My name is Danielle. Wife, mother, and Postpartum doula. Here, I am going to
tell you my story about my journey into motherhood and why I became a
My first pregnancy went the exact opposite of what I thought pregnancy
would be like. Turns out that pregnancy, at least for me, was not magical.
I was sick for most of my pregnancy. I lost weight. At the end of my pregnancy I was diagnosed with intrauterine growth restriction. This led to early induction, and a very sick baby.
My entire birth experience was miserable and exhausting. Every time I think about it, it makes me sad and angry. This is not how one should feel about the birth of their child. But birth trauma is REAL, for my son and for myself. Together, we are healing from this birth trauma. My son was forced out of me too soon. He was not ready for the world yet. He was taken away from me for hours, days, and then finally came home after 2 weeks. We didn’t experience the golden hour. We didn’t have skin-to-skin contact. He was hooked up to machines minutes after being born. Once we brought my son home, I experienced the hardest time of my entire life. I had no village. My hormones were raging. I had postpartum depression. I couldn’t eat; I felt sick, and I couldn’t sleep. After birth was not what I expected. You are a new person after giving birth. You are a mother. You struggle to find your old identity.
My second birth was so empowering; it was opposite of my first. I had a large amount of anxiety going into my second pregnancy. Thankfully I had my own birth doula to help me along the way. Her knowledge of pregnancy and the birthing process calmed my anxiety and gave me confidence that things were going to go well. My birth went fantastic. No complications this time around. I can’t imagine my birthing experience without my doula being by my side.
Transitioning into motherhood with my first child was hard but becoming a mother of two may have been even harder. I juggled my way through the first month. I had sleep anxiety after my daughter was born, and I couldn’t “sleep” when the baby slept. Later I learned that sleep deprivation can be a huge factor in postpartum depression. I couldn't
nap because I had a 3-year-old running around. My toddler was jealous and going through his own transition into becoming a big brother. Things were chaotic.
In spite of the long days, I thought I was doing so well. Breastfeeding was going well and my daughter was healthy, but lack of sleep caught up to me. My lack of patience with both children caught up to me. I look back at this time and see myself curled up in a ball crying on the floor. I had no help. No village. I was alone.
I had no idea that there was such thing as a “postpartum doula”. If I knew, I would have made the investment.
You’re probably thinking “why would I hire a postpartum doula?”
I’ll tell you why!
Postpartum doulas are so overlooked. New moms in the United States don’t get the care that we need to heal after birth. In other countries postpartum care is built into their culture. Unfortunately, women's health isn’t as much as a priority here in the United States. Doctors see new moms at the 6-week mark and say, “you're good” and that’s that. But the 4th trimester isn’t just those first 6 weeks. The 4th trimester is your entire life after having a baby.
The postpartum period is when parents need more support than ever.
I’m here to help!