Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Doulas are Worth Every Penny

On February 10th, we met with Yana for our first of two prenatal visits.  She stayed with us for 2.5 hours while getting to know us as people so she can best serve our needs before, during, and after labor.  She was very thorough and asked us questions about what we like and dislike, our personalities, our hopes and fears, our reasons for choosing parenthood, and other things without judging a single thing we said.  It was quite moving to be in her presence because I could really see that her profession was so dear to her.  Being a mother to two children herself, she was even faced with a challenge from her 3-year-old daughter that evening when her husband called Yana to inform her that this little munchkin had shoved 3/4 inch nut up her nostril!  As soon as she realized that her husband had taken control of the situation, she did not even hesitate to continue our session.  She provided us with so many resources that I know we will utilize whenever we see fit.  What I liked most about her was that, after heeding my warning that I tend to have a temper in stressful situations, she gleamed and exclaimed withOUT sarcasm, "Oh I'm going to LOVE working with you!"  She is on call 24/7 for 2 weeks both before an dafter my due date and provides us with one more prenatal visit, discounted birthing classes, and one postpartum visit.  She informed us that she is the last one to leave the room after the birth, making sure we are settled, cleaned up, and comfortable in our new role as parents.  Then, when she returns about a week after the birth for our postpartum checkup, she makes sure we can adequately bathe, change, and feed the baby and she teaches us different techniques like swaddling, baby wearing, and even grocery shopping for the first time with baby!  To put it in my sister-in-law's words, "Doulas are worth every penny."

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