Cheryl Wolf – BE Brave: MSP Spring 2019 Scholarship Winner

scholarship winner, cheryl wolf, holding a newborn baby


My entire childhood was something I sometimes wish I could just forget. Filled with abuse of every kind, I feel I am lucky to be alive today. But I now get the chance to be a part of something greater, to become the person I am supposed to be. – Cheryl Wolf


The bebo mia Be Brave Award recognizes a scholarship applicant whose lived experience has afforded them a deeper understanding of their worth and potential. The recipient will demonstrate this connection through their resilience of spirit, positive attitude, and willingness to meet challenges head-on.  Their business plan and personal goals reflect the spirit of bebo mia’s mission: to connect women* to their intrinsic value and power through excellent, evidence-based doula care, prenatal and/or childbirth education.


You know the classic Kindergarten question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Most children say things like a police officer or a doctor and then that answer changes many times throughout their time of adolescent. Adulthood comes and they most likely are in a different line of work from their own 5-year-old answer.


When I was asked, I would say” I don’t know” because at that age I really didn’t know the correct term for it. When I was 7 I asked my mother the big question, “How are babies born?” Thankfully my mother didn’t tell me the birds and the bees story and didn’t push my question away as nonsense. I sat on the floor in front of the computer screen and she played a video of a baby being born with her birth partner on one side and her doula on the other side. I remember the feeling flooding over me. It was the instant joy of finally knowing what I wanted to do and putting a name to it.


I am turning 29 this April, and my answer has not once changed. It’s in my soul to do this. I was a teen mother at the age of 16, and we went on to have 4 beautiful children. With each pregnancy, my dreams were put on hold. Now, it’s my turn. Just as every mother deserves a doula, every person deserves to live their dream. This is mine.


Cheryl Wolfe family collage


As a mom of 4, any extra money goes towards anything they need, which seems to be daily! Either it’s a new pair of shoes for my 10-year-old autistic son, who is constantly running, which tears the bottoms up so fast. Or it’s the incredibly high sports fees and after school activities for my 12 and 5-year-old sons, who just want to be apart of a team. Now adding dance class fees for our 3-year-old ballerina, who needs 3 different color leotards with matching tights because, “Mama, they just so bootiful.” Anytime one outgrows their shoes or clothing, it’s back to the store to keep up with their constant changes. (Seriously, can we just start a buyback program for children’s clothing and shoes?!) It’s a never-ending cycle.


It’s been a challenge to save up for something for me and to actually finally do something for myself. My husband is active duty in the Navy, and we have lived all over the country. It has made it so difficult to find a job and quality childcare with moving so often. I’ve been a stay at home for the past 6 years, and that leaves us with only one paycheck. I hope to be able to start contributing to our family. I feel that sting of mom guilt often when I think about being away from the kids. I am working hard on myself to remember that we are not only breaking the cycle of pain and hurt but showing our children that they too can always chase their dreams. My entire childhood was something I sometimes wish I could just forget. Filled with abuse of every kind, I feel I am lucky to be alive today. But I now get the chance to be a part of something greater, to become the person I am supposed to be.


Family photo with Cheryl Wolfe, her husband and four children


To become a certified doula is everything to me. I have so many ideas on what exactly I want to do with that title, I just can’t say for sure where it will lead me. I plan to learn as much as my mind will take in, and follow where each birth takes me. I want to travel to foreign countries and volunteer at local homes/hospitals/birth centers. Not only to help where I can but to learn as much as I can and break down barriers with a completely open mind. I want to extend my services after proper training as a miscarriage/stillbirth doula because I feel like that is where doulas are needed and not talked about enough. I want to get a feel for which direction I’m pulled to after I begin to take clients. That’s what makes this job also so incredibly exciting, I don’t believe any day on the job will ever be like the last.


My husband is in the medical field and is the kind of person you would want on your medical team. He is not only my biggest supporter but my partner in this crazy, beautiful life. One day we would love to open up our own clinic to provide services to all who need because America is seriously slacking in health care for our families. From doula birth services to pediatrics, we hope to one day make it happen.


When I first began looking into how to become a doula, I was overwhelmed with the number of choices on who to pick. Each one I looked at, I felt discouraged from many of the requirements of maybe not being able to do this. They didn’t fit in with my need of training from home, while still being able to be present for our children. Until I found bebo mia. The website instantly attracted me, and everything was easy to understand and gave me a push of “I CAN DO THIS!” I continued to research for a few days after and found myself still coming back to bebo mia. I knew that bebo mia was the right place for me! I am incredibly honored to be the recipient of the bebo mia Be Brave Award and to be apart of this beautiful team!


*bebo mia uses the term ‘women’ in our mission and throughout our values work. We define women as women-identified, femme-presenting, two-spirited, genderqueer, trans-inclusive, gender-non-conforming, androgynous, agender, intersex, bigender, gender questioning, gender fluid, butch, non-binary, queer positive or any person that would like to be included in this definition


AUGUST 25TH, 2019 AT 11:59 PM PST.

Find an application guide HERE




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