Did you know that North Dallas Doula Associates has been serving the DFW area for over a decade? Would you be surprised if I told you, I really do carry a "little black book" with all my client information with me at all times?
Well, the truth is, I do!
So lets talk about the who's who on the doula client list....
I have meet some of the most interesting, accomplished, and educated people around the world working as a doula. I have been the doula for professional athlete's, musicians, TV personalities and celebrities. I have witnessed the birth of families in many cultures and religions and consider it an honor to be present and open hearted during their traditions and religious rituals.
Did you know that women of the Muslim faith can only be attended by females at her birth? Although, male doctors can be used, the majority of the attendees will be female. Some Muslim fathers do not attend the birth although religious teachings do not prohibit his attendance.
Breastfeeding , in the Muslim faith is highly promoted via the Quran. Some mothers are given ratb, which is a kind of date said to improve milk quality.
Muslim fathers will recite an Adhan (call to prayer) in their infants right ear so that it is the first words he/she will here post delivery.
In the Orthodox Jewish faith a women will enter the ritual status of 'niddah' when certain signs of labor approach. This status has implications for the ability for the husband to provide physical assistance and/or be present throughout the delivery. Niddah basically means husband and wife cannot touch once labor has begun. In this scenario the doula becomes the mothers only means of physical support.
In over 100 traditional Jewish births, I have seen many adaptations to these rituals, but have enjoyed learning and loving through each and every one....and did I mention the food that usually comes along with these families. YUM!
There are over 100 gay and lesbian couples that grace the pages of the black book. Witnessing these men and women become mothers and fathers is one of true triumph. Learning about he struggles, time, finances, and prayers that have allowed them to receive the gift of a child is beauty beyond belief.
I have attended teen births, surrogate deliveries, twin, triplets, and adoption births.
I have been beside a mother who is delivering a baby we know will be born still or with a disorder that will not allow for life after birth. When I look back and read those names on the pages I cannot help but feel my eyes fill with tears and my heart with hurt....
Every single one of them takes space in my soul.
My client list has been privileged to include the names of many labor and delivery nurses, doulas, midwives, and obstetricians. There is no greater compliment than being asked to attend the birth of a colleague. They have seen you work and trust you to be beside them during the most intimate of experiences. This is confirmation that you have found your true calling.
I am in love with the diversity that soaks through the pages of my worn out book. I have been the doula to 6 women this year who have come from other parts of the world; Iraq, Mexico City, Israel, The Dominican Republic, China, and India to birth their babies. I am filled with gratitude for the chance to serve woman outside of my 'backyard" and know that I played a small role in their own unique journey to motherhood.
I look forward to reading and filling the pages of my client list for years to come and hope that there will never be a day that I stop learning from the amazing women who fill my book and support my life's work.