To’s – Get the best information for your birt of choice! What to putin your diaper bag, Practice how to communicate with the hospital staff, Learn how to wrap your hair,/& belly, how to pick out car seats, and more.

D. Spiritual Health- DISCLOSURE – not all doulas rely on the ways of their African ancestors as a resources, but I do. I sing, I touch, I hmm, and truly connect with my moms to ensure she is confident in her new role as much as possible.

2. Via Phone. – A Caring and Resourceful Voice

2A. Affirmations. You can get affirmation read to you to help start your day or help you get through it.

2B. Verbal Check Ins – You’re quarantined. Your mate will be in your face. You have zero desire to get dressed or much less brush your teeth. Neither do I . Use the magic of voice. Your doula can sense how you’re doing with particular questions and cues. If needed she can make suggestions and referrals to assist you remotely.

3. Via Email/Text- Get It In Writing.

3A.Your doula can send you reminders to workout, help complete your birth plan, remind you to call your boss for paid leave*, assist you in order your exercise ball, etc.

4. Via USPS, General Delivery – Rain, Shine, Sleet or Snow……. it’s Coming To The Do’ (door)!

4A. Let’s all admit it. There’s something exciting about getting mail. Many doulas create/ & sell birthing supplies like bath salts , aroma therapy, herbal blends for lactation and more.

4B. She can have a healthy, non – contact, locally sourced meal delivered to your front door.

As you can see, a doula is loaded with resourcefulness. Some more than others. The key is to ask questions, and be flexible. She wants to help. She’s certified to help and because everyone is quarantined….she’s available to help! Shucks, I’m available- Call me!

P.S.

Protect Our Election and Postal Workers- Click here please!

Tell Governor Roy Cooper: We need mass release NOW. Our community is counting on you to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Being safe at home has never been more important. Unfortunately, fear— fear for our health and for our families— has motivated the panic buying of firearms, particularly by first-time gun owners.[1][2] But fear-purchasing firearms isn’t a way to safety. In fact, research shows the opposite: Bringing a gun into a home makes the home less safe, and this is particularly true in the current moment when domestic violence is increasing.[3][4][5]

Sign on to our letter to governors, urging them to address panic gun buying and reduce the risk of gun violence as part of their efforts to secure everyone’s health and safety in the face of pandemic (scroll down to see the entire message that we’re sending to governors). *When you click, you’ll automatically sign on if we already have your information. 

Friday Four: Black Maternal Health Week


Black women are up to four times more likely to die than white women from pregnancy-related causes, including stillbirths, premature births, lower infant birth-weight, and miscarriages. And that’s why I’m celebrating with many other organizations, legislators, moms, and dads for the second Black Maternal Health Week! Our goal is to improve african american mothers’ reproductive justice, and birth justice frameworks. As a holistic doula, and mom of nine, I couldn’t be any more grateful for these efforts!

Doing a quick search online, I’ve seen a lot of federal and local support. I was pleasantly surprised to see our very own congresswoman Alma Adams putting in ground breaking work.
BLACK MATERNAL HEALTH ADVOCATES RESPOND TO RESOLUTION INTRODUCED TODAY BY CONGRESSWOMAN ALMA ADAMS OFFICIALLY DECLARING APRIL 11-17 AS “BLACK MATERNAL HEALTH WEEK”


On April 9, freshman Congresswoman Lauren Underwood (right) joined Rep. Alma Adams and co-launched the first first-ever Black Maternal Health Caucus

