As your birth doula, I will support you and your partner to have the birth experience you desire. I work in all settings (hospitals, birth centers, home) and with clients seeking normal childbirth, vaginal births after c-sections (VBACs), women planning to have epidurals, high-risk clients, mothers having twins, and women having c- sections. From the moment you hire me, I will be available by phone and email 24/7 to discuss your upcoming birth and answer any questions that may arise. I will come to your home for one or two prenatal meetings to talk about your birthing preferences, discuss any fears or concerns, discuss signs and stages of labor, as well as questions and decisions that may arise during your birth. We will review comfort measures, laboring techniques, breastfeeding and how to prepare your home for the postpartum period.
I will provide you with advocacy (interpreting your wishes to the hospital), emotional support (encouragement, reassurance, continuous physical presence), informational support (assistance to families in gathering information about the course of their labor and their options, explanations, non-medical advice), physical support (comfort measures, positioning, massage, breathing, relaxation, and other non- pharmacological pain relief measures), and partner support (role modeling, encouragement, reassurance). I also want to know your own best ways of coping with pain and how you and your partner foresee working together. I will be on-call for your birth starting at 37 weeks.
When You are in Labor
I prefer that you call me when you think you are in labor, even if you do not yet need me. I can answer questions and make suggestions over the phone. We will decide if I should come right then or wait for further change. I usually need approximately one to three hours to get to you from the time you ask me to come. We will also decide where to meet, at your home, the hospital or the birth center. I will remain with you throughout your labor and birth of your baby. After the birth I’ll stay one to two hours to take pictures and get you started with breastfeeding, if necessary.
I will come to your home in the first weeks after birth for a postpartum visit, to talk about your birth, discuss a written birth story, receive feedback about my role, and answer any breastfeeding questions you may have.
What Doulas do NOT do:
1. Perform clinical tasks, such as blood pressure, fetal heart checks, vaginal exams, and others. I am there to provide only physical comfort and emotional support. 2. Make decisions for you. I will help you get the information necessary to make an informed decision. I will also remind you if there is a departure from your birth plan. 3. Speak to the staff on your behalf. I will discuss your concerns with you and suggest options, but you or your partner will speak directly to the clinical staff.
Failure of a Doula to Provide Service
I will make every effort to provide the services described here. Sometimes this is impossible (for example, with rapid labor). If my failure to attend your birth is due to my error, there will be no charge for my services and I will refund the final $300. If it is due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control or your failure to call me, I will keep the retaining fee of $350 and refund you the remaining amount.
My fee for the services described here is to be paid as follows: $350 non-refundable retainer fee, due when you select me as your doula. $350 is due six weeks before your estimated birthing date. $300 is due within two weeks before your estimated birthing date.