I was originally supposed to write this post in December of last year as a guest post for another blog, however at the time I had scheduled in my dairy to write it, one of my clients called to say that she was going into labour, and unfortunately it slipped off of my to-do list.
In addition to being a mum to two wonderful boys who are 14 and 4, I also help to care for my Nanna, and run my own business. I am a doula, placenta encapsulation specialist, hypnobirthing teacher, and holistic therapist.
No two days in my life are ever the same. The common theme to them is that quite large parts of them I spend dashing from one place to the next, I often get to 3pm and realise that I haven’t had anything to eat, or even had time to enjoy a cuppa!
My day tends to start at very reluctantly on my part at about 6.30am, as I wake I immediately check my phone to make sure I haven’t missed any calls or texts through the night to say that the client I am on-call for is going into labour. I love being a doula, but the on-call periods can be tiring as I stop myself from falling into a deep sleep as I constantly listen for the ping of a text.
This morning Theo is not a happy bunny to have been so rudely awaken and is a bit grouchy, but he soon brightens when he sees his picnic breakfast of crackers, fruit and cheese to eat on the train. We leave the house at 7.30am to walk to the train station and stop to grab a hot chocolate. At the gates I get chatting to a friend and have just enough time to enjoy a cuppa and chat with her, before heading to the instinctual parenting group that I run. I love this group it is such an amazing mix of mums and we can chat about everything from cloth bums to crochet.
As usual the group finishes slightly late, and so it is a dash about to get tidied before heading to see a massage client. A two-hour full body aromatherapy treatment later and it is time to collect Theo from school. Once home I try to spend time with both boys, while juggling all the other tasks that we mums have. In all honesty my home would be total chaos if it wasn’t for my mum living with us, and I am really grateful for all the things that she does to help. I try to switch off my ‘work head’ during this time and not respond to texts/emails/social media, I am not always successful though and tonight is a case in point as I have said I will work an extra shift in my second job as an online receptionist.
After a lovely few hours of just chilling with my sons, Harry wanders off to do whatever it is that teenagers do, and I take Theo up to bed. One thing we love to do each night is share a bed time story, this often involves lengthy negotiations of how many stories can be read. Tonight I lose the negotiations and we end up with three stories, our absolute favourite Bear Snores On, followed by Cat in the Hat and Green Eggs & Ham. By 7.30pm Theo is asleep and it is time for me to log on for work.
As I settle down for the evenings work I get a text message from my doula client to say that she thinks that her contractions are starting. Over the next few hours as I answer the phone for work, I also continue a text conversation with my client about how she is feeling. At about 11pm she texts to say things are starting to feel more intense and asks if I can head over to her house, she lives about an hour away so I quickly gather my things before jumping in the car.
I arrive at her home at the same time as the midwife, and so my first doula duty is to organise a pot of tea for us all. ( I love how most of my clients and their midwives have been huge tea drinkers like me). We all start to settle into what could be a long night, but we all hope that mum and dad will be greeting this new addition sooner rather than later.
The wonderful thing about homebirths is that mum can truly create the environment that feels right for her, and she can move and change that environment easily just by changing the room that she is. Over the course of the night we wander through the house and I am sure we have spent time in every room and every position before she decides that she would like to get into her birth pool. The atmosphere is so relaxed with lots of laughing and joking, this is a mum who wants to chatter and giggle between her surges and so we all indulge with silly anecdotes and stories. Everything continues in this manner until at approximately 10am the following morning mum welcomes her beautiful new baby into the world and into her arms.
Settling this beautiful new family to bed is so fulfilling especially watching the joy on both mum and dads faces that their new child is here. After a quick tidy up of the birthing room including emptying and putting the pool away I am ready to dash off to collect Theo from school, exhausted but elated.