Saturday, May 19, 2012

I'm a Doula

For those of you who do not know. I am a DONA trained doula. I plan to get lots more information up those with questions but here is a little intro for you.

Why am I a doula?
 I got the wonderful joy of having a beautiful baby niece before I was ever pregnant. My sister did all the research on all the different angles of childbirth and child rearing. Which was great because when it was my turn a year later my sister had answers for all my questions. She had even gone through CAPPA doula training and was my doula. How great it was to had someone who had recently been through all that I was going to go through. All the questions I had she had resources for, in labor she massaged my legs and encouraged me, she was awake when Kent was asleep, and after my baby was born she made sure I figured out breastfeeding (which can actually be way harder than it looks at first).

We live in a society today where most daughters don't see their mother give birth, they don't see their mother breastfeed, and many don't even see their mothers stay at home and be maternal with their children. That said when many women have children today they don't know what to do or where to start. The process can be very overwhelming because it is not something ingrained in us anymore. Many people don't even perceive it as a normal physiology and instead view it as a pathology. After having my babies, I notice so many mommies struggling with breastfeeding problems that could have been avoided, frustrated with birth augmentations they didn't even know existed until they went in to deliver, and unsatisfied with their birthing experience and hospital stay. Childbirth is an experience that should be joyful and full of great memories not frustration and anxiety. I became a doula because I love to help mothers have a wonderful low stress experience the first time their sweet little baby makes their debut. The more educated you are on the process of childbirth and the more support you have, the less anxious you will be.

What is a Doula?

I would love to tell you what a doula is in my own words but in an effort to get this information up instead of postponing it indefinitely I am going to re post what DONA international says for now.

The following is straight from the website of Dona international. This site is a great resource for lots of other information too, so make sure that you check it out.

What is a doula?
The word "doula" comes from the ancient Greek meaning "a woman who serves" and is now used to refer to a trained and experienced professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to the mother before, during and just after birth; or who provides emotional and practical support during the postpartum period.
Studies have shown that when doulas attend birth, labors are shorter with fewer complications, babies are healthier and they breastfeed more easily.
A Birth Doula
  • Recognizes birth as a key experience the mother will remember all her life
  • Understands the physiology of birth and the emotional needs of a woman in labor
  • Assists the woman in preparing for and carrying out her plans for birth
  • Stays with the woman throughout the labor
  • Provides emotional support, physical comfort measures and an objective viewpoint, as well as helping the woman get the information she needs to make informed decision
  • Facilitates communication between the laboring woman, her partner and her clinical care providers
  • Perceives her role as nurturing and protecting the woman's memory of the birth experience
  • Allows the woman's partner to participate at his/her comfort level
A birth doula certified by DONA International is designated by the initials CD(DONA).
Research evidence shows that the quality services of a postpartum doula can ease the transition that comes with the addition of a baby to a family, improve parental satisfaction and reduce the risk of mood disorders.

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