Search

Flatbush Doulas

Where Families Grow Strong

Tag

black maternal mortality

The Best Holiday Gift

“It is possible to become discouraged about the injustice we see everywhere. But God did not promise us that the world would be humane and just. He gives us the gift of life and allows us to choose the way we will use our limited time on earth. It is an awesome opportunity.” -Cesar Chavez

Everywhere we look, the statistics and numbers for Black families are dismal.
During the holiday season, many of us look for ways to bring joy and mirth into our lives.

At a time when Black people enjoy so much “freedom” compared to our enslaved ancestors, we are dying in childbirth many times more than they did. No one seems to know the solution, though we know that racism is the problem.

Black babies die within their first year of life at a higher rate than White babies.

Black mothers die in childbirth at many times higher rates than their White counterparts.

Policies are created.

Rallies are held.

Funerals are attended.

Tears are shed.

Families are torn apart by the loss of hope, the loss of life, the loss of vitality and enormous grief.

Rinse, repeat.

Rinse, repeat.

Our ancestors left birth & postpartum wisdom on record.

This ancestral science has kept us alive until this day.

Flatbush Doulas has launched a training academy called House of Shiphrah & Puah, named after the Biblical midwives who saved the Nation of Israel by saving the male children alive.

The premiere course offering is a childbirth education class for Black families called Birth & Postpartum, For Us By Us.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER!

Foods, rituals, & medical care models are explained and discussed, from preconception to postpartum. The course features live video sessions & online assignments/discussions.

Best of all, you are trained in the tools to become a historian of your own family birth wisdom!

This year, give yourself or someone else the best gift ever: tools and instruction in taking back the empowering and essential knowledge of how to prepare for and execute healthy conception, childbirth, and postpartum.

You will become part of an ancient line of freedom fighters, who used their limited time on earth to benefit generations to come.

See you in class!

REGISTER NOW

-Yael B. Yisrael, Founder & Lead Instructor

House of Shiphrah & Puah

Tune in Tonight for the Series Premiere of “Shiphrah and Puah Stories”

by Yael B. Yisrael, Flatbush Doulas Owner

Click here to tune in tonight, @9PM EST for the series premiere of “Shiphrah and Puah Stories”!

“Shiphrah & Puah Stories” celebrates Caribbean midwives and matriarchs, and documents the nutrition, rituals, and pampering practices that have kept Black women safe during pregnancy, childbirth, and throughout the postpartum period.

“Shiphrah & Puah Stories” is a call for us to save ourselves, despite dismal statistics for maternal and infant mortality rates among Black women and babies in America.

New Series Documents the Lifesaving Birth Wisdom and Traditions of Caribbean Midwives and Matriarchs

by Yael B. Yisrael, Owner of Flatbush Doulas

As the daughter of a retired Labor & Delivery nurse, childbirth has always been a part of my life. I remember listening to my mother’s stories of the joys, pains, and politics of giving birth in New York City. Her work as an RN in Spanish Harlem, was an intriguing topic of many family conversations. The real jewel of growing up as the child of an L&D nurse, was that my mother’s view of childbirth wasn’t limited to what she saw at work each day.

A culture of normalcy surrounded birth in the island on which she was born.

This cultural outlook tempered the medical side of her practice, with the strong belief that: 1) Women are capable, and 2) What they need most during labor and birth is care, support, respect, and more care.

“Shiphrah & Puah Stories” is a series that celebrates the contributions of Caribbean midwives and matriarchs, while documenting the nutrition, rituals, and pampering practices that have kept Black women safe during pregnancy, childbirth, and during the postpartum period.

At a time when maternal and infant mortality rates among Black women and babies in America are unconscionably high, “Shiphrah & Puah Stories” is a call for us to save ourselves.

The goal of this series is to highlight the continuum of African birthing wisdom preserved from ancient times until now, in the tradition of the Hebrew midwives who saved the nation of Yisrael through their wisdom and commitment.

