Some time has passed since I made the choice to become a birth doula and went forward in receiving training to do such. This past June I completed the Birth Doula Workshop along with Basics of Breastfeeding and Childbirth Classes. I don’t know that I have ever been a completely active listener during a class, which totaled 24 hours when it was all said and done, but all of this information had my full attention the entire time.
Besides self study at home (continuing reading the required materials) I have not done any further training as life has many seasons and my family is in a new one! We are expecting our third child and I am so relieved to be armed with all of this new information regarding birth and all things you experience with a brand new baby that I didn’t necessarily have before. Along with all of that I have also done a lot of self reflection on how to make this best work for myself and my family so that I can better serve the women and families I hope to work with one day. In my original post on this path towards becoming a doula I quickly mentioned my passions regarding the postpartum period and this still stands true. The days and weeks following the birth of a new baby speaks to me on so many levels which likely stems from my own personal experiences with PPD (postpartum depression) after the birth of our second child. While I view the entire birthing process as a complex and sensitive time and I especially believe this for the time after baby has made their debut. What I did not know at the time, but was hopeful for, is that you can specifically become certified as a Postpartum Doula. Often being a Birth Doula and a Postpartum Doula go hand in hand (which only makes sense because a relationship has been established) but like anything this is not always the case which goes back to clients preferences along with the doulas as well for what services they offer. All of that being said I am now turning my focus towards Postpartum Doula training. I do hope to continue learning on in regards towards certification as a Birth Doula but the unpredictability of birth and stricter demands of being on call for your clients does not fit together well with my lifestyle right now. Am I open to still serving families as a Birth Doula? ABSOLUTELY. It is something I still plan to consider should I be asked to but right now I want to dive into everything postpartum care and what I can do to offer my experience, knowledge and insight regarding this part of parenthood.
Early this Fall I sat down with a friend to speak with her about her own birth preferences which is another area I am more than happy to discuss with expecting parents, and I really enjoyed doing so. What so many parents lack before and after the birth of a child is conversation and real answers to questions. There are so many choices to be made when giving birth, especially in a hospital birth setting, so knowing what you want and being comfortable and confident enough to speak for your needs is key. Counseling on birth and postpartum, before any of that fun actually happens, is an important aspect of being a doula as you get insight for your clients needs and wants and they can get a feel for what services you can offer to them.
If you would like basic information on what a doula is and does please refer back to my previous post titled “My Doula Journey…” Also, if you want more specifics on either a birth doula or postpartum care please feel free to reach out to me personally. I am more than happy to answer questions, help you find resources and point you in the right direction.