This year’s theme for World Doula Week is #doulasbenefiteveryone.
World Doula Week’s Facebook page posts a challenge for each day of the week, which celebrates doulas all over the world as they empower families during childbirth. One of the challenges is to tell a brief story about how being a doula has benefited me in my own life.
I can think of several benefits such as having a career that utilizes my passions around foundation, providing an income that helps me pay for my children’s college education, and contributing to something bigger than myself, hopefully improving the birth world.
But I think one of the best benefits I have received from being a doula is the work that has occurred in my own heart.
I believe that being a doula has challenged me to become a more compassionate person with less judgement for others.
I like to think that before I became a doula, I was a pretty compassionate person, but I am not naive to the fact that I need to continually change and grow. Working with people during pregnancy and childbirth means I’m there with them during some very intimate times. This means that I see them for who they are at their core and I interact with them as they make choices based on their beliefs and experiences.
Meeting and working with people, in many ways different that me, has broadened my view, made me a better listener, and helped me to be less judgmental. With each encounter, I see people who just want to do what’s best for themselves and their families, and be supported in those decisions.
I have benefited from being a doula because I have been challenged to expand my mind and think about things in a new way.
I am thankful to each family that has added to my story, while I have been adding to theirs.