"Sarah made me feel so at ease throughout my pregnancy, knowing that I could call her with any questions/concerns no matter what time it was. Even just the positive emails replying to my doctor updates helped me feel more relaxed and confident. Her encouragement helped me stay positive when I was becoming frustrated due to numerous false labors. Being first time parents it was very reassuring to have Sarah in the delivery room looking out for us, since we wanted as natural a birth as possible. Her knowledge of labor procedures and medications was beneficial during the stressful process of labor when at times you can feel pressured by doctors. She was constantly helping me get through contractions, suggesting different techniques when I became confined to bed. Everything seemed to happen so fast in the delivery room, that if not for Sarah there, my husband and I would have had no idea of everything that was going on. Her postpartum visit was great; having her come and check on how we were adjusting at home. The birth story she brought with her was amazing and was put in his baby book for us to look back on in years to come. She was so detailed in what happened I can read it and feel like it is all happening again. We are very pleased that we decided to have Sarah as our doula!"
"I decided to have a Doula with my second child after my first child was born via c-section. I desperately wanted a VBAC and knew that a Doula would help that to happen. It truly did help the whole process having Sarah there. She was fabulous. I seriously felt that she was my best friend ever during labor, like having the best nurse at the hospital never leaving your side (and not be busy looking at monitors). She was a great coach, very attentive, very encouraging and very knowledgeable. She answered all my questions about what was going on during labor and pushing. My VBAC ended up being successful and I know Sarah was a factor in that success, even just the peace of mind having her there help tremendously. Let me add that my husband was also there and was very glad Sarah was there. He expressed that he didn't always know what to do or say but followed Sarah's lead and found that very helpful. Sarah also visited us a few days after baby was born and wrote up the whole birth story. That is something I will always cherish and someday I'll be able to give to to my baby when she has a baby of her own. Sarah is a great person, so sweet and a joy to be around. She didn't "replace" my husband in the labor room but instead worked along side each of us. I am very thankful she was there and glad to have met her. I also want to add that I was due very close to Christmas and I told her she didn't have to come if she was busy with family Christmas celebrations but she dismissed that suggestion and said she will come anyday, anytime no matter what. Sarah is so professional and a complete joy to be around." ~Tara
When asked by a friend about whether or not it is beneficial to hire a doula, Cathy had this reply regarding her experience having Sarah as her doula...
"My doula experience was amazing. I first learned about doulas after watching The Business of Being Born-- highly recommend if you haven't watched it -- and later in nursing school. I found my doula just by doing a google search, she is DONA trained and teaches childbirth classes. We had an initial meeting, she told me what she did, costs, etc. We were suppose to have a prenatal visit - a couple hours long- talking about labor and techniques-- however our appointment was suppose to be April 1 and Willa came March 30!
My labor was horrible-- I was induced Thursday night and gave birth Saturday afternoon. I was on strict bedrest due to meds I was on, so really my labor was not a normal thing. I am so thankful I had Sarah (the doula) there. Even though nothing went as planned, she was so comforting and helped Rusty and I through it.
She explained what was going on, was able to give Rusty breaks, distracted me when needed, massaged my back and talked me through contractions, helped me feel OK about getting an epidural, kept me emotionally stable with everything that was going on and the fact that she was coming so early, helped with breastfeeding within the first 30 minutes of birth... I really cannot imagine the experience without her. There would be lots more tears and anxiety.
With her there, the birth experience was still one that i look on with pride - without her I think I would be terrified to have another child!
After the birth she visited me at home and we talked about the labor- I really didn't realize how much I needed this. There were things I forgot, memories I blocked out, and she helped the time-line of what all happened- it all ran together for me. She also kept a journal during the entire labor and is wrote up a birth story for me to keep. This meeting is when I first realized how much I went through during those 2 days and how it was pretty amazing that I still delivered vaginally.
All in all, my labor and delivery was exhausting and the complete opposite of how I thought it would go. But, with Sarah there it was still an experience that was beautiful and really I wouldn't change it-- it made me stronger!
I would say get one for sure! I had no idea what I was doing and neither did Rusty-- we needed someone to help us and empower us. Sarah was perfect at being present in the moment and still letting Rusty and I feel that the experience was ours alone.
My husband, Rusty, felt the same way.
After I asked him if he was glad we had Sarah. He immediately said yes! He couldn't imagine what it would have been like without her because the doctors are hardly ever in the room and the nurses are busy the whole time to really focus on comforting me and helping us both through. I'm sure the nurses would help with contractions and comfort measures- but not as focused as a doula does. So he was really glad we went with the doula." ~Cathy