My first born and why I am a doula.
My pregnancy, birth and postpartum was the most transformative experience of my life.
I had always yearned to be a mother. I was that little girl putting pillows up my dress to create a ‘baby bump’. Always wrapping up my babies and pushing a pram around the backyard.
I worked with children for several years in a day care before becoming pregnant. I LOVED being able to care and nurture the children in my care.
“You will be the best Mum”,
“You are going be amazing at motherhood”. I was praised.
Being pregnant, feeling life grow within my womb was such a beautiful sensation. I remember laying awake at night feeling my baby move. Imaging what life would be like to have my baby earthside. I meditated. I read Ina May Gaskins ‘Spiritual Midwifery’ cover to cover several times, I researched stages of labour, active birthing positions, I asked my midwife a long list of questions each visit and was empowered to make decisions. My husband Luke and I attended a ‘Calmbirth’ workshop. I was ready to experience birth with an open heart.
“I had such a terrible birth” I was told.
“Good luck with that!” was the response I received after sharing my desire to experience a medication/intervention free water birth.
I experienced an empowering medication/intervention free water birth. I was on that much of an oxytocin high I happily welcomed visitors into our home from day 1. Visitors for 2 weeks straight.
“Aren’t you lucky” was the response I received when sharing my birth story.
“I didn’t have enough milk so I just gave them the bottle” I was told while settling my fussy baby after a breastfeed.
Once the visitors left I felt alone. The walls become higher and the cries of my first born became louder. My old self became further away. I felt ashamed of feeling unhappy with newborn life. I felt ungrateful for experiencing a ‘bad day’. I was ment to be “The best Mum” and be “amazing at motherhood”. What I was experiencing was far from the expectation.
My mother’s group and close friends with children were my happy place. I wasn’t alone. The more I was honest with my experience the more I realized that I wasn’t alone. I was nurtured by the mothers around me. I still am.
My first born gave me a wealth of experience. Experience as a women and a mother. My first born celebrated her 3rd birthday yesterday. I am 3 years into my mothering journey.
I have chosen to be a doula to fill the gap. From my experience there is a lack of positive conversations around birth. Lack of positive support during postpartum and lack of community for mothers. I have chosen to be a doula to fill the gaps and provide a positive support for women during their transition and journey through motherhood.