Can you help but eavesdrop in a hair salon? I mean really. It comes with the territory. A decidedly woman-centric space, the hum of gossip is just as impossible to ignore as the droning hair dryers.
Waiting for my semi-monthly brow wax (you’re welcome), I couldn’t help but watch as client after client met with their hairdressers. These women were informed — and opinionated!
“I want highlights, but not too bright like last time. Here’s my Pinterest board with a few ideas. Can you show me the color swatches again?”
“My hair has been laying flat recently and I really want to give it more lift. What products do you recommend?”
“How long will gel nails stay on? Will they last through the week?”
These women were smart and spunky. They knew what they wanted and who could give it to them. No one of those hair stylists was pressuring their clients into doing what they thought was best. “I know you wanted highlights, but I don’t do highlights. A solid color would be better.” The stylists were listening, engaging in conversation, and partnering with their clients to achieve the desired look. Of course
As a doula, overhearing these conversations, the one thing I wanted to shout from the rooftop of that hair salon was:
LADIES!! Please, give as much care to your births as you do to your hairstyles.
Just as you wouldn’t walk into a hair salon without a clear idea of the look you wanted, you shouldn’t walk into you birthing room without an idea of how you want your birth to be. No one would walk into a hair salon and say, “Just make my hair shorter. That’s all. I don’t care how you do it.” Not at all! We are very specific with our hairstylists about how we want our hair to look, and how we need it to perform. (And yes this analogy will break down, as all do. Bear with me.)
I am afraid that women believe they have the ability to plan intensely for something as routine as a haircut, but not their births. The experiences are vastly different (obviously), but you should play just as active a role in each.
So go ahead! Make that pinboard of Kate Middleton blowouts and bring it to your next salon appointment. And if you’re rubbing a baby bump as you read this post, go ahead and make a pinboard with ideas about what you want out of your birth experience. Explore. Ask questions. Learn your options. Make decisions. Talk with your provider. Please don’t be more prepared for your next haircut than the birth of your sweet baby.
With doula love,