Meet Kelly Underwood, Birth and Postpartum Doula
Where did you grow up?I am a born and bred Virginian, I was born in Warrenton, VA and lived there when I was very young but did most of my growing up in Stafford, VA. Our house was kind of out of the way of things with a small lake nearby, lots of woods, and only a few neighbors. I grew up with my Mom and Dad, three sisters (1 older, 2 younger), two dogs, a cat, a bunch of chickens, a cockatiel, and whatever pets I could catch that summer (frogs, toads, lizards, newts, etc.).
What is your favorite part of Virginia? I have a special fondness for the Blue Ridge Mountains, especially through Shenandoah. My grandmother’s family lived in the mountains in Shenandoah National Park before they turned it into a national park and I used to sit and talk to her for hours about life in the mountains. We didn’t really go on vacation when I was a kid but instead we would pack a lunch and drive out to the mountains find a nice spot and just spend the day there. We would climb rocks and trees, roll down hills, generally chase each other around, enjoy a beautiful sunset, then head home. The Blue Ridge Mountains are my happy place.
What is your favorite part about being a doula? I love the many forms this work takes. I love meeting people where they are at and providing the care that they need at that moment, which can look different from person to person and from one moment to the next.
Why are you a professional doula? I believe that this is the work that I was put on this earth to do. Being a doula allows me to make the most of my natural strengths and talents and I feel like I can do this job for 20 years and still be learning and growing. Being a professional doula is the most sustainable way for me to do the work I love.
Where is one place you would like to visit in the world? I really love traveling and want to see as much of the world as I can. If I have to pick just one I’d say Norway is pretty high on my list. I would love to explore their fjords and mountains and there are some areas of Norway that you can get a good view of the Northern Lights, which is something that has been on my bucket list since I was about 6 years old.
What’s your favorite food? There is a restaurant near us that makes the most amazing Korean food, it is the sort of food that not only tastes delicious but also makes you feel really good.
Chocolate or vanilla? It has to be chocolate, particularly dark chocolate and if it has spices in it like cayenne or cinnamon then I am in heaven
Who has inspired you in your life? My grandmother, she was a fierce protector of her family, strong, hardworking, and she would tell it like it is, but she was still one of the most loving nurturing people I have ever met. My husband, I can say with the utmost confidence that I would not be the person I am today without him. He has taught me more than I can say, he showed me how to find my own strength and value and how to apply that to the world around me, thats how I came to be a doula! On the sillier side of things when I was little I wanted to grow up to be Pippi Longstocking (I kind of still do), she was my childhood hero.