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On today’s podcast, we will be speaking with Mystique Hargrove, EBB Featured Instructor, and our new Podcast Coordinator. Mystique (She/They) is a certified full spectrum doula who serves BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of color), and LGBTQ+ individuals in Greensboro, North Carolina. Mystique also serves as an advisory board member for the United States Lactation Consultant Association and is a Certified Lactation Educator, as well as a Certified Childbirth Educator. Mystique completed her Master of Science in Clinical and Mental Health Counseling from North Carolina A&T State University, along with a Marriage and Family Counseling Certification. Mystique earned a Certification in Wellness and Nutrition Consulting and Counseling, and her Certification in Reiki I and II, along with her certification as a Reiki Master. As a Black, Latinx, and Indigenous birth worker, Mystique has experience in herbal medicine and ancestral healing practices under Black, Latinx, and Indigenous teachers, and elder curanderas, or healers, in her community. Currently, Mystique is a Ph.D. student at Capella University for Counselor Education and Supervision, with a research focus on Inclusive Services and Advocacy in Perinatal Mental Health for Black, LGBTQ+ individuals. 

Content Warning: In this episode, we will talk about birth trauma and birth and perinatal mortality. 

We talk about Mystique’s role as our new EBB Podcast Coordinator and her expectations for future podcast episodes. We also talk about Mystique’s experience as a birth worker in her community and what challenges she is faced with as an advocate for inclusive perinatal care for marginalized communities.

Resources

Learn more about Mystique and The Black Birth Healer (https://www.theblackbirthhealer.com). Follow Mystique on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/TheBlackBirthHealer) and on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/blackbirthhealer).

Learn more about Janiya Williams (https://www.madeingso.com/2020/08/28/janiya_mitnaul_williams/) and her Human Lactation Pathway 2 Certification Program at NC A&T State University (https://www.ncat.edu/caes/departments/family-and-consumer-sciences/lactation-cert.php). Follow Mahoghany Milk on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/MahoganyMilk) and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/mahoganymilk). 

Learn more about Dr. Juan Michelle Martin here (https://www.jmmhealthsolutions.com/). Follow Dr. Martin on Instagram here (www.instagram.com/thepelvicperspective). View Dr. Martin’s pelvic floor topic videos on YouTube for JMM Health Solutions here (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKNEkVefn_wLgrqlf4wyXHw). 

Learn more about National College of Midwifery (https://www.midwiferycollege.edu/). Follow National College of Midwifery on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/NationalCollegeMidwifery/). 

Learn more about Dr. Cheryl Beck (https://birthful.com/podcastbirthptsd/).

Transcript

Rebecca:

Hi, everyone. On today’s podcast, we’re going to talk with Mystique Hargrove, the new coordinator of the podcast here at Evidence Based Birth®®.

Welcome to the Evidence Based Birth® Podcast. My name is Rebecca Dekker, and I’m a nurse with my PhD, and the Founder of Evidence Based Birth®. Join me each week as we work together to get Evidence Based information into the hands of families and professionals around the world. As a reminder, this information is not medical advice. See ebbirth.com/disclaimer for more details.

Hi everyone. I’m so excited to welcome a new guest to the Evidence Based Birth® Podcast, and that is Mystique Hargrove. Mystique Hargrove, pronouns she/they, is a certified full spectrum doula, and an Evidence Based Birth® Instructor who serves Black, Indigenous, and people of color, and LGBTQ+ individuals in Greensboro, North Carolina, and the surrounding areas.

Mystique also serves as an advisory board member for the United States Lactation Consultant Association, and is a Certified Lactation Educator, as well as a Certified Childbirth Educator. Mystique completed her Master of Science in Clinical and Mental Health Counseling from North Carolina A&T State University, along with a Marriage and Family Counseling Certification.

Mystique earned a Certification in Wellness and Nutrition Consulting and Counseling, and her Certification in Reiki I and II, along with her certification as a Reiki Master. As a Black, Latinx, and Indigenous birth worker, Mystique has experience in herbal medicine and ancestral healing practices under Black, Latinx, and Indigenous teachers, and elder curanderas, or healers, in her community.

