Women Helping Women: The Modern Midwifery of Ginny Phang at POSKOD.SG

I’m over at POSKOD.SG, an “online magazine about modern Singapore and its people, places, and phenomena.” It is, hands down, my favorite local read. Editors Dan Koh and Yu-Mei Balasingamchow do an amazing job of  celebrating “the old-school and the cutting-edge; the strange and the familiar; the weird and the wonderful” of this island nation. POSKOD.SG‘s stories are unexpected and interesting.

Women Helping Women: The Modern Midwifery of Ginny Phang” is a profile of our doula, or birth companion.

An excerpt:

On a recent Friday, nearly 30 mothers nestled into Ginny Phang’s cosy Chip Bee Gardens home. The room hummed with the chatter of new mothers and mothers-to-be, punctuated by infants’ cries and coos. The women – and occasionally men – shared ‘war stories’ about the physicality, isolation and elation of parenting. From her corner, Phang instructed one mother on how to best use a ring sling and tended to another mother’s breastfeeding ‘SOS’.  All the while, her iPhone buzzed over the din; her fast fingers sent support and information, perhaps to a first-time mother in early labour or to one of the many obstetricians with whom she works regularly.

Phang is a doula, or birth companion, and every Friday she hosts a “Mothers’ Circle” in her home. I first found myself at Phang’s in July 2011 when I was a few months into my first pregnancy. My partner and I had recently relocated from New York City to Singapore and we were keen on hiring a doula to educate us about childbirth and childrearing in Singapore, and to be our constant companion during and shortly after the birth of our child. Since then, I’ve been a regular attendee at Mothers’ Circle (though now with baby in tow).

Pinning Phang down to chat is no easy task. Her life moves at a frantic, organic and unpredictable pace. On the weekends, she teaches HypnoBirthing and breastfeeding pre-natal group classes. During the week, she is either attending a birth, overseeing her growing business Four Trimesters, or spending time with her pre-teen son Kieran, whom she describes as “the compass and the anchor of my life.”

Finally, on a humid Friday morning, we sat down in her backyard, her goldendoodle Junior underfoot, to discuss modern medicine and modern motherhood.

Continue reading here.

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