Ellen Huffmyer and I are the newly appointed co-coordinators of “Heart & Hands” Doula Service. We are very excited and happy about this new promotion. We hope to do more to help new mothers with births and breastfeeding and other doula support. We are starting a Beechview Breastfeeding Cafe and a special interest mothering group.
I wonder how many births Orson Welles observed? I would guess none. I have never yet seen a birth in which the baby being born was alone. There is always at least, his mother. Beyond her, there are usually many people caring for both mom and baby. No one is alone at their birth. Even if he is referring to being alone in the birth canal, it is his mother’s body and she is with him every step of the way.
I can’t speak for death. Many people have loved ones around them as they die. Some die alone. But no one is born alone. No one I supported as doula labored alone. We humans crave support and companionship. Doulas enjoy being a part of the miracle of birth.
September 2011 was a banner month for me as a doula. I was privileged to attend five births in September. Each birth had its beauty and interest for me. Each birth was the unfolding and beginning of a baby’s life. Each baby started its nursing relationship with its mom. None of these babies were born alone. Not one.
Buddhism regards birth as one of the four inescapable sufferings of human life. The others being: old age, sickness and death. I hope that I can ease the passage of birth for the mother or baby. I try to help the father and family through the birth. I assist mom and baby with breastfeeding. If I can help make this transition from pregnancy to family life a satisfying one, that I have done my job as a doula. Then I feel that I have added to the happiness of the world, one birth and one family at a time.
Save the Date! March 24th, 2012 the 12th Annual Family Centered Maternity Care Conference will be at the Doubletree Hotel in Monroeville. Featuring renowned homebirth midwife, Tonya Brooks of The Natural Birth and Women’s Center in southern California. She has caught over 5000 babies, and has devoted her career to making homebirth a safe option for mothers and babies, as well as researching risks and benefits of modern obstetric practice. It should be an amazing, and informative conference.