As a doula, my role is to be present for women throughout their pregnancy and during labor. I work with each individual woman to optimize the satisfaction of her birth experience. I empower women to believe in their bodies and follow their intuition. As the mother, you know what is best for you and your baby. Through prenatal education, emotional validation and physical support, I strive to awaken the connection between mother and baby during pregnancy, labor, and birth. This is a very sacred time in a woman’s life; each woman has a different vision of how their birth should unfold. I encourage women to find their voice, become an active part of their own journey, and embrace the spirituality of their birth.
The most critical role of a doula is to provide continuous emotional reassurance and comfort. As a registered nurse who specializes in psychiatry, I have invaluable experience providing emotional support and teaching coping skills. Prior to labor, we will review relaxation techniques and other comfort measures. During labor, I will help you and your partner to utilize these tools in addition to providing validation and perspective. I, however, will not employ any clinical skills. I aim to inspire women to believe in their innate abilities to labor and birth, in their own way and on their own terms. I have completed training approved by Birth Arts International and I am independent and self-employed. As your doula, I am working for you, not for your providers or the facility where you choose to give birth.
An initial consult can be scheduled in person, at a place of the clients choosing. During the consult, we can discuss the services I provide as a doula, the fees, and I will provide a contract presenting these terms. This contract will be signed at or before the first prenatal session, along with providing the required deposit. I prefer to include your birth partner during our meetings so that we can explore and discuss your goals and any concerns the mother or partner may have. Meeting with your partner will give us the opportunity plan how we might best work together, as well as anticipate any potential barriers to reaching your aforementioned goals.
If you choose to select me as your doula, I will want to become more familiar with your vision of birth and your ideal plans for labor, birth, and postpartum. It is very important that you and your partner are comfortable with me and with my role in the birth. To foster this relationship, I expect to meet with clients at least twice after the initial consultation. These prenatal sessions will be in your home and last about 1-2 hours each. The first will be sometime after the start of your second trimester, and the second will be in the third trimester, prior to 37 weeks.
In the first prenatal session, we will discuss your past and current pregnancy experiences and your desired birth plans. At this time we can review your available options and I will provide requested resources and address any concerns or fears that you may have. In the second session, we will explore various comfort measures and non-pharmacological pain relief techniques that you may utilize during labor. In addition, you and your partner may learn various coping skills and positions to practice for labor and birth. We will review the various phases of labor and the appropriate time to call your doula. We will, again, review any lingering concerns and solidify your birth plan. My role is to inspire you to have a satisfying birth as you define it. The more we explore this in advance, the better I will be able to fulfill this role.
I am available for phone/email consultations throughout your pregnancy. I encourage clients to call with questions or updates at any time. Once we enter the on-call period, I prefer that clients check in with me every few days to let me know how they’re doing. I am on-call for you starting two weeks before your given due date and lasting up to two weeks after. During the on-call period, I am committing myself to be no more than 2 hours from your home and chosen place to birth, at all times. There may be times when I am unavailable to be present during your labor. During those times, I will arrange one or more qualified back-up doulas whom you may also meet. I currently accept only 1-2 clients a month, making the likelihood of your birth overlapping with another client’s birth extremely small.
I prefer that you call me at the first sign of labor, even if you do not yet need me. I can answer questions and make suggestions over the phone. I will not be present for labor support until you are in active labor. Calling me during early labor allows me to anticipate your labor and arrange my plans accordingly. I usually need approximately 2 hours to get to you from the time you ask me to come, it is vital you call me as soon as you require my presence. You will decide where to meet—at your home or the hospital/birthing center. If there is a medical emergency or other cause for concern, call your provider or 911. I will not provide medical advice or clinical skills in person or over the phone.
I will remain with you for 30 minutes after the birth. In this time, I may help initiate breastfeeding and provide brief postpartum comfort measures. This is a crucial time of bonding for your new family and my role at this point will be to allow this process to unfold. I am available by phone or email to answer questions about the birth of your baby. I will return for one postpartum within 7 days of the birth. During this visit, I can provide additional breastfeeding support, baby care tips, referrals to community resources and a chance to discuss the birth experience. I will continue to be available for additional phone/email consultations for up to six weeks postpartum.