Scholarship Winner: Obsidian supporting marginalized communities
Posted on February 16th, 2018
Hello! My name is Obsidian and I am going to be 25 come November’s scorpio season (2017). I play accordion and guitar and I love cooking for my friends- especially my pregnant friends! I also play this goofy sword fighting live action role play game called Amtgard. It’s like D&D plus martial arts and it’s pretty amazing. (You should totally look up the park nearest to you.)
I’m an extremely kid-oriented person. My experience has been developing since my mom started a daycare in our home when I was just 2 years old. I love to slow down, connect with children where they need me and scaffold for positive growing and learning experiences from there.
A strong connection with families and foundation for collaboration are important to me.
I have been a nanny, babysitter, preschool teacher, and assistant in-home daycare teacher. I’ve received over 400 hours of training which focused on early development, curriculum building, meeting special needs, nutrition, sanitation, the best games to play inside when it’s rainy, etc. I have also volunteered with a tutoring program, a children’s library program, and a children’s museum.
For the past three years, I have been focusing on brand new families and families with children in the 0-3 range. I have realized that I have an ever growing passion for pregnancy, birth, newborns, and infants. My best friend and my housemate are both five months pregnant. My current nanny family just had their third a month ago and I attended their home birth. Lately, the social connections I make are essentially entirely with parents, doulas, and midwives.
When I found out that my best friend is pregnant, I wrote a zine called Poor, Punk, and Pregnant.
The need for information on pregnancy and labor that was inclusive and compassionate was suddenly more urgent to me than ever before. I avoid assumptions about gender, sexual orientation, relationships, class, etc. I include week by week information as well as interviews from single parents whose stories aren’t represented in your typical pregnancy books.
Doing the work that I do, people were starting to constantly ask me if I was going to become a doula. So I started thinking about it and asking my doula friends questions. Bebo Mia’s program came highly recommended to me by one of my birth work heroes and I was so thrilled to hear about their focus on community and business support.
My heart sank when I started thinking about the financial aspect of things.
When I was in high school, my family became a single parent household. As a young adult, I became estranged from both of my parents. With my dad, it’s been 4 years and counting. With my mom, it was up to 7 years when we finally reconnected last year. It’s going so great by the way, I swear she’s a new person! This being my reality, I have been homeless a few times and broke most of the time. When I saw the opportunity for a scholarship, I knew that if I told my story, I would get it.
Birth work is the next logical step for me. It’s what I’m meant to do!
I view my role with my childcare families as one of support before anything else. I know that every family, every child, and every day is different. I am never here to pass judgment on what works for a family. I am patient and compassionate, but I also know my limits. I move forward knowing that I am on the same page as my families so that I can best understand how to support them. This attitude is essential to me in my work and it will absolutely carry over to my doula practice.
I am committed to caring for my community through birth work. I am a Chinese person of color who is also non-binary in gender and queer in romantic endeavors. I especially want to provide support for the people who share these experiences with me.
Resistance through radical birth work is a real thing and it is immeasurably important work.
The emphasis on community that I feel from Bebo Mia is what lets me know that this is The Opportunity for me to build a business with a foundation firmly in my belief of meaningfully connecting with families and supporting birthing communities in a real, tangible way.