In my life, I’m extremely blessed to have my dream job. In many ways it doesn’t feel quite like a job at all but more like an adventure doing what I love. I get a lot of interesting questions when people find out that I’m a doula. Sometimes people aren’t even sure what a doula is, or does.
I’m sure I could tell you a detailed explanation of what it means to be a doula; the bare bones of what my role entails. I provide informational, emotional, and physical support. I provide parents with two prenatal visits, two postpartum visits, and support during labour. I’m on call 24/7 for weeks at a time.
But what does that actually tell you? Not a whole lot really. So here are some things that go along with my job, the amazing parts as well as the not so amazing parts.
What’s it like to be a doula?
Seeing the sun rise, sometimes twice.
Getting the call that a mom is in labour, getting my bag packed and ready as I leave.
Having my ‘Doula bag’ travel with me everywhere, filled with small comforting items like a heat pad, rebozo, snacks, massage lotion, and more.
Downloading obnoxiously loud ringtones that will wake me up in the middle of the night, as well as annoy anyone I’m around.
Making sure I always have gas in the car.
Mocking tv shows that portray birth horribly.
Knowing way too much about vaginas, uteruses, and female anatomy, to the point that all your friends and coworkers ask your advice.
Ordering a pair of crocheted boobs off of etsy for breastfeeding technique demonstration.
Knowing which chiropractor in town will work with pregnancy.
Spoon feeding a labouring women ice chips between contractions.
Knowing techniques to help turn a breech baby.
Applying counter pressure hip squeezes every 4 minutes for over ten hours as a mom labours.
Guiding a partner how to be more involved, and watching as they work together.
Seeing moms roar their babies out.
Holding a hand when things don’t go as planned.
The look on a mom’s face as she holds her baby for the first time, and the proud look of a father as he watches them both.