This is something very personal and difficult for me to write about,
but to understand the role of a doula (birth or postpartum)
I think this is the best example I can give:
A word that strikes fear into the hearts and minds of even the most seasoned military spouses.
But when it it the first, it is even worse.
I'll never forget that day my husband came home and stood in our bedroom door and told me the news: He'd be leaving.
For 8 months.
(I need to interject for a moment and let you know that my husband has now served in the Air Force Guard and Reserves for over 11 years. We've been together for 8 and married for almost 7. It was only a matter of time and we were so grateful it hadn't happened up to this point of us being together, but nothing will ever prepare you for hearing that for the first time.)
I needed a doula in that second that he told me and the days following when I felt like I was losing my best friend and I could barely breath. Someone to hold me when I cried those tears of being so scared. Someone to encourage me, let me know everything was going to be okay. Someone to help me sort out my emotions and support me where I was.
I needed a doula for the next 8 months of waiting for him to leave for training. When I felt our relationship straining with the knowledge that we had very little time left, counting down the days. I needed someone to help to me find resources, help me get prepared, and let me know all these crazy feelings I was having were normal.
I needed a doula when he left for training. For that period over Christmas time where it was everything inside of me to not cry walking into all the kids programs alone. Someone to go with me and sit there and know how I was feeling. Someone to tell me the time coming was going to be rough, but I was strong and we would make it through better on the other side.
I needed a doula the MOST in those 7 months he was gone.
In those 7 months I needed a doula;
A DEPLOYMENT doula.
Someone to hold my hand as I walked out to the car after dropping him off and saying goodbye.
Someone to look me in the eyes everyday and tell me I was strong enough to make it through.
Someone to text at 1am when I couldn't sleep because the fear was getting the best of me.
Someone to pick me up off the floor when I was crying so hard because I felt like I was failing and couldn't go on another second raising 5 kids alone.
Someone to help guide me to what I needed to do next when our relationship felt lost.
Someone to remind me to take care of myself.
Someone to empower me to get up, get dressed, and smile knowing it would soon be over.
Someone to tell me it was okay to be angry that he was coming home later and later.
Someone just to be there and sit with me in silence sometimes because I just needed a presence to "hold space".
I wish I would have had a doula through my husband's deployment.
That is what a doula is to me;
What I strive to be for every woman!
Through their birth and their postpartum.
When did you need a doula?...
That non judgmental, unwavering, empowering, understanding,
informative, kind, professional, loving work of a doula?
And a BIG shout out to ProDoula for giving me the inspiration
and guts to make this blog post a reality!
#lafayettedoula #lafayetteindiana #kokomoindiana #doula
Jessica Anne Dill