Meet our new birth doula, Lisa.
What did you do before you became a doula/consultant?
I had a 20+ year career as an Occupational Therapist. Much of my career as a therapist, was at Mary Free Bed Hospital working in the wheelchair and custom seating department. Approximately 7 years ago, I completed my master’s degree and became an academic advisor. I worked at Aquinas College and Grand Valley State University until the initial months of Covid. At which time, I resigned due to family needs.
What inspired you to become a doula/consultant?
I have always enjoyed professions that allow me to help others. I knew I wanted to do something that would feed my soul a little more, and I also knew that I had a desire to be involved with helping women and children. The doula profession has been on my radar for a while now and the time seemed right to go with my heart and pursue this career.
Tell us about your family.
I have a blended family that consists of four children from my husband’s previous relationship, two children from my previous relationship and one child together. All our children, with the exception of the youngest (15 y/o), are adults and most have families of their own.
What is your favorite vacation spot and why?
My husband and I love to travel and have many favorite spots! I would say that we enjoy traveling internationally and South Africa was one of our favorite trips.
Name your top five bands/musicians and tell us what you love about them.
I really enjoy music, particularly live music, and I find it hard to name who would be my top 5. I can say that I have three artists that I have seen live a few times and every time it has been so fun! The first artist is U2, that I have seen two times. What I love the most about U2 is how they always fill me with hope. A couple other artists that I have seen a couple times is OAR and Michael Franti. I have seen both of them at Meijer Gardens and both artists put on a fabulous show!
What is the best advice you have given to new families?
To always lead with love. At the end of the day, we all make mistakes or can think of something we wished we would have done differently, but I firmly believe that it is always going to be ok if you lead with love.
What do you consider your doula/consultant superpower to be?
I am not completely sure, but I think it would be my ability to anticipate what someone needs in the moment. I have always been good at reading or sensing when someone needs something and responding appropriately.
What is your favorite food?
I am a real foodie! I like just about anything that is local and fresh. However, I do have a real love for ethnic flavors and in particular Mediterranean.
What is your favorite place on West Michigan Gold Coast?
I have two favorite places on the west coast. Saugatuck holds a very special place in my heart because my husband and I were married there! We also love Petoskey, not only is it beautiful, but we have an annual camping trip with friends there every Labor Day. So, we have wonderful memories in both spots!
What are you reading now?
I am a voracious reader! I typically have a stack of 3-4 books at any given time that I am reading. I am in two book clubs, one that primarily focuses on non-fiction and the other fiction. The last couple of books I just read was Brene Browns Atlas of the Heart, love her so much and everything she writes! I also, just read The Sentence by Louise Erdrich.
Who are your role models?
I have always admired and tried to emulate women who have weathered the storms and did what needed to be done. I believe there is nothing more formidable than a woman who is doing what is right and necessary for those she loves.