“Being part of Black Centering meant having someone help you navigate and feel empowered to create the experience that you want to have. My husband recorded the birth, and sometimes I go back and watch the videos of the delivery because that makes me feel so empowered. I ultimately got the experience that I wanted to have.”

Krista Hayes

Member of BElovedBIRTH Black Centering Community

Initially, I really wanted a home birth. But it seemed like something that was out of reach, with all we had going on. The only option I had was a hospital birth, and I was not excited at first.
But that all changed when I came in contact with BElovedBIRTH Black Centering. It made me feel comfortable. I have the added layers of not just being woman, also being Black. Also being considered obese, because I am plus size. And so there’s many different layers to me and my body, in the way that I appear, and in the way that people treat me or discriminate against me.
So it was definitely scary to me because I was like, what will be the level of care that I receive in the hospital? But being a part of this group helped me to feel comfortable with the choice that I was making. And it made me feel reassured that I’ll be cared for.
It also helped me to navigate the healthcare system itself, to advocate for myself. And to basically create a birth plan so I can create a manifestation of what kind of birth I wanted to have here at Highland.
Even though I had a positive experience, I did have a medical emergency. I had a retained placenta, so they had to rush me to the OR. I had all the staff around me, and I remember that, for the most part, most of them looked like me, Black women. I honestly feel like, because there were people who were operating on me who look like me, that’s why I’m still here.
I’m so grateful to be a part of Black Centering, because it changed everything for me.

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