Monday, March 26, 2012

Celebrate World Doula Week!

March 22 through 28 is World Doula Week annually. The week is chosen because March 22 is the Spring Equinox which represents the renewal of fertility in cultures across the globe. Let's celebrate doulas and the gift they are to women, get the word out and see to it that every woman is supported and attended to before, during, and after her birth!

Here's the deal. No woman should suffer in childbirth. No woman should be left alone during childbirth. No woman should be forced, coerced or expected to undergo any intervention or procedure she doesn't understand or doesn't want for her birth. Every woman should be informed about and empowered in childbirth and have the opportunity to remember it as a positive, beautiful experience for the rest of her life. Every woman should be cared for and attended to during her postpartum period as well.

You know who ensures that happens? Doulas.

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Having a doula present at your birth:
  • Reduces the incidence of c-sections     
  • May shorten the length of labor     
  • Reduces epidural and analgesic requests     
  • Increases breastfeeding initiation and continuation    
  • Increases mother’s satisfaction of birth experience     
  • Can reduce the incidence of postpartum mood disorders    
  • Increases new parents’ confidence in the care of their newborn
Who wouldn't want any or all of those things?

If you're pregnant, consider hiring a doula as you interview care providers and birth locations. Here are some resources to help you in this endeavor:
  • Tulsa Doula Directory - Honeybee Mama's list of Tulsa Doulas.
  • DONA International - More information about doulas, resources for parents, families, childbirth educators, etc. You can click on "hire a doula" to find a doula in your area.
  • DONEOK - Doulas Of Northeast Oklahoma - Find a doula in the Tulsa Metro Area.
  • DACO Inc - Doula Association of Central Oklahoma - Find a doula in the Oklahoma City Metro Area.
If you have experienced the benefits of a doula at your birth, or hired a postpartum doula to assist you as a new parent (or wish you had!), consider giving that gift to someone else. Who says you can't hire a doula for your friend or family member? Consider going in on the gift with others. I guarantee you she will remember and treasure that gift far more than if you had purchased that stroller or crib she registered for!

I love my job as a doula. I am passionate about it. It is a gift and a privilege like no other in my life. It is a blessing to share this gift with others and support women, and I wouldn't trade it for the world!

Happy World Doula Week, lovies! And get ready because International Doula Month is right around the corner in May! DONA International is celebrating it's 20th Birthday!

Love and Honey,
Missy

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