I’m writing a quick blog out of the gratitude in my heart for all of the amazing things that have happened recently in Knoxville for birth and options involving pregnancy and birth. I say recently because I started professionally being a doula and childbirth educator in 2000 — and things were very different then. There were a handful of amazing doulas, some childbirth educators, Lisa Coomer, CPM, and of course the Lisa Ross Birth and Women’s Center. We were here, but sometimes our time and resources were limited.
Now in Knoxville and East TN we have a lot more doulas and childbirth educators! There are placenta encapsulation services offered by East TN Placenta Medicine. There is a re-opening of Cutie Tooties Cloth Diaper store this weekend — and the owner, Emelie, is opening up her classroom to many birth professionals. Some of the offerings are regular Breastfeeding and Newborn Care Classes, Meet the Doula events, Comfort Measures Classes, a Breastfeeding Circle with regular meetings… just so many events so that any mother and family in the area can explore their options. Carry Me Close is a business by a mom and midwifery student — she offers hand made baby-wearing carriers and custom makes them and meets with you to show you how to wear them. Another mama sews cloth sanitary pads and much more. ICAN of Knoxville and Knoxville Birth Network are fairly recent (in the last 2 years) but more people are becoming aware of the regular meetings and support offered through these networks and local volunteers.
Some people have made remarks about how there is more “competition” for doulas. I do not ever feel that way — years ago if my schedule was too full or I was not available for a birth due to travel, it truly hurt me to turn someone down, and I worried about those who were not aware of the then available resources. Now I firmly believe that any woman who wants a doula has not only the option of having one, but finding the very best fit for her and her family. Now there are so many more options for classes! Today’s schedule is hectic enough without having to worry about taking time off for classes, or missing the only one offered in a month, or before a due date. It’s nice for me, too — getting to network with birth professionals, help one another, provide and receive support and bounce ideas off of one another.
Grateful is how I would sum it up. Go get the pregnancy and birth experience you want and deserve!
p.s. I apologize for not putting links in to the great resources I mentioned, but I’m out the door for an event — I will try to add these later, or simply search on Google or Facebook.
All Rights Reserved, 2011, Kimberly Sebeck, Knoxville Doula