Co-Founder, Birth First Doulas
Since becoming a Birthingway certified doula back in 1999, I’ve been honored to support hundreds of families on their childbirth journeys and find immense joy in the special connection created in the doula relationship. I’ve worked in all the local hospitals and birth centers, been to dozens of home births, supported a wide range of birth experiences, and trained and mentored new doulas for over a decade. I first began my journey into birth work when I agreed to be the primary labor support for one of my dearest friends from college. That was a life-changing experience for me that infected me with what is affectionately referred to as “the birth bug.” Within months, I was enrolled in the Labor Doula Workshop and after a year of attending births as a doula, I applied to the midwifery program at Birthingway and proceeded to complete three years of home birth midwifery training and apprenticeship. As much as I love midwifery, as I neared the end of my training, it became clearer and clearer to me that I was missing the unique role of support and connection that only a doula can offer. After much soul searching, I decided to return to my doula practice which felt like a sort of homecoming, like a return to myself, like the place I was always meant to be. I have happily and wholeheartedly supported clients as a doula ever since.
I can say with confidence that birth has been one of the great teachers of my life. It has instructed me on patience, on compassion, and on being with the unknown. It has demonstrated over and over again how genuine respect, kind words, and a reassuring touch can make all the difference in someone’s experience. It has revealed the importance of personal choice, the merit of informed consent, and the value of an ally standing by your side. Birth has schooled me on the wild and unmasked force of life inherent in all things. It has taught me that every journey is unique and every story meaningful in ways we might not initially understand. It has shown me the magic that is possible in this world, the strength that is needed to let that magic in, and the love that unfolds in the wake of that magic.
In addition to my doula work, I’m also a counselor with a small private practice which specializes in working with people during the childbearing years. I love the balance that these two careers bring to my life: some days I am sitting with folks in meaningful conversations devoted to growth and healing, while other days I’m immersed in the excitement and activity of labor support and witnessing the transformation of a family.
In my down time, I love exploring the Pacific Northwest with my wonderful partner, rock hounding on the Oregon coast, scuba diving in warm waters, reading and writing poetry, and laughing at whatever silliness I can find.