The decision to hire a birth doula is an incredibly personal one so it is important to take your time and not rush into your choice. Consider meeting with several doulas before you decide fully – always keep in mind that your doula will be with you every step of the way from the first moment you hire, through your labour, birth and beyond! So it’s incredibly important that you hire someone who you feel comfortable with, someone you feel that you can trust and that you have a good rapport with.
The first step in your doula journey with Total Wellbeing From Bump 2 Birth & Beyond is a meet & greet – this usually occurs in a coffee shop or similar location, one that is neutral for all parties involved. This meeting is a no obligation chat, so that you can get to know your doula and find out a bit more about each other. This may be your most important meeting, so take your time, relax and have a good time just chatting to each other. You are under no obligation at this meeting to enter into any hire agreements, it is merely a chance to find out more about a doula and to see if we are a good fit for your needs.
If you decide to enter into a contract with your doula, the next steps will look similar to this outline. This is merely a guide however, as each client’s needs are so individual there may be women who require more or less in their doula services.
- Initial prenatal visit: This visit will focus on your birthing needs – what you expect from your doula and what you are hoping for with your pregnancy, labour and birth. We will focus on how you feel a doula/client relationship should work and if there is anything particular that you need from me. We will also sign contracts and agree on payment schedules at this time. This visit can last as long as you need it to!
- Second prenatal visit: This visit usually happens anytime from late second trimester to early third trimester, depending on your needs. In this visit, we will work to pin down your labour and birthing preferences and we will endeavour to write these up in a clear and concise way so that you can have them with you available for your health care providers on the big day!
- At 36 weeks, a doula will go on-call for her clients. This means that I will be ready with plans in place so that I can leave my house within a moment’s notice to be by your side. You can call on your doula at any time in your labour journey – from the first twinges if you so wish! My aim is to make you as comfortable as possible no matter where you choose to labour, so I can come to your home to be with you and transfer to the hospital with you when it is time, or I can wait until you are ready to transfer to the hospital and meet you there. The choice is entirely yours! I aim to remain with you throughout the labour and birth and will stay by your side for the first few hours after birth to help with initial establishment of breastfeeding, skin to skin or bonding as required. This is also an entirely personal choice and I will respect your decisions both from your birth preferences and on the day itself.
- You will have a minimum of 1 postnatal visit from your birth doula. You can use this as an opportunity to have a birth “debrief” – a reflection on your birth experience from your own perspective and from the perspective of the doula. If more than 1 visit is required, this will be discussed with you.
- Your doula will be contactable at all times during your pregnancy via phonecall, text message, email or instant messenger. Support is available to you continuously. You can also have your doula attend prenatal visits with you if you require this, however your doula cannot advocate on your behalf. My purpose is to educate you with enough information to be your own advocate and to support you and encourage you to speak for yourself.
For further details or to arrange a meet and greet session, please contact me here.