Doula Care in the SF Bay Area & Napa
Twice the Love
Rachelle’s story: It’s not an overstatement to say that we don’t know how we would have made it through the birthing process without Melissa. We had gone to a couple’s birthing class, read many books, and were feeling pretty confident about our decisions regarding the birth of our daughter. Yet we still wanted someone who would be with us from start to finish. In the weeks preceding the birth, Melissa helped us to clarify our birth plan and be prepared for the baby’s arrival. She had tips that we didn’t already know—everything from when it is okay to begin trimming a baby’s nails to which products are best for a mama’s postpartum care. She was even cheerful during one midnight phone call, when we had health concerns and were wondering what to do. When labor began, Melissa came immediately. She was lighthearted in between contractions, and quietly soothing during them. She had an amazing touch that was very calming, and taught my husband how to help. My labor progressed into painful back labor, and it was very reassuring to know that she had seen it all before, and knew what was normal and what wasn’t. She got along very well with the nurses and respected our decisions 100%. There was never a time when I felt that she disapproved of a choice we made, or tried to speak for us to the hospital staff. We had lots of questions after our daughter’s birth, and Melissa’s postpartum visits were great. When I was at a scary standstill with a breastfeeding problem, Melissa arrived for one of our appointments and magically (it seemed to me) got me through it. For me, it was quite scary having so many intense things happening to my body, and being solely responsible for the life of a new living being. Melissa was like a wise and cheerful aunt that guided me through it. I will always be grateful to her for being there at this time. It was one of the best decisions we made.
Adam’s story: We did our due diligence to find a good doula. But in the end we chose the best. My wife’s labor was so intense, and exhausting. As her husband and birthing partner I wanted to be there for my wife and to help as much as possible. Melissa supported me and gave me tips to help massage and support my wife. But still, it was so intense! I wouldn’t have been as useful without Melissa’s help. Honestly, without her help, I would have felt completely helpless. Melissa was there with my wife and me for the entire 13 hours of intense labor. During that time we went through three shift changes, many nurses, and 3 different doctors, as our chosen doctor was on vacation. Melissa performed exceptionally and got along famously with the nurses. I probably wouldn’t have been so sweet to them since there seemed to be way to many. My wife is a teacher and I am a UC research assistant. We have no reservations about recommending Melissa people in our community. Her help was consistent and her demeanor was poised and confident. She is a compassionate, knowledgeable, personable, and fast thinking doula. If you choose her as your doula she will be there before, during and after the birthing process. She’s great!
Congratulations on your new stage of life into parenthood. I moved to California in 2008, and love the feel for mothers in the bay area. I have 3 cherished girls that have shown me the art of teaching each other about life, love, and the balance of secure individual relationships for each of them. Here is a general breakdown of what I do, though each person is unique. I first meet with the expecting parents, and let them see if there is a connection between us. Then you decide if you would like to have me nurture, guide, and support you whether in a hospital or a home birth. We set up a consultation that is free of charge, which usually takes 1-2 hrs-for me to understand your family dynamics, style,
and plans for your birth.