More and more people across the UK are becoming aware of the demand for - indeed, the need for - Doulas throughout the pregnancy and birthing journey. But have you considered becoming a Doula yourself?
As you may have read in my last blog, " What Is A Postnatal Doula?" many people are still unaware of what a Doula is; so, I am on a mission not only to raise awareness about the role of a Doula but also to train a fabulous army of Postnatal Doulas, who are ready and willing to take the utmost care in assisting parents and families in those crucial and chaotic weeks after a new baby arrives!
According to Health Line, the difference between a Doula and Postnatal Doula is as follows:
Whereas a birth doula provides support during the actual labor and birth, a Postpartum Doula provides non-medical support in these important days and weeks following delivery. This support is emotional and physical, as well as informational. And while the Doula does help with infant care, her primary focus is on the mother and her family.
Indeed, the International Childbirth Education Association describe a Postnatal Doula's job as "Mothering the Mother" - what an honour!
In 2013 I gave birth to our first daughter in a midwife-led unit and made a pretty smooth transition into Motherhood. In 2015 I had a wonderful home water birth for our second daughter. This time, I really struggled with Motherhood and felt extremely lonely and isolated, even though I had the support of my husband and friends around me.
In 2019 I had another wonderful home birth and completed our family with another baby girl. I gifted myself a slow recovery. I observed a slow pace of life for 12 weeks after birth, nested down with my baby girl, ate delicious and nourishing food and kept visitors to a bare minimum. This gave me the best start to Mothering a third time round than I could have wished for. I felt rested, content, happy and myself.
And so began my journey into Postnatal Doula Heaven!
For those considering becoming a Postnatal Doula themselves, I am so excited to be able to offer my Postnatal Doula Training Course starting with our first weekend this year in Devon; Friday 22nd - Monday 25th October 2021. If you are interested in attending please visit our Info Page on the website to find out about how to book and fees.
There are a few things you should consider about becoming a Postnatal Doula:
You may end up working with families with complex needs
You may need to support parents that have had a traumatic birth experience
You will be supporting Fathers, Mothers and partners; bottle feeders and breast feeders - your own stories and opinions need to be forgotten to ensure you can focus on the needs of those you serve
Nutrition is a key element of Postnatal recovery - so start finessing your cooking skills!!
Patience is mandatory - if you've been a parent yourself you will understand the hormonal rollercoaster and the energy dips; if not it doesn't matter I'll help you to get to grips with it - but patience is most definitely a virtue here.