Currently, Mystique is a PhD student at Capella University for Counselor Education and Supervision, with a research focus on Inclusive Services and Advocacy in Perinatal Mental Health for Black, LGBTQ+ individuals. Welcome, Mystique, to the Evidence Based Birth® Podcast.

Mystique:

Thank you so much for having me.

Rebecca:

After reading through your bio again, sometimes I just can’t believe that we were lucky enough to get you to work with us here at Evidence Based Birth® on our team.

Mystique:

Yay.

Rebecca:

Yay.

Mystique:

Yes, yes.

Rebecca:

So, it’s been wonderful having … Mystique started in the summer of 2020, and we’ve just loved working with you. So, I wanted to hear more about your story and learn how you got into birth work. How did you find this profession?

Mystique:

Well, like many birth workers, mine was pretty much my own birthing experience. It was very traumatic, especially in my last trimester of my pregnancy. It was a lot of neglect, and not a lot of abuse, which I had no clue that I was going through at that time. And I always say if I knew what I know now back then, it would’ve been totally different. But pretty much, it resulted into me and my son almost losing our life. My birth plan was thrown out the window. I wasn’t being advocated for. The support people I had didn’t know how to advocate.

It was times where my mother, she didn’t know what to do. But she had a sense of, “You shouldn’t be stuck in the bed all the whole entire time.” And she was like, “Can’t she get out?” They were like, “No. We have to monitor her. She has to stay in the bed at all times.” So, it was very aggressive. It was a lot of bullying. And the things we know now, it’s mind-blowing to know that all the stuff that I went through, I was like, “How in the world did I even survive? Why didn’t I take action,” or whatever.

So, it pretty much led me into me kind of confiding into who I call my kindred, who they’re in birth work, and they were like, “You advocate a lot about this, and you tell your story. You should be a doula.” And I’m like, “I don’t know.” So anyways, fast-forward, in that time, I was living in Georgia. So, fast-forward, I moved back to North Carolina, where I’m from, and I enter a doula program, and I train under pretty much a lot of the elders in the community and the birth workers who are active in the community, and they just brought me on along this journey. And I’ve been riding shotgun ever since, now with a megaphone, kind of addressing birth justice and reproductive justice, and microaggression when it comes to perinatal mental health.

Because I was also dealing with depression, as well. And I suffered in silence. So, I kind of go back into work and saying, “Yeah. I’m going to use my experience, my story as my testimony.” To be like, “I’ve been there, I’ve done that, I know similarly what you’re going through, I can kind of empathize,” because we all don’t have the same situation.

So that, pretty much. That whole incident, chaos and destruction of … I consider my birth plan, my birth journey is pretty much what led me to where I’m at now.

Rebecca:

That was how many years ago that you had your traumatic birth experience in Georgia?

Mystique:

My son is five, so a little over five years ago.

Rebecca:

Okay.

Mystique:

He’ll be six next March. So, it was over five years ago. And I will say maybe last year, I just moved past that birth trauma to say, “Okay, I can take on this work accordingly and not use my trauma to my work, and kind of separate that.” So, that happened a little over five years ago.

Rebecca:

And that’s hard to do. Can you talk a little bit about how you were able to move past that? Because it sounds like you were kind of … lit a fire under you, this passion for getting people better care. But you were still dealing with your own trauma. So, what is it like to be able to move past that and not care for people out of a sense of trying to overcome that trauma, but have a new outlook?

Mystique:

I feel like I literally feel a sense of freedom. Because I feel like I was pretty much shackled to that trauma. I was tied to it. I had all the chains to it, and I had to break the chains of that trauma in my life. And once I did that, I was able to … I felt like I could exhale. It was a moment of thanking my ancestors, thanking spirit, my spiritual team, as I call them, to finally break free. Because I felt heavy in this work.

