Episode 115--Facing childlessness with art, my interview with Dr. Krista Cooper
Hello everyone! Welcome back to Childless not by Choice, where my mission is to recognize and speak to childless not by choice women and men around the world. Civilla Morgan here. I am spreading the great news that we can live a joyful, relevant, and fulfilled life, although we did not have the children we so wanted. Welcome to episode 115
Welcome to the first episode of 2020!
What is today’s show about?
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- Jordan Morgan
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Krista Cooper PhD, LLMSW is a native of Hartford, CT, of Jamaican heritage.
she attended Oakwood College in Huntsville, Alabama where her love of languages and the written word resulted in a change of major from Pre-Med to English and Spanish. While at Oakwood, she also studied for a year at Colegio Adventista de Sagunto, Spain. After obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and Spanish, Dr. Cooper obtained her Master of Social Work from the University of Michigan.
After graduation, she worked as an Intake and Assessment Social Worker in the Children and Families Division as well as working as a Substance Misuse social worker in the United Kingdom. Other areas of work experience include geriatric populations and mental health work with children and adults.
In 2012, prior to the completion of her doctoral studies, Dr. Cooper accepted an Assistant Professor of Social Work position at Andrews University. While there and completing her dissertation, she began experiencing several health and life challenges related to uterine fibroids. This sparked an interest in exploring in more depth the experiences of women living with reproductive health challenges.
Upon completion of her doctoral studies in 2014, and her own subsequent healing process, Dr. Cooper applied for a grant that would allow her to explore the aforementioned area. She was granted funding for research entitled, ‘Identity and Experience: The Lives of Women Living with Symptomatic Uterine Fibroids.’ Results from the study and its focus on individual story prompted her to start Reproductively Yours LLC which focuses on reducing the stigma associated with women’s reproductive narratives through education, story work, creativity and community building. Her greatest desire is for women that currently live or have lived with reproductive health challenges to know that they are not alone.
Welcome to the show Dr. Cooper!
- So you finally gave in to the prompting you felt in your heart, to start your business, what are your dreams for this business? What types of people are you hoping to help? Where do you see your business, your platform, by the end of 2020?
*The cost of IVF is around $10k for each cycle, was that a prompt for you to start your company correct?
Faith and childlessness
Nutrition and self-care
Understanding who I am and who God created me to be
Reproductive health challenges and reproductive health trauma: Reproductively Yours.
- I was intrigued by the list of people and issues you wanted to or have researched.
- Researches reproductive issues--
Afro Caribbean women living with HIV
Being a woman
Being an immigrant
Being a black female immigrant
Majority of women she interviews are Jamaican or Trinidadian
Do these subject matters, issues all tie together? How?
- So, let’s talk about something we and many of our listeners know so much about, fibroids.
We talked about our horrific experiences with fibroids, being in the car or out and having accidents, iron so low it was difficult for you to breathe, needing to have IV iron all dealing with this with no family around nearby, no real support system, then finding out after graduating college that early menopause had set in...
Getting to be able to speak with other women who were going through the same things with fibroids, hysterectomy.
So you got a grant through your college to research women who are dealing with these issues.
During your research, qualitative research, you realized you were also researching yourself!
She was having difficulties, feeling tired and worn out, and realized it was because the content was so close to home, she ended up allowing a friend to interview her and that was when everything started to fall into place.
She read a quote that says ‘ the best research is research where the results lead back to yourself.’--Basal Vander Kolk.
5) Working on writing a paper that includes the arts.
Tell us more about the paper you are looking to write which will include another type of media: art.
6) Did we miss anything? Tell the world!
Mentioned in the podcast:
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