Who's a Doula?
Although the Doula profession has only existed since the 1960’s, women have been filling that role for as long as humans have been giving birth. “Doula” is a Greek word that basically means “woman servant”. In a sense, if you have sat by the bedside of a laboring friend or sister, held her hand, rubbed her back, you were acting as a Doula. And probably even more of us have listened to a new mom cry or air her frustrations over a difficult transition to parenthood, watched her baby while she has slept or taken her a meal. In a sense, you have been a Postpartum Doula for that woman. We are wired to give, share and love with our whole being, and doing that is the heart of a Doula in its purest sense.
My friend and former client Chrissie Demarais demonstrates this beautifully. I had the privilege of being present at the birth of her son Jack in December. Planning to breastfeed, Chrissie encountered several unexpected obstacles: Jack’s recessed chin and small mouth made it difficult for him to get a good latch, a major oversupply for Chrissie which had its unique challenges, and a terrible bout of mastitis about 3 weeks postpartum. She was ready to give up! Long story short, with the help of a Lactation Consultant, my help implementing the L.C.’s advice as Chrissie’s Postpartum Doula, a supportive husband and stubborn determination, Chrissie not only made it work, but has become a champion for the cause! She is always ready to assist new moms and peers with breastfeeding struggles. She has made the most of her oversupply and not only exclusively breastfeeds Jack but has donated gallons of breastmilk to babies who would not receive its benefits otherwise. Chrissie has even started her own business of creating Lactation Desserts full of ingredients designed to boost milk production in breastfeeding moms! She is using that business platform to host “LACTATION NATION” this Saturday afternoon. Although Chrissie does not consider herself a Doula and has not trained professionally for that role, I can’t think of a better example of a woman serving women. I am honored to be invited to be a part of “LACTATION NATION”. Come see us at Restore House (924 S Main St, Broken Arrow) stop by my table and let’s figure out if there’s a way I can serve you.