And this work is heavy, period. But it was times where I would take on those who I’m serving in the community, and it was adding onto my trauma. So, it was like more weight adding onto my trauma, and it literally broke me to the point where I had to do some self-care. I had to do some self-reflection. I had to get back into therapy because my partner, he’s talking about wanting kids and I’m freaking out, and I’m like, “What? I don’t want any more kids.”

But in the beginning before I had my first son, I always wanted a big family. And then after that experience, I was like, “This is it.” So then, once I moved past that trauma, it was kind of like it was a freeing moment. I felt free. I felt lighter. I felt like I was back to my old self, but stronger and wiser. And just knowing that I know how to effectively do birth work in the community because it’s easy to carry on your trauma and use it while you’re serving others, and then while you’re taking their trauma and making sure they’re good, you have to bring that home and you just sit with it. I will say it was very freeing, and I feel a whole bunch … A bunch of weight lifted off of me to really get into this work like I should be.

Rebecca:

That’s amazing. And I think Dr. Cheryl Beck calls that posttraumatic growth, when you come out of it stronger on the other side. And you need that strength because your community is facing a lot of challenges. What are some of the things that you struggle with as a birth worker in your community?

Mystique:

It’s a lot of what I call generalizing birth work, and not understanding how intersectionality plays a part in birth work, and how a lot of things intersect in my community. So in my community, I’m part of the LGBTQ community. And there’s a lot of misgendering. I’m always advocating for being inclusive, making sure everybody feels welcome, feels supported, feels safe. But there are not a lot of spaces in my community for that, for that to even show up.

And it’s hard. It’s a struggle, and there is some progression, I will say, thankfully, with me teaming up with who I consider are heads-up in the hospitals, and the doula programs in the hospitals teaming up to kind of network and sit down and have a talk and discuss, “What changes do we need to transform the way we do birth work in the community? Because something is failing, something is not right. Things are not clicking. Things are being pushed aside, or put down and ignored.”

For instance, I have clients who are transgender or non-binary and it’s a lot of ignorance to that, and a lot of people, we try to inform about making sure we are inclusive with our language, inclusive how we promote our work. For instances, classes, the childbirth classes and lactation classes. And I will say the newer generation of birth workers get it. They understand it, even if they’re like, “Hey, I’m completely ignorant to it, but help me understand it so I can do better.” The older generation, I will say there are few who they get it, they’re right for it. And then majority of times, there are the rest that push back. They don’t want to hear it. They don’t care. They think it’s silly, it’s stupid, people are confused. And it’s hurtful to hear that, to hear that about my community is to say my community is full of sin, and it’s a lot of judgment, and like I said, it’s a lot of ignorance that I’m the type to …

Even though I’m always this radical birth worker in the community, I at least have some kind of compassion to say, “I can sit down and have a conversation with you, but we have to listen and learn from each other instead of butting heads.” So, that’s the challenge in the community. Just lack of representation, lack of inclusiveness. But we still continue to advocate, even though there’s still pushback regardless of what we try to do. And we come in peaceful. We’re not coming in knocking down doors and knocking things down. We’re like, “Come to you at peace,” really trying to see what is going on with the issue.

Because we’re seeing a lot of Black parents, a lot of Black bodies, who are having these complications. They’re losing their babies, they’re almost losing their lives, and we’re like, “Something’s up. Something’s not right.” So, it’s just a struggle to figure out, “What is not clicking? What do you guys not understand? And how can we meet each other on one accord instead of as enemies? Because we’re here to pretty much serve all bodies, and make sure everybody is safe and feels supported.” So, yeah. It’s frustrating. It’s really frustrating.

And it’s times where I want to literally quit. I say that every month, and literally, I’ll have my community say, “I don’t know what you’re talking about so we’re going to let you have your self-care break, and then when you come back, we’ll talk about why you say you wanted to quit.” Because it’s literally like running into a brick wall. Or once you knock down at least brick, or a couple of bricks down, it’s like another wall is built back up.

