What is a Doula?
Nine months ago I would ask, “what is a doula and what do they do”. Today our doula is our superhero. When we sat down and interviewed her, I was impressed by all the prenatal support and postnatal services that this profession offers in addition to the actual birth. I was inspired to write a guest post “Doulas are for Dads” on their blog to help dads and partners get the story out. A Doula is a valued resource and helps both the physical and psychological outcomes of baby and parents.
Why share this on this blog?
I wanted to champion what a great experience that I had using a not so common service. I was able to focus on the birth process, my wife and kids. Yet, if there are any parallels to life insurance, it is that it was already in place and I did not have to think about doing without the needed support. I am sure that you can draw your own parallels from any of your near death or death experience and how your thinking is compromised.
Rather than be victim to our likely challenge, Jasmin and I sought out support through a doula. We included it into our plan. We prepared for the most challenging scenario and created a planned for success with help from a MJ (our Doula). The benefit in working with a doula was peace of mind during the birthing process.
High Risk Pregnancy
Having a high risk pregnancy we knew that death or complications was a possibility. Jasmin and I had planned in the event that if we were to be separated. I would go with the boys and MJ would stay behind. Having our doula gave me comfort that Jasmin was not left alone. Baby B, as he was known by hospital staff, had breathing issues and I stayed by his side the entire time. I did not know that Jasmin was under distress!
My wife developed Postpartum Preeclampsia within a few hours of giving birth. This is treated with magnesium sulfate. Our Awesome Doula and hospital nurse saved her life. They were able to diagnosed it early and quickly! Postpartum Preeclampsia is a rare condition. It occurs when a woman develops high blood pressure within 48 hours after childbirth.
Improved Physical Outcomes
Jasmin and I attended a few sessions together and our doula showed me how to best support her and how to adapt to the changes throughout the pregnancy. Expert Guidance is a simple way to describe her support. Yet, it has been researched that doulas support throughout the pregnancy process also decreases the need for Cesarean deliveries, shortened labor process, and overall less difficult and painful birth.
A Natural Birth
With twins births it is unusual that they are born vaginally. Through prenatal yoga, a supportive labor and delivery doctor, and a super strong wife determined for a healthy natural birth, we were fortunate. Our doula lead Prenatal Yoga classes and helped us maintain our birth plan.
Let me introduce the Rebozo
Our Doula showed me how to make Jasmin more comfortable by isolating pressure points and providing physical support with the use of a Rebozo. This was a game changer, I felt empowered with the right tools.
In this photo, you see our doula working with another family using the Rebozo.
Here are 6 ways the Rebozo can be used
- Belly Support and Belly Lift
- Hip Squeeze
- Counter pressure on the back
- Rocking or Shifting the belly back and forth
- Belly Wrapping
- Baby Carrier
Improved Psychological Outcomes
In search for an understanding what is a doula, I read a few academic articles. They showcases the early benefits in working with a doula to include reduction in anxiety, overall positive feelings about the birthing process, and breastfeeding and lactation support.
Continuous Emotional and Physical Support
If you asked me know to describe what is a doula in a single sentence, I would argue that the conversation deserves more than just one sentence. What is a Doula in less than 15 words? A Doula is a continuous source of emotional and physical support for pregnancy. In my guest post, I describe how our doula provide a significant amount of support to me as a worried husband, father, and partner. Through our prenatal sessions and during the actual experience, I was coached by our doula and I was able to ask for her expertise on difficult issues that presented themselves. She was there for both of us. As a result I was able to be the best support that my family needed at the time.
Jasmin and I have three blessing! Our Twin boys and our daughter. They are all under 3 years of age. We still receive support and services from the New Life Birth Services team. Jasmin is transitioning from the corporate grind to being a full time Real Estate agent and part time photographer (her passion). I continue to be passionate about financial planning and a champion of low cost large amounts of term insurance for young families.
Jamin handles all the nursing duties out side of bottle feeding (naturally). She has been an amazing mother over these past three years. I am beyond fortunate having her as my partner. I am also fortunate to have a work schedule that allows me to be home more. Often I write blog posts while they are sleeping.
If there is something odd or really off base in this post, please call me out on it. Our Family is currently adjusting to our new normal. While the Life insurance industry goes through digital disruption, our family is going through newborn twin disruption. Photos taken by Lori Martinez. You can find out more about the Albuquerque Brith Photographer here.
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