Friday, March 12, 2010
Doulas working through the nights
This past week, I was at two labors as a doula. The first one was with friends with their second baby and other birth was a first time mom. I love birth. There is so much to learn and supporting moms during this day of their life is so rewarding.
Doula work is emotionally investing and its good to know when to call in the reserves. :) I came home at 11 this morning after 31 hours with my doula client, took a HARD CORE 2 hour nap, woke up, picked up the kiddies and had a good afternoon and evening. We went for a walk down the road then had Matt (Katie's husband) and kids over for dinner, as Katie was up at the hospital with our doula client. I feel SO LUCKY to have Katie as a co-doula. It makes all the difference in the world to know that if I get tired or need support or advice, she is there.
One of the things I love about doula work is the relaxed nature of it--birth isn't necessarily a relaxed experience for the mom in labor, but as a support person, the rest of the world continues on, almost in slow motion as we support mom in labor. Its almost like time stalls. Contraction after contraction comes-conversation incurs between the attendees in the room. Food runs are made. Bathroom breaks taken. Naps squeezed in by support people and mom. I used to think that the doula isn't allowed to nap, but at long labors, its important for all the support partners to take power naps. Sometimes as I'm sitting at moms side, and she is sleeping between contractions I"ll close my eyes with her between contractions. Even a few seconds of rest makes a difference. We find a rhythm to labor and each labor has its own rhythm. Some are faster. Some are louder-more music, or talking. Some are relaxed. Some are busy. They all have their own energy and rhythm. I never will know what kind of rhythm the day and night will take until labor is well underway.
Now I'm off to bed to get some rest...so I can get ready for skiing tomorrow with Patrick! yeah!