So, it’s a struggle in itself to just come together as a community, as a collective, to just be informed and be educated, and just come with an open heart and an open mind, and not be so judgemental and closed-minded on the differences we have with each other.

Rebecca:

I love hearing how you’re doing this advocacy role in your community and trying to bridge the differences of opinion, and I know it’s difficult in a Southern state like North Carolina-

Mystique:

Yeah.

Rebecca:

… and like where I live in Kentucky. That adds a whole ‘nother dimension to it.

Mystique:

Yes.

Rebecca:

And-

Mystique:

It is.

Rebecca:

… you mentioned self-care, and I know you and I have talked about this before, not on the podcast, but what are some things that you do to care for yourself when you’re dealing with such … This is not an easy role in your community.

Mystique:

Right. I’m this huge organizer. I’m always having different planners, different journals, different binders, whatever. I have to schedule-in self-care for myself. I have to block out time because I have a habit of I want to help everybody. But I lack awareness of needing help myself. And so, I’m giving, giving, giving. And I’m like, “Who needs this? Who needs what? Okay, I don’t know how to get it, but I’ll get there for you.” And now I’m at the point where I literally have to block out times, or block out days.

Thankfully now I have an assistant who picks up the pieces. And I’m like, “Hey, today I’m off. I’m not available if anybody needs me, or has questions, or anything like that.” Because she’s also a birth worker, so she can answer the general birth working questions. But if it’s too in-depth … She knows what she’s doing. Thankfully. I don’t know how she came into my life, but I’m grateful she did.

But she’s part of my self-care. She gives me reminders to say, “Hey, are you actually sitting down?” And I also have kindred support who does the same thing, checking in to make sure I’m good, making sure, “Hey, what do you need from us? Anything we can possibly do,” or anything like that. So, just scheduling that self-care, having that support, and also just getting to be more active. I used to take walks, but now that it’s getting colder, walks are very difficult in the morning. So, I just do yoga or light cardio, or I do what I call my dance workout. I’ll listen to my favorite songs on my playlist and just jam out, dance all the stress, anxiety, whatever, away, type of thing.

But I literally have those moments where I have to block those out in my schedule, just to set boundaries with myself. Because my mother always tells me, “You can’t pour from an empty cup.” So, you’re trying to give, you’re trying to fill everybody’s cup in the community, and yours is empty and it’s dry, and you need to fill yourself up. So, find ways to fill yourself up because you’re tipping over.”

So, that’s kind of the mantra I always have running in my head. I can’t fill other cups if my cup is empty, as well.

Rebecca:

And I love how you talk about boundaries being part of caring for yourself. Setting boundaries. And you’re probably one of the first doulas I ever heard that has an assistant who helps answer inquiries and questions. So, how did you-

Mystique:

Oh really?

Rebecca:

… decide to do that? And how did you find a helper?

Mystique:

What is so crazy … I was talking to my partner and I consider him my rock. So, when I’m all airy and I want to help everybody, he grounds me. He’s like, “I’m going to bring you down a little bit because you’ve been doing a lot.” And he was like, “Is there a way to get help?” And I was just literally thinking, “Maybe I need an assistant. But at this time, I can’t pay them. And if I’m able to pay them, I can whenever I can. But I just need somebody who’s my intern assistant, or something.” And I had literally set that for actually to start next year.

And emailed me…Who is my assistant now. She emailed me and she was like, “I idolize what you do. I’ve been following your work. You’re amazing. I want to learn from you because I want to be a birth worker.” Or, “I am a birth worker in-training, and I want to learn from you and be your mentor and assistant.” And I was like, “If you are going to be my assistant, I will let you know I cannot pay you right now because during the pandemic funds are limited because I started doing this for free because people are getting laid off, so they can’t afford a doula.” And she completely understood. She was like, “I’m not looking for money. I’m literally looking for experience and wisdom from you.”

