26 Jul Becoming A Doula
I have found that most people choosing to become a doula initially think it’s about getting to enjoy babies, or joining some sort of movement, like an activist does. I thought this too, when I was first becoming a doula.
And over the past 10-12 years, immersing myself in supporting others during pregnancy, during labor and birth, and during early parenthood is that becoming a doula hasn’t been what I first expected.
Becoming a doula is both a momentary becoming and a years long transition into a way of being.
–> you take a professional training and then you are a doula. A professional, ready to start your business and serve clients. It’s a “one day you aren’t, and the next day you are” type of thing. You have become a doula.
–> you also transition into a state of ‘becoming’ a doula who looks at life and people differently a little more each day. You will find yourself on a learning curve that places you in unfamiliar life territory, relating to people in a lot of new ways and learning to appreciate many perspectives you may not have considered before. It creates whole new kind of open mindedness.
I have learned that becoming a doula is not about promoting certain choices, methods, or beliefs over others. It is not about my own experiences with pregnancy, birth, or parenting. It’s certainly not about what I felt and feel are best for my family.
Becoming a doula is NOT about decreasing the number of epidurals used or cesarean births experienced. Is it not about increasing rates of breastfeeding or making parenting look a certain way. It is not about promoting planned home birth over planned hospital birth. It is not about increasing or decreasing certain statistics. The families I work with are so much more than a statistic.
Being a doula is not about finding people who share my beliefs and personal philosophies. It is about supporting families as they grow and define (their own) beliefs and philosophies.
Becoming a doula professionally, and ‘becoming’ a doula continually has led to a level of personal growth I would not have achieved outside of this profession. It’s given me an appreciation for the differences among us, unlike any other influence in life. I am a better person because I have become a doula.
So I ask you. Do you want to become a doula? What is your motivation for considering this line of work? If it is because of a personal vendetta or activist oriented action, then I implore you to take that passion to its appropriate place, which is not the birth room or the new parent’s home.
If you want to become a doula because you seek to see more families receive support in their own unique journeys…then lets talk. I can help you with that!
Seattle | Tacoma | JBLM | Olympia