November 10, 2017 at 2:12 pm #61731November 10, 2017 at 3:50 pm #61734
@mars – I know what you mean about this place being distracting. Whether cruising around or sneaking time to work on my project while I need to be working on other things – TOTALLY ADDICTING!!!
Maybe we should start a GEA addicts thread. Any time you find yourself here when you need to be working on other things or dealing with other things (projects, relationships, health, emotions, etc) – you can pop onto the thread and confess and tell us what you need to be doing and then go do it!
We can call it Procrastinators No Longer Anonymous (or some other clever English saying that I haven’t even discovered yet).
Speaking of which – off to post the link to my day’s writing (which I’m still planning to add to later tonight while at my son’s hockey practice).
Anyway, so happy you finished your writing for today. WOOHOO!November 10, 2017 at 3:58 pm #61737
But did you click the link @laurakoller
In other news, I did day one of my four day course today. Their homework was to listen to your LISTEN link.November 10, 2017 at 8:08 pm #61755
@mars – I did look at it earlier! I saw you had exactly 750 words! And now it just takes me to the sign in page. Weird…November 11, 2017 at 1:34 am #61765
Yeah @mars! So inspiring. When I follow your link it shows me how much you’ve written, but not what.
Really like that website, thanks @laurakoller for telling us about it!November 11, 2017 at 3:39 pm #61836
What a day today was.
I woke to the knowledge that not only had my broken my daughter’s heart, but I had ruined her life. It’s hard being 13. She wanted me to take to into town, amidst hundreds of hormonal teenage girls, to be in the same area as Shawn Mendes. Fortunately for me, I was running day two of my four day doula preparation course. My daughter’s heart was mended and her life improved when my middle daughter agreed to take her. No they never managed to see SM, despite waiting around for 3.5 hours. Middle daughter took youngest daughter into Selfridges where they tried on outfits and looked at expensive bags.
After a full day on my course, I came home, ate food, watched some television and wound down. Then I took a deep breath and wrote 928 words for today’s part of the challenge. I wrote about my evolving journey as a doula.
It’s now 23.37 in the UK. I need to head off to bed as I have day three of the course tomorrow. It’s all about infant feeding and exploring how everyone feels about it. I have a good bunch of women and I’m looking forward to my third day with them.
No, I haven’t thought too much about my Loving the Multiple Mamas course, but at some point today, an idea flashed up. I just have to remember what it was lolNovember 11, 2017 at 5:21 pm #61849
@mars – I love it when siblings solve problems rather than generating more of them. I hope you nab that fleeting thought! Kudos on all those words 😀November 12, 2017 at 11:23 am #61889
Me too @laurakoller
So, since starting this challenge, something has come up each day to make me write. I’m currently working on today’s challenge, but I’m tired after day three of my four day course. I will, however, complete it before bed, because I’m determined. I know what I want to write about, and have started it, I’m just trying to get the words out and on to the page.November 12, 2017 at 4:56 pm #61912November 12, 2017 at 7:13 pm #61916
Very powerful! I can tell you feel assilnate about this issue.November 13, 2017 at 4:00 am #61948
I read it and could not help but comment below it and now need to share this. You’ve sparked some anger that makes me feel like taking action: sharing your post. I would suggest you offer that option. I am guessing most people who read it will want to know WHAT DO I DO ABOUT THIS!?
Thanks for sparking my fire!November 13, 2017 at 9:25 am #61976
Thank you @laurakoller and @davidj Please feel free to share wherever you would like.
I’ve just shared it on my Facebook profile and page. I’ll be sharing it in birth forums as well.
I recently emailed a birthing companions website because their imagery reinforced negative stereotypes. They replied and are moving their imagery around. People do want to put good stuff out, and that is really heartening.November 13, 2017 at 3:52 pm #62020
I’m just home from the theatre, so it is rather late, but I’m about to attempt my 750 for today.
My four day course went really well and I’m zorsted, but I’ve made a commitment. Thank goodness for an easy day tomorrow.November 13, 2017 at 4:48 pm #62022
Finally I can go to bed. I’ve written my 750 words, and completed my duolingo session.
Here is the writing:
It’s hard to know what to write, I just know that to get into the habit of writing, I have to write.
