Cara Busenhart, CNM, PhD, APRN
Candidate for Region V Representative
See Cara's CV here
Question: What challenges to midwifery practice have you observed/experienced either nationally or in your region, and what solutions would you suggest or implement to eliminate that barrier?
Answer: One challenge that many midwives face is that of self-care: often it is too little, or none at all. As care providers, we often sacrifice our own well-being for others. For our patients. For our families. For our practices. For our partners. We may sacrifice physically, emotionally, spiritually. We may sacrifice our time, our money, and our resources.
It is important that we allow an opportunity for each midwife to fill up their tank, to rejuvenate and spend time caring for themselves in the way that they would suggest patients care for themselves. What works for one midwife may not work for another. But it is important for us to consider those things that might work. Is it exercise? Is it a massage every now and then? Is it a chance to really talk with one another—not about practice acts, hospital privileging, or lobbying on Capitol Hill, but about things that matter to our hearts, our minds, and our souls as midwives.
I would suggest a wellness initiative for midwives, focused on body, mind, and spirit. This wellness movement should be diverse in content, breadth, and depth. It should encourage each midwife on their journey of self-care and should be applicable in our daily lives as women’s health providers. It is very important that this movement begin early on the path to midwifery, with our students. And it should be applicable and appropriate for all midwives, regardless of their age, physical capability, or personal preferences.I appreciate continuing education, political action, and the business of midwifery as many of you do. But, I think we should focus some energy and time in our affiliates, regions, and nationally to caring for ourselves and one another. You matter. I matter. And we need to take care of ourselves.