What's on your mind about your pregnancy, birth and postpartum experience? Do you have questions or concerns and need someone to work through them with? Families are faced with many decisions during the childbearing year and it can be overwhelming to sift through the information available and move forward with clarity, confidence and ease. A doula consult is an empowering step towards enjoying your pregnancy and preparing for birth and life with your new baby. You bring your worries, hopes and ideas. I listen without judgement and provide tools, information and resources that surround you with support as you move through this time of great change. Consults provide support at any time in your family building journey from pre-conception to after your baby has arrived.
You Pick and Choose What You'd
Like to Focus On:
Choosing a Birth Location
Deciding where to give birth: Home or hospital? If at the hospital, which one is a good fit? Midwife or OB? These are very personal decisions and there is no one size fits all answer. I have attended home births and hospital births around Western Massachusetts including The Birthplace at Baystate Franklin Medical Center, Cooley Dickinson Hospital, Holyoke Medical Center, Baystate Springfield and Berkshire Medical Center. My hope for you is that you feel supported and well cared for wherever you give birth. A prenatal consult with an experienced doula can help you identify what is most important to you, help you formulate questions for prospective medical care providers (remember, you are hiring them!) and provide unbiased information as you decide what's best for your family.
CREATING A BIRTH PLAN:
A birth plan clarifies for yourself, first and foremost what is most important to you about your birth experience. When it comes to managing pain, shaping your labor environment and meeting your baby, you have a lot of options. I help you learn about the possibilities so you can move forward with clarity and have an excellent communication tool to share with your birth care team and your partner.
ESTABLISHING COMPLEMENTARY CARE:
Many expecting parents benefit from connecting with yoga teachers, massage therapists, acupuncturists, lactation support, couples and individual therapy, medication proscribers, physical therapists and more during pregnancy and postpartum. We live in a resource rich area which is great! But it can be overwhelming. I can help you identify your needs and connect you with the support you need.
Many families ask me for feedback about the arrangements they've made in their home as they prepare for life with a new baby. It can be hard to know what you really need and how to prepare. I work with families to help you think about daily life with an infant and identify systems, tools and strategies to bring more ease and peace into your home at a time that can feel like an upheaval.
NEWBORN CARE SKILLS:
Parenting is instinctual AND learned. Do you have questions about diapering, bathing, soothing, swaddling and feeding your new baby? Often the first newborn we hold is our own. A little practice and guidance goes a long way towards increasing your confidence so you can feel more joy and less fear when you meet your little one.
WHAT CARRIER TO BUY/USE:
I am trained by the Center for Babywearing Studies and bring years of experience with my own children and the families I serve. I have a large stash of different kinds of carriers and weighted dolls to practice with.
PREPARING FOR POSTPARTUM:
Many families take the time to create a birth plan, but what about everything that comes after that? It's normal to focus on the birth while you are expecting. The birth day is a big day! It's the first day of the rest of your life with your child. What about the second day? The first day home? What about when your partner returns to work? A postpartum plan helps you set realistic expectations for the weeks and months after your baby's arrival. Together we identify needs, priorities and resources that will surround you with support so you can feel less stress and more joy.