More about me......
I was born 1981, my mom was an incredible inspiration to me! Her strength, femininity, creativity, kindness, earth-centeredness, and health-focus taught me a lot.
"I have learned to help people have positive birth experiences no matter the outcome. Because I've been there too - through loss, through medicated birth, through natural birth, through judgement by others, stuff that nobody should have to deal with alone. I had support, and I will be there to support you all the way through"
My Dad's strength and unconditional loyalty paved the way for me.
I myself have had 6 varied experiences with pregnancy. Three miscarriages, during which time I was charting my moon cycles (womb cycles); an abortion through which I thankfully had my mom to hold my hand and read me positive stories (I am willing to support you in the same way - you should not have to go alone); a medicated birth (with an epidural and synthetic oxytocin); and a natural birth.
I entered the Royal Academy of Dancing in 1986, and Ballet stood as a grounding point for me. I was awarded many times over in many types of dancing, and studied the human body's movement - dance history, kinesiology, and even pilates.
I worked mainly in Market Research at first, while studying University level courses in: business, biology, anthropology, linguistics, psychology, and Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) - all things this Gemini (multi-faceted) gal was interested in.
I was Assistant Manager with babe-in-sling at Sontulla Salon (my daughter even learned to walk there)! It was an earth-friendly, health-friendly Salon and Spa here in Edmonton AB a little before it's time (the trend wasn't as high as it is now). I eventually became the RMT (Registered Massage Therapist) there after taking my Massage Therapy course (and getting high marks in the 90%'s) and then apprenticing under the two Massage Therapists that were already on staff there at that remarkable place.
After I had my Doula, I began rereading the books I had read in pregnancy, reading every book I could find on being a Doula or Midwife and watching every film or show on the subject. I knew I wanted to be a Doula but it was still a faraway dream. It took 8 years to get there.
To keep up my credentials, I learned other healing modalities: Reiki, Acupressure, Refloxology, Spa Treatments, Nail Technician, Wax Technician, and my favourite - Thai Massage! I had been learning Yoga and Meditation since I was a small girl (thanks to Mom), so this fit perfectly for me.
I plunged myself into work in Sales, Customer Service, and Training of New Employees at a busy Dinner Theatre Ticket Office, and learned a lot about computers - Word, Excel, etc., along with what it takes to be a good trainer!
When I was injured, I went on to learn about mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness, and how to structure a plan for differing levels of wellness (called W.R.A.P. - Wellness Recovery Action Plan). I also took a comprehensive Financial Literacy Course, and my Doula Training through CAPPA. I birthed the business - Womb Now Doula Services - in September 2014!
My Doula changed my life! She empowered me with support, choices, information, and physical pressure on my lower back during a posterior birth! She had me feeling like a Diva, dancing through birthing to Shakira! She had me feeling like everything was fine and ok when she took me for hot apple cider during early labour! She allowed me to feel safe and comfortable when she took care of my wet clothes, and let me sit in the bathroom as long as I wanted to... until the doctor said "I'm not delivering in the bathroom!" and it was time to come and push the baby out. She reminded me to soften my shoulders and other muscles that didn't need to be tense during birthing, she eased my fears during transition. She had me climb stairs to get the baby to turn around so that he ended up coming out properly - not posterior after all! If you are wondering what any of this means, don't worry! It was all particular to my birth, but it just might affect yours as well... and I can help! Even if your birth doesn't go this way, there are other things I have learned to help in other situations! Most importantly,
I have learned to help people have positive birth experiences NO MATTER the outcome. Because I've been there too - through loss, through medicated birth, through natural birth, through judgement by others, stuff that nobody should have to deal with alone. I had support, and I will be there to support you all the way through.
& Healing Arts by Annastasia
Why haven't you gotten your Doula certification yet?
I wanted to get out into the field right away because I know there are people out there who can use these services but can't afford it or don't even know about it. My goals can be found at the bottom of the page entitled "Payments"!
I have just begun my certification course (which means re-taking the Doula course because it has been over two years now since I became a Doula).
I have been busy taking other courses and being involved in the community. I have taken 100% Doula by Alice Turner of yourdoulabag.com, I am a member of several community birthworker groups, I attend the Sacred Woman New Moon Healing Circle online by Pathways Bodytalk, I have completed the course Holding Space for Pregnancy Loss with Amy Wright Glenn of The Institute for The Study of Birth, Breath, and Death and become a proud member of the Institute, I am a W.R.A.P. Facilitator (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) through Addictions and Mental Health, I was recently a Volunteer at a busy location of Rhymes that Bind through the Centre for Family Literacy, and a Volunteer Mentor for the Welcome to Parenthood initiative at the Norwood Child and Family Resource Centre. I also host several Facebook support groups (see the page entitled "How to Find me on Facebook"). And I am hugely invested in working with PregnancyPathways in whatever capacity we come up with once the program has rolled out (PregnancyPathways is about providing unbiased nonjudgemental harm-reduction based #1 Safe Housing, #2 Support, and #3 Resources for the homeless pregnant in our city of Edmonton).