Post Midwife Power

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in The Birthkit, Issue 47, Autumn 2005.
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Jill with son, Arlo, holding sister, Lucretia

I have had the opportunity to stand back from the front lines of midwifery and look at what midwives need to help them do all they do. One way I have done this is by referring pregnant women to my sister midwives. Advocating midwifery and natural birth is fun to do. I tell great birth stories and dispel the horror stories these women all seem to hear. I plant a seed of confidence and get to watch the young and upcoming birth culture change back to a more woman-centered place. When I was doing births I rarely had the opportunity to interact with my community on a large scale. I was so busy taking care of all my women and my own family that advocating was hard to do. I now have the time and will continue to spread the word.

Another way I have helped midwifery is through a class project in my women’s studies class this last term. We were asked to do a volunteer project for any nonprofit organization that helps women. I chose Robin Lim’s organization, Yayasan Bumi Sehat.

Robin is regular contributor to Birthkit and Midwifery Today who works and lives in Bali part time. I wanted to find a way to support all she does to help women from Bali to have safe births while also helping the tsunami victims. Our project has gone beautifully and I hope to continue to raise funds for her on a regular basis. If you are interested in donating to this worthy cause, e-mail me at

I miss attending births and being on the front lines. I have learned that midwifery involves many avenues. If you are not attending births, you can still teach, promote, educate or find ways to otherwise get the word out for those who need the time to devote to their practices. By helping other midwives I retain the honor of serving as a midwife, just in a different capacity.

Toward Better Birth,
Associate Editor Jill Cohen

About Author: Jill Cohen

Jill Cohen lives in Mill City, Oregon, with two of her four children. After 20 years as a lay midwife she returned to school to become an RN. She is currently working in a small rural hospital as a primary OB nurse. She was the associate editor of Midwifery Today magazine from 1990 to 2007. View all posts by

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