There is actual evidence doulas improve birth outcomes.
Rather than bore you with statistics, though, here’s my personal story and review of what a difference having a doula made at our birth. I can’t say enough about how important, empowering, and wonderful it is for women to have doulas at their births.
When I first met Karen, we talked for almost two hours. It was as if I’d always known her. Sometimes you are blessed to meet people with whom you just click, and I felt that with Karen.
I was determined and truly believed my body was capable of a natural birth. Even though my contractions started nearly four weeks before my EDD, I never panicked, and that was in part because Karen was there. She calmly sat with me at my home and talked me through each wave. She continued this support at the hospital. When I felt I just couldn’t handle it, she grounded me and encouraged me that yes, I could do this. And I did.
Karen was excellent at relaying my wishes to hospital staff who seemed to truly respect her, which I think is key to a positive experience in the hospital. I also believe she helped my husband stay calm during labour and delivery, which meant he could encourage and support me.
Karen found me breastfeeding support as well as housekeeping after our baby was born. She visited us numerous times during our four – day hospital stay. She also visited us once we were home and helped around the house. She recounted the birth with us so we could document our birth story, something we will cherish for years to come. She went above and beyond what I expected of a doula.
I would recommend Karen to anyone having a baby. She will arm you with the knowledge and support you need to have an amazing birth, however you choose to do it.
I should also add I had two other amazing doulas, Carmen and Dionne. Carmen armed me and my husband with a lot of knowledge to prepare us for the birth. She also connected me with a great prenatal massage therapist, and I loved my prenatal pilates class with her: I met one of my best friends there.
An amazing friend, Dionne regularly sent me articles about labour, birth, and babies. She had also offered her home as a place to labour had my labour gone on longer than it had, and she was going to hold a blessingway for me, but early baby thwarted those plans! Dionne also gifted me sessions with a lactation consultant who visited me at home to help with breastfeeding. She responded to regular text messages, and continues to do so, when I’m struggling with breastfeeding.