Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Why Doulas are Worth Every Penny

Up front, doulas may seem expensive. Some people think they are hired to replace another important person in the birth space, like the partner or the birthing woman's mother. But doulas are an integral member of a birth team.

Doulas' fees may seem steep. But birth work is truly the work of the heart. Doulas' fees covering many things:
-Doulas spend quite a bit of money on their initial doula training and usually take additional training courses to keep up with the most recent information.
-Supplies like books, birth balls, massage tools, snacks, rebozos, must be bought and restocked.
-Many doulas need to pay for child care while they attend prenatal meetings and births, which are unpredictable and can last days.
-Doulas need to be compensated for the time spent away from their families while attending prenatal meetings and births. With birth being unpredictable, doulas can put anywhere from 8 hours to 50 hours into a client's pregnancy and birth.
-Doulas are on call for normally four weeks. This four weeks means no planned vacations, never traveling more than a few hours from home, possibly missing out on events like concerts and children's birthdays.

Doulas provide:
-A relationship that starts during pregnancy and blooms with every prenatal meeting. This ensures that the doula and couple have a close relationship before labor ever begins.
-Ongoing support, from the moment that the mother feels she needs help. This includes support at home before the midwife joins a family or it is time to go to the hospital.
-A doula brings a wealth of knowledge into the birth space including relaxation and comfort measures.
-A doula also brings a calming presence with emotional support and encouragement.

Books may contain some of the information that doulas know. Care providers may emulate some of the characteristics of doulas. But neither can replace a doula entirely. Books do not provide hands that comfort or calming words when you think you cannot go on. Care providers, while incredibly knowledgeable and healing, must worry about the mother and the baby's medical needs if nececssary while a doula focuses on her emotional needs as well as her partner and other family members.

There was a time when females of all ages would help support a birthing woman. Our modern society has robbed us of the ability to know how birth can truly be. Most modern women do not possess the innate knowledge that comes with attending physiological birth from a young age. Doulas are the modern replacement for this feminine rite of passage. The support is completely irreplaceable and worth every penny.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

What to Expect from a Calm Birth Class

Calm Birth is a set of meditations tailored towards pregnancy, birth, and early parenthood. It helps instill a practice of breathing and mindfulness that will help expecting families deal with the stress that can accompany pregnancy as well as be in tune with the mind during labor, making sometimes for an easier birth and recovery period. All while instilling the amazing benefits of mindfulness for parents and baby.

Calm Birth is perfect for any expecting family: planned natural birth, planned medicated birth, planned cesarean birth, first birth, second, third, or fourth birth!

Here are some questions you may have about the class itself:

  • I have never meditated before, is this class for me? This class is for anyone, no matter if you have meditated before or not. I will provide pointers on how to include meditation practices and mindfulness into your daily routine. 
  • I cannot sit on the floor in the traditional meditation pose, is this class for me? While sitting in the traditional pose is the most beneficial pose for meditation, I will show you other ways to sit that may be more comfortable. Even if you sit in a chair, you will still receive the many benefits meditation offers.
  • I have already taken a childbirth class, will this be redundant? The Calm Birth class is not a childbirth education class. It is a compliment to traditional childbirth education.
  • I've already had a wonderful birth with my previous pregnancy, will I still get something out of this class? Calm Birth helps families prepare during pregnancy, helping them be mindful and recover quicker, no matter the type of birth. The tools can be used during any type of birth. And the practice stretches far beyond pregnancy and birth as Calm Birth offers tracks for the postpartum period. And studies have shown that children who are born to a mother who practiced meditation while pregnant, receive many benefits like healthier brain development and are more apt to continue mindful practices in their life.
  •  I have hired a midwife and/or doula, what can this class offer beyond what I am already receiving? Meditation and mindfulness is a tool that you can bring yourself. It will compliment all of the great care and support you are already going to receive.
If you have any questions not covered, please contact me directly at I would love to discuss this class with you.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Is Calm Birth Meditation for You?

Calm Birth is a meditation type for expecting families. I am so excited to be offering these classes in the very near future, in the St. Louis area. This will not be the typical Child Birth prep class. How do you know if it is right for your family? Calm Birth helps any expecting family as meditation helps ensure a healthy birth and baby brain development. It helps the family, as a whole, become closer and establish a meditation practice that will extend far beyond pregnancy and birth. But Calm Birth can really help the following families:

-You are expecting your first baby. Calm Birth is an amazing way to help mentally prepare for the unknowns of labor.

