I am a DONA certified birth and postpartum doula providing support to women and their families in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, including Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, and sometimes Suffolk, Hampton, and Newport News. My goal is to inform my clients of their options for childbirth and to provide physical, emotional and informational support during the last trimester of pregnancy, labor, birth and the postpartum period. I consider it my utmost responsibility to help my clients achieve a positive birth and postpartum experience, encouraging the best start for both mother and baby and the new family as a whole.
I absolutely love what I do and am continually inspired by the women and families I work with. Pregnancy, childbirth and the postpartum period are an exhilarating and challenging time and having good support both before and after baby’s arrival is the key to a smooth and confident transition into parenthood.
- I have been fascinated with pregnancy, birth and babies for as long as I can remember. As a twelve year-old I was supposed to see the birth of my baby brother but the unpredictable nature of labor prevented that from happening. I carried that curiosity with me through to my own first pregnancy many years later however, and I have only grown more fascinated and passionate about the process with each of my own birth experiences. After some dedication, study and very hard work, I earned certification through DONA International as a birth doula in 2003, enriching my life in amazing ways ever since. After serving families as a birth doula for several years, I desired to extend my support to the sweet yet challenging postpartum weeks and months. So in 2008, I added my certification as a postpartum doula, easing the transition at home with the new baby. My most recent certification has been to become a BirthWorks certified childbirth educator, made official in January 2012. I am very excited to support women and their partners in this new role as educator as they gain knowledge and insight into the birth process, enabling them to trust the amazing power of the human body and its capacity to give birth, but also balancing that trust and knowledge with informed decision-making if the need arises.
I am blessed with a loving and supportive husband and four beautiful children. Family is the most important thing in my life and the reason why I value my doula work so much. It is a true privilege and blessing to be invited to assist other families as they grow and I will be forever humbled and grateful for the trust my clients place in me as I join them in welcoming their little miracles.
- DONA International birth doula certification since 2003
- DONA International postpartum doula certification since 2008
- Certified Childbirth Educator through BirthWorks International since 2012
- Provided doula support for over 350 families
- Active member of the Tidewater Chapter of Birth Matters Virginia, a non-profit organization that brings information about evidence-based maternity care to the local community through presentations, film screenings, birth circles and more
- Yearly attendance at annual 3-day East Coast LATCH breastfeeding conference since 2008
- Current certification in Infant, Child and Adult CPR, and First Aid
- Bachelor of Arts Degree from Texas Christian University, 1994
- Mother of four, one birthed with i.v. meds, the remaining three birthed drug-free
- Breastfed my four babies for 1 to 2 ½ years each
My Birth Philosophy
As a birth doula, I feel it is my job to provide you with emotional, physical, and informational support to make the birth all that it can be for the whole family. I bring a collaborative spirit to my support of laboring women, working in harmony with the other loved ones that may be supporting you as well as your care provider. I trust in the natural process of birth and believe in the empowerment that birth brings you. I believe that your birth experience will remain one of your most empowering and memorable events of your life.
I know birth can be unpredictable and sometimes Mother Nature has her own plan. But I believe that my clients have the right to remain informed and be a part of the decision making process when obstetrical intervention is necessary. No matter what labor brings you it is your birth experience and I want to help make it a positive and memorable one.
The definition of a positive birth experience with regards to pain management varies greatly from one woman to another. Some women are able to cope with the pain and hard work of labor, and trust it. Others want to have the option of pain relief, but want to try laboring without it. Yet other women feel that pain in labor should be managed. That is their philosophy.
My philosophy is informed choice, and I believe that as long as a woman has the information to make informed decisions with regards to the benefits and risks of medication in childbirth, or any obstetrical intervention, and is comfortable with her decision, then that is what defines a positive birth experience and I am there to support her decision.
My Postpartum Philosophy
I believe what families need most is nurturing and gentle support. My goal is to support the new mother on an “as needs” basis so that she is better rested and able to nurture and care for her baby. I do this by focusing on the mother’s needs and helping both parents to develop confidence in their own parenting skills, while demonstrating techniques in newborn care and feeding.
I think there are many good ways to care for babies, and I do not enforce my own parenting style or insist that you adhere to a specific school of thought with respect to your baby. I trust parents to make decisions for their babies and will help you get the information you need to make wise choices.
Families with a new baby are particularly vulnerable, and it is always my goal to be helpful in a quiet, pleasant, appropriate and unobtrusive way. I am respectful of the traditions, culture and values of my clients.Schedule a Consultation
Listed below are my travel plans for 2016. I am still taking clients during those time frames, however if you go into labor while I am out of town there will be a backup doula in attendance at your birth.