Every doula has their own style and presence with their clients. Personally, I'm a big-hearted joker; I'll feel all the feels with you, with a heavy dose of sarcasm (when appropriate). I'm a straight talker — I tell it like it is, I won't lie to you, and I will always meet you where you're at. I am equally comfortable encouraging you and cheering you on as I am providing a shoulder to lean on and holding space for you to scream, cry, or whatever else comes your way. I am a huge nerd, and will happily dive deep into the science and mechanics of pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum period, so if you're someone who wants to know the how and why behind birth, you've come to the right place. I tend to attract clients who are high-powered, cerebral, seeking evidence-based support, and perhaps prone to anxiety.
For those of you who are into personality typing, I am an Enneagram 1 wing 2, ISTJ, lawful good, and a Ravenclaw.
I am a Childbirth International and Stillbirthday doula, which means that I am trained to provide support for complicated and uncomplicated live births, as well as miscarriages, stillbirths, births where baby is not expected to live long, and births where baby is expected to have complex health needs. I am also trained to provide postpartum support and grief support. A core tenet of this training is a four-part method for providing support: slow down, validate, provide options, supplement with resources. This means that I will help you to relax and calm your mind and body; remind you that your thoughts, emotions, desires, needs, and physical experience are real, understandable, and valid; offer and thoroughly explain available options for any situation; and provide relevant resources, whether they be books or articles, people you can trust, or other things you might consider. In every moment, I aim to bring peace through each of these modes of support.
Furthermore, having studied religion and feminist theory extensively, I honor the sacred and holy within birth. I believe that the way we enter this world matters — as does how we leave it. Being invited into the sacred space of your birth is a holy experience and one I partake in with great honor and humility. There is something unequivocally beautiful about birth.
As part of my education, I learned to look at certain things when interpreting a story from a feminist lens: power, voice, experience, and role. Your birth is a story and my job is to honor and serve you throughout it. I pay attention to who has power in each interaction, helping to you to find yours. I listen to your voice, hearing both your words and your emotions, and I help others to hear that voice too. I trust your experience of your own body — that you know yourself better than anyone — and I trust the experience of countless parents before you who have stood on the same holy ground of childbirth. I gently draw you back to your role, not as a patient or a statistic or a problem to be solved, but as a parent. In these ways, I hope to help you honor yourself and your baby throughout your pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.
The Olive Tree operates on a pay-what-you-can system — I offer up to 50% off of my full rate for clients with limited financial means. This is an intentional choice, as I firmly believe that anyone who wants a doula should have one, regardless of income. I work with clients to find a price that works for them, operating on the belief that the services I provide are valuable, but the amount a family can pay in any situation varies widely.
That being said, many people want to know what the “expected” fee is. My full rate for birth doula support is $950, though many clients pay less. I am also more than willing to set up a payment plan, and I am open to bartering depending on the service. Over half my clients have utilized an alternate rate, payment schedule, or barter/trade! In short, if you want a doula, but have a tight budget, let's talk!