And I’m like, “But I’m not old.” And she’s laughing, and she’s like, “I know, but you have so … For you to be so young in this birth-working game, you have so much wisdom, and I want to absorb that, and I want to learn from you.” And she just literally … I didn’t advertise it, I didn’t promote or ask for anything. So, I really feel that was … I always say that was my spiritual team swooping in to save the day and say, “Here. This is what you want, this is what you get.” And literally, she just came out of nowhere. A week after I had that conversation with my partner, she popped up in my email and was like, “I want to address …” Because we’re friends outside of birth work. But she came to me professionally, and that’s why I admire it. Because people, they’re not aware of how to appropriately address of come to somebody who they want to mentor under or assist, or whatever.

So, it was like a breath of fresh air for her to have that much respect for me to do that, and say, “Yes, I know. We’re homegirls. We’re friends. But I respect you much more than that to just come to you any other kind of way.” So, she literally just showed up.

Rebecca:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Mystique:

And it took off from there.

Rebecca:

So, she’s a mentee and an intern, kind of learning from you.

Mystique:

Yeah.

Rebecca:

Okay.

Mystique:

Yeah.

Rebecca:

That’s awesome. So, what other strategies have you tried in your community? I know you talked about communicating with people who need to change their language and behavior. But are there any success stories or strategies you want to share?

Mystique:

Yeah. So, here in Greensboro, my friend Janiya Williams, I always idolized her. I call her the lactation guru for people of color because she’s always about being inclusive, she’s always about meeting people where they are. And at that time, couple years ago, I was working as a WIC breastfeeding counselor, and I started … I came to my boss at that time, and Janiya and I was like, “Hey, has the community ever had a community Black breastfeeding week type of thing?” And they were like, “No.”

So, the meeting started to turn into discussions of, “Oh, we’re not aware that we’re not that inclusive in our community,” because I would have clients who are non-binary or transgender, and they would be misgendered, and even if they’re being corrected, people would dismiss that correction. So, it got to the point where they started literally assessing how they promote their classes, their language and descriptions online, how they teach. When they started their doula volunteer program, how they’re teaching their doulas, and same with other doulas who are in the LGBTQ community … changing the wording on their pamphlets.

So, it literally went from just collaborating on an event for a community to the entire end as far as doula program and the lactation work to change the way they are promoting to the community in their language and promotion, in their purport, and getting who are those who represent that community to come and teach classes for a specific group. I literally was like, I never thought it would get to that point where she’s like, “Mystique, because of you, we changed the way we work here. We’re making sure everybody’s being heard, and we’re taking things into consideration, and we’re opening scholarships. I’m creating scholarships for marginalized people of color, I want to connect with more LGBTQ birth workers of color and make sure we have more of them as representatives in our doula program.”

So, it literally was like a domino effect because … and I wasn’t expecting that. So, it brought me a sense of joy to know, and hope, to know that, okay, change can happen. Even though, if you just kind of push a little bit, but change can happen. And people are actually open to receive what they can learn from you. So, strategy-wise, it’s just me just authentically coming into the space to present, “Hey, this is the problem, this is the situation. How can we fix it?” And literally coming in with an open mind, being ready to learn from them because I, at times, have a hard time to deal with people who don’t understand my community. But at the same time, I’m like, there’s some people who actually have good intentions that say, “Because of my upbringing, I don’t understand anything of this. But I’m willing to learn and I want to learn.” And that’s like a breath of fresh air. So, yeah.

Rebecca:

That’s amazing. And so, you’re working, you’re helping your local lactation community become more inclusive, and to help make an impact on more people.

Mystique:

Yes.

Rebecca:

Yeah. I also know that you were talking recently about a new class you’re teaching for midwifery students. Can you tell us a little bit about how you’re making an impact in that area?

Mystique:

So, yeah. So, that is what is so crazy. That is something I never thought would come into another role in my life as a birth worker so soon. I was like, “Oh, maybe a couple years down the road, I’ll be a professor at a midwifery school,” and it happened sooner than expected.

