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  • How will you support or work with my husband/partner/birth support person?
  • Are you certified?
  • How much experience do you have?
  • Do you have a backup?
  • What if I find out I need a cesarean?
  • How do you maintain your knowledge and stay current in the birth field?
  • What do we do in a prenatal meeting?

How will you support or work with my husband/partner/birth support person?

Working as a team is very important to me and I am there for all of you! During our prenatal visits, I will help you all explore your preferences and desires, teach your team how to give hands-on support and encouragement, and give your support people guidance on how to be effective advocates for you and protectors of your space and experience. As your doula, I would continue this support during the birth. During labor, I can be the person giving hands’ on support or I can guide your chosen person in giving that support. I will give them breaks when needed, remind them to eat & drink, and give them emotional support. All of this will help them be a better support person, as well as give them a better experience. They can relax more, knowing that they have a guide, a helper, and a coach to lean on. Even if they want to be YOUR birth coach (as Bradley method teaches), every coach needs a coach or mentor of their own!

Are you certified?

I certified as a Labor Doula with DONA International in 2008 and maintained that certification for 6 years. Doula certification is not required, but it shows that a doula has gone through a specific education process and attained a base level of knowledge. You can feel confident and assured that I have completed all of the necessary education and documentation to become certified, though I have made a conscious choice not to maintain a doula certification at this time. Like most doulas, I continue to learn and expand as a birthworker. In 2021 I completed an extensive 9-month training with Birthing From Within and certified as a childbirth educator. As part of the program, I completed their doula training and certification path, but ultimately chose not to submit my certification packet. In 2023 I completed a Birth Story Listener certification. I will continue to pursue continuing education because it keeps me engaged and energized in my practice. Thanks to my studies, experiences, and my engagement with the community of birth workers, I have a much greater understanding of birth than when I first obtained my certification in 2008. There is always something to learn!

How much experience do you have?

Over the years I have supported over 50 birthing people and their partners. I have supported women in the hospital, at home births, and at birth centers. I have supported all types of birthing situations, including labor induction, cesareans, planned epidurals, labor without pain medication, water birth, multiples, VBACs, LGBTQ families, and more!

Do you have a backup?

I always work with one or more backup doulas, in case of an unexpected event or illness. I am part of a close community of doulas who live in the Claremont area. We meet regularly and discuss our births and back each other up when we have clients due. Most often your backup doula is there for a just-in-case scenario, however there are times when I work more closely with a backup, such as if I have a trip or performance planned during my on-call period for your due date. I would let you know about these situations during our initial conversations, and you would be able to meet with the backup doula over Zoom if desired.

What if I find out I need a cesarean?

If I am contracted as your doula and you know that you will have a cesarean ahead of time, or if you find suddenly that you have to have a cesarean before labor begins, I will offer to come meet you at the hospital to give support during the preparation for the cesarean, postpartum, and if your partner needs support while waiting. Depending on the support needed during your time in the hospital, I may also offer extra prenatal or postpartum support.

How do you maintain your knowledge and stay current in the birth field?

I read books, take courses, talk with colleagues, and listen to podcasts, such as Evidence Based Birth. Often when something new comes up with a client, I will spend a considerable amount of time gathering knowledge and information about the topic. I also maintain membership in Birthing From Within, my most current training and certifying organization, and they offer regular meetings and trainings on various topics. Most years I attend at least one new course, such as Spinning Babies, Birth Story Listening, or Breastfeeding Education. I also listen to my clients and find out what they are reading and listening to, and what was helpful to them during their birth, what was surprising, and what they wish they had known or understood.

What do we do in a prenatal meeting?

Prenatal meetings are a fairly informal but moderately structured time to get to know each other and for us to delve into your preferences, desires, as well as deal with any obstacles that might be in your way. Depending on your childbirth education and knowledge, prenatals are custom-designed to fit your needs. We might go over exercises and stretches, practice birthing positions and comfort measures, do pain-coping practice, develop a birth plan, or role play conversations with hospital staff and caregivers. We will definitely go over when and how to request my support during labor, and what that support might look like. They are usually fun and informative!

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