Image by JMH, 2018. No use without express written permission

INFORMATION for CLIENTS (and FUTURE CLIENTS!)

My philosophy, my training, and what to expect for our initial interview and beyond.

MY BIRTH PHILOSOPHY
It's YOUR birth.

My personal experiences, my ideas, and my training make it clear to me...this birth yours to lead, and mine to follow. We will work together to make a plan that feels just right to you. As a parent, I have experienced midwife and OB birth, vaginal and cesarean birth-- both emergency and planned.  And they have all been incredibly rewarding. There are so many things that can make the birth you have be an empowering one:

  • having the undivided attention and focus of someone who is able to help ease fear and pain during labor;

  • knowing that you have been heard, understood, and well-supported by your caregivers; and

  • being well-informed about your options and having the time and space to make decisions that feel right for you.

 

It doesn't matter to me what type of birth you're intending to have--I am happy to help support anything from vaginal birth with no pain medication to a planned cesarean birth and everything in between. My job is to find ways to support you, whatever your desires. And, if you're not sure what you want, we can work together to figure that out, too.

 

MY POSTPARTUM PHILOSOPHY
It's YOUR family.

Just as with birth, YOU are the leader in this process. Only your family can decide what will work best for your life and your situation. As a postpartum doula, I have deep background and wide skill set that can help you discern what might work best from among the myriad of options available for EVERY choice: from how, what, and when to feed, to how and when to sleep, etc.--including putting different pieces together to create a custom approach for your custom family. From the basics of baby care to the (occasional) chaos of incorporating a whole new person into your world, I will be there to support, nurture, and educate your family during the fourth trimester. Things that can make an enormous difference during this time of transition include:

  • a listening ear and non-judgemental support as you navigate these new, occasionally rough, waters;

  • a spare pair of hands to provide respite and practical household support; 

  • a trained set of eyes to assess the ongoing needs of any and all family members; and

  • encouragement and validation as you begin to walk this new path.

Each new baby, be it the first or fourth, brings a beautiful new and unknown into a family. I find it an enormous privilege to be able to help a family find whatever tools they need to successfully embark on their newest adventure.

I always appreciate Testimonials and Endorsements on DaoCloud!

MY DOULA TRAINING
...and other relevant work

Special Projects, Passions and Community Engagement:

  • Member of the Open Arms Perinatal Services Birth Doula Core Team since 2016;

  • Extra-big heart feelings for working with LGBTQIA+ families, plus-sized parents, survivors of violence and trauma, and families of color who want to work with a white doula (I love connecting families of color with my doula colleagues from community if that is their preference!);

  • Co-chair of the 2018 Northwest Doula Conference, focusing on inequities in the field of birth work, and how white doulas can make a difference for their clients and colleagues of color;

  • PALS volunteer positions: board member (2019), Hospital Ambassador (UWMC), Racial Equity Committee/Scholarship Review co-chair, mentor for certifying doulas, co-chair of 2019 Northwest Doula Conference;

  • Consultations for the clients of colleagues around lactation preparation and pre-birth trauma mitigation.

Relevant Life Experience:​

  • BS in Human Development, UC Davis, 1993

  • over a dozen years in the field of Early Childhood Education, including 4 years as Director of a NAEYC-accredited preschool

  • 1999: 4 day induction with pitocin, unmedicated labor ending in vaginal delivery (midwife in hospital)

  • 2001: induction with cervidil ending in unplanned cesarean birth (midwife in hospital)

  • 2002: scheduled cesarean birth

2016 Advanced Training, Conferences, and Continuing Education: 

  • BRAS (Breastfeeding Resources, Application and Skills) training

  • TENS Unit training 

  • Rebozo Uses training 

  • DONA, International ENGAGE! Conference: Advanced Peanut Ball Techniques​; Supporting LGBTQ Families During Pregnancy, Birth, and Postpartum; Providing Trauma-Informed Birth SupportYou & the NICU: How Doulas Can Support NICU FamiliesCircle Support for Parents with PMAD

  • Northwest Doula Conference: The Perinatal BodyPregnancy, Childbirth and the Pelvic Bowl​: a Physical Therapy Perspective; Breastfeeding Support in Disenfranchised CommunitiesBirth Story HealingEpigenetics and the Developing BabyPrenatal & Postpartum Fitness: Dispelling Myths, Empowering Individuals & Creating Healthier Generations

  • Open Arms Perinatal Services Birth Doula Orientation; Seattle, WA (October 21)

2017 Advanced Training, Conferences, and Continuing Education: 

  • Foundations for Best Practice in Lactation Care, Evergreen Perinatal Education; Seattle, WA (February 7-10)

  • Presentation on Tongue Tie, Breastfeeding, and Chiropractic Care (February 22)

  • REACHE conference: The Times They are A-changin'--Provocative Topics for Today's Birth Professional: # thestruggleisreal:How to Build Understanding and Empathy with Millennial Families​; The Science of Attachment and Breastfeeding: Understanding How the MotherBaby Bond Influences the Epigenome, the Microbiome, and Long-Term BreastfeedingJust say N2O! A Panel of Experts Say Yes, No & Maybe to Using Nitrous Oxide During Labor and BirthUp in Smoke: Influence of Marijuana on Pregnancy & Breastfeeding

  • PALS Hospital Ambassador Training 

  • Breastsleeping: Cultural, Historical and Biological Perspectives on Normal Healthy Maternal – Infant Sleep with Dr. James Mc Kenna 

  • specialized training for Open Arms doulas to work with clients in/recently graduated from Swedish Hospital's Addiction Recovery Services program 

  • Assisted Penny Simkin in her out-of-hospital childbirth education class at the Center for Birth

  • Northwest Doula Conference: Rewriting the Story: Pre-conference​ workshop:use of Peanut Balls in Labor with Heather Turner, CD(DONA), LCCEAshlee Wells: Protecting the 4th Trimester: How Perinatal Professionals Can Help Shift the Paradigm and Promote Positivity PostpartumJen McClellan: Plus Size Pregnancy and BirthCrystal Gurney, CD(DONA,PALS): ​Doulas as PMAD First RespondersKelly Barr-Lyles, MA: Secondary Trauma and the Birth Worker

2018 Advanced Training, Conferences, and Continuing Education: 

2019 Advanced Training, Conferences, and Continuing Education: 

HIRING YOUR DOULA
Not sure what to ask? DoulaMatch has some great questions!

Birth clients: Our initial interview will take place in your home, or over a cup of coffee or tea if you prefer. During our meet-and-greet, we'll spend some time getting to know each other, and I'd love to hear your thoughts on the type of birth you envision, the childbirth classes you're taking, what books you've been reading, and the like. The rest will flow from there!

 

If you choose to retain my services:

  • the rest of our appointments will take place in your home

  • prenatal appointments will be approximately 2 hours in length

  • you can access me by email, text, or phone at any time prior to our on-call period ("business hours" 9am-7pm Sun-Fri) 

  • I will be on call for you 24/7 from 2 weeks prior to your due date until your baby arrives

Postpartum clients: I will come to meet you and your family in your home for our initial interview. During our meet-and-greet, we'll spend some time getting to know each other and the ways in which you envision me supporting your family during the fourth trimester. I'll admire you new little one and would love to hear your birth story if you'd like to share it!

If you choose to retain my services:

  • we will work out a schedule of days and times you'd like to have me with you providing postpartum support

  • I  will be available to you by phone, email, or text anytime between 9am and 7pm daily, except Saturdays