“It’s unconscionable that in United States, one of the world’s wealthiest countries, we are seeing the rates of illness and death during pregnancy continue to skyrocket. For Black women, the statistics surrounding maternal mortality and morbidity are especially alarming,” said Black Mamas Matter Alliance Co-Directors Elizabeth Dawes Gay and Angela Doyinsola Aina. “Two days after BMMA joined Reps. Alma Adams and Lauren Underwood in launching the first Black Maternal Health Caucus to address this urgent crisis, we’re excited to see Senator Harris and Rep. Adams introduce a resolution officially recognizing April 11-17 as “Black Maternal Health Week” — a nationwide effort to amplify the voices, leadership and scholarship of Black women working to improve maternal health, rights and justice for Black mamas. Now it’s time for other lawmakers to follow suit by enacting policies and legislation at the state and federal levels that empower and support Black women before, during and after pregnancy.” – Black Mammas Matter Alliance

Although there is a lot of work to be done, we have gained strives by highlighting the birth stories from stars like Serena Williams and Beyoncé — Williams, 37, underwent an emergency c-section and endured a a pulmonary embolism and Beyoncé, 37, suffered from preeclampsia and also had an emergency c-section. Truth is, there are more blacks moms out here suffering than these two, and it’s great to see so many public figures, organizations and legislatures getting on board.


The health and well being of women before, during, & after pregnancy demands our undivided attention now. Proud to be a Founding Member of the Black Maternal Health Caucus as we celebrate – Rep A. Pressley
Image result for ayanna pressley

Ayanna Soyini Pressley is an American politician who is the member of the United States House of Representatives from Massachusetts’s 7th congressional distric

I believe everybody should be able to get equitable health care. – Kelle Pressley

So as you can see, awareness is growing. For those who do not have a reliable, knowledgeable community, or family support, we doulas provide this information and support for you. Here in Charlotte, I will continue doing my part. It takes a village. I hope you will contribute to your village by sharing this information with someone who needs it.

Here’s what I found online. Sunday April 14th Death By Delivery -Brought to you by
by Rock Hill Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Wednesday the 17th Birthing POC’s Webinar Brought to you by yours truly, Jabela the doula.
I will be sharing very candid snippets of my nine births, why I wanted to be a doula and work in community activism. I will also have other providers of color throughout the day covering everything from why we are needed, how we work in your birthing team, to exercises for pregnant moms. Write down a few of your own questions and join in! My practice is privately funded but I often discount or donate many hours to low income moms both online and locally. (Well, until I get my medical provider number from Medicaid) Right now many of my white clients sustain my birthing business. They confidently buy most of my lactation teas, salves, etc and hire any referrals offered to them. They are usually quicker follow my diet plans to the letter. My mothers of color come to me with built in fear and uncertainty. Affordability, necessity and relativity are their biggest reservations at first. Once we are past those hurdles, I see how much they appreciate my presence as a provider that looks like them. Much of what they feel I can understand to a certain degree, because I speak their language, and understand things that another provider might not. I’m their voice, a powerful link to local resources and favorite sister. Getting past everyday stress, connecting her to essential resources and access to proper care is detrimental. My moms enjoy soothing back massages, answering “odd” questions, troubleshooting pregnancy woes, birth plan creation, belly casting, hip pushing between contractions, help with new baby latch on, make a fresh post delivery recovery smoothie right after birth,cooking a delicious hot meal once home, officiate her welcome to the world celebration, come back by your home for a few hours for her to get uninterrupted rest, all of which, means so much more to my moms of color.

No doubt, it’s hard to change practices that have been done a certain way for many years. But it can be done. Join in, get out of your silo and encourage birth workers of color and our work, inclusively doulas and midwives. Support the efforts of organizations like Momsrising.org and Black Mammas Alliance, because BLACK MOMS NEED DOULAS.

The Black maternal health crisis deserves more media attention. If you have maternity pictures you would like to share, please drop them on my facebook or Instagram page. Find me @qcsupermom EVERYWHERE!
I’m changing birth one birth at a time. Join me!

Here’s Four Additional Things I Offer In My Holistic Doula Service: 1. Officiate Welcome To The World Ceremony.

2.Live Workouts with Online Mommies

3. Fresh,Organic post Delivery Smoothies

4. Free Childwatch during Labor & Delivery until discharge.