Doula Diaries: A week in the life...(birthdays, birthdays, everywhere)

Christine Ghali, Certified Doula

Ever wonder what it's like to be a doula with a family? I'll tell ya! Welcome to my doula life! My main characters are Mike, my superhero of a husband and father to our three children; Jace, my 11 year old guitar-playing, x-box loving, sharp-witted son; Kaia, my 9 year old sunshine daughter; and Ty, my 26-month old whirlwind of a toddler. And then there's me! I've been doulaing since 2011 and have attended more than 70 births to date and have taught over 100 couples in my childbirth classes. This is my full-time gig! With three children and a doula business, private and group childbirth education classes, evening sports and afterschool homework, staying at home as a full-time mom and also creating space for my own health and fitness, there is, as they say, never a dull moment.

Here I sit, on Sunday afternoon, lazing about as Mike has the boys out fishing and Kaia plays the day away with her BFF. The weeks are just flying by, especially as it is "birthday season" in our family. We have 5 birthdays in our immediate family between the first week in October and the first week in December, plus extended family birthdays, Halloween, and Thanksgiving. That means non-stop preparations for this Mama. I intentionally keep things as easy as I can, while still making the FUN happen. We all need more fun. It's good for our immune systems :) It also means that today I am intentionally taking a rest, taking a break from all the FUN and letting my body and mind slow down and rest. It is greatly needed!

Where does work fit into this time of year? Yeah. It's hard. But, I love what I do and am continually learning how to prioritize and honor the truly important pieces in this life. Sometimes, it's listening to a pregnant mama-to-be on the phone, or fitting in an in-person hands-on Spinning Babies lesson; sometimes it's dropping everything to attend a birth; sometimes it's writing a blog because it feels good to my soul. We all need to do more things that feel good to our soul.

Monday, 10/17/16: At the end of the day full of caring for Ty, picking up Kaia, helping with homework, plus making dinner, keeping Jace on track with homework, and getting everyone fed, clean and cleaning up the kitchen, I sat down to a luxurious hour long phone call with some dear clients. It was our 37-week doula prenatal phone call where we discussed their birth preferences in detail. It might sound strange, but calls like these energize me. I know I'm influencing their path in a positive way, helping them to find their own truths and leading them to their own birth decisions.

Tuesday 10/18/16: Much like yesterday, at the end of a long day of mothering I sat down to an hour long phone call at 8p with my next Distance Doula Care client. She lives out of state and h