-You plan on having a baby in the very near future. Calm Birth helps establish mental and physical health that makes for a healthy pregnancy. And meditation helps in the positive visualization that can be helpful in becoming pregnant.

-You had a previous traumatic birth. Calm Birth helps with getting into a good place to start to identify the issues with your previous birth and possibly seek out the help you need to work through them. This way you can prepare for a well supported, respected birth. Calm Birth helps you get into a mental state to relax and prepare for the birth that you need.

-You are planning a medicated and/or Cesarean birth. Meditation in general helps the immune system and the body's ability to heal.

-You are experiencing a stressful pregnancy or time during pregnancy. Meditation helps in dealing with the regular stresses of pregnancy as well as any extraordinary stresses you may experience. This can help in alleviating or preventing any health issues for mom and baby that may be caused by extra stress.

-You experienced a mental block during your last birth. Mental blocks can impede labor and meditation helps get you into a good place for your next birth.

-You want a natural birth without medical interventions. Meditation can help you get into a good space to experience birth without pain medication and help ensure steady labor progression.

Calm Birth is a huge step to setting up a peaceful birth space no matter which type of birth you envision or need. Follow this link for more information on Calm Birth:

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

How to Deal with Your Birth Not Following Your Plan

It can be difficult to deal with a birth that does not go quite as planned. These are ways to cope with the loss of your ideal birth.

1. Be prepared. The best thing you can do is to ensure that you have a plan for your birth as well as a backup plan. Present this to your care giver to ensure that they fit this plan as well as the hospital or place you plan to deliver. Hiring a doula can be especially helpful as well. While a doula cannot ensure a certain birth outcome, they can help you feel confident in the decisions you make regarding your birth. Preparation and hiring a doula will help you realize that you did everything in your power before having to veer from your original birth plan.

2. Adopt a regular meditation practice. Meditation does amazing things for your health. Meditation helps support your mental health and as well as your immune system. While it can be integral in ensuring the birth that you wish for it can also help your body and mind heal after birth interventions. Meditation can help you heal in the post partum phase.

3. Accept help. Surround yourself with people who will help with housework, cooking, and your other children. This will allow you optimal time to bond with your baby and focus on yourself when needed. A post partum doula can be extremely helpful in this situation.

4. Find someone to talk to who understands your feelings. Talking about your birth can be healing. Your birth doula can help in this regard, as they witnessed your birth and can help you remember certain details. And a doula (birth or post partum) can be an incredibly good listener and help you sort through your feelings.

5. Seek professional help if need be. If you really feel down and cannot shake the feeling of depression, especially if you feel the need to harm you or your baby, you may need to seek professional help. Know that this is ok and birth trauma is very real.

Your birth is important, it affects the relationship between you and your baby. It affects your health and well being as well as your baby's. Understanding the importance helps you know your feelings surrounding your birth are vital and need to be validated. Never discount the importance of birth.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Calm Birth

I am very excited to announce that I will be offering Calm Birth classes. Calm Birth is a method of meditation tailored for expecting families. Calm Birth offers three unique types of meditation for pregnancy and birth:

  •     Womb Breathing: Practice of breathing in vital energy to your womb that will help you escape your mind and bring you into awareness. This will help families overcome their fears and walk into their birthspace with clear minds. This method will also help women cope with the pain of labor and help them physically heal faster from birth.

  •     Practice of Opening: This practice will help families focus on their bodies and bond with their baby. It is a great relaxation tool to help families sleep and relax into the early stages of labor. Practice of Opening also helps heal the mother and baby's nervous system as well as immune function.

  •     Giving & Receiving: The practice of Giving & Receiving allows the family to heal from past traumas. It will also allow women to use their innate ability to heal others. And this practice allows the partner to send healing energy to the mother during labor; to be active participants in their partner's birth.

Calm Birth also offers a very healing program for the postpartum time.

This page shows all of the benefits Calm Birth can provide for families and new babies:

And what sets Calm Birth apart from other childbirth preparation classes is that the practices learned through Calm Birth can be used for the rest of a person's life. Meditation has proven effects in pre-conception, pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and beyond. It has also been proven that babies who have experienced meditation in utero, are more likely to continue the practice.

Imagine, Calm Birth is not to just benefit yourself but your new child, your family, and the world around you! I am so excited to expose this life changing practice to families in the area!