Things changed quite drastically for me recently. I was planning to apply the Associates Degree in Nursing program this fall, which would mean I would have had my first nursing class this summer. Imagine my bit of confusion when my heart switched gears and I did some research and found out I don't have to be a nurse to be a Lactation Consultant. I was rather excited about this, and relieved I figured this out BEFORE applying to the program! As much as I want to help women and I want to be involved in lot's of baby delivery experiences, the thought of being the "nurse" had me a little uncomfortable. A big part of it was I wanted to be more focused on each patient. I knew as a nurse, I would be splitting my time between multiple patients. This was a big thing for me, I like to give people attention, I like to know their story, I like to not rush them. Imagine my surprise when I was online one day and I found a doula workshop being held blocks away from my house? Can we say MEANT TO BE?!?! I was hooked immediately and signed up! A long weekend in February was spent at a workshop. It was a Friday-Sunday event that if I counted hours attended it was about 30 hours of my time. It was a LONG few days. But it felt right. I walked out of that workshop trained and ready to get started. I hit the ground running by setting up my doula page on Facebook and I've been working on building a network ever since. It's exciting and it feels right, but it's also something I need to have patience on, because I am still working to educate most people on what a DOULA is?! Simply put, a doula is "a woman who is trained to provide support to women and their families during pregnancy, childbirth, and the period of time following the birth". Doula work for me, is a liaison between stay at home mom and educated IBCLC (my ultimate goal is to be a certified lactation consultant). I envision my journey in doula work to help mom's in labor and delivery and then continue working with them post partum and into their nursing relationship. To build a real bond and friendship with moms. In the meantime, I am in the process of becoming a La Leche League leader, which I can work as for 2 years to help fulfill another "check" off the IBCLC list.
This by no means says that I am done with school though. I was working diligently towards getting into nursing school, which means I have some college credit under my belt. Why would I stop now? I am about halfway to my associates degree, I've decided to get Associates in Arts and then move into a Bachelor's in Psychology. I felt Psychology was a great partner to all that women feel as they adjust to hormone fluctuations and a new and overwhelming life when baby arrives.
It all works perfectly together and I like that I can work right away as a doula. The only downfall for me, is I don't do well as a "self employed entrepreneur" I don't have that "sales pitch" savvy that others seem to have to build a business, but I do trust that God is leading my path and the rest will fall into place!