ProDoula Newsletter, Happy Spring! volume 1, issue 8
Happy Spring Everyone! I hope that you are starting to take advantage of the beautiful weather! I love to see the flowers and trees blooming; to me, it feels like a great time for a new beginning. It’s a great time to re-evaluate and re-start up if you haven’t gotten where you want to be yet.
I hope you are coming to the Speak Your Truth 2017 Conference in Kansas City, MO – I’d love to see you there! This is such a wonderful time to connect with other ProDoulas, learn a ton, have a great time and be inspired!
Last month we added 110 new members to the ProDoula family. Welcome home! Looking forward to all that will join us this month!!
A gentle reminder to renew your membership – your membership date is always on the anniversary of your first training. Also, don’t forget to send me your web page questionnaire so that you can be on the ProDoula Website – this is a great perk of being a member – ProDoula’s website receives a ton of visitors and we want them to find you there!
Remember, we are ALWAYS here for you whether it is by phone or email! But we love most when you call as it gives us an opportunity to catch up!
Lastly, we have been putting a ton of focus on our YouTube channel and have created some incredible learning opportunities there! Please go subscribe to our channel so you don’t miss out!
Have a great month!!!
ProDoula, Office Manager
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If the demands of labor doula work won’t yet fit into your lifestyle, or if you’re looking for an additional service to add to your business that allows you the convienence of scheduling, becoming a childbirth educator is a great way increase your revenue and establish yourself as the expert in your community.
As a labor doula, teaching childbirth education classes allows you the opportunity to support expecting families through in-depth education. Attending childbirth education classes is a right of passage for many families, and it’s often the first introduction they have to the other supportive services that are available to them such as labor and postpartum doula care and placenta encapsulation.
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I’ve been a doula for a long time. You could say that my doula career is old enough to vote and it’s closing in on being able to drink, legally of course.
I wanted to take a minute and discuss a discourse I often see among many in the doula community that has been troubling me. The conversation surrounds the idea that we are responsible for educating our clients on all the possible risks, benefits, outcomes and that this is our responsibility as doulas. It is an expected part of our job.
While providing information is a part of what we do, forcing information on clients is not. Let’s use an often discussed situation as an example.
Mary is 39 weeks, and at her prenatal visit with her provider, an induction is scheduled for 40 weeks. Mary calls her doula later that day to update her on her prenatal visit and notifies the doula of the induction date next week.
ProDoula teaches that we are to provide non-judgmental support to clients. This means that it is not our place to push our opinions or judgments onto them. We are to support them in their choices, even when we disagree. How we respond beyond that depends on the client and their personality style.
The discussion may look something like one of the following scenarios and always depends on what the client is saying to us and the context of that message:
It is not a part of our role to assume that the client has not made an informed choice.
I often hear many doulas say, “I would educate her on the risks and benefits of induction so that she can make an informed decision.” What this translates into is “I only support clients who make informed decisions, and I am the measure by which informed will be judged.”
When we bestow upon ourselves the responsibility for making sure that clients are “informed” according to our personal standards, we set ourselves up as the judge, jury and responsible party for how their birth turns out. When doulas assume responsibility for the outcome of their client’s births, they lose the ability to provide non-judgmental support and ultimately set themselves up for burnout.
There is a place and time for in-depth discussions about risks/benefits and alternatives:
When the client requests this information. Clients who hire a doula realize that we are well informed on topics relating to childbirth. They are capable of asking for more information.
When you are teaching expectant individuals as a childbirth educator. It’s important to keep the roles of the doula and the educator separate. These are two different hats, and while there is a crossover between the two roles in terms of information, the intent of the relationship is inherently different.
Students come to childbirth education classes to learn their options, become informed on topics related to pregnancy and childbirth and are actively seeking and pursuing education.
Doula clients are seeking support. While we also provide information and hands-on care, the intent of the relationship is more personal, more intimate and not educationally focused in the same way childbirth education classes are.
When in doubt:
Angela Horn – ProDoula Labor Doula Trainer
Owner – Tucson Doulas
“If you’ve ever thought about becoming a Childbirth Educator, I highly recommend taking ProDoula’s Certified Childbirth Educator Exam! This comprehensive exam was exactly what I needed to feel prepared to begin teaching classes right away. Teaching classes is a wonderful complement to my doula career and so much fun! ProDoula provides the support and encouragement that is helpful to complete the exam in a timely manner. With the continuous support of ProDoula, I walk into my classes feeling like a true expert– qualified and confident!”
Northwest PA Doulas
May has come and once again the annual No Child Wet Behind event will be hosted in over 20 cities across the United States.
One in three families with diaper-aged children will experience diaper need.
To find a No Child Wet Behind Diaper Drive and 5k Family Fun Run near you please CLICK HERE
What is the most embarrassing thing that’s happened at a training?
At a training in North Carolina, I squatted to show a labor position and my pants split from front to back! Thank goodness it was in ProDoula’s early days when I stayed with my Liaison and trainings were held in their homes! Having my suitcase close by was a lifesaver!
Share with us the moment you realized the importance of doula work.
At the very first birth I attended, I knew that support was important. I was training as a peri-natal technician at my local hospital when a teenager in labor came in during transition with a less than supportive boyfriend. The support of a loved one would have made a huge difference to her. It wasn’t until I was doing this work professionally and seeing the positive impact it was having on my clients AND the ripple effect of positive change it was having on providers, nursing staff and hospital administrators, that I realized exactly how important this work was.
Share with us an epiphany you had at your own doula training.
When I took my first doula training, I had already attended over 100 births. What I found most fascinating was learning about oxytocin and adrenalin and their impact on the birthing person. Internalizing this new knowledge gave me great perspective on my own birth experiences.
C A K E, duh!
There is a time for every single color. My favorite depends on the day!
Must have item when traveling to a training.
The one thing that I always have with me when I travel is my computer. It has The Rhythm Within on it and I need it to fall asleep in a hotel by myself.
As a trainer, you spend a lot of time on airplanes traveling from training to training. What is your favorite thing to do when sitting on a plane?
This is where I write! Whether it is web copy that I’ve been hired to write for an up and coming doula business, a blog or my own personal journal, I write. It heals me and keeps me centered.
Spring has sprung and with it a seasonal side dish that is one of our favorites!
This delightfully simple and quick side dish is the perfect addition to any springtime meal.
What you’ll need:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Snap off the bottom ends of the asparagus. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat thoroughly. Arrange in a single row on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Roast for 20-25 minutes until crisp but tender.
Try adding a squeeze of your favorite citrus to add an extra kick.