SB84 Passes, Allowing Licenses For Certified Professional Midwives in Kentucky

Today, on March 13th 2019, after a 44 year fight and after 8 years of the Kentucky Home Birth Coalition, SB 84 passed its final vote on the House floor. After a quick concurrence from the Senate and a signature from the Governor, we will start the regulatory process to license Certified Professional Midwives and integrate them into Kentucky’s healthcare system. You have the power to make our state a better place. It was a long road, but our hard work has paid off.

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Lobby Day Photos: Grassroots in Action.

“On February 13th, we put another Kentucky Home Birth Coalition (KHBC) Lobby day in the books. Every year, they run smoother and become more successful. This year, we had hundreds of constituents representing 85 districts of Kentucky. Thanks to photojournalism student Mhari Shaw, I have the whole day documented and they tell a memorable story. “

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For the Love of KY Babies

6 years ago, I met with Senator David Givens for the first time. It was my first time ever meeting with a Legislator, and here I was leading a meeting. I was only 6 months postpartum and had my baby on my lap. I had never shared the details of my traumatic hospital transfer with anyone outside my inner circle before. Sen. Givens was kind and attentive, and the meeting left me feeling confident that I could continue to do this (despite not yet knowing what “this” would become).

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SB84: Licensing Midwives and Increasing Birth Options in Kentucky

A bill (SB84) to license Certified Professional Midwives (CPM) has been filed in the Kentucky State Senate for 2019. In 1975, the state stopped issuing licenses to non-nurse midwives, leaving CPMs with no way to obtain the state-required permit needed to practice legally. The goal is to see the state issue licenses to CPMs. February 13th, citizens will convene in Frankfort for Lobby Day. It is our chance to present a united front to legislators and express the need for increased access to Certified Professional Midwives throughout Kentucky.

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Food and the Breastfed Baby: Don’t add the wrong foods too soon.

“A lot of people ask me about introducing foods and Baby Lead Weaning. I’m going to share, as we go through food introduction, so you can see what we do with a few rules in our house. Keep in mind, every time baby gets a new food, they are digesting that food for the first time. It can be difficult on their little systems. Watch for pain, discomfort, rashes, etc.”

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Mary DukeComment
Savanah's Birth Story - Part Two

“I woke to them bringing him back in the room, and jumped up to grab him. I picked him up and held him close. I teared up looking at his beautiful face. I scanned his body, noticing a big bruise on his hand, several scabs from needle pricks in both his arm and his foot, scratches on his wrists and ankles from all the little bracelets they had on him. In that moment, what was left of my heart crumbled in my chest and I sobbed again. My poor sweet boy had been through so much and he wasn’t even a day old.”

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Savanah's Birth Story - Part One

“My eyes begged for an answer. She looked up at me and calmly said, “Everything is going to be okay, but we need to head to the hospital right now.” I wanted to cry, but I didn't have time. I just nodded my head. Everyone was moving quickly around me, and I was just caught in a sort of stupor. Not only was my dream birth coming to an end, but my baby's life was in question. My body moved, but my brain was frozen.”

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The Importance of a “Village”

“Motherhood can often be an isolating and anxiety-filled experience, especially in early postpartum. Our society has produced an image of mothers as needing to “do it all”. So what are we to do? How can we manage all of these expectations, with a new child AND hold onto some shred of ourselves?”

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Alana's Birth Story

“Pushing was the hardest part of labor. I had to be fully present in my body and actively labor. I don’t know how long I pushed for. I had a moment where I thought that I couldn’t do it. Mary told me to look into David’s eyes and focus on him. I experienced a side of myself that I haven’t before. It has always been there, this primal animal-like part of myself that gives in completely to the body and embraces the extreme physical experience.”

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Stop Shaming Moms for Being on Their Phones.

“She walked up to my baby and started talking to him. In my head I was thinking “don’t touch my baby” and kept an eye on her as she got closer and closer. Then she put her hand down on my table to get my attention and told me to get off my phone and pay attention to my baby.”

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Neat Relief: “The less you own, the less that owns you.”

Fast forward to me 4 months postpartum and recovering from a postpartum mood disorder. Through counseling, dietary changes and support from friends and family, I was coming out of the haze of depression and rage. I looked around my house and realized it was a mixture of “postpartum dirty and depression dirty” (If you’ve ever experienced either you know what I mean). I called Sara…”

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A Guide to Shopping Small

Let’s not pressure small business owners to deeply discount their goods or services like Black Friday. Instead let’s value their services and trust that the price they charge year round is what they need to make a living. Let’s support small business owners by valuing them, paying them fair and helping them thrive.

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Mary DukeComment
The Part of My Birth Story Nobody Knows; Until Now.

“So there I was, sitting in a dark theater next to the man I love watching the feel good movie of my lifetime. Then suddenly, contractions started to pick up. I sat on the edge of my seat, lightly swaying when I needed and squeezing Les’ hand when the intensity rose.”

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American Academy of Pediatrics Sets New 2018 Guidelines on Car Seat Safety.

“The American Academy of Pediatrics has released new guidelines on car seat safety (CSS) for 2018, with some significant changes in prior recommendations. Probably the most significant, was the following change in how long they recommend a infant or toddler remain rear facing in a car…“

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