The first episode, featuring part one of my interview with elder midwife Emelda Cox, will air tonight Thursday February 21, 2019 at 9:00 PM EST. Please feel free to tune in by clicking this link.

It will take you to YouTube, where you can subscribe to the Flatbush Doulas channel and set a notification before airtime. You can also request more information on this series, as well as the products & services provided by Flatbuish Doulas, by contacting us directly.

Like Flatbush Doulas on FaceBook, follow us on Instagram, and subscribe to our YouTube channel, for more exclusive content!!

Featured post

When Dr. Andrea Little Mason Speaks, You Should Listen!

This blog has been living in my body & soul since October 2017. It was then, shortly after my 43rd birthday, that I traveled to Kansas City, Missouri to attend the ProDoula Annual Conference, dubbed “Speak Your Truth”. Despite my reservations about going to Kansas City after the NAACP put out a travel warning for that area, I knew that I had to be there to hear my sister speak. We had never met in person, but our hours of conversation via telephone and FaceBook had forged a kinship bond, that pulled me to show up for what I knew to be a historical event.

I was not disappointed. In fact, that night I and nine other Black women were divinely appointed by “Dr. Doula”, as she is called. Not only did she summon us to the stage and cast words of affirmation and insight upon us, she did it in a room that was overwhelmingly filled with White women. Women who in every other arena would have been the center of attention, watched as Dr. Doula spoke life into us, and made us speak it into ourselves. I stood there crying, profoundly aware that we were being initiated. Dr. Little Mason wasn’t teaching me anything about myself, or giving me any traditions that I wasn’t already a part of. She was simply letting me know that she already knew who I was, that The Most High had sent her “on assignment”, and giving me the charge to be more of myself from that point forward.

This was no ordinary keynote speech. Dr. Doula embodied the role of African griot and historian, as she told of her experience as a woman of highly melanated skin in the circles of birthworkers, which are predominately populated by White women. She was “singing my life with her song” as she illustrated the microaggressions and inherent bias that Black women in America face at the hands of our “well-intentioned” White counterparts. But more than that, she put on a clinic on what it is to truly doula someone. Those White women in the room, who on any other night would have been able to jump in and save the day with their White savior complexes, were in no position to do so. At that moment all they could do was truly “hold space” for those of us who were being restored and acknowledged, as well as our ancestors who literally birthed this entire nation, or fed it at their breasts.

By the time that her presentation was over, I was forever changed. Her presentation was so interactive, and I was so clear of my mission, that for a moment everything made sense. Dr. Doula was illustrating how Black women’s contributions had been erased from the history of childbirth in America. She collected tiny Post-Its on which we all had written the contributions of Black women to childbirth in America. And at one point she started burning them. That was just too much for me to take, in my stirring moment of self-actualization. I screamed out, “No! Don’t do that!” Yet, she continued. I realized that the burning and destroying of our history could only be stopped by us.

I jumped onto the stage and blew out the flame, sending embers flying. Thankfully Dr. Doula is as quick with her reflexes as she is with her wit! She quickly patted them away, preventing any accidents, and stared at me with the stare that African women have stared from time immemorial, to get folks back in line with the quickness! I did no such thing. She had given me a charge and I was going to keep it. I proceeded to snatch the papers away and start reading them out loud, one by one. Soon, others joined me and read the contributions for everyone present to hear.

Today, ProDoula released a video documenting this phenomenal event. I invite you to listen to it, and be forever changed as I was. Remember, as in the Sankofa symbol from the Akan people of Ghana, the bird turning its neck around. . .it is not taboo to go back for what you have lost!

Bail Money & Black Maternal Mortality

What does bail money have to do with the black maternal mortality rate in the U.S.?

Check out Yael B. Yisrael, the owner of Flatbush Doulas, as she talks about these topics & more in this YouTube video

Startup Stock Photos

Please feel free to continue the conversation by commenting on this page and on the video YouTube. We want to hear from you!

Up ↑