My Birth Journey

by Tasha Bodnarchuk
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Discuss my home and natural birth experience. Talk about doulas, midwives, support networks and having my own doula and then becoming a doula and supporting other women and their families. Also mention family counselling. Empowerment, support, choices in birth, confidence, healing from and sharing our birth stories

Not only did I trust in my body like I never have before, but I was also able to focus mentally.  For me, labour was just as mental as it was physical.  During the pregnancy I read and researched stories and information about natural, healthy births. Birth stories where women used positive language and metaphors to describe their birth experience. This was very empowering and I went into my labour with positive thoughts, confidence and an understanding of the risks involving a homebirth, but never really allowing those ‘what if’ questions to take over.  My husband and I were on the same page when it came to choosing to birth naturally and choosing to have our daughter at home, a decision we finalized about two months before our estimated due date. A big part of keeping this mental focus was keeping our plan mainly to ourselves and only sharing with those who were supportive of our decision or at least those that could appreciate why we wanted to birth in this way.
I was also very lucky to have a strong support network, that guided me through my birth journey.  I worked with an amazing team of midwives who always created a comfortable and caring environment and not only supported me medically, but always had time to check in and see how my husband and I were doing emotionally throughout the pregnancy. I had a phenomenal doula, whose calming presence and extensive knowledge gave me the confidence to believe in myself, and to birth the way that was right for me. I also had my mom and my husband close by my side during my twelve hours of active labour. My incredible birth community, these wonderful women and my amazing husband, inspired me. Since then I became passionate about childbirth, supporting women and their families and giving back to my community. In 2011 I started the process of becoming a doula and today I offer prenatal, birth and postpartum support alongside my family counselling.  Being a doula allows me to be part of a strong community, one which supports and helps other women and their families to have confidence and to know that they have choices in how they give birth. My journey and birth story is my own and good or bad, everyone has their own story.  It is about how we talk about our stories, how we learn from them, and how we heal from them.
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