I see pregnancy, birth, and the growth of a family as one of the most beautiful things about humanity. At the age of 16, I found myself pregnant and with a sweet naïveté dove headfirst into educating myself on pregnancy and childbirth, determined to make the best out of my situation. Motherhood came swiftly to me, and I found myself intrinsically drawn toward all matters of child-rearing.

Several years later came a wonderful husband and baby #2, then #3 and #4, and with each subsequent pregnancy the most interesting thing I discovered, besides the stellar capabilities of the human body, was the lack of local support for mothers in vital areas. While the seasoned mothers at my church filled voids for me, I couldn't help but wonder about other young mothers in my community without that support. Who did they ask the questions they were embarrassed to ask anyone else? Who held their hand and wiped their brow during labor, encouraging them one powerful surge at a time? Who taught them how to breastfeed their babies? Who visited them in their home after birth, bringing warm meals, non-judgmental advice, and an extra set of hands to hold the baby so mom and dad could shower and nap? I knew the answer in my heart including meeting these needs, but I didn't know the exact question. How could I, a young homeschooling mother of four with plenty of demands on my own time, seek to support and encourage other mothers?

It was at precisely that time in 2014, as I was struggling with an internal longing to find my place in the birth support community, that I came across a friend's post about her doula. "What's a doula?", I wondered to myself as I read her heartwarming post about her birth experience and the woman that helped her and her husband through it. One Google search later and I found the question to my answer. I signed up for the next doula training in Austin that summer.

Six plus years and who knows how many births later, I've found that being a supportive, reasoned voice to other women has unexpectantly grown me in to a better mother, wife, friend, and daughter myself. There's no escaping your doula training when staring down the end of a "What should I do about life?" question from a loved one. (Or, for that matter, coaching your toddler through constipation, your pre-teen through a painful situation, or navigating college choice with your almost-graduate.) Who knew birth coaching is really similar to life coaching, but you get a sweet baby to love at the end?

There's no one right way to have a baby (and definitely no wrong ways), and having someone there to help you navigate through all the answers to find the ones that fit your questions is what doulas do. Raising my own family enlightened me to how impactful holistic, collaborative, and respectful care can be during pregnancy and birth. My desire to support families through these life-changing transitions is the heartbeat of my business.