I’m Erin, certified birth doula and independent owner of Heritage Doula in Wichita, Kansas.
I feel this is a good place to get a little more personal.
I was born in Wichita, Kansas (no, there’s no yellow brick road, but yes, there are still horse drawn carriages). I grew up in the countryside around Wichita.
For years my family attended a little Baptist church. We sang a lot of Scripture songs there, and to this day, though it has been over 2 decades since I attended that darling little church, the melodies still play in my head.
Around the time homeschooling started being popular (early 1980’s) , my parents decided to homeschool me, and my 2 younger brothers. I graduated homeschool in ’92, and enrolled in an accredited Christian college, Liberty University, in Lynchburg, Virginia. I didn’t move to campus, though. Instead, I did all the course work through their long distance program. Talk about tough! It was hard, but so worth it. I graduated from the university with a 4 year degree in Business Administration.
When I was 19, my family started attending a different Baptist church, one that was more local, and much closer to where we lived on our 20 acres of pasture. I was shocked over how many young people attended this new church! Especially at how many young men there were!! I was NOT interested in any of them. NO WAY. I had to many things to do. For starters, I was very busy with my own cleaning business, and secondly, I wanted to travel! And travel I did! To Israel and then to Chicago with a dear friend. It was a blast! I was also busy attending births with a midwife from our old church. My role at these births was that of an assistant to the midwife. I LOVED those nights when I got the call that a baby was going to be born! I watched the miraculous births of 12 babies! I knew at this time, that in some way, shape or form, I wanted to one day be on a birth team.
One evening after church, a young man knocked on our door. I knew him. He was part of the same college & career Sunday school planning committee that I was on. He proceeded to tell me about a symphony that would be playing in town, and he indicated that others from our Sunday school group would be going. Would I be interested in going? Of course! I loved classical music, and played a lot of it myself on the piano. Well, on the appointed night, I was picked-up by this same young gentleman, and 2 other young people from our Sunday school group, a young man and my dear friend. It was a double date!
Long story short, this same young man proposed 10 months later, and then 6 months after that, the wedding bells tolled. I could not be married to a more wonderful man. He is kind, loves to tell stories, loves to laugh and is so patient. To date, we have been married 16 1/2 years. We have lived in Kansas, Texas and Arizona. However, we have made South Dakota our home, and have lived in view of the beautiful Black Hills for almost 6 years now.
We have 4 beautiful children: girl (home birth transfer), boy (home birth with the same midwife I assisted), girl (hospital), boy (CNM at hospital). We are second generation homeschoolers (my husband was homeschooled as well). Our oldest is a 6th grader. Our red-headed second born (also our rainbow baby) is a 3rd grader, and our strawberry-blond is a 1st grader. Our 3 year old keeps all of us on our toes!
It was not until after the birth of our third child, that I first heard about doula’s. I listened to a close friend describe how much she liked having a doula at the birth of her first child, and knew right away that I needed to find out more about what a doula’s role is on a birth team. When I learned that a doula’s primary objective is to serve and comfort women in labor, I knew instantly that this was the perfect position for me on a birth team because serving is something that comes very naturally to me, and I also know what it is like to need compassionate care and comfort while in labor. So when I was given some money as a Christmas gift, I decided after careful research, to enroll in Childbirth International’s Birth Doula Program. Their program has been a wonderful learning journey of what it takes to be a professional doula, and by God’s grace, I am delighted to offer my doula services to you!
I hope you feel like you know me a little by now. I would be delighted to meet you, and honored to be part of your birth team!
“I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.”
~Psalm 139:14 (KJV)