I truly believe that nobody is disqualified from having a doula. No matter how many pregnancies you have had previously, what kind of setting you wish to birth in, or what kind of preferences you have, a doula can help support you in any context. According to Evidence Based Birth, having the continuous support of a doula can decrease the risk of a surgical birth, increase the likelihood of spontaneous birth (rather than induction), and decrease on the use of pain medication. Those who have a doula by their side tend to have short labor, and overall higher satisfaction with the birth experience. While medical professionals pay attention to the numbers and care mainly for the outcome of "healthy mom, healthy baby", the doula cares very deeply about the big picture. We want so badly for you to feel safe, empowered, and happy with your birth experience. And don't forget, we aren't just there to support the birthing person. As a doula, it is my responsibility to cater to the needs of those who you choose to have present at your birth.
My doula services include the following:
(at least) 2 Pre- natal appointments
There is no limit to what we can cover during these appointments. These appointments should last about 1-1.5 hours each. Some taking points include (but are not limited to):
previous pregnancies and birth experiences
hopes, goals, challenges, joy of this pregnancy
your present care provider and how they may or may not meet your needs
what kind of additional support you may need during pregnancy and postpartum (pelvic floor therapy, chiropractic work, traditional talk therapy, support groups, parent's groups, breastfeeding support groups, cloth diapering education, placenta encapsulation, postpartum doula education and resources, etc.)
how to apply for government benefits should you need/want to use them while pregnant or postpartum
discuss and create a "birth preferences" sheet. This conversation is usually ongoing and you are welcome to change your birth preferences at any point in time
discuss the emotional and psychology elements of birth
(at least) 4 weekly check-ins during your final months
weekly routine phone calls may last 20-30 minutes, depending on what you are emotionally at that time
We will be able to work together to also resolve any emotional trauma that may be something too heavy to carry with you into the birth. So much of what we do together is about emotional wellness. I would argue that birth is equal parts physiology and psychology.
Additionally, I will take you through my doula bag and show you comfort measures that you can take alone with your partner, or comfort measures that we can take together so that we can delay or avoid the use of medication (should you wish to delay or avoid medication). I also place a heavy priority on preparing the family for the postpartum experience and go into detail about what that might look like.
Continuous Labor Support
Because childbirth can last from just a few hours to several days, I may not be able to be with you physically throughout the entire process. However, because of the time we have spent together before the big day, you will feel prepared to work with your partner through the early stages of labor without your doula immediately by your side. When it is clear that the birthing person is in active labor, this is a great time for the doula to join the birthing person and their partner. We will go together to the hospital or birthing center should you choose to birth outside of your home.
I will be there for the birth of your child and for the hours following. I won't leave until Baby has a good latch on the breast, or you are being support by a lactation consultant (if you chose to breastfeed), or you tell me that I should go. I do not want to interfere with those precious moments that you will spend as a new family.
As stated above, once Baby is born, I will stay with you until Baby is in your arms, and everyone is safe, sound, and all needs are met. If the baby needs to be in the NICU for a few hours, I will stay with you while your partner goes with the baby so that you do not have to spend that time alone. I will check-in with you for the days following birth, at which point, we can plan for a postpartum visit to your home. I like to do this about 10 days postpartum.
Because I vow to give my families the best care possible, from the time we sign the contract together,
I am available 24/7 to answer any questions or concerns that you may have.
I will continue to provide you support throughout your child's first year of life.
I have an unusual payment structure, so please feel free to reach out with questions. This is based on my experience with families from a variety of socio-economic backgrounds. The services I provide within these price points are not dependent on cost- rather they are dependent on your needs and my ability at that time.
My sliding scale is from $0-$1500 and is broken down the following way:
families with zero in the way of resources/disposable income ($0-$350)
families with few resources, some income, but no disposable income ($350-$750)
families with adequate resources, steady income, and some disposable income ($750-$1150)
families with abundant resources, reliable income, adequate disposable income ($1150-$1500)