Houston Birth Class
Kristi Keen is one of our fabulous Birth Boot Camp instructors and doulas living, teaching, and supporting women in birth in Houston and Sugarland Texas. There are a lot of us instructors and doulas these days, but Kristi manages to be everybody's sweetheart. We love this girl. And you will too. Take a Houston birth class with her!
First, could you introduce yourself? Tell us a little bit about your own birth experiences and how they influenced your desire to teach birth classes.
Iâ€™m Kristi Keen. I am a wife, mother of three adorable kids, musician, doula, and childbirth educator. All three of my births have been so amazing and satisfying, but my very first birth is the one that completely transformed my life. I was set on being a flute teacher for the rest of my life, but my first birth was so amazing that I wanted to share the message with other families. Birth can be amazing, yâ€™all! I had a quick and straightforward natural hospital birth with my first baby, and I decided to become a birth doula a few months later. I remember telling my husband, â€œI wish I had decided to become a doula when I grew up.â€ He said, â€œItâ€™s never too late.â€ With his encouragement and support, I began my journey into birth work.
What first got you interested in the realm of birth?
A funny thing happened a few days before I was preparing to pursue my Master of Music degree at the University of Houston. I was taking my music theory entrance exam when I received a phone call. After the test was over, I checked my messages. One of them was an opportunity to interview for a graduate assistant position in the Womensâ€™ Studies department. I was pretty much given that job, and one of my co-workers was a doula and childbirth educator. When I became pregnant at the beginning of my final semester of graduate school, she was one of the first people I told. I took her class, had a great birth, and became passionate about helping others have great births.
What are your particular passions concerning birth?
Though I love all of the clients Iâ€™ve had and all of their various birth experiences, I have a particular passion for first time parents. I feel like that first birth sets the tone for all future births, and I hope that first one can be amazing for them! My hope is that women leave their births thinking, â€œI gave birth! I can do ANYTHING.â€
There are lots of different childbirth educator training programs out there. Why did you choose Birth Boot Camp?
I had the desire to teach childbirth classes before Birth Boot Camp existed. I read about each program, but there was always one or two little things about each that didnâ€™t quite sit right with me. One day our founder, Donna Ryan, published a post on her Banned from Baby Showers blog about Birth Boot Camp. I took one look and knew Birth Boot Camp was THE ONE. The curriculum was absolutely what I had been looking for.
Tell us a little about your Birth Boot Camp training experience. Where did you train? What did you like about it?
I took my training in Houston, TX with a group of incredible women. Besides soaking in all of the information about the curriculum and how to teach it effectively, I finally got to meet the authors of Mama Birth and Banned from Baby Showers. I felt like I was meeting celebrities!
How is teaching your own classes going for you? What do you enjoy most about it?Â
In what ways did the Birth Boot Camp teacher training help prepare you for teaching Houston birth classes?
Something I am coming to learn about being a doula and childbirth educator is that, not only do you have to know about birth, how to teach about it, and how to give the most amazing hip squeezes, but you have to know how to market your incredible services. Birth Boot Camp taught me how to get my services known in the community, and they are determined to help me to continue improving, not only my teaching skills, but my marketing skills. They want me to succeed, and I have never doubted it.
Tell us a little about your students. How do you believe childbirth education is having a positive impact on them?
I have the best students and doula clients! I have one who went on to become a Labor & Delivery nurse, one who is taking a doula training soon, and one who is an aspiring midwife. I know they will have a positive impact in the birth world. I have also seen other students and clients share their experiences with childbirth education to help their friends. I love seeing the impact my students are having. They are amazing!
To close, tell us how you see natural childbirth education having a positive impact? Why does this work matter to you?
I feel like Birth Boot Camp classes prepare students for ALL types of births. I feel like if students prepare their bodies and minds for a natural birth, even if that may not be their ultimate goal, the process of preparing and educating themselves on how to have a natural birth will help them more likely achieve the birth that they want.
Where can we find you?
You can also see Kristi talking about her doula training in this video! She is about 50 seconds in. Check her out-