Throughout my life I have been faced with issues that shape me. I often find myself standing up on my handcrafted soap box with my cheerleader megaphone and pouring my heart out for what I believe in. More often than not, I'm left standing all alone. Except for now.
There is a #doularevolution happening. And I'm part of it.
This revolution is shaking the ground all across the country and I am responsible for some of the quakes. See, for many years the role of a doula has been deemed our responsibility to society. Culturally women have gathered around women during childbirth to assist them in this primordial transition from woman to mother. I get it. It's in our nature to nurture. But it's time to evolve.
The destruction of the common misconception is occurring. What is the common misconception? There are a few. First, is the notion that women NEED a doula. Guess what? You don't. Women have been giving birth since the dawn of time and though birthing with the support of a doula has been proven to drastically improve the outcome of the birth, we are not necessary or responsible for it. You WANT a doula. To educate you, to comfort you, to support your birthing and parenting philosophies. You want the luxury we provide. Two, this bizarre idea that doulas should work for free or for pennies. I think this ideal is stemmed from the nature/nurture thing and it's truly devaluing this profession. Yes, you read that correctly. PROFESSION. This is not a hobby. I am not an #oxytocinvampire. I am a ProDoula; and in more ways than one.
So, what's the solution? The plan? My contribution? It's simple.
The solution is to promote doulas across the country as professional, certified, businesswomen and men. Get out from under those prehistoric rocks and value yourself and the women you serve. It's okay to earn a living wage! Doulas work. Hard.
The plan is to increase the living wage of doulas everywhere by elevating the roles of doulas. We are valuable, important and key players in the birth team. We deserve to be compensated for our time. Though you may think the doulas on this money-mission are greedy, take a moment and ponder how they pay for their training, certification, business licenses, insurance, websites, extended education and tools of the trade. Just one client could consume anywhere from 6-46 hours of doula face-time. (sometimes longer!) It is absurd to think she should be away from her family for this time without being paid.
My contribution is to promote this #doularevolution and to shout into my megaphone about how important it is. I may not be the popular vote in my neck of the woods, but like I said before, I'm used to standing alone in my beliefs. The difference is the amount of like-minded support I have from across the globe. Together we are showing the world that we matter. We are making changes. Doulas are succeeding and the ones who balk, badmouth and shame are going to be left trapped in the subterranean bitumen, burned out and broke.
Don't you know it's going to be all right? Yeah. All right!