Having a Doula: The Basics
Are you thinking about having a doula at your birth, but you aren’t entirely sure if it is right for you? A lot of expectant families would love to have extra support through their pregnancy and during birth, but are concerned about having someone there who will pass judgement over their choices.
What’s a doula good for?
Those who have heard the term doula don’t always know exactly what doulas do. They know they are there during the birth, but what do they actually do? Doulas are support people. The common definition when you search Google is that doulas offer “emotional, physical, and educational support”. What that is a really wonderful sounding way of saying nothing. Most people cannot define what that phrase means, even many doulas! They will let it roll off their tongue, without really understanding what it means themselves. After all, in a way, the support we offer is intangible and hard to describe. Hard, but not impossible.
A Sports Coach
A lot of people played sports when they were younger, and they identify with the imagery. The education support doulas offer is very similar to the role a coach plays with a sports team. We know the plays, can teach skills, or make recommendations on ways to do something differently during birth. Like coaches, we have access to other resources, have read all the books and websites, and we are able to demonstrate the skills we are describing.
A Wedding Planner
Just as a wedding planner takes care of all of the tiny, physical, details on your wedding day, a doula will take care of all the details during your birth. Do you want someone who can make sure your water cup is always full, or that your ice chips don’t melt too much before being refilled? Your doula can do that. Prenatally, your doula has all the to-do lists, checklists, and your prenatal visits are just like wedding planning meetings.
Professional Best Friend
Your best friend is the person you can share everything with, even the not-so-wonderful thoughts and moments. But sometimes during pregnancy, that isn’t true. Your best friend might be having difficulty with infertility, so complaining about your pregnancy seems a little off-colour. Or perhaps you have found that your friendship has changed just a little bit since you got pregnancy. Or even more likely, your best friend doesn’t live close and can’t be there for everything. Our doulas can step into that role. They can be there to listen to the good, the bad, and the hormonal. They won’t be hurt or upset if you complain about pregnancy. They can be your shoulder to cry on, or your personal cheerleader. And it is always about you, 100%.