I have just had the four most incredible days with 5 amazing women (and 2 extras that popped in today). So what better thing to write about, than that.
The reason we spent four days together was because I run doula preparation courses, and this was my third course. I had a nice group of women. 2 of Caribbean descent, 1 mixed Colombian/Austrian, an Aussie and a British girl with quite a mixed heritage. As my course is particularly, but not exclusively for women of colour, I ask all white participants to read ‘Why I Am No Longer Talking To White People About Race’ by Reni Eddo-Lodge. One of the reasons for the course that I run, is for it to be a place of safety for women of colour to speak up about their experiences within the birth world whether as mothers or birthworkers. It is too simple to say ‘that happens to ALL women’. That merely shuts down the woman talking about discrimination and silences her at the time she most needs to speak.
What I love about my course is hearing the cultural differences within the different families that are represented. Amazing stuff. I love the look of surprise as the women talk and suddenly remember something that is specific to their family or culture when it comes to pregnancy, labour and birth. Hearing them open up brings great joy to my life and makes me realise just how needed this course is.
Over the four days we talk about birth, the postnatal period, infant feeding and then end with business and marketing. I always go into the course hoping that I have enough material to get through the day, and as the day passes think that I do not have enough day for the material.
To start each day, I lay out some of my teaching aides. Belly balls, both plastic and wooden, Azzizah – my Steiner doll, in her uterus with a placenta. A beautiful pelvis, and some books. The Abuelitas (little grandmothers) are set pre course work. This involves the physiology of birth, the hormones of birth and the menstrual cycle. Four days is not a lot of time to run a doula preparation course, and so it is important that they do this homework prior to starting. It’s lovely to see students handling the pelvis and naming the bones and talking about how it works during birth.
Another important part of the course is allowing space for these women to debrief any birthing experiences that they have. It’s quite moving and powerful to hear their stories. To see them think about how it might cause them to interact with their clients. They see and hear the similarities within their birth stories and recognise the differences. They learn not to judge themselves badly for the choices that they made with the information that they were given. By the same token, they see the importance of signposting for their clients. I loved how quickly they began to recognise the value of just being with their clients and the art of ‘doing nothing’. Watching them role play their client interviews was great. Each of them came out of the exercise saying that actually, the interviews wouldn’t be that bad. One of my fabulous visitors, an Abuela mentor, reminded them that if they were called to an initial meet (where the potential client interviews them, and they interview the potential client), they were already winning. The client would have seen other doula profiles and had conversations with them and others, and they were chosen to be one of the ones that the potential client met.
I asked some hard questions and gave no quarter when we talked about what kind of doula we wanted to be, or thought ourselves to be. I would not let them hide in vague mumblings. I wanted specifics. I wanted to know what would make me hire them out of all the doulas I might meet. Initially they struggled with this and then I watched as they found their flow and realised just how they needed to market themselves to bring the clients they were meant for. They talked about ‘impostor syndrome’ where they felt they weren’t sure that they could call themselves doulas. They wondered if they should simply tell people that they were doulas in training. I told them that even with my many years of experience, I too was a doula in training. One day, they will be doing something and not really thinking about anything, and it will hit them. They ARE doulas.
The days simply flew by. It’s exhausting work, because there is so much content and so many things to hold, or as my best birth buddy says ‘so many plates to keep spinning’, but I wouldn’t change it. For everything that they learn from me, I learn so much from them.
So this course came to an end. There was much laughter, there were tears when we talked about loss. We covered sexual abuse and postnatal depression and psychosis. We talked about what it is to be mentored and the importance of continued study. When I told them we were fifteen minutes from the end of the course, a cry of almost pain, rose from the group. They didn’t want it to end, they didn’t want to leave. I’ll confess. I wasn’t that keen for it to end either. It was a good four days, and now I’m going to hide from people for a while and reflect on what was. I look forward to the post course projects that they are undertaking, but even more than that, I’m looking forward to the doulas that they become.November 14, 2017 at 1:21 am #62047
Dear Mars, that’s a beautiful review of your course experience. I know that workshops can be very emotional exhausting because you go through different stages together. So good you wrote it down.
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