July 19, 2021
Series: Why I Advocate - Crystal Sada
By: Crystal Sada | 0 Comments
Today is the second in a weekly series leading up to the Lamaze International 2021 Virtual Advocacy Summit on September 27-29. The virtual summit is an opportunity to connect with your fellow Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educators from around the world, who will be meeting to address the most critical and timely policy issues that affect prenatal care and childbirth outcomes. In this series, blog readers will have an opportunity to meet perinatal professionals and read their personal essays on why they advocate for evidence based care, improved policies and funding that impact birth outcomes. You can find the entire "Why I Advocate" Series here. - Sharon Muza, Connecting the Dots Community Manager.
I have always been a rule follower. As a young person it gave my tumultuous life some stability. When my husband and I were expecting our first child we attended Lamaze classes. I knew I wanted an unmedicated birth and set out to do whatever I could to make that happen, and promptly ended with a very challenging labor and cesarean birth. And our daughter removed for 24 hours with no contact because that was hospital policy.
After this very traumatic event, both Jerry and I questioned this policy and formed a parents’ support group, which lobbied hospitals in NJ and PA to change policy…and was successful! Not only did they start bringing babies to recovery after a cesarean, but they also permitted a support person to be present during the birth. When our daughter was older, the hospital hired me to work in maternity because the supervisor was progressive and felt more change was needed. This is also when I became a childbirth educator.
Forty years later, I continue to advocate for families. Through my teaching as well as previous work as a labor support and postpartum doula, and currently teaching doulas through my own certification program.
To me, advocacy is helping people find their voice. Educating them so they empower themselves to make change, be it change for their birth or going further and making change for others. Standing next to them and providing support. In my childbirth classes I try to remain as balanced as the evidence will allow. I share that I am educating so that they can make the choices that are right for them at the time. My goal is preserving the birth memory because we remember our births for the rest of our lives. Even a birth ending not the way we originally planned can be an amazing memory, as we found with our second and third births.
But we need to advocate and communicate, or no one will ever know what we truly need! And that is my goal for all those attending my classes.
About Crystal Sada
Crystal Sada has successfully advocated for birthing parents for over 40 years. She worked maternity for eight years where she became a childbirth educator and is currently certified with Lamaze. In addition to teaching childbirth classes, she also teaches labor support and postpartum doulas.
TagsLamaze International Advocacy Advocacy & Collaboration Committee Advocacy Summit 2021 Series: Why I Advocate Crystal Sada