"I honestly have no idea when Monika walked through the door, but it had to be shortly after 9 pm. My contractions were almost unbearable, and I remember thinking at one point that I now understood why women chose to get epidurals. With each contraction I felt the strong urge to vomit, and as each one passed, I realized I was in transition. Monika asked to check me and I agreed, all though I didn’t know when she would get a chance as my contractions seemed to be one on top of the other. We waited through the next one and did an exam, proclaiming me 7cms and 100% effaced on the left side, but with a bit of a lip on the right side.
About ten minutes after Monika had checked me, my body started to push. Pushing was instant relief, but I knew that I still had a lip and I just was not ready. Monika told me to let my body push, but don’t bear down with it. This was the single hardest thing I have ever done. I held my belly with each contraction and stated “No baby, not yet!” At this point I was having a hard time staying focused. I was losing all sense of myself. Everything was so intense, moving so fast, I was starting to panic."
Reading this excerpt from my birth story opened up my eyes to the fact that I was a woman who could have benefited from a Doula at her birth. My daughter was born peacefully at home with the help of my two wonderful midwives, but I still look back on that evening and feel as if I had been missing something. With my family living halfway across the country, I only had my husband to rely on for support during my birth, and unfortunately he fell into the category of husbands who completely lose their sanity when you exclaim your water has broken. My birth was extremely fast, just a hair over two hours, with one midwife who barely made it in time to see her born and another who barely had time to unpack her birthing supplies. My contractions were so strong I barely could remember to breath, my husband had no idea where or what he was supposed to be doing, and in that moment we could have used a third party to bring everything back down to earth.
After my daughter was born, I was on a birth high, and I never wanted it to end. I wanted every woman to feel how I felt about my birth, empowered, strong, fulfilled! Six weeks after my daughter was born, I started my Doula certification course with Birth Art International which I completed in early 2014.
Channeling my own birth experience and the knowledge written down by other strong woman in the birth industry, I am working to give woman a birth that brings tears of joy to their eyes two weeks, two months, or even two years down the road. Every woman deserves a birth they can brag about, and my vow is to make that possible.