Background/Experience that you think is beneficial to Doula work: I am an E-RYT 200 yoga teacher and Pilates instructor. My work through yoga and Pilates – understanding of body movement, breath work, mindfulness – has been extremely beneficial and translates well to my work as a doula.
What led you to become a Doula?: I completed a pre-natal yoga teacher training and met a doula who led the anatomy section of the course. I was fascinated; she had so much knowledge! I wanted to know how I could follow a path similar to hers and be able to empower women to feel strong and beautiful in their bodies during pregnancy. I think like most women and those around me, that so much information about what really happens during pregnancy and birth is shrouded in a lot of mystery until you find yourself on the journey to motherhood. I wanted to be part of a community of professionals who provide unconditional support to women through this big change and transition in life. To me, there is nothing more powerful than women supporting other women to be themselves and feel confident in their decisions. Part of being a doula is creating the space for another to feel heard, understood, informed, welcomed and accepted just as they are.
What are some positive comments made about you by other people?:
I’m often told that I have a sunny disposition and positive outlook. Which is true, I always try to see the glass half full! I’m also told that I am very open-minded, non-judgmental and a good listener. I’m always happy to hear that I possess these qualities that we all have if we just work on cultivating them. I have a friend that often reminds me that traits of compassion, kindness, gratitude, empathy, patience are just like the muscles in our body and the more we use them, the stronger they become, and I think that is 100% true. I’ve also been told that I’m great at hands-on adjusts and massages!
What are your favorite pregnancy/parenting resources?: There are countless ways to access information online. However, I think some of the strongest resources can be connecting with other women who are either experiencing the birth journey with you, doulas or other childbirth educators. The power of in-person community is not to be underestimated!
What thoughts come to mind when you see a pregnant woman or brand new mom?: Wow, what an amazing journey mixed with joy, excitement, maybe a healthy dose of fear of the unknown. Everyone's experience is going to be different. So rather than putting any labels on things, I always greet a new mom or mom-to-be with a healthy dose of kindness and an openness to be as you are!
What is the best gift you can give a new mom (as a Doula)?: As a doula, the best gift you can give a new mom is reminding her that it's okay to take some time for yourself when you can. That could something as simple as having someone help around the house or watch your newborn so that you can catch up on some much needed sleep. Self-care can often go overlooked or fall to the bottom of the to-do list when you're caring for another, but it is so important to recharge so that you can be there for the important people in your life and for yourself.
What is your favorite TV show or movie?: It is really hard to pick just one. Growing up I loved Jim Henson's Labyrinth which probably fueled my love for David Bowie. :)
What is your favorite place to vacation?: Somewhere warm with plenty of nature, ideally near the ocean and a beach.
What is your favorite food?: Anything green. Vegetables!
What is your favorite way to spend a day off?: Reading a book, practicing yoga, sharing a good meal with friends/family, spending time outdoors, taking my dog to the park, painting, writing or some type of creative expression.
Who lives in your house?: My lovable and quirky dog, Berkeley.