We hired Katy to be our doula for several reasons.
First, I am a swim coach for the university of Michigan and if someone watched a video of someone swimming, I would not let them coach my swimmers afterwards. As a husband, I felt that just because I had watched a video of labor, did not mean I was qualified to “coach” someone though labor. I knew I could provide emotional support but I wanted a professional that had been through it before because labor can change at any minute. With Katy we got just that. Her professionalism and skill allowed me to stay calm as a first time dad. It allowed me to emotionally support my wife without having to worry about all the medical jargon that was going on around me. She assured me that when my wife was going through really bad pain that everything was normal. Also, our birthing plan changed during my wife’s labor and with her help I felt more comfortable with these changes! There were also times where she left and got us food and kept us focused on taking care of ourselves through the emotions of labor. She also made calls to our family memebers to update them on our behalf so that my wife and I could focus on her labor, rather than all of the white noise surrounding us.
Second, and more importantly, Katy was a real support figure as another woman. There were times where my wife would tell me that she felt better with Katy just standing in the room. Her experience proved to be just as soothing for my wife as she was constantly reassuring her in a calm soft tone that everything that was happening was normal. She provided comfort measures, aroma therapy, massage and so much more to help my wife stay comfortable. She also was on call and helped my wife through 27 hours of prodromal labor and 24 hours of her actual labor. To say she put her time in is an understatement.
Third, She was great with the Doctors and nurses and really bridged the gap between us and the hospital staff. Katy knew many of the nurses/doctors and had worked with them before. It was reassuring to know that she was so connected to the hospital. She also made sure the hospital staff followed our birthing when it was time for delivery. She verbally reminded everyone on our behalf about waiting to cut the cord until it had stopped pulsating on it’s own, and allowing the father to be the one to cut the cord. This was helpful because, although this was important to the two of us, it was the furthest thing from either of our minds when my wife started pushing.
After our experience I would recommend Katy as a doula to anyone with any level of birthing and labor experience. She does so many things beyond simply giving comfort measures to the wife. Without Katy I feel like we would not have had the birthing process we intended!