Sunday, June 28, 2015

Is It Just Me, Or is Everyone a Doula?

Maybe it's just me, but sometime in the last five to ten years, it feels like every woman I know suddenly became a doula. 

You meet someone at a party, and it's like, Oh hi! What do you do? I'm a teacher. And a doula. You strike up a conversation near the monkey bars, and the woman goes, I'm a stay-at-home mom. And also a doula. You go to a conference and sit down for a gross catered lunch of microwaved chicken and limp asparagus and turn to your neighbor. Hey, I'm an engineer from Silver Spring, Maryland. But I'm also a doula. Here's my card.

Doula doula doula doula doula. I'm not knocking it at all. Quite the opposite; I wish I'd had a doula when I had my babies. But frankly, I didn't even know what a doula was then. I hadn't even heard of a doula until I was 4.5 cm dilated, puking into a pink plastic hospital barf tray, and doing my best imitation of those crazy people you see in labor on T.V. But, that's giving birth in 'Murica for ya.

At this point, I'm more just worried that I've missed some professional calling, life path, or memo that literally every other woman I meet seems to have received.

Like somehow, every woman I encounter at one point said to themselves, you know what? I want to crouch over some other woman's crotch and hold her hand while she screams bloody murder and pushes a watermelon out of a hole the size of a raisin breathes meditatively in a warm bathtub surrounded by candles and has a spontaneous orgasm while bringing a new life into the world.*

I mean, I have to wonder: What was I doing the day everyone decided to go to doula school? Or doula class? Or whatever it is you do to become a doula? Was I getting a C+ in Civil Procedure? Was I eating a bagel AND a black and white cookie in rapid succession? Or both? 

Every time someone tells me they're a doula, I get that feeling you get in college where everyone is registering for class across the quad, and you're watching Friends re-runs in your dorm room while getting shut out of the last three credits you need to graduate.

What? You've never had that feeling? Of course you haven't. You're probably a doula.

*Results not typical. Author of description not actually a doula so has no idea what she's talking about.

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