So, I’m teaching pretty much the class is called Cultural Issues. I’ll be teaching that at the National College of Midwifery, and they are a super, awesome program. They’re going to go online next month because of the pandemic, and they want to pretty much be very supportive of all students and help everybody in the transition from being in-class to being online for right now. And so, yeah, I’ll be teaching midwifery students about the importance of being culturally competent in this work. Because that is lacking, and it’s not necessarily just about people of color. It’s also how to come into a marginalized community such as LGBTQIA+ communities, and serve them, and not generalize them, and know what misgendering means, and know what being inclusive means, and knowing what intersectionality means and what it looks like and how it should show up in midwifery care.

So, I’ll be teaching that beginning next month for the new semester, and I’m excited. I’m a little nervous because it’s my first time literally officially being in a teaching role. I’ve taught classes before, like prenatal classes, or lactation classes, or whatever. But I feel like this is the real, real deal. It’s a university. And it’s midwifery students, and I wasn’t expecting this, but the team, the entire administrative team, they were like, “We love you, we see what you’re doing. We see all the experience you have. We need somebody like you.” And I was like, “Okay.” So, yeah.

So, next month, I’ll be officially a midwifery professor teaching Culture Issues to the students.

Rebecca:

Congratulations. That is-

Mystique:

Thank you.

Rebecca:

… so amazing. And I’m sure the students are going to love working with you. I know we have. So-

Mystique:

Yes. Thank you.

Rebecca:

Can you talk a little bit about the Evidence Based Birth® Podcast, and what are your hopes and goals for this position as the official EBB Podcast Coordinator?

Mystique:

I’m hoping that as big of a audience and platform, I’m hoping we grow even bigger, and I feel like we will because it’s so much information that hasn’t been touched on, and it’s a lot of people who are like, “Hey, do you have information about that?” And we’re like, “We’ve covered all this, and we haven’t even touched that.” So, all the information being out there, especially uplifting and encouraging pretty much all birth workers, even if you’re a birth worker of color, to understand what birth justice is, and what it should look like, and be trained more and more BIPOC, Black, Indigenous, people of color guests who are in this profession, especially, representing the different aspects of birth work and how it can look like.

For instance, this Dr. Martin who talked about pelvic floor health. That is not even talked about in our community. And it’s genius. And it’s like, “Who thinks of that?” Because we don’t know a lot about that. We just get the whole, “That’s normal. That’s supposed to happen.” And when she spoke about, “No, that’s not normal. That is not supposed to happen, these are the issues. And you have to be informed and educated about it.” It’s those types of episodes that I’m so excited that are coming in full circle and becoming more and more exposed to a larger audience as time goes on.

So, I’m definitely excited for what’s in store for everybody to listen to in the future.

Rebecca:

Yeah, I agree. I think we have a lot of guests that you and I have brainstormed, and we’ve started reaching out to you for this year of 2021, as well as we’ve picked out some topics on the evidence that we want to cover. And I appreciate all your hard work behind-the-scenes that goes into the podcast. So, you know-

Mystique:

Thank you.

Rebecca:

For those of you who don’t know, Mystique schedules the guests, makes sure everything’s lined up for the interview, and then she writes all the show notes, emails everybody with info about the podcast, posts about it on social media, picks the quotes that we feature, and reaches out, but stays in communication with the guests. So, there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes work that goes into producing a podcast.

And we’re really close to our reaching two million downloads of the podcast. So, we’re-

Mystique:

Yes.

Rebecca:

Yeah. We’re about a little over 1.8, so I think in early 2021, we’re going to achieve that goal. And so, you’re right. We are reaching more and more people, and a lot of students, and a lot of younger people, and people who are pregnant for the first time, where they can learn from guests like you, and Dr. Juan Michelle Martin. When they’re pregnant the first time, instead of having to experience like what you and I had, where you learn the hard way.

Mystique:

Exactly, exactly.

Rebecca:

Yeah.

