I initially went into writing this thinking I would be highlighting just this (amazing) childbirth education class. But what I ended up with is so much more than that.
Barbara Davis is the founder of “Birth Fort Worth”. A small collective of Doulas who support people all over the DFW metroplex. Voted best birth doula in 2017, 2018 and 2019 as well as the best childbirth class in Fort Worth in 2019 by Fort Worth Child Magazine. Her entire group is also part of The Inclusive Birth Workers of DFW. They offer labor support, placenta encapsulation and breastfeeding support on top of their childbirth education class.
Walking into the Fort Worth Birthing and Wellness Center always feels like home to me. Today was a little different, as the center looks like a whole new space! Beautiful new floors, fresh coats of paint and a modern furniture update. The space is stunning. Barb has all of her teaching tools laid out for the class to see. Bright colorful crocheted boobs (of every size), a baby doll, cloth placenta, pelvic model, & real tools used in the delivery room.
As we get started Barbs smile is absolutely infectious and it’s easy to see why she’s been voted the best doula three years in a row. Barb jumps right into talking about how birth is normal and profound. Everything seems to be going smooth.
We’re getting ready to watch a video and for some reason, the internet connection won’t work. There is banging upstairs in one of the birthing suits as it’s under construction and it may or may not be interfering with the WIFI. Not a problem, Barb jumps on a hotspot to connect and keep the class rolling.
After talking about the anatomy of birth and some pre-labor tools we take a bathroom break. Barb confides that she has a horrible migraine and I’m in awe of her. She never skipped a beat or gave any indication of this to her class, and the show went on.
The class used all inclusive language and talked on evidence based care, free from fear. Heidi (one of the doulas on her team) was upstairs with a client. She came down to speak to Barb, as their client needed to be transferred to the local hospital, and an ambulance had been called. What a morning.
At around noon (this is only two hours into the six hour class) we break for lunch and Barb tries to lay down for a minute to help with her migraine, but ultimately the third of their trio (Rachael) is called and asked to come finish the class. It seemed as though anything that could go wrong, did.
When Rachael arrived, it was a smooth and easy transition. These ladies have taught this class enough to be able to pick right up where the other left off. And just like that it was business as usual. Pain management, interventions, packing your bag, birth plans, labor stages and comfort measures are all covered.
We retreat to one of the birthing suits upstairs and practice some comfort measures with partners. Everyone is laughing and having a good time. Racheal is flawless in asking for consent before touching anyone, and being hands on in teaching.
At the end of the class, she asks if anyone has questions, and it comes as no surprise to me that not one hand raises. The class has covered everything, and all three couples are going into their birth feeling empowered and confident.
Maybe it was the full moon the night before. Maybe it was residual “bad luck” from the day before (Friday the 13th). Whatever it was, these women took it in strides, professionalism and outstanding teamwork. I can only imagine what a “normal” day looks like for their team. Maybe this is exactly what it always looks like, a smooth rotation of knowledgeable women. No matter the case, I couldn’t think of a single thing they missed in their class.
It really was, for “Your Best Birth”.