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'To offer one-self as a faithful companion to another woman on life's greatest journey, that into motherhood, is a conscious, considered & committed choice. It is a decision that illustrates deep respect for women, belief in the power, the beauty & the passion of birth, & recognition that the way we birth & nurture ... our children has profound effects on the whole of our lives & those of our families'. Vicki Chan
I am a doula, a student midwife and a mum of three kids. I feel it is a must that every woman is educated so that they can make the right decisions about their birth experience. Birth is a natural event, and every woman can be involved in the decision-making process and can come away from the birth satisfied that they were involved and had a 'voice'.
Giving birth is a beautiful, wondrous, exciting and scary time- nothing compares or even comes close to it. Having a doula allows you to 'own' your birth and make the choices you feel are right for you. I will support you throughout your pregnancy, labour and beyond. I will make sure that your wishes are complied with (as closely as possible) and that you are fully informed every step of the way. Statistically, births which have a doula present have a 65% lower chance of having interventions including epidurals and pain relief.
I have worked extensively with Dr Amber Moore (St Vincent's Private Hospital) and feel absolutely privileged to be a part of this miracle. I am very passionate about empowering women and helping them through this life-changing process. I have been at many types of birth- vaginal, forceps, vacuum, epidural, drug-free, VBAC, pre-eclampsia, caesarian (both planned and emergency), IVF and a combination of these.
#1 Full Package- Ante-natal, Birth and Post-natal
#2 Ante-natal and Birth Package
#3 Birth-Only Package
Though it is more beneficial for you to have continuity with your doula throughout your pregnancy, it is possible to have a doula to support a birth.
#4 Birth and Post-natal Package
#5 Extra Ante/Post-Natal Support Package
The main role of the ante/postpartum doula is informational and emotional support. Women who are at home on bed-rest for such things as high blood pressure, threatened miscarriage or severe morning sickness may need a doula to assist them with physical, emotional and/or informational support. Doulas are able to suggest ways of overcoming breastfeeding and other postnatal problems and are able to help the woman de-stress.
#6 Overnight Package
If extra help is needed during the night (10pm-6am), I am available to help with this process.
5 Ways Your Doula is Like a Wedding Planner
Wedding planning is a big deal. We expect people to take their time, and have big plans, even for small occasions. This might include a meal, a ceremony, coordinated outfits, decorations, a bridal shower, cakes, and more. As a society we don’t say anything to a woman who chooses to use a wedding planner. She’s smart and has help. Who wouldn’t want that? So I’d like to propose that a doula is much like a wedding planner, except that it’s for the birth of your baby.
1. A doula knows the major players in town.
Just like you would count on the wedding planner to have an idea of where to look for catering and flowers, a doula will be able to help you navigate your way around the many practitioners and services in your area. She can help you find the best people to help you have the birth you want from your doctor or midwife, to the baby’s paediatrician, a lactation consultant and more. This can help reduce the amount of work you have to do finding out which practitioners do what and when.
2. A doula knows the options.
A doula has training that most pregnant women do not have when it comes to giving birth. Sure, you took a childbirth class and learned a lot but her training is typically longer and specifically focused on how to help pregnant women in labour. She has extensive knowledge, not only of ways to help alleviate pain, positions for labour and other coping techniques, but she knows about medications and procedures that are common to the birthing environment.
3. A doula helps orchestrate.
Once she has your birth plan and knows what you want, your doula will help make sure that the birth follows your plans as much as possible. She will work the behind the scenes to ensure you can focus on your job – having a baby. She will remind your partner of ways to support you, bring you ice or drinks, and help you know when to use what tools on your list.
4. A doula wants you to have the best birth for you.
A doula, like a wedding planner, isn’t reliving her birth or wedding; she’s helping you and your family have the ideal birth for your baby. During the prenatal period, your doula will sit down with you and extensively go over what your desires are for your birth. She will ask you questions and listen as you tell her what you’re looking for in the experience, both in terms of physical things as well as emotionally. Most doulas will ask you to write a birth plan to help outline what it is you’re looking for so that everyone who is assisting you at the birth will be on the same page – your page.
5. A doula can help when unexpected things happen.
A doula can help you when your plans start changing. She can quickly help you evaluate what your other options are, based on your birth plan and preferences at the time. She can help you get more information and be more informed. This can be by helping you ask the right questions or helping you get the space you need to make decisions. She will also help you remember the other parts of your birth plan that may be still viable. She can also help you change directions and cope better with the changes.
Just as not every bride uses a wedding planner, not everyone will choose a doula. However, unlike the wedding planner scenario, many doulas will reduce fees, trade for services and work out payment arrangements if needed. While doulas deserve a fair wage for their hard work, many are also doing this because they believe that women deserve respectful care.