Motherhood in a Pandemic: A Note from PTBi's Program Director

Dear Community,

I love my kids and I’m normally an easygoing parent, but sheltering in place as a single mom has tested my patience with my kids too many times to admit. From the piled-up dishes, the conflicting homeschooling schedules, constant work interruptions, clogged sinks, and broken everything, I’ve found myself raising my voice more than ever.

But I recognize that these annoyances are just that. We are healthy, we have shelter, we have food, I am blessed to do work that I love, and I get to work safely from my home. Enduring the round-the-clock togetherness is the least I can do to help ensure the health and safety of my family and my community. I have also appreciated being able to slow down and spend more quality time with my family -- especially when so many of my loved ones, friends and colleagues are taking risks as providers and essential workers.

So this Mother’s Day, my thoughts are with the moms who don’t have these things - whose lives have been lost, or who have lost loved ones, the moms on the front lines, the moms who are living without food, shelter, clothing or income, the moms who are alone, are hurt or afraid and the moms who have lost their own mothers too soon.

I’m also thinking about the moms who are innovating to help others, taking their services online to do all they can to counteract the structural racism that has led to the disproportionate numbers of Black people dying of this pandemic. I'm thinking about the doulas, midwives and other advocates providing support through zoom, taking to the streets to feed and care for the homeless, sewing masks, shopping for neighbors, donating services and creating policies to better protect and serve our communities. I’m so proud to know that many of these women are part of the PTBi family.

I also want to take the time to honor the moms whose babies came too early and who lost their lives or the lives of their children because doctors still aren’t listening, and the pregnant and delivering moms who are enduring extreme circumstances during their journeys to bring new life to this world.

To all of you, you are seen and you are cherished.

From one mom to all of you, thank you for continuing to keep perspective during these difficult times. It has fanned the flames beneath all of us at PTBi and we will continue to honor your struggles and your successes through our work to end these disparities and improve birth outcomes for all.

Humbly yours,
Alexis Cobbins 
PTBi Interim Program Director