Congratulations - your partner is pregnant and soon your family will grow!
You are probably feeling pretty excited for what is to come - who could blame you! It is a pretty cool thing happening. But you may also be feeling pretty nervous - especially when it comes to the giving birth part.
You most likely have never seen anyone give birth before but you want to be the perfect partner for your loved one. But how when you have no experience? There is only so much a book can teach you - if you even remember it when the time comes.
Then she mentions a doula. A DO-WHAT? A doula - that is us! We are there to not only help your wife, but to help you too! Your reaction to this may be one of two (which we have seen be the most common reactions): 1. HELLS YA! Let's hire someone to help me help you! 2. What do we need a doula for? I can figure this thing out. Do you think I won't be a good enough birth partner?
Hopefully, by the end of reading this - if you reaction was number 2 - it will change to number 1. And if your reaction is number 1 - then you will be even more excited to have us join you at your birth!
The most important thing to know about us is - WE ARE NOT THERE TO REPLACE YOU. We are there to make you look like the most bad-ass superstar supportive birth partner who knows exactly what to do when so mama feels good!
"My husband felt such a sense of relief and was able to focus and enjoy every moment that was ahead of us" -S.D.
The thing is, we feel for partners. A LOT is expected from you which is really pretty crazy, especially if this is your first (or even if you have been here before).
Here are some things we can help you with:
Inform you of hospital protocols and routine procedures
Explain the many options available for birth so you and mom can figure out what is important for your family
Share with you ways that you can help your partner manage her birth sensations
Provide you both with the emotional support that is so needed during such an emotional time
Help you understand the emotional and physical labour signs in mom
No idea when to actually leave for the hospital? We can help with that too!
Help you feel confident in advocating for what mom wants in her birth
Postpartum help - we can show you ways to sooth baby, how to change a diaper, how to swaddle your baby like the perfect burrito - just to name a few
Show you how to properly use your car seat by our certified car seat tech, Olena.
Can you imagine doing all that with no help? That is quite a bit to expect from someone who has never done this before... and that is where we come in!
Doulas and partners make the perfect team. No one knows mom better, or loves mom and baby more then you -and that exactly the most important thing you bring to the birth - LOVE.
Oxytocin, also known as the Love Hormone, is what made the baby and it is exactly what makes baby be born too! And while mom will naturally produce that oxytocin by herself, having you there to help and to love her will make that oxytocin stronger and better. Plus, you will be making mom feel pretty special.
It is very difficult to see the person that you love to experience discomfort and unless you have been to tons of births and are super informed, it is hard to know what "normal" is and totally understandable that you may get worried, and that can affect mom's birth experience. From us, your partner will receive encouragement and feel safe in knowing that what is happening is normal. If mom can feel the fear from you, she may get worried herself and ditch her birth plan just to make everyone else calm down.
But remember, we are not just there for mom. We are there for you too! Depending on how actively involved in the birth you want to be, we can share our knowledge with you and give you ideas on the best ways to support mom - then we are there to fill in the gaps. You only have two hands and if those hands are busy giving mom a massage, you will need our hands to grab mom a drink, to apply a cool cloth on her overheated body, or even to run out and grab you a coffee!
And if you are not comfortable with being super hands on, well then you can buy the coffee and we will be there to massage mom.
It is also important to remember that birth can be unpredictable. If things veers off plan and decisions need to be made, we are there to help you get to an informed decision by asking the right questions.
Supporting a birthing woman is a big deal and it is pretty unfair to expect you to take on all the different roles that are essential to having a positive birth experience. Together, all of us can be there to assist your partner in different ways, and with the teamwork with your medical care provider, a positive birth can be achieved.
The Maya's Nest Doulas and Birth Photographers provide information, support and nurturing while capturing life's most precious moments to families in Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, New Westminster, Burnaby, Vancouver, Langley and Surrey.