A little thank you
It’s so easy, when reading tales of maternity services in crisis, or women and families being treated poorly, to sink low into despair at the state of it all.
But it’s really not all bad news.
I am constantly in awe when I think of the time and talent some people donate to others in order to help them through their pregnancy and early childcare experiences.
So in order to cheer us all up, I wanted to say a big thank you to everyone who volunteers their time to help pregnant women and families.
Thank you to the feeding supporters who spend years studying breastfeeding and formula issues in order to then spend many more years volunteering on feeding helplines and drop-in clinics. For free.
Thank you to the doulas who work for no fee to assist women prisoners and women who have been domestically abused.
Thank you to the people who give up their evenings or lunchtimes to run antenatal groups to encourage everyone to feel positive about birth, no matter what type of birth they want or need.
Thank you to the lawyers who give away their expert knowledge to protect our human rights.
Thank you to the volunteers who run the numerous groups and campaigns to fight for choices in Midwifery, support families with complicated pregnancies, multiple birth or stillbirth and miscarriage loss.
Thank you to those that open their homes and phone lines to provide free counselling to women, men and birthworkers affected by birth trauma – even years after the baby has been born.
Thank you to the parents and off-duty professionals who support others in online groups and provide practical signposts and information without mother-bashing.
Thanks to the parents who share their birth and feeding stories online, so that we can all learn from their joys and learn from any failings in support.
Thanks to the family and friends of the volunteers, who support those who are giving so much to the rest of us.
And thank you to you for reading this far.
If I have missed you off the list, then I am sorry. Please know I am grateful for the work that you do.
Now, let’s spread the love. In the comments below, please tell me about the person or charity/volunteer organisation that has given you the most pregnancy-related support. What is it about them that makes them so special?
Bonus challenge: call or email someone who has helped you and tell them about how it made you feel. I can guarantee that you will make their week.
Image from nateOne.