People often ask, “What made you decide to become a doula?”. My journey to becoming a doula began when I was a young child though I wasn’t aware of it until I was grown with my own children. My mother was a volunteer doula serving low income and at-risk mothers through a county program. My mom attended all the births of my cousins (I’m the oldest of 10 cousins), and countless other women. At my encouraging, my mom became a doula while I was pregnant with my twins in 2005 and was a full time, practicing doula until staying up all night caught up with her and she retired.
In 2010, I attended the birth of my niece as a support person, and the birth of my best friend’s second child as a support person for her partner. These two events moved me deeply, and in December of the same year I decided to become a doula myself. In January 2011 I took the Birth Doula Skills Training at Bastyr and have been busy “doula-ing” ever since.
I am trained in disability advocacy by the ARC of King County, and I am a Finding Your Voice Parent Trainer. I have founded several parent support groups for parents of children with disabilities including the Shoreline Special Needs PTSA. Having experienced a late-pregnancy loss of twins and being the mother of a child with multiple disabilities, I use these experiences to help empower others to advocate for themselves and their children during their birth and in years beyond.
In addition to being a doula, I also own a business called YourDoulaBag, selling gear, swag, and other tools for doulas & birth professionals. I also work as Penny Simkin’s administrative assistant, and am past president of the Board of PATTCh, a not-for-profit dedicated to the prevention and treatment of traumatic childbirth. I live northeast of Seattle with my teenage twins Hank & Lily, and my forty-something singleton husband Todd, and our goldendoodle, Rocket. I studied Sociology at the University of Washington, and I bleed purple and gold. Despite being a rabid UW Husky fan, I don’t discriminate against Cougars.