From the ancient Greek: “Servant to the Woman.” She assists the woman during the weeks before and after childbirth emotionally and physically, supports her belief in her own strength and encourages the ability to give birth on her own terms. Ideally, each Doula has given birth herself. She does not assume medical duties but focuses entirely on the needs of the woman. The Doula’s role is that of a reliable, sensitive partner. It has been shown that the presence of a Doula positively impacts the birthing process and subsequent mother-child bonding. The duration of childbirth can therefore be shortened, the need for pain medication reduced, and the rate of intervention decreased. Postpartum depression becomes less prevalent.
“One week in bed.
One week close to bed.
One week at home.
One week close to home.”
Traditional Midwife Wisdom
After Henri Nouwen.
A pair of unborn twins are talking in their mother’s womb.
“Tell me, do you actually believe in life after birth?” asks one twin.
“Yes, definitely! In here we grow and become strong for what’s to come outside,” the other twin replied.
“That’s bullshit,” says the first.
“There can’t be any life after birth, what is that supposed to look like?”
“I don’t know that for sure either. But it will certainly be much brighter than here. And maybe we’ll be walking around eating with our mouths.”
“I’ve never heard such nonsense. Eating with your mouth? What a crazy idea. After all, there’s the umbilical cord that feeds us. And how are you going to walk around? The umbilical cord is much too short for that.”
“Yes, I’m sure it will work, it’s just that everything will be a little different.”
“You’re crazy! No one has ever come back from after birth. Life ends with birth. Period.”
“I admit that no one really knows what life will be like after birth. But I do know that we will see our mother then and that she will take care of us.”
“Mother ??? you don’t believe in a mother, do you? Where is she?”
“Well, here – all around us. We live in her and through her. Without her, we couldn’t be at all!”
“Nonsense, I’ve never noticed anything about a mother, so she can’t exist.”
“Yes there is, sometimes when we’re really quiet you can hear her singing. Or feel her caressing our world…”