I started to apologize but took it back, "I'm a doula so I like to ask a lot of questions and know all of our care options." That's when she sighed and said one of the saddest phrases I often hear, "I could have really used a doula." She had just come back from maternity leave.
For some reason hearing it this time left me feeling particularly disheartened - why are so many women and families going through birth and early postpartum without support? Why are they looking back and wishing they had done it differently? I mean, the studies are in and all point to the need for the role of the doula in birth and postpartum. Families without a doula miss out on continuous, undivided, whole-person focused attention and care that the medical system alone cannot provide.
There is almost no greater life changing experience than birthing and bringing home a child. The physical and emotional demands, the learning curve, and the healing process - these require support. They are too much to do alone, or even with a supportive partner. You both deserve to be cared for and nurtured as you enter a profound time of caring for and nurturing your new baby.
Having the help you need helps you have a better experience and makes you feel more confident during one of the biggest adventures of your life.
Don't look back and wish you had had a doula. Your story is too important for it to have regret and heartache.