What Does a Doula Do?

Well there are so many talents, past, and education behind every Doula that their passions and knowledge are so diverse.  So I am going to tell you what THIS Doula Does.

I work for you.  You are my boss.  You may know what you want me to do for you, or maybe I could surprise you with what tricks I have up my sleeve (or really in my Doula bag) I am committed to the possibilities you set for yourself,   so let me give you a bit of insight to what I can bring to your pregnancy and birthing time.

I start as soon as I am hired I can help you explore and discuss many ideas.

Before Birth
I will...

before and after birth

~discuss what care provider is best for the pregnancy and birth you want.
~Discuss the benefits of a planned home birth, along with risks, misconceptions and outcomes
~be a resource to help keep you comfortable for your pregnancy and birth by finding (alternative) care providers that believe in a healthy body, mind and spirit.
~contribute my knowledge about birth and challenge your ideas too
~tell you to trust your intuition
~encourage you to ask questions, to me, to your care provider, to your friends, to your partner, to yourself
~promote nutritional foods and help you find a way to eat well
~facilitate conversations of keeping sons intact
~research for/with you to help you to make the most informed decision to clarify conflicting information you may receive
~facilitate difficult conversations, be it fear, your desires, and concerns.
~encourage partners to participate in decision making and share ideas of their ideal birth
~promote great communication between you and your care provider(s) so that you know your desires and concerns are heard

During Your Birthing Time
I will...

~translate suggestions and terms from your care provider into language that can be clearly understood by you.
~include and empower your partner to be the best support person for you
~use breathing techniques, visualizations, massage, as comfort to you
~make suggestions on poses and positions for well-being and make suggestions for sleep and rest( yes, you can sleep during your birthing time!)
~assist with older sibling at the birth
~Promote that your partner is the best support person for you
~believe in you and your body to birth your baby
~be hands on and put myself into positions so that you are most comfortable.
~encourage you to stay at home as long as you are comfortable (if planning a hospital birth)
~reassure you and express normality in a homebirth or hospital birth setting
~ask questions to your care provider(s) so that you can gain insight to recommendations

After Birth
I will...

~help to ensure your views and wishes are respected
~explain in real time procedures that are being carried out on baby while they are happening
~believe in breastfeeding
~promote rest
~teach you skills that will allow the rest to happen be it your 1st or 4th child.
~help to instill confidence in your intuition (this starts way before birth)
~offer to clean, cook, entertain your children, talk, nurture and share my knowledge of early days at home
~support you in asking and receiving help from friends, family and neighbours.

What does a Doula Do? Michelle Tyliakos

These are many of the most important things I do as a Doula… but I know there are just so many to list.  I truly believe that it’s my job to promote great communication and connection with you, your baby and all those that support you.  I believe that communicating in depth during the prenatal visits we can remove any feelings or fear surrounding birth, allowing for a smoother ride into parenthood. If after birth something didn't go the way you expected, we will work though the challenges, feelings and fear and set you up for the best possible success.    Please take a look at my packages, or contact me to ask me questions.  I would love to share my work with you.  If you know anyone who could benefit from a Doula, Please share this post. 

With Love..
Michelle Tyliakos

10cm Time to Push!

Just because a woman reaches 10 cm dilated it doesn't mean it's time to push.

Think of it this way.  I can make a great meal, put it on the table and yell “Dinner is ready!”  And you can come and eat if you choose.  Or I could make a great meal, put it on the table and yell “you are ready to eat now!”  You might question what the heck I just said.  .  Yes, it might be evening and it may have been lunch 5 hours ago and it seems as though you would probably be hungry, but it sure doesn’t give me the right to tell you that YOU are ready to eat now. 

We can all be excited at different stages of labour, early signs leading to anticipation.  Moving on as surges get closer and stronger, we think about a time line.

What would you rather hear?

‘ok, you are 10 you can start pushing’

‘ok, you are 10 you might feel the urge to push’

‘It sounds as though your body might be pushing, what are you feeling?’  

relief!  Baby is here

It may actually be quiet a long time that a woman experiences no surges after being fully dilated  Some may feel that labour has stopped and it’s time to interfere, but the body is at rest and is gathering strength to use for the most primal part of birth.

This whole process is called the Fetal Ejection Reflex. It was a term used first in the early 60s and explained further by Dr. Michel Odent later on.  It sounds so lovely doesn’t it? Well, actually it can be. Basically, with the right conditions the woman’s body will automatically ‘expel’ the baby to get it out. Think of a dimly lit room, the mother is comfortable in her surroundings; the attendants are calm and remain quiet.  There are no internal checks and mother’s space is respected.  This allows Mom to lose her inhibitions and behave how her body needs to.  Hormones have been dancing to create the best recipe to fall in love with her baby.  Only a few ‘pushes’ will allow baby to enter the world!  

So when you are told that you are 10 cm and it’s time for baby, consider not wasting your energy trying to push as instructed by ‘coaches’. Instead use that time to listen your body. 

Hospital Birth with a Doula

Hospital birth! I am excited that this shows the Sterile Water Injections. I find that this alternative medical pain relief is rarely talked about or offered. I also find that women who are 'threatened' with an unwanted intervention, can use their adrenaline to push that baby out. It has happened to me, and it base on the whole flight or flight system.  If there is too much adrenaline in early labour it can cause the birthing time to stall.  If it happens near the end, Mothers can use it to their advantage and birth their baby quickly. I am not sure if that was the case in this birth, but a pleasure to watch.  Happy Birthday to little Sawyer!