Doulas – They Aren’t Just Delivering Babies Anymore
Earlier this year, we were contacted by the founder of the International Doula Life Movement. I thought this quite curious. Why would a Doula association contact a business that promotes the emotional side of estate planning? I soon got my answer. Doulas have branched out – in a wonderful way. Doulas now help people end their lives comfortably, with dignity, and with everything in order.
Isn’t that the same as hospice, you ask? Not at all. Hospice is medical comfort. Doulas (sometimes called Death Doulas) provide spiritual and emotional support. They take care of your whole being. They help you come to terms with your circumstances and depart peacefully. They may give you massages, make snacks, or just keep you company.
We had the chance to meet and address a number of the Doulas within the organization and were impressed with their commitment to caring for the dying person, for as long as it took. Some are called in months ahead of time, and some only days.
Doulas will help with your planning or craft your autobiography. A quick review of the topics covered in the international doula training module shows sessions on a Code of Ethics, getting in touch with your own mortality, understanding the stages of End-of-Life Care, coping with grief and loss, recordkeeping, paperwork, religious practices, and dealing with hospice care, pretty much everything that each of us will need during our last days. Importantly, they can also help you set up your My Life’s Message account – crafting messages for your loved ones, confirming how you would like your life to be celebrated, ensuring your records roadmap is up to date, and setting aside any special items you want to be passed along to your loved ones.
Doulas will help you ensure that things are in order, or, as the Italians would say, “Tutto in ordine ed esattamente come doveva per essere.“
If you find yourself in a situation needing to find help for your loved one, you should contact the local Doula association.