Welcome to our third week of Feature Friday. Today we’d love to introduce you to Laura. Laura is a birth and postpartum doula she’s been kind enough to share some information about herself. Again we’d like to thank Laura for sharing her expertise.
How do you help people?
I am a birth and postpartum doula and parent educator. I support people as they become families, whether they are first time parents, or welcoming their fifth child. I support all people, regardless of background, beliefs, sexuality or gender. Most of my work is birth work, helping people to prepare to birth their baby, as well as hands-on care and emotional support during the birth. I provide much needed postpartum support in people’s homes; helping to tidy, cook, offer sibling engagement, and of course newborn care. I also provide parent education via workshops and one-on-one. One of the most popular parent education services I provide is potty training support. I love helping parents find success in this important milestone!
What’s your favourite part about what you do?
My favourite part of my job is sharing the incredible spectrum of emotions that surround births and parenting. Sometimes, it is a small moment, that ripples out to heart-exploding joy. Other times, I bear witness to incredible shifts in people’s lives. Sharing in people’s tiny victories or huge challenges is really humbling, and I am left driving home with a profound sense of gratitude. Snuggling newborns isn’t half bad, either!
What are some of your hobbies?
I have two boys that I love to spend time with. Our favourite activities are playing in the backyard and going for bike rides. I play the piano and love to play some oldies and (badly) sing along. I also love reading (historical fiction is my jam) and watching movies with my partner. We are majorly into nerdy sci-fi, and I love anything the BBC makes. I also love to dance. Right now, I’m taking a ballet class for adults that has been so challenging, yet fun. There hasn’t been a class yet where I haven’t walked away sore, but with a full cup.
What piece of advice would you give mothers?
Take up space. Be heard. Be seen. Demand that of your partners, your parents, your children…the world. Because you are so SO worth it. You are worth asking for help. Worth some time alone. Worth keeping boundaries. I don’t say this flippantly or mean to imply that it’s easy. It’s HARD. But you can do it. Motherhood can easily slip into martyrdom, and I think that happens because people stop feeling worth the fight. But I want to tell all mothers, all people, you are worth it. Oh, and any other advice that random strangers give you? Feel free to smile, nod, and go on doing whatever you think is right.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Five years seems like an eternity!!! I hope that my business is thriving and that I might have a business partner or collective, to share the workload. My goal is to save a bit from each birth I attend, to create a scholarship for people who might want a doula but are restricted by funds. In my personal life, I hope I feel strong, calm and grateful. I hope to take a family vacation and find time to see the world through my children’s eyes. I am hoping to go back to school to get my masters, which could open a lot of new doors for Becoming Family Services.
Is there anything else you would like to say?
If you are considering having a doula at your birth, I encourage you to meet with some. Most offer free consultations to know if they are a good fit for your family. Even if you are birthing with the support of midwives, as doulas and midwives provide different support. Although I may be biased…I think if you can find a great fit, a doula is a FANTASTIC idea for prenatal, birth and postpartum support. And let’s face it, I’ve never heard anyone say they had “too much postpartum support”.
I consider myself very lucky to be invited into families’ lives. Whether I am involved in supporting potty learning, or a birth, it is an honour to be trusted in your space, and one that I take seriously. I believe that we only rise by helping others up, and this is one way I can help give a lift 🙂