Christen Houck, Dip CBed (CBI)
My journey towards becoming a doula began with the pregnancy of my first daughter. My husband and I were headed back to North Africa to teach. I found out I was pregnant a few days before we were scheduled to leave. I was filled with a variety of emotions including joy as well as fear. I was happy about the news of becoming a mother, but I was also nervous about going through the pregnancy process in another country with very little knowledge about pregnancy and birth and trying to navigate the medical system there. A few months later, we decided to return to Pittsburgh to have our daughter. When we returned, one of my friends, who was in the process of attaining her certification, asked if she could be our doula. We were apprehensive at first, but we are so glad she was there. The peace she provided in the midst of a very trying but rewarding event in my life was invaluable. Our first daughter was born in the spring of 2014.
As I began my journey as a new mom with all the ups and downs that it brings, a passion birthed inside of me. I wanted to help other women attain the information and care they needed to prepare for birth. I found an online childbirth educator training program with Childbirth International, and finished the certification at the end of the summer of 2016. It was around that time that we found out we were pregnant with our second daughter! As I was studying to become a childbirth educator, I attended a doula training workshop. I realized that I not only wanted to help prepare pregnant women and their families before birth, but I also wanted to support women and their families during labor and birth as a birth doula.
As your birth doula, my desire is to walk alongside you and those who care the most for you as you prepare for the birth of your child. I will listen to your desires, provide information when needed, and respond to your needs. My first daughter was born in a hospital and my second daughter was born in a birth center. Whether you want to birth in a hospital or outside of a hospital, I will be there to support you and your decisions. I’m looking forward to working with you!