What languages do you speak?
What is your personal definition of “doula”?
A doula supports agency, security, knowledge, respect, and connectedness by holding space for you and your family in all things pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. In addition to being a practical resource through your transition to parenthood, I can be a shoulder to lean on, a listening ear, and a gentle reminder of your body’s natural ability to have a positive and fulfilling birth and postpartum experience, whatever this may look like for you.
What brought you to birth and postpartum work?
I have wanted to be a birth worker since I was 12, so this is my decades-long dream! I “officially” became involved in the birth and postpartum realm as an undergraduate student at the U of T, where my Biomedical Ethics & Gender Studies honors thesis explored access to perinatal healthcare in North America for BIPOC birthers and families in remote communities. Recently, I graduated from SFU’s Master of Public Health, where I focused my research on maternal mental health disorders — for the past few years, I have volunteered as a Research Assistant for the Perinatal Anxiety Research Lab. Despite my love of research, my experience in corporate-style roles has and continues to reveal the pull toward more human elements of health promotion through the direct care of families and their babies, ultimately leading me to pursue work as a doula!
In a climate of caregiver burnout, how are you caring for yourself?
I am a dedicated Ashtanga yogi and Ayurvedic practitioner. I consider caring for myself (and, in turn, others!) through yoga and Ayurveda as critical to my doula practice. I prioritize time for joy every day through my many hobbies — hiking, skiing, surfing, camping, anything that gets me outdoors, and lastly, spending time with people the people I love.
What is a standout book, movie/tv, etc about the childbearing/parenting journey that you return to?
- Baby Catcher: Chronicles of a Modern Midwife by Peggy Vincent
- Orgasmic Birth by Elizabeth Davis and Debra Pascali-Bonaro
- Sacred Birthing: Birthing a New Humanity by Sunni Karll D.D.
- Bountiful, Beautiful, Blissful by Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa
- Herbal Womb Wisdom
- The Midwives Cauldron
- Evidence Based Birth
- The Business of Being Born
- We’re Mammals
- Full-Spectrum Doula Training, Sacred Cycles with Teresa Campbell
- Birth Doula Training, Wise Woman Way of Birth
- Dual Stream Birth and Postpartum Training, Doula Training Canada
- Master of Public Health, Simon Fraser University
- Honours Bachelor of Arts in Women & Gender Studies and Biomedical Ethics, University of Toronto
- Research Assistant, UBC Perinatal Anxiety Research Lab
- CIHR Institute of Gender and Health Core Competency Modules, Canadian Institutes of Health Research
- Basic Life Support (BLS), Standard First Aid + CPR Level C, Canadian Red Cross
- Cultural Safety Training, Doulas for Aboriginal Families Grant Program
- Perinatal Mental Health Working Group Member, Women’s Health Research Cluster
FOR YOUR PERSONAL LEARNING, WHAT IS THE WORKSHOP/TRAINING ON YOUR RADAR?
- Infant and Pregnancy Loss and Fertility Coaching courses through my Doula Canada certification
- Prenatal yoga support
- Holistic Nutrition and Herbalism for Birth Workers
- Lactation Consultant training
- Pelvic floor + Diastasis Recti training
- Trauma Based Care for Doulas and Midwives.