My favourite explanation of a postnatal Doula was coined by Mars Lord, of Abuela Doulas:
"A postnatal Doula is like their mother without the politics"
My interpretation of this and how I work is by being the person that can come in the door, whilst gathering washing that have been strewn along the hall by other members of your household, pop that in the machine, whilst turning on the oven to warm through some delicious food,
then popping on the kettle whilst listening to any concerns you've had since we were together last,
what's going well, what can I help you clarify or any suggestions I could offer that may make things a little easier.
Coming with you on your first trip out with the baby, this is my favorite. This might be to your favorite Cafe to get your favorite food,
or a stroll in the park. I will help you with packing up all the stuff you might need,
working out how the sling goes on, how the pushchair folds, and supporting you on this first of many firsts.
I’ve helped families find their rhythm by providing food, love and insight.
Just as with Birth Doulas, we hold no magic wand to suddenly fix everything, and make it all better again.
My role isn't one of a babysitter, or nanny. Although sometimes support you might mean holding baby whilst you shower,
or even taking baby out for a stroll in their pushchair or in a carrier if you prefer.
My aim is to support you to parent. So rather ill nourish you, love you, and hear you.
We have a certain set of skills based in being and not doing, to enable us to hear to listen not to reply.
Create enough space (sometimes physical as well as emotional)
for families to find their own way, not be saved by a magical person.
I believe in the power and ability of parents.
I have supported families across Essex, Kent, Hertfordshire and London.
Get in touch to see if I cover your area.
I can work a few hours here and a few hours here, if that is what you think would work for your family best.
I can work nights or days.
I have a minimum booking of 10 hours, these can be taken across days, weeks or even months.
Get in touch if you want to talk through what it is you and your family need.
Want the security of knowing that I will be coming frequently in your postnatal period to be with you?
Then the postnatal package will provide that assurance along with a "routine" of dependable care.
Coming for a couple of hours 5 times in the first and 4 in the second week, dropping to 3 in week 3 and 4 and then once in weeks 5 and 6 we get to grow together in me learning how to support you best, and you learning how to find your new rhythm and dance with your new baby.
As a sling librarian and qualified babywearing consultant I have my own mini library of slings and carriers that you can try and borrow. I have more than 7 years experience in carrying my own children and helping others carry.
Over my parenting, babywearing, Doula and breastfeeding training and adventures I have collected a small library of books, magazines and journals on a range of topics, you are welcome to borrow!
In fact there are some books I will invite you to read.
In August 2018, as Emma and I came into our third year of breastfeeding, I was accepted on the prestigious breastfeeding counsellor course with the Association of Breastfeeding Mothers.
This course took me nearly 2 years to complete. It has deepened my already extensive knowledge and experience in supporting
families achieve their breast or chest feeding goals.
I have personal experience and attended study days to expand my knowledge of Tongue tie. As a parent who had both of my children's tongue ties cut at a few days old, 4 months old then 3 and a half years old, I know how this process works, what to expect and how to love and hold you all through it.
Plus I know fantastic providers in NHS hospital, private clinics and ones that come to the comfort of your own home all across the South East.
One of my favourite things to do is cook for others and knowing that people enjoy my cooking.
I cook from fresh and spend hours tinkering with my recipes to make them tasty, nourishing and healthy.
I hold particular joy in researching other cultures and their food in the postnatal period. Learning these sometimes forgotten recipes and what they include sometimes has that eureka moment of realising: that's why you were craving a particular dish or food! It was deep inside your ancestral brain, with your great, great granny whispering it in your ear.
As the child of an amputee paraplegic, a parent to a child with autism and a Grandchild of a person with Alzheimer's, I understand the importance of ensuring our vulnerable loved ones are cared for with extra time, love and attention.