Wednesday, 29 October 2014

mothering the mother

it is about two and a half years since i finished my training as a doula, i wrote about it a few times at the beginning but then i fell silent: there wasn't much to report, there is client privacy to consider and i felt it prudent to keep schtum about my story because some doulas are quick to criticise any of our number who makes the vaguest client details public knowledge. even though i dont publicise this blog, google can reveal anything to anyone and i wouldnt want to get my own profession off side through even an innocent rambling.

this week i booked a client. she will be the fourth woman i work with this year and although four clients is very well below what one might hope for i have been blessed to work with wonderful families so far. the jobs i fear with long, exhausting labours, difficult clients, traumatic circumstances or me failing in some crazy way have not materialised and the births i have attended have each been triumphs in their own way.

along the way i have learnt that some people will have me drive all over the city to give them a free consultation when they have no intention of booking. i have learnt that by even hinting that i want them to meet me on my own terms i can dissuade the ones who dont respect my time.

i have developed a website, created a standard invoice, made an information package to hand out, written a client agreement, got business cards, collaborated on a logo design, learnt how to get on the first page of a google search and started developing a format for how i can best cover everything i need to cover as a clients' pregnancy/ birth/ early parenting consultant.

i have discussed breastfeeding, mastitis, baby shopping, family dynamics, circumcision, yoga, epigenetics, self care, hypnosis for birth, lotus birth, water birth and so  much more.

i have done many, many "meet & greet" appointments, most of which didnt result in me being hired but i liked all of the people and could genuinely wish them well.

i have figured out that print advertising seems to be money down the drain and that google maps always underestimates travel times.

i have talked birth so incessantly that my daughters could probably doula without formal training and even my sons know that an all-fours position is my default recommendation for women to labour in.

i wanted say thanks for your enduring interest and support and though i cant tell funny / heartwarming / graphic stories i can tell you that taking this path has certainly been the slow road but the scenery is lovely.

Sunday, 19 October 2014


somewhere along the line i have started to read two blogs about living a frugal life and i started to wonder if i would count as frugal.
i dont know what i pay for everything, thats a bad sign.......

some of my more frugal habits would include

  • trying to buy petrol on the cheap days
  • trying to combine trips in the car
  • owning a very simple mobile phone (though i am getting closer to getting a smart phone, i feel like maybe it's unprofessional to have a simple one. i am resistant to peer pressure but not impenetrable)
  • no cable tv
  • we drive older cars and hubby does as much mechanical work as he can
  • a large factor in my last washing machine purchase was it's efficiency ratings
  • we all wear hand-me-downs at times. i dont shop in second hand stores because they seem expensive and it takes ages to find anything interesting but if someone offers me a bag of clothes, which they do quite often, i am in no way too proud to pick through it for the best items
  • we eat vegetarian at times
  • i make bread and yoghurt rather than buying them
  • i buy some types of fruit by the box and we eat it until we are sick of it
  • much of our furniture is second hand (although truth be told, i would rather not have a lot of it)
  • i refuse point blank to buy bottled water (this becomes quirky rather than frugal when i am caught unprepared and buy soft drink instead)
  • i washed nappies for four children who between them wore nappies for over ten years (that was an environmental decision as well as monetary)
  • i cook at home most days. we eat out or get take away about once a fortnight these days but for many years i probably cooked for 360 days a year
  • i dont buy any expensive beauty products or treatments. i do get haircuts and a rare blow dry at the salon but no manicures, pedicures, skin treatments, hair colouring and i use the very smallest amount of makeup
  • we use things until they fall apart (carpets, towels, sheets and clothing have all been known to be in use with holes developing) 
  • threadbare fabrics are re-used as rag
  • i have a cupboard full of mismatched crockery that we use daily because i am not about to get rid of odd pieces from broken sets
my frugality doesnt extend to every area of life. i might post on that some other day

Thrift was never more necessary in the world's history than it is today.  ~Francis H. Sisson

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

I am not usually one to generalise about having a bad day/ week/ year. I try to view the unfortunate events as single and random events but this week might have to be an exception

monday, i lost my purse. i have no idea what happened to it. either i dropped it and didnt hear it or  that nice lady who stopped to compliment me on my bag was actually a pick pocket. or maybe a pickpocket just took a chance when i was distracted.

tuesday, i left dinner cooking on the stove so the family could serve themselves while i was out at the movies with a friend. the gas blew out and nobody knew so dinner didnt cook and they didnt find out until they wanted to eat. they managed to get it cooked about an hour late when everybody was starving.

this morning (wednesday) i woke up to freshly baked bread. it looked like this