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Supporting and helping women through pregnancy, labor and the postpartum period is honestly not something I ever thought I would do. It has been a personal journey of healing as well as a journey of learning. It started in February of 2010 when I found out that my husband and I were expecting an unexpected blessing. The pregnancy went smoothly, I read a few books, my husband and I attended childbirth classes and I found a provider at Gerber Memorial Hospital in Fremont, Michigan who was supportive of our desire for a unmedicated, vaginal birth.

In September of 2010, on the date that my husband and I were planning to be the last before baby came, my water broke in Target, three weeks before my due date. We attempted to finish our date and attend the movie showing that we had already bought tickets for, but I was too afraid that I would leave a puddle in the seat for the next customer. We headed home, called our hospital and took their suggestion to come in. Once we got there we found out that baby had turned to a breech position. We talked about our options and asked about an external version, but because there was no water surrounding baby the doctor did not want to attempt it. I was headed for an unplanned cesarean section.

The recovery was hard, both physically and emotionally. It took a while for me to accept the fact that even though it wasn’t in my plans to have a cesarean section it was God’s. While in surgery it was discovered that I had a uterine septum, something that isn’t usually even looked for until one has miscarried several times. Eighteen months later in March of 2012, after visits with specialists and ultrasounds we decided to have the septum removed and surgery was performed.

labor

In July of 2012 I found out that I was expecting again . This time I was not only planning for a unmedicated birth, I was planning for a vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC). I read and researched more than I ever had before, I learned stats and new medical terms, I found a supportive provider, again at Gerber Memorial Hospital, now Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial and I hired a doula.

In March of 2013 I had a unmedicated VBAC with a great support team. My doula was truly a blessing and my husband and I don’t know if we could have done it without her. She was a great comfort and presence during my intense hours of labor.

My doula sparked interest in my heart about helping other women, it was subconscious at first. I read more books and encouraging stories. It wasn’t until February of 2014 that, while on a date with my husband, I vocally expressed interest in becoming a doula. He encouraged me to look into training and I was directed The Center for the Childbearing Year in Ann Arbor, Michigan. There I started my doula training and I am still currently working towards my certification.

It is my desire to help other women achieve the births that they desire. I want women to feel strong and empowered in their labor and delivery, not like someone in need of rescuing.

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