Well, here I sit, in my own favorite chair, in my own living room, with my laptop balanced on my legs, and the sound of jet engines slowly fading from my ears! What a trip!
I am just back from the Lamaze International Conference in Orlando, Florida. Two days doing Disney “things” with my kids, (and trust me, two days was about 1 1/2 too many for all of us, but that is another story!) then on to the Conference.
The conference was held in the Coronado Springs Resort, in Disney. This place doubles as a million football fields all strung together! It is HUGE! HUGE! Like, if you leave something in the exhibit hall and are now in a breakout session in another room, and want to “run” back to get it, count on 20 minutes! Seriously, but enough griping!
I got to meet so many people that I have only heard about and read their material! Robin Weiss, who writes both pregnancy.about.com and many books as well as blogs over at The Birth Activist. I met Rixa Freeze, who received the Safe and Healthy Birth Media Award in recognition and appreciation of her engagement of new media and reaching childbearing women with critical messages about safe and healthy birth practices/ Her blog is on my blogroll, Stand and Deliver I met the blogger responsible for the great blog Mom’s Tinfoil Hat, who is in med school to become an OBGYN!. I looked for, but couldn’t find Amy Romano, who does the Lamaze Science and Sensibility blog. I also couldn’t find the blogger Reality Rounds, another one I love! I got to give a hug to Katy Rawlins from Idaho, who was presented the Safe and Healthy Birth Advocate Award in recognition of her promotion of safe and healthy birth and its contribution to childbearing women and their families. I got to meet Debbie Amis, who was was presented the Elisabeth Bing award in appreciation of her continued efforts to train and mentor new Lamaze childbirth educators. She also has a great blog that I love.
I got to clap really loud for my dear friend Teri Shilling who was presented the Lamaze International Award in recognition of her significant contribution to expanding the reach of Lamaze childbirth education around the world. I also met Barbara Hotelling, Ann Tumblin, Pat Predmore, Marilyn Hildreth, Ann Israel, and the list can go on and on, I probably left out many others, such a crowd of women (and a very few men!) who know that birth matters and how babies and women are treated during pregnancy and birth is important.
Another high of the conference was that I was a speaker! My session was “Working Your Magic!” The Educator’s Role in Reducing the Fear of Pain.” I had a blast and the session was received very well by the almost 90 participants! The attendees got to rock and roll during a realistic labor simulation with lots of ice! just like my clients and students do!
So many more things to say, but my head is spinning from lack of sleep! We got up at 1 AM Seattle time, in order to catch our very early plane out of Orlando!
I am renewed, encouraged, excited and proud to be a childbirth educator, doula and doula trainer! I know that what I do matters and I look forward to growing my business and improving my skills from all that I have learned this past week at the conference!