Mystique:

And also, I’m excited that we’re also featuring more BIPOC birth justice organizations on Instagram and our Facebook. We’re using that platform because we’re out here, it’s a lot of us out here, and a lot of people don’t know that we’re out here. So, I’m very thankful and grateful for you, Rebecca, for using your platform to just give us a chance to say, “We’re here. We’re out here, we’re not hiding. I promise you, we’re out there.” And just because more and more people are like, “Oh my gosh, I never knew there was a doula, or there was a birth working organization here to help me with whatever needs I have for my community. I didn’t know that existed, or these programs they have.”

So, it’s great to kind of expose that to the audience, as well.

Rebecca:

Yeah. And also, those of you who follow us on social media, Mystique is behind a lot of our posts on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and answers messages in there. And you’re right, we get a lot of requests all the time for different topics, and you’re like, “There’s a never-ending well of topics we could cover on the podcast.”

Mystique:

Right, right.

Rebecca:

Speaking of featuring our guests and telling people where to find people, how can people follow you on your website and social media?

Mystique:

So, my website is www.the, T-H-E, black birth healer.com, all together. You can follow me on Instagram @blackbirthhealer, and Facebook The Black Birth Healer. Everything’s The Black Birth Healer, that’s the name of my business. And yeah, that’s how you can follow me on there.

Rebecca:

And can you talk a little bit about the herbal services and work that you do?

Mystique:

Yes. So, I’m a Certified Herbal Medicine Practitioner, pretty much I specialize and am certified to assess and provide clinical herbal services to those in need, and outside of birth work, in anything. So, it can be from mental health and wellness, it can be from different body ailments, arthritis, things of that nature. I’ve been learning this since I was a little kid, learning from my abuelita.

And all the other curanderas in my community, in my household, of members in my family. So, but the clinical part, I had to go to school for, of course. But I incorporate that into my work, and that’s pretty much how I first started The Black Birth Healer. Before, it was just this herbal services while I was just doing my doula training, and I decided to incorporate it because there’s a lot of history of Black birth workers before the Grand Midwives, the Black midwives in the past, majority of them were herbalists.

And they incorporated those into their services in serving the community. So, that’s pretty much what I do. Outside of birth work, I do the herbalism services, as well. And those will begin coming back sooner because I’ve seen a lot of the benefits it has provided, especially with the community. And we’re kind of, as I call, getting back to our roots and connecting those dots to get back to what our ancestors used to before us. So, yeah. That’s what I do for my community.

Rebecca:

Yeah. I want to encourage all our listeners to follow Mystique on social media, like they said, at The Black Birth Healer. And also, Mystique, you have a shop on your website, as well, where people can order things like healing bath salts, and other herbal things. And I was able to order some from you, and love it. So-

Mystique:

Yay.

Rebecca:

Yay.

Mystique:

Yes, yes.

Rebecca:

You are just-

Mystique:

They are awesome.

Rebecca:

… doing so much work, and I just feel really lucky that we have the opportunity to work with you, and that people can learn about you from this podcast and go follow the work that you’re doing at The Black Birth Healer.

Mystique:

Yes. Thank you.

Rebecca:

All right. Thank you so much, Mystique, for coming on the podcast. It was our honor to have you today.

Mystique:

Thank you for having me.

Rebecca:

Today’s podcast episode was brought to you by the online workshops for birth professionals taught by Evidence Based Birth® Instructors. We have an amazing group of EBB Instructors from around the world who can provide you with live, interactive, continuing education workshops that are fully online.

We designed Savvy Birth Pro workshops to help birth professionals who are feeling stressed by the limitations of the healthcare system. Our instructors also teach the popular Comfort Measures For Birth Professionals and Labor and Delivery Nurses workshop. If you are nurse or birth professional who wants instruction in massage, upright birthing positions, acupressure for pain relief, and more, you will love the comfort measures workshop.

Visit ebbirth.com/events to find a list of upcoming online workshops.

Listening to this podcast is an Australian College of Midwives CPD Recognised Activity.

Stay empowered, read more :

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