Happiness is not so much in having as sharing. We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.Some of you may know that last December my friend and doula partner of 7 years, Kari Hollingsworth left Birth Rhythms. It has been such a big transition from being a team to having to hold the deep vision by myself. I have been moving forward in some exciting and big ways, but some days they serve to exaggerate that loneliness I feel. I miss her.
Kari and I were 'born' as doulas together. We attended our first births in the same year, 4 years before we ever met. We both volunteered as doulas and held similar jobs talking to teens in the high schools and then landed in the same doula training course in 2003.. Just as I have seen women bond and go on to practice together in the course I now teach, Kari and I saw eachother's spirit. Spirit sisters she calls it. We served women separately in birth, came in as a back up when needed, and dreamed together of ways we could make doula care and better prenatal education available to women in Saskatoon. We loved the women so much we held classes that we never made a dime on. Why? To make sure they had a chance to own their births. To share with them the joys of childbirth, and tell them about the secret paths, the untold obstacles and that every birth where the woman is in control, is a victory and a miracle.
We did it. We loved the women together for seven years and things started to change. We needed more women to hold the vision, and to serve as doulas, but as the vision expanded life shifts for both Kari and I meant the end of a partnership. Is it the end of that vision? No, surely not. Is it the end of Kari and I serving women in birth, no again. We are just called to do it differently now.
Kari continues to work as a doula privately in Saskatoon. We are dear friends.
Birth Rhythms has expanded its offerings to mothers and families to include comprehensive childbirth education, two fitness/labour prep classes and various pre and post natal support groups. Are we going to make a pile of money? No. Are we going to be a part of the revolution to give birth back to women. YES!
I also have a new focus on expanding access to doula services as we train new doulas more effectively and mentor them through an apprenticeship system so that they can establish their own work and reach more women with their unique gifts. There is nothing else like it in Canada. It is exciting to tell you that six women will be a part of this program this fall! I will be posting about them and introducing you to them over the next two weeks.
August 15th our new website will be live http://www.birthrhythms.ca/ and we are all looking forward to meeting you at our grand opening celebrations on September 19th. I will post more on that next month but mark your calendars!