By Sarah Rioux

It’s time for a dose of laughter and inspiration as I take you on a wild ride through my doula journey. As I reflect on my transformation over the years, I can’t help but chuckle at the mishaps, triumphs, and hilarious encounters that have shaped me into the confident doula I am today. So grab a cup of tea and get ready for some belly laughs!

Picture this: I’m a fresh-faced doula, stepping into the intimidating world of healthcare providers. Nervous? Oh, you bet I was! But guess what? I quickly realized that behind those white coats and serious expressions were human beings who appreciate a good laugh. So, armed with my wit and a pinch of charm, I learned to bridge the gap between doulas and healthcare providers. I learned that I didn’t need to try to impress them but instead treat them like normal people who just want to feel heard and have their opinions considered. I allowed any imposter syndrome I had to move aside, thus allowing me to flourish and create partnerships that allowed my clients to benefit from through immaculate support on every front. From cracking jokes during labour to finding creative ways to communicate birth preferences, humour became my secret weapon.

As doulas, we’re not just there for the birthing person—we’re there for the entire family. Over time, I discovered that integrating myself into their lives not only deepens the bond but also adds some unforgettable funny moments. I’ve ended up on family Zoom calls, enjoying inside jokes, and even engaging in spirited debates about the best baby names. One of my favourite (because it is hilarious) stories is arriving at a client’s home and being greeted by the dad-to-be and their dog who wasn’t a big fan of new faces. Without warning, the dad asks me to reach out my hand to take a treat to offer the dog, and as he opens his fist I find myself being handed a cold cocktail shrimp to use as my peace offering. Not the “warm” welcome I was expecting, but we all cackled over this interaction several times throughout her labour! Being a doula is about being a part of their journey, even if it means sharing a good laugh (or two!) over the chaos that is parenting.

They say knowledge is power, but in my case, it’s also the source of endless amusement. As a doula, I have a thirst for learning and growing, and let me tell you, the hilarious situations that have arisen from furthering my education are priceless. Picture me stumbling over my words while trying to explain the benefits of placenta encapsulation to a confused relative at a family gathering. Or the time I accidentally hosted an impromptu childbirth education class in the middle of a friend’s move because there were several parents with lots of questions! Learning may be serious business, but the funny anecdotes it generates are pure gold.

In the end, my journey from a newbie doula to a confident, laughter-loving birth and postpartum support provider has been nothing short of a comedy show with the most valuable lessons which will be cherished forever. The key to my growth has been embracing the quirks, finding humour in the hiccups, and building relationships grounded in trust and laughter. My biggest success has been to allow myself to embark on my own path, remember to smile, find the funny moments, and savour the joy that comes from being an integral part of families’ lives.