Do you want help weighing the options in pregnancy? Do you want help finding your way to manifesting your dream of having a baby? Do you want someone with which to share the fear surrounding your pregnancy? Do you want someone with which to share the joy and excitement of your pregnancy?
In all these cases, your birth story has already begun. Today it takes on new meaning as you contemplate hiring a Doula or, perhaps, this Doula. My prenatal package is extensive so book your initial consultation early for best results! My full package is described below, but it can always be tailored to suit your particular needs. (I work with abortion plans, stillbirth plans, adoptions, surrogacy, full-term pregnancies, lgbtq families, small or large families, and so on...).
The following is addressed to the bearer of the child, but I also work with the supporters. The relationship between parents, if applicable, should be nurtured in such a way that the parent-parent bond is strong before the baby is born - resulting in a secure parent-baby bond as well. This is part of my role: to bring families together as a team over the project of pregnancy and childbirth.
A Doula cannot offer or perform any clinical assessment or examination, and it is illegal for a Doula to attend an unassisted birth. So if you are interested in a homebirth it is ESSENTIAL to apply for midwifery services immediately when you find out you are pregnant. Funding for midwives is low so it can be difficult to get in with them. Please try right away if this is something you have interest in.
You'll be able to contact me by phone or text with any questions or concerns that arise as well as any joys or milestones that you wish to celebrate. I can also reply to Facebook messages within the day. After our initial consultation, we will begin MONTHLY VISITS. These visits allow me to get to know you, your birth partner or anyone else who will be attending your birth, and your birth wishes. If you do not know what these are yet, I can give you lots of ideas. These visits also give us an opportunity to "play" with some of the tools I work with so that they are no surprise and I can begin to discern your preferences with regard to comfort measures. I'd like to get to know your cues. I'd also like to help you feel most at ease as your body shape-shifts in many ways.
During your third trimester, we'll begin WEEKLY VISITS. These are definitely celebrations of victory over each long week passing. We will visit your caregiver (doctor or midwife) together once and, if time and circumstances warrant, we will tour the facility (home, hospital, or birthing centre) together. We will begin a regime that works for you (even 10 minutes/day or 10 minutes/week), and narrow down to just a few tools that have really worked for you. In this way, we have the others as back-up but we build skills that really work. And what is hard labour anyway but work without skills?
When you feel the first rushes, OR when your water breaks, OR when you head in for induction, OR if you have bloody show, OR if you feel something is wrong or different, call me. Allow up to 2 hours for my arrival, though it has never taken me more than forty-five minutes to arrive yet! Birthing times are truly unpredictable. Rushes (contractions) can sneak up on you quickly or slowly, and can stop and restart. They can last at an easy pace for hours on end, or come strong and purposefully. When they last more than 24 hours, I will need to nap. I will attempt to bring in one of my back-up Doulas at this point. This scenario is rare, but it is good for you to know that I do have back-up Doulas, who I will introduce to you after you have signed the contract with me.
To assist with baby to guardian bonding if applicable, breastfeeding or supplemental nursing system if either will be used, and getting you comfortable for sleep, I will usually stay approximately 2 hours after the birth.
Initial Postpartum Period (just after the birth):
I will be available on-call for you for the first 4 days (meaning for example that I will be able to pick you up eggs from the store one day, assist with a breastfeeding concern the next day, help you with phone calls the third day, and run you and baby a warm lavender Epsom salts bath the fourth day). Then we can resume WEEKLY VISITS until your lochia (2 to 6 weeks of bloody mucous discharge) ceases. Besides performing a ritual blessing with you in whatever faith you belong to, gifting you with your birth story or photo log (whichever is your preference), discussing how moods are affected by the huge hormonal shift you've just undergone, and encouraging you to eat healthy and begin a balanced exercise program, I have valuable referrals and networks to connect you with as you go into the future. During this time I am still available by phone or text, and will reply to Facebook messages within the day.
Why is a Doula important to have at the birth?
• 31% decrease in the use of Pitocin (the Oxytocin drug they give to increase or start up contractions)
• 28% decrease in the risk of C-section (when they have to surgically remove the baby)
• 12% increase in the likelihood of a spontaneous vaginal birth (without needing to have an induction to get things started nor a scheduled c-section)
• 9% decrease in the use of any medications for pain relief
• 14% decrease in the risk of newborns being admitted to a special care nursery (or NICU)
• 34% decrease in the risk of being dissatisfied with the birth experience (so leaving with a positive experience of the journey to birth and back)
The statistical information is coming from Evidence-Based Birth, and so is this, word for word:
The total fee for my services is *$850*, which can be paid via cash, paypal, or email transfer. I offer a two-part payment plan (the first payment is due upon hiring, the second payment is due one month before your due month). These fees cover the costs incurred during my visits with you, the supplies and products I use for you, the transportation costs for my travel, and my time.
I offer a sliding scale to those who are low to no income, please inquire. Bartering is an option as well!