What is a Doula?

The word doula is Greek in origin and means woman caregiver. Today it’s described as a trained and experienced labor companion who provides the woman and her partner continuous emotional support, physical comfort and assistance in obtaining information before, during and just after childbirth.

My love for natural birthing began with my own pregnancy and eventual home-birth of my daughter over 20 years ago.  It was a beautiful, life-altering experience that I will forever remember. It has been a love and passion of mine to work with women and support them and their family through this most magical time. There is nothing more inspiring for me than to witness the strength and beauty of a woman during this time or to witness the loving and unwavering support of her partner as they welcome the new life into their arms. My passion as a Doula and a birth professional is to highlight the mother through her own natural birthing rhythm. To support both Mom and her partner, supporting each of them through this beautiful, natural, life-changing event; to hold space for this magical ritual of birth and with safety and education care for them every step of the way.

My Ayurvedic background has given me unique skills to support you along the way, coupled with over 16 years of experience as a master massage therapist.  I don’t set a time limit on your birth with my support, I am there for as long as I am needed. As well as “on-call” for the 5 week window of your estimated birth date.

Your Doula Package Includes:

  • 6 Prenatal Wellness Follow-up appointments (includes the following)
    • Prenatal massage
    • Health and wellness coaching
    • Herbal recommendations
  • Complete support during your labor and birth
  • Postpartum home visit within 2 weeks of birth (includes the following)
    • Ayurvedic massage for Mom
    • Ayurvedic infant massage and instructions for baby
    • Postpartum wellness plan
    • Sits bath herbs and infusions

I offer unique services for Mama’s-to-be. My prenatal wellness packages are individualized and can include nourishing herbal infusions, dietary support, Ayurvedic herbal formulations, yoga, meditations and journal inquires to honor this magical and fleeting time, as well as weekly or bi-weekly prenatal massage treatments. Check the Prenatal Support page… DETAILS HERE for more info.

Prenatal Wellness Packages are individually priced, call or email for more info.

Doula services  $1750.

As a first time mom, I didn’t realize the scope of the role that Pilar would play when I asked her to join me for my birth process.  With my partner intermittently working out of town, to include the week of my due date, I was seeking the support of a doula who could take on the role of primary coach if need be.  From the beginning though, Pilar emphasized that babies come when they feel it is the right time and with whomever they want present.  She was right.  My partner was home for the birth!  Also as Pilar had emphasized from the beginning, her role was to bring him and I together as partners during the birth process.  That is exactly what she did.  She seamlessly supported us so much that I mostly remember my boyfriend’s support and presence; though, I know Pilar was in the background facilitating our environment both at home and at the birth center.
There were times during my labor when Pilar stepped in to give him a break.  She also offered to massage and stretch me when I had very painful cramping in my hips.  I’ll admit, one of the main reasons I interviewed her was because she is also trained as a massage therapist.  I naively thought that massage would make labor comfortable.  Little did I realize, I would need her to relieve me of debilitating cramps that had prevented me from laboring sitting down.  I remember being amazed at how she was able to target the exact muscles that needed relief, even while I was stuck in certain positions.

I am also forever grateful to Pilar for the pictures and videos she took while I was giving birth.  Those pictures that I have from the seconds and minutes just before and after my daughter was born are by far my favorite pictures in the world.  I am also so thankful for both the prenatal and postnatal guidance I received from Pilar.  Prenatally, she was able to really get me thinking about how I truly wanted and expected to experience childbirth; and, she was able to prepare me in ways that I couldn’t get from reading baby books.  Postnatally, she filled me in on the details that I didn’t see while in my fog of labor.  She also offered me herbs and ayurvedic medicine for breastfeeding, as well as for my own emotional and physical recovery.  Most importantly, Pilar sat with me, as a dear friend, for hours helping me to better process the experience that I had just gone through as well as setting me up for success as a new mom.
I will absolutely be asking Pilar to join me again for my next birth experience!

Laura Angelli