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Doula of the Year... 

It transpires that Pregnancy and Birth Magazine has been sponsoring a “DOULA OF THE YEAR AWARD” and received around 100 letters from Mums nominating both birth and postnatal doulas.  After a lot of reading, discussing, reflecting and debating, they have made a shortlist, from which they will select three finalists. 

The winning Mum will win a holiday for 2 adults & up to 2 children in Malta. 

 and it turns out that I was on the short list...

I asked my clients who was responsible for this and received the following copy of her entry in to the competition and thought you might want to see what she said about her experience of having a birth doula:

"I would like to nominate the duo Lucy Symons who was by my side in Labour and her partner Maggie Vaughn who have changed my perception of pain and the World. These two wonderful ladies made the birth of our son extra special, less daunting and magical. I had originally wanted a Doula because I find visiting hospitals tricky because I had a spinal injury (fractured my neck in childhood) This has caused me great anxiety and triggered memories ..... so we met Lucy and Maggie and they were the perfect fit. 

Pre-Labour

Our Doulas supported both my partner and me through pregnancy and gave us top tips to remain calm, settle baby in my womb & for sciatic nerve pains towards the end of pregnancy. They reassured me at every stage and actually enabled me to enjoy pregnancy. My mum did not enjoy pregnancy yet our Doula's enabled me to not follow in these footsteps but to be positive, have baths, bond with baby via massage and relaxation. (this worked like a DREAM

I even had a car crash at 5 months in pregnancy - Oooops! Both Lucy and Maggie were there for us and again I focussed on being positive and praying how lucky we are to have such a resilient baby. Maggie visited promptly after this. 

Our 'Charlie's Angels' (Doulas) visited us on numerous occasions, providing books, DVDs and helped with ideas for the Birth Plan. They enabled me to be mentally prepared and were honest too and enabled me to manage pregnancy and the stress / pressures of work. (combining the two) 

Our Charlie's Angels were in contact with my boyfriend and supported him through the pregnancy too. 

Lucy and Maggie talked me through the stages of labour which initially shocked me. However, when I attended my ante-natal classes I was psychologically more prepared. 

Maggie and Lucy suggested ways to help us get baby in the correct position using gym ball, swimming etc. I felt I was being pro-active and in control of the pregnancy and doing my 100% best I could - thanks to our Charlie's Angels.

Labour 

My Contractions began.......Lucy protected me by not telling me that the maternity ward at our hospital may have to close as they were so busy & understaffed.  She did not tell me that if we turned up we would have to go home or to an alternative hospital. Had I known this information I would have gone into distress mode and started to hyperventilate. 

Our Charlie's Angel created distractions throughout labour, even washed my hair and consoled me.  She kept the family calm and requested they sleep, she timed my contractions for me and noted them. 

Lucy continuously rang the hospital back to try to get a room for me - thank the lord for our angel because we did eventually get a room and knew this on the car journey there (what a gem).

She helped me manage pain until I was 7cm dilated in my own home using water, massage and tens machine. UNBELIEVABLE - I could not have done this without Lucy. 

She supported my decisions 100% especially when I asked for an epidural.

When my baby was born I was in shock.  Lucy was able to cuddle him whilst I gained some awareness through all the medication/drugs

Post Natal 

I had no memory triggers from my childhood trauma when I got to the labour ward and even enjoyed my stay at the hospital. (thanks to our Doulas) 

We received an entertaining letter for our son outlining all the various conversations and stages of labour.

Aftercare

We received a meal & home made chocolate cake delivered to our home which was divine.  I received help with breastfeeding and general aftercare. Maggie advised me on what to eat and the natural approach to breastfeeding really worked better for us. 

Lucy explained all the details of labour afterwards. How the hospital was going to close and things she had protected me from hearing. My jaw was on the floor. I'm so glad she shielded me from this and for taking the time to explain what happened in labour in more detail. (Our baby had been in a tricky position, with both his hands on his head)

I could not have asked for more!!!!!!! Both Doulas who worked in partnership are already winners in my eyes and our family. They made labour a positive experience and they have a special place in our hearts."

What more could a doula ask for?  I Love my job.

 

Posted on Tuesday, September 15, 2009 at 04:42PM by Registered CommenterLucy Symons | CommentsPost a Comment | References5 References

References (5)

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