I have had the privilege of attending births all throughout the lower mainland and also up in the Cariboo region of BC. I have driven in snow storms, flown to births, and done hospital transports. I have seen completely natural births, medicated births and assisted births and worked with both high-risk and low-risk pregnancies. No matter what the circumstances or the outcome I always come out feeling so grateful for the journey I was able to be a part of. I am grateful for everything I have learned from the DONA trainers, to the care providers to the mothers themselves as I feel they have the most to teach us about self worth and perseverance.
My DONA training got off to an amazing start with Kathie Lindstrom as my instructor at Douglas College, the group of Doula trainees were all such amazing women and made the experience that much more rewarding. On day 2 of Doula training things got a bit more exciting as I got called to go to my first birth as a somewhat trained Doula. Kathie my instructor was more than happy to have me go to the birth and I ended up getting to make up the day I missed with a new group of amazing Doula's so I felt my experience got enhanced that much more because of this.
With two young kids of my own I really had to count on family and friends to help me attend births for certification and I am so grateful to them for their contribution in me accomplishing my goal of being certified. I attended births of friends and strangers, first time moms and experienced moms, confident moms and hesitant moms, with OB's and with midwives. The biggest challenge I felt was filling out the labor charts during the labor as it meant I did have to take a moment away from the mom, the other challenge was approaching the nurse or OB to have them sign the forms too as I felt I was being a pain sometimes. But I powered through it. I loved writing birth stories after each birth (so much that I would write two; one for certification and one for the mom I was working with) and I still write birth stories for the births I attend now. Reading all of the books was awesome too as I learned so much and was able to build my library which I am very proud of. Although I completed all of my births for certification in 2012 I still took 18 months to complete all of my paperwork for certification. Being a mom of two young ones was my priority but I got to a point where I felt something was missing and I sat down over a weekend and finally put it all together. I felt so amazing afterwards and was so proud of what I had accomplished and could not wait to send it in.
6 weeks later I got a call from DONA and got to do my phone interview with this amazing lady named Penny who went over my birth forms with me, shared some wisdom and congratulated me on becoming DONA's latest certified Doula! I got a bit teary eyed and was beaming with pride. A few weeks later my package came with my certificate and my name tag and I saw my name in lights...on the DONA website :) It was a journey well worth the time and the effort.