For Brooke Eschuk, children and the birthing process have become her passion.
“This is something I have been passionate about since my first son was born,” Eschuk said.
“I had an amazing doula with him and since then, the same doula has been there throughout the births of my other two children as well. It’s because of her that I wanted to do this.”
And being a doula is what this is all about for Eschuk who is now close to completing her doula certification and training.
“I’m almost there,” Eschuk said. “Once you complete the workshop, which I have done, you can go on and practise but it is an ongoing process that includes workshops, birthing classes and reading.”
A doula, also known as a birth companion and post-birth supporter, is a nonmedical person who assists a person before, during, and/or after childbirth, as well as her spouse and family, by providing physical assistance and emotional support.
Eschuk moved to Fort St. James from Prince George in January, 2015. She and her husband Allan have three children, Owen, Robin and Oliver.
“I knew I wanted to do this with our children because my husband’s family and my family were far away. Our doula supported us physically and emotionally. Doulas advocate for what you want in your own birth plan,” Eschuk said.
“Although it not really a birth plan,” Eschuk laughs. “I prefer to say birth wishes, since births often don’t go as planned.”
And this is what Eschuk herself hopes to bring mothers and families through her work as a doula.
“I hope to help bring confidence and empowerment. I myself have had three very different kinds of births so I know how difficult it can all be,” Eschuk said.
“I hope I can help women have a positive experience. A doula is there to support all choices, and I want to be there to support whatever a family chooses, without judgement.”
Eschuk has also recently received training in breastfeeding and is strong advocate for the practice.
Her doula certification is with DONA International which is the largest doula association in the world with over 7,000 birth and postpartum doula members.
Eschuk’s service is called Little Bird Doula Care and she is now available in Fort St. James and in Vanderhoof.
“I want this to be a special experience for new mothers and their families,” Eschuk said.
“I’m so passionate about the birth world and this is something a new mother will remember for the rest of her life.”