The Good That One Woman Can Do - Livin' the Good Life
Feb. 2nd, 2013
08:52 am - The Good That One Woman Can Do
Karen Baker is about my age, and she has made a lifetime career of midwifing our babies into this world. She attended the births of many of my friends, and she was there to welcome little Oliver. Not only has she attended hundreds of births, but she has generously trained many, many midwives over the years. She knows that someday she will retire, and she wants to be sure that high-quality midwifery is still available in this area after she's gone. For as long as I've known her, she has had interested women attending births with her and coming to workshops she's held on all things to do with birth. She is continually passing on her vast knowledge that could only be acquired through direct experience.
Midwifery is a special calling, and it is NOT for everyone. Qualities needed: uncommon bravery; unwavering trust in the birth process and its variabilities; ability to be calm and think clearly in emergencies; ability to spot what's not normal early on; being able to make oneself at home, often for days at a time, in other people's houses; to be a comfortable person for others to be around during their most intimate and vulnerable of times; and to be willing and able to wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait patiently for the baby to come; to be willing to be woken up randomly in the middle of the night and rush to someone's side to welcome their baby... or not... and willing to wait another couple of days, if necessary. Willing to lose sleep regularly.
Karen Baker is one of those extraordinary women who has these qualities in spades. That is why she is considered the one to go to in about a 75 mile radius of her town of Yucaipa CA. It is because of her that we finally have a licensed midwife in our immediate area. Quincy Bates is now our local midwife due to Karen's willingness to teach and apprentice her... and of course Quincy's own hard work and determination to see it through. So thankful to have Quincy on the job!
Here is Karen with her current "crop" of midwifery students. We are deeply indebted to these women for putting themselves on the line for us and our babies. They do us a heroic service. (Karen is in the middle in light green)