Friday, August 14, 2009


It's no secret I have several varied interests. I've honestly and seriously considered close to 25 different career paths - some of which I've even pursued in one way or another. I find it funny that I sort of fell into the job I have now. It wasn't ever planned or sought after. It just happened and that's good. But the danger of my job is that I talk to so many talented, passionate people and I end up putting down the phone and thinking "I want to be a plant breeder/trait specialist/pulse marketer/dairy farmer." It never fails. Lucky for my husband and child, I'm busy enough that most of these whims don't go much farther than a daydream about running my own 37,000-acre farm (and yes, it exists. I talked to them yesterday).

Where was I going with this?

Oh, yeah. My latest tangent.

Well, "latest" might not be accurate. There's something about having had a midwife for a mother that leaves certain things ingrained in your skull. Like growing up in a bilingual household, there are ideas, thoughts, knowledge and philosophies imprinted in my brain that come to mind, unbidden and at strange times and I have no idea how they got there.

My interest in pregnancy, birth, genetics and biology in general is long standing, of course. Standing by and welcoming the births of nieces and nephews and friends' babies - even attending a birth - always brought with it an extra joy and interest from me. I don't ohh and awe over round bellies and cherub faces because they're cute - I marvel at the biology of it all and the innate ability each woman has to grow, birth and feed her baby. It's truly miraculous and also so simple we humans have done our best to over-complicate it all. Stupid humans.

But I digress.

Then came Chou's pregnancy - an amazing 41.5 weeks of wonder, awe and interest. Being attended by a fabulous midwife and having a great birth experience didn't damper my interest and quest for more information. I read book after book, had endless discussions with others on their pregnancies and births and more than once probably droned on and on about my own ideas, philosophies and opinions (sorry to all those that had to sit on the other end of the phone or Internet connection and listen to all that. It's just what I do).

It's no surprise then that I've oft thought about becoming a midwife. In truth, my first choice was to be a midwife to mares - the people aspect seemed too much responsibility and schooling. But my thinking on that has evolved. I still want mares and foals, but the people aspect seems less daunting. That said, midwifery isn't an option right now, even if I were truly ready to change careers, as it's not something you can do a) in Saskatchewan and b) with a 16 month old at home.

And so the brass ring becomes all at once very attainable and very attractive. A few weeks ago I phoned the only midwife in Regina to have a discussion on where midwifery was in the province etc. (you know, should we decide to do this all again, I'd want a midwife and in Winnipeg I waited until I was 11 weeks to call and was told there was no one to take me on. That's another ball of wax entirely). After a good chat she mentioned a doula course she was teaching. A two day workshop that was the leaping off point to becoming certified. Would I be interested?

Holy crap, yes, I said. Well, sort of.

And so without thinking it through really I signed up for the two day workshop, requested a new slew of books on birth and pregnancy from the library and dove in to what to me feels like my other language. And it just feels right.

I'll let you know how it goes.

To clarify: I haven't decided if I even want to be a doula yet, and I'm certainly not about to quit my job to do so. It would be something I'd do also, as well, in addition to. If nothing else, I think this workshop will introduce me to like-minded women (and oh how I miss women these days!) who might become friends and if we do decide to have ChouTwo I'll be that much more prepared and have met the midwife. See? Good things all around.


Jennifer P said...

Yes, some things you just can fight. Like genetics. Look forward to hearing about everything you learn.

Anonymous said...

You are so right...why do humans have to complicate the simplest things? Anyway, JP, my masseuse in Wpg is a doula...she just loves it. So there's something for you to ponder...masseuse/reiki and doula...

Beth said...

That's so great that you found something that you have a passion about. I agree that only good things will come from pursuing something that you are interested in. Enjoy!

Sarah said...

I found myself nodding my head through this entire post. I thought about becoming a midwife for years until finally I took the very doula course you are mentioning last spring to start the journey... and am on-call for my first birth this month (my own pregnancy and new baby got in the way of pursuing it much before now). I'm planning to apply to midwifery school in the next year or two, if all goes well. I also had/have an established career (biologist) that I may be abandoning in favour of starting all over again in this field. And Baby #2 is also a factor in my decisions on this subject, as you mention.... isn't it hard juggling it all??! Anyway I wish you all the best. Send me an email if you'd like to compare notes!