I started my doula journey with my DONA training in November 2012. Over the past year I've learned so much. I've grown as a person and a doula. I've laughed and cried, and shared some really special moments with some really special people. I've shared my journey with doula friends and my family. I've been invited by couples to share one of the most intimate and intense times of their lives. I've seen babies being born.
I thought it would be interesting to take a look back at my first year in business, my first year as a birth doula. What did it look like?
Tiny Feet Doula Services was born and so far I've done 7 interviews and have been hired 4 times. I supported 4 couples and saw 4 babies being born. I spent approximately 36 hours at births and 10 hours supporting my clients postpartum. I went to 4 DoulaCARE meetings, attended an information session on vaginal breech birth, completed a breastfeeding workshop, and went on a retreat.
I wrote 15 posts about doula-ing on this blog and read 7 books about pregnancy, labour, childbirth, and breastfeeding. For my business I created a website and a Facebook page, and created all the documents I'd need. I fill out paperwork for my DONA certification every time I attend a birth.
I've been thinking a bit about this year. I have some goals for 2014. I'd like to continue to support one client a month, maybe more if it works for my family. I'd like to attend a childbirth education class (a requirement for certification), and I'd like to get all my paperwork completed to submit my certification package. I will continue attending DoulaCARE meetings and seeking out other learning opportunities. I'm going to take a close look at my paperwork and make adjustments where necessary and I'm working on a resource list to share with clients and other doulas.
I'm very happy being a doula. It is truly a rewarding career and doesn't feel like work. Birth is work. Supporting birth is my calling. Here's to a fun and busy 2014!
Tiny Feet Doula Services on the web, on Facebook, and on DoulaMatch.net.