ICEA Certified Postpartum Doula
The way we treat our smallest, most vulnerable people matters for their whole lives. And if new parents aren't given the support that they need to manage these uncertain early days, it can leave them feeling ill-equipped to handle the unrelenting challenges of parenting for years to come.
When my first child was born in 2007, I was living in Northern Virginia with my husband, which was several states’ distance from my support network of family and friends in Wisconsin. I struggled. Even with family visits and an incredibly patient and present husband, in the midst of all the joy, I often felt sad, confused, isolated and alone as I transitioned to motherhood.
Most of our current prenatal practices take parents through preparing for the physical aspects of pregnancy and birth, often including practical baby care techniques or breastfeeding basics. And that is all essential and important. But what about the hormonal, mental and emotional transition that people go through during the days, weeks and months after birthing? During this tender time, they are often left to go it alone, sensing on some level that they may need something more, but not always sure where to look for it. Partners and other family members may be processing their own transitions or just feeling unsure how to best support their loved one in this brand new territory.
As the years passed for me, I slowly reached out and discovered or built my own circles of support. My confidence grew along with that first baby. I got pregnant and gave birth two more times. With the help from some family and amazing friends, I made sure to ask for and find a way to get the care I needed. An experienced, empathetic and reassuring presence can do so much for someone in the midst of such beautiful chaos as the transformation from pregnancy to parenthood. I feel so fortunate that I am now able to be that presence for new parents in my community.
I have had many years of experience in customer service; I've worked in offices, creative fields and childcare. I am a martial arts student and Karate America Legacy Team member. I also offer breastfeeding support in my community as an accredited La Leche League Leader. I began my postpartum doula training with ICEA in Februrary, 2017, I certified two years later, and my work with growing families during this time has been incredibly rewarding.
I care deeply for families no matter what they look like or how they form. I believe that love in action can impact the community and make the world a better place. We all deserve dignity and respect, no matter our backgrounds or parenting patterns, and I enjoy sharing relevant information and experiences with people so that they can feel empowered to make their own choices. People grow in confidence and joy when they are seen and appreciated. I am always learning new things from my clients and connections, too. I love to share stories, celebrate small victories and meet people in the messiness of real life.
Courses / Certifications
May 2019 - The Infant Microbiome and Epigenetics (Microbirth Online Course)
February 2019 - ICEA Postpartum Doula Certification
October 2018 - Conscious Communication(TM) For Conscious Families with Rudy Miick
July 2018 - B.I.T.S Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 6 - "Brainstorming Inclusivity: Putting it All Together"
May 2018 - B.I.T.S Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 5 - "Consent and Childbirth + A Look at Sex Work"
May 2018 - Bengkung/Zulu Belly Binding workshop: Malaysian and African wrapping benefits and techniques
March 2018 - B.I.T.S Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 4 - "Compassionate Care for Survivors of Sexual Abuse"
March 2018 - ICEA Postpartum Doula Training Workshop -- including "The First 1000 Days" new material
February 2018 - B.I.T.S Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 3 - "Kinky and Non-Monogomous Parents"
November 2017 - B.I.T.S. Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 2 - "LGBTQ+ Sensitivity"
September 2017 - B.I.T.S. Birthworker Inclusivity Training Series: Session 1 - "Basics of Sexual Pleasure in the Childbearing Year"
May 2017 - HUG Your Baby Part 1: Helping Parents Understand Their Newborn
March 2017 - Wellstart Lactation Management Self-Study Modules: Level 1
February 2017 - ICEA Postpartum Doula Training Workshop
February 2017 to Present - American Heart Association Heartsaver®Infant and Adult CPR/AED
June 2011 - Accredited Leader, La Leche League International