The Musings of a Doula...

view:  full / summary

Birth Photography

Posted on March 31, 2016 at 1:00 PM Comments comments (8)

Oh Birth Photography...Just the mention of a photographer in the birthing room can cause some couples to cringe. “We don’t want any pictures of what’s happening DOWN there”… “I really don’t want another stranger in the birthing room”… “ACK…gross!”

Fair enough. But let’s break it down:

The birth of your baby is an experience you really can’t anticipate to its fullness. The beauty of the moment is surreal. All the bloody horror scenes depicted in stories you hear, movies you watch and pictures you see are usually NOT the reality.

A birth photographer will not be a stranger in your birthing space. They will be someone you’ve previously met, someone you feel a connection with; interview a few to make sure you feel safe with them. Once you’re in the ‘birthing zone’ you probably won’t even notice when they’ve quietly snuck into the room and started taking pictures.

Birth photography has so many long-lasting benefits. A good photographer can capture the feeling during your birth; love, warmth, support, surprise, joy; the connection between mom, dad, and baby; a beautiful memento of the best day of your life. Photography is a way to capture those first precious moments, first skin to skin with baby, first kisses, that look between a new mom and dad.


(my beautiful boy, Wallace, on his 'birth'day)

Birth photography can serve to remind a mom, in later days, of the power and strength she has. The pictures of your baby first emerging into the world can actually be therapeutic to look over in the months and years after baby is born. Seeing your body, in third person, doing the most amazing thing it’s every done can be inspiring and can help to empower a postpartum mom. Although these may not be the pictures that don the baby room walls, they are oh so important to have; and this definitley includes moms who bravely birth by cesarean. 

Saskatoon has a fantastic selection of Birth Photographers to choose from. Think about meeting with a few and seeing if it’s right for your birth. (As always, it's YOUR birth YOUR way, and as your doula I will support your decision to not have a birth photographer during your birth)

Here is a sampling of a birth I attended with a couple who had hired my dear friend Amy Smith, Birth & Lifestyle Photographer with Smith & Co Photography (formally Petit Oiseau Photography). All photos shared with permission.


The Peanut Ball

Posted on November 2, 2015 at 2:30 PM Comments comments (0)

 Despite what you might have heard Doulas are not anti-epidural. In fact I love epidurals - in the right situation and used properly an epidural can be magical.


Here's where epidurals go bad: mom decides to have an epidural; she lays down in her hospital bed, plays cards, reads a book or watches a movie. She might get up to pee but let's face it, even a 'walking epidural' severely limits her mobility. Eventually it's announced that mom has dilated to 10 cm and it's time to push. But is struggling to push her baby out and her doctor says baby is not in an ideal position. The vacuum or forceps are used or mom is sent for a cesarean for a 'stuck baby'.


Sound familiar?


So what happened, what went wrong?


A mom who labours without an epidural will find comfort in continual motion. Walking, swaying, dancing; all her movements are ideal to widen her pelvis and shimmy her baby into a perfect position for birth.

A mom who labours with an epidural will often lay down and stay that way until it's time to push. Her baby is still descending, but without mom's constant motion, can become lodged in an unideal position.


So what's a doula to do?


My first job is to help mom find her inner power so she can actively labor, uninhibited by medication, if that's her decision. But sometimes, in certain situations, the labour path changes and an epidural is a lovely option.


But how do we prevent more interventions now that mom has an epidural?


Introducing the peanut ball!!


This sweet little peanut can be used to position mom's hips to aid in her baby's perfect descent. By opening and widening mom's pelvis in different ways, baby is able to navigate into an ideal position. The use of a peanut ball can actually shorten the length of labour with an epidural because it enables progress.


So, while a mom with an epidural may find herself confined to her bed, more than is ideal, with the use of a peanut ball we can simulate the widening and opening of an unmediated 'labour dance'. Statistics show positive results regarding decreases in vacuum/forceps assisted birth and cesarean birth, when a peanut ball is used to counteract the restrictions of an epidural.


My peanut ball will be coming with me to all births in case of those special circumstances in labour when an epidural is needed. I'm very excited to provide new options for the labouring moms in Saskatoon and surrounding area.


Curious to know more? Contact me, I’d love to hear from you!



What exactly does a Postpartum Doula do?

Posted on October 23, 2015 at 2:45 AM Comments comments (0)

New Website

Posted on October 19, 2015 at 7:35 PM Comments comments (1)

Hi there! Welcome to my new website. You'll find lots of changes including some new birth and postpartum packages as well as gift cards - which would be great for any new family! Stay tuned for my Facebook and Instagram giveaway!