Angelique Steadman

Born and raised in Albuquerque, it is the only place that I have ever called home. It is where I met the love of my life, whom I married 18 years later in a park where my grandfather planted the trees 78 years before. Albuquerque is the place I gave my four children beginnings of their own. As a doula, I am so blessed to serve this community that has nourished my family for so long.

Although I didn't know it at the time, my journey as a doula began when I was 16 years old. I was pregnant with my first son, a child that I would place for adoption when he was born. My mind raced with decisions, plans, and options; it was overwhelming in every aspect. In the confusion, there is one moment that stands out above the rest. As I contemplated the impossibility of a baby coming out of my body, I felt a jolt from my head to my toes and then heard these words: "You will have this baby exactly the way millions of women have done before you." That became my mantra, over and over, for days and weeks, until I pushed out a beautiful, 9-pound baby boy.

As the years passed and more babies came, I learned more about a mother’s strength to do whatever is necessary and the importance of women supporting each other in all respects, but especially so during pregnancy and birth. We draw strength from the experiences of those who came before us. In this way, I hone my intuitive skills so that I might better serve the needs of my clients and their families. When I first began attending births, I couldn’t wait for that moment when a baby takes its first breath; simultaneously taking the breath away from everyone in the room. Lately, I find myself asking, "What did this birth teach me about myself, where I have been or where I want to be?" The doula-client relationship is a microcosm of community, each of us leaning on the other.

Through my involvement with the Student Doula program at New Life Birth Services, I have had to opportunity to study Birth Story Listening under Pam England. Every birth takes a woman through a journey, and occasionally the events of her birth will affect the way she views not only birth, but all aspects of life. I can’t wait to provide this, much needed, service to the women of Albuquerque. I will becompleting my Birth Story Listening course along with doula certification through Doulas of North America (DONA) International next spring. In addition to birth work, I am passionate about essential oils and their place in our everyday lives. I am eager to share the many safe and beneficial ways to incorporate them during pregnancy, labor/delivery and the postpartum period.