Labor Doula Instructors
PERSONALIZED DOULA SERVICESCarolyn Alexander
When I was in labor with my son, I was unaware that a labor doula was an option for moms in labor. By default, my sister, who had delivered her sons by planned cesarean section, was appointed as my support person. She was unaware of how to assist me with an unmedicated birth. I felt like the hospital nursing staff was very unsupportive which resulted in feelings of fear and anxiety. Although my son’s birth was wonderful, I learned a great deal about the wonders of birth and the value of a “good” support team. My decision to become a Labor Doula is very personal as a result of my own birth story and my goal as a doula is to support expecting moms and partners in achieving a successful birth.As a childbirth educator and labor doula, I teach that birth is a process! I am aware of the stages of labor and provide several comfort measures, relaxation techniques, and acupressure during labor. Most importantly, I want my clients to be aware of ‘informed consent’ regarding any medical and non-medical procedures. I’m there to support moms and partners with my knowledge as a doula and years of experience working with hospital staff, OBs and midwives. I completed my labor doula training with Dona in 2009 and recertification 2017. In the last seven years, I’ve attended over 498 births (VBACS, 97% Vaginal delivery rate) and have taught over 2000 expecting parents in childbirth classes. I’m certified in Rebozo techniques and am a certified Breastfeeding and Lamaze trained educator. I’ve assisted deliveries at Medstar Washington Hospital Center, George Washington University Hospital, Inova Alexandria, Inova Fairfax, Medstar Georgetown University Hospital, Ft Belvoir Hospital and Sibley Memorial Hospital. I welcome the opportunity to work with you and your partner and to attend your baby’s birth.
I am a mother of four boisterous children of my own. My experience with my own labors is what fueled my passion to become a doula. In my family, we enjoy a tradition of women supporting other women throughout their labor. I enjoyed the benefits of my experienced family members doing the same for me through my first three births. When it came time for me to deliver my fourth child, all of my family members experienced in childbirth were traveling. There was just my husband and I. He was very supportive, but I deeply missed the element of support that my experienced family members offered. The labor was harder in an emotional way that manifested itself physically for me. It was my fourth labor that enlightened me to what a doula is and the very real benefits of having one. Following my fourth labor, I felt a deep conviction that the presence of seasoned labor support aside from the partner, the physician, or the nurse was a real need. I desired to be there for others as they labor a new life into the world.
While pursuing my certification through DONA International, I began to build my knowledge base through community work at the Rockville Pregnancy Center and the Holy Cross Hospital Teen Program, as well as helping clients in the Special Ops Doula program. As a certified doula, I believe in educating women with the knowledge they need in order to feel empowered to make informed decisions pertaining to their care before, during and after labor. I draw on my professional training, knowledge and experience to offer the support that best suits each family. I provide reassurance and perspective to you (and your partner), make suggestions for labor progress, and help with relaxation, soothing touch, positioning and other techniques for comfort. Over the years, I have done labors in hospitals all over the Washington, DC metropolitan area including Inova Fair Oaks, George Washington University Hospital, Sibley Memorial, Washington Hospital Center, Holy Cross Hospital (Silver Spring and Germantown), Washington Adventist, Shady Grove Adventist, Frederick Memorial, Anne Arundel Medical Center, St. Joseph Medical Center, and the Special Beginnings Birth Center. As your doula, I am working for you, not your caregiver or the hospital.
My doula passion began in 1997 during the birth of my first child when we quickly realized my partner was going to miss our first birth. A Doula was gifted to me on the way to the hospital where she met me. I learned very quickly that without her I would have been scared and alone. She didn’t know me at all, yet she knew so much along every step of the way. She never left my side and gave everything she had to me…a stranger…to better my story and guide me to see what she already knew was in me. Strength. Confidence. Ability. I knew, as I looked into her eyes moments before the birth that “doula” was a calling for my life purpose.
I believe that all mothers deserve to be pampered, loved, and cared for – not only by their main support person – but also by the reassurance, comfort, and encouragement of someone not intimately connected to them who is well educated in labor, birth, and postpartum care. This can help ease the birth process and postpartum time for all members of the family as they learn to connect with themselves, their partners, and their new baby. I have served families since 1997 with education both hands on and by my lending library. I started attending births regularly in 2013 and have now attended over 40 births. I am trained in: Childbirth Education, Birth Doula, Postpartum Doula, Placenta Encapsulation, Belly casting, Acupressure for Labor and Birth, and Bengkung Belly binding. I am Certified in Gena Kirby Rebozo, Gail Tully Spinning Babies, and Certified Lactation Consultant (CLC).Each client and each birth deserve and will receive the very best I have to offer as I continue to educated and grow myself in many areas of the birthing world. My husband and I have been married 19 years and we have 3 children we love supporting as they grow and learn to define who they are and what passions drive them to growth. We also help to raise a sweet girl who has been in our lives since she was a newborn. Vanessa Hanible I am a Birth & Postpartum Doula. My first experience with childbirth was in 2013, helping my cousin labor until 9cm before she had an unplanned cesarean section. I felt that my cousin was not given the time needed to birth her baby vaginally. That experience taught me the importance of women having proper education and support to feel empowered during pregnancy and birth. I have attended 11 births (cesarean, medicated and un-medicated vaginal births). I have attended births at Washington Hospital Center, Georgetown, Providence, and Holy Cross Hospitals. I believe that childbirth is a powerful and transformative experience and I enjoy watching mothers become empowered birthing their babies. Vanessa graduated from Tennessee State University with a Degree in Public Health. She trained through Mamatoto Village in the Fall of 2015 as a labor/postpartum doula, and breastfeeding coach. Since becoming a doula she has trained on Perinatal Mood Disorders & Anxiety and led childbirth, breastfeeding and newborn care classes for over 50 parents. Abiana Patton-Toure
I’ve been a doula with Momease for about two years. I began my formal doula training in Costa Rica at Centro Ashé through the Birth Well International. There, I learned the basic principles of being a doula. By working with Ms. Carolyn, I’ve been able to gain invaluable hands-on experience aiding mother’s through birth. Each labor has fueled my desire to master effective techniques and comfort measures for moms. Thus, I have delved into the usage of Mexican rebozo techniques, aromatherapy, Spinning Babies® techniques, acupressure, and massage. I’m inspired by the birthing process and want to offer stability, comfort, hope and strength to families planning to bring another life into this world. My primary goal is to aid moms in connecting with their own sacredness during birth. I encourage. I massage. I sing. I sway. I soothe. I calm.
I have a background in herbalism which I use to aid women both prenatally and postpartum. I also offer postpartum vaginal steaming and would love to expand my postpartum services to in-home care. Most excitingly, I recently enrolled in the Midwives College of Utah and am looking forward to expanding my capacities as a birth companion and baby catcher.
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