Wonder Twin Power….ACTIVATE!

Working with Partners at Births reminds me of characters on a show I watched as a child. Zan and Jayna were part of the Justice League on a Saturday morning cartoon called “Super Friends”.  These brother and sister superheroes put their rings together and could take on the shape of a bucket and water to put out a fire!  Or become any other combination of things all based on what the situation required. I consider them to be the ultimate super heroes!

I am often reminded of Zan and Jayna when attending births. I work very closely with partners and primary support people to be sure they have the tools to support the birthing Parent as needed. I encourage them to use techniques like light touch and resting hands to increase oxytocin levels and decrease discomfort in Labor. Could I do these techniques myself ? Of course, but they are often more effective when done by the partner. I will hop right in when support people need a break to eat or rest. But I believe it all works best when the partner is in very close proximity to the laborer.  Birth can be an intimate time for a couple and I love to help encourage this closeness.

As Doulas we are there for reassurance, information and physical support. Often our reassurance is directed at support people. We are able to help them understand that what they are witnessing is normal and expected. We are essentially walking childbirth classes.  We may give technique pointers or demo a comfort measure for partners right in the moment and then help them adjust to get it just right.  At that point we can step back and let the couple do their work together.   We are able to take the pressure of partners to know what to do next or what techniques, if any, to try. Removing this pressure from partners allows them to be fully present for the person they love as well as opens a door for them to have their own experience.  I have also worked with partners who have some anxiety about birth or even general nervousness.  Having a calming presence in the form of a birth expert can go a long way to help these partners feel calm and confident.

As I leave a birth, or I visit new parent’s homes after their birth, I often hear something like, “I can’t even really put my finger on what you said or did, but we are both SO glad you were with us!”  To me that is the best compliment I can get.  It says I did my job exactly as I should.  I wasn’t the focus, I wasn’t absent, I was there supporting both the birthing parent and their partner, assuring they each had exactly what they needed.  I imagine myself as Jayna, the bucket carrying the water to put out the fire.  The water (partner) was the vital tool, the bucket simply helped carry the water to just where it was needed to be.

 

It was amazing to have a support system totally dedicated to me, especially during a long and difficult labor and delivery.Molly C. - Family Nurse Practitioner
The services that you provide are invaluable to new moms (and dads). I feel that your classes are as beneficial to my health as staying active and hydrated.Katie B.
Being a first time mom is the most elating and terrifying journey in the world. Having a guide who is educated and understanding like Paula definitely made a difference, especially during those first few weeks!Selina, Mother, Wife, and Teacher
Paula was amazing supporting me, my husband and our midwife. After our baby was born, Paula would check in at clutch times and ease our uncertainty.Sarah P. Operations Manager
Paula helped my partner to have the confidence to make informed decisions and be the best support he could be.Sarah M. Business Owner
Paula not only provided essential postpartum support, She was always available to answer questions or troubleshoot any concerns at any time.Sam W. Montessori Teacher
Paula's consistent support allowed me to breastfeed, recover, and spend time with my older child.Jenny B. SAHM
I wasn't sure how I would make it through those first few weeks with my son in the NICU. With Paula's help I was able to meet my needs and his, and eventually meet our goal of exclusively breastfeeding.Jill J. Special Education Teacher
"I'm so glad I hired a doula for my husband!"Regan S.
It's hard to imagine our journey without her knowledge and optimism reassuring us each step of the way.Chelsea M
it was clear our doula knew how to integrate seamlessly with the hospital birth team. My OB specifically mentioned how much she liked my doula during a follow up appointment.Tracy K.
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