Background/Experience that you think is beneficial to Doula work: Supporting women and children comes naturally and is something I have endless energy to learn more about. I have over 15 years of professional childcare experience. I have been a nanny for the better part of the last 13 years and have worked with a variety of ages and needs. My Central Michigan University program of Therapeutic Recreation taught me much about working with special populations as well as how to be a strong leader. I have particular interest and passion around helping families work through obstacles as related to feeding and special needs or circumstances.
What led you to become a Doula?: Upon graduating from Central Michigan University with a degree in Recreational Therapy, I made the decision to move to the greater Chicago area and start a career in childcare. I now live back on the farm I grew up on here in Michigan. I am honored to have had the opportunity to provide care for several families and children over the years, and now get to watch those little ones grow up and make their way off to college and beyond. After than more 13 years of providing childcare services, supporting my friends through pregnancies and the postpartum period, and discovering more about what I was put on this earth to do, I expanded my child and family based career and became a Doula.
What are some positive comments made about you by other people?:
Caring; Thoughtful; Giving; Prompt; Gentle; Patient; Intelligent
What are your favorite pregnancy/parenting resources?: My Friends and Family, My Prodoula Trainers, My ProDoula Training Manuals, How to Talk so Kids will Listen and Listen so Kids will Talk by Joanna Faber and Julie King, The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin, The Nursing Mother's Companion by Kathleen Huggins, Guilt Free Bottle Feeding by Madeleine Morris, The Montessori Method by Maria Montessori, The Good News about Bad Behavior by Katherine Reynolds Lewis, The Five Love Languages of Your Family by Gary Chapman, The Big What Now Book of Learning Styles by Carol Barnier
What thoughts come to mind when you see a pregnant woman or brand new mom?: What comes to me is less of a thought and more of a feeling. The word I use to describe it is WONDER. This feeling is warm and magical; full of expectation and excitement. The beauty that surrounds pregnancy and those first critical weeks after birth is a season that captivates me in a way that inspires me to ensure all women have a chance to be celebrated and supported.
What is the best gift you can give a new mom (as a Doula)?: My gentle and calming demeanor, as well as my faith, plays heavily into how and why I have decided to serve families as a Doula. It is my aim to assist clients in a way that is unique to their needs and desires with non-judgmental and loving practices. Bringing love, confidence, and compassion, my best gift is one of simply entering in; entering into the wonder of all the ups, downs, ins and outs of bringing a new baby into the world and nurturing a growing family.
What is your favorite TV show or movie?: One of my all-time favorite TV shows is, Once Upon a Time.
What is your favorite place to vacation?: I am happy to vacation wherever there is water, warmth, and good company. I enjoy camping locally, adventuring in the northwestern states, as well as tropical places.
What is your favorite food?: Oddly enough-- dill pickles!
What is your favorite way to spend a day off?: My days off are spent either relaxing at home, consuming music and art in some form or fashion, working on home projects, spending time with friends, cooking, and adventuring outdoors.
Who lives in your house?: In 2015, I moved back home to the family farm in Michigan in order to live with my grandmother. She is 93 and I felt it was time to come be with her. She is quite independent, but couldn't live on her own anymore. I brought with me, my sweet lhasa Poo doggy named Rayzen, and my fluffy cat Lilac.