the doula spotlight

hello good peoples,

this post is part of an ongoing series called the doula spotlight. my goal is to interview doulas around the country to highlight some of the good things birth workers are doing for our birthing mothers. each week we’ll be answering 3 different questions about doula life. i’m really excited to start this series and share the wisdom of these women with you.

the doula spotlight this week takes us back to Tampa, FL.  Gaetane Joseph of Seeds of Mommy Soul submitted her interest after reading my very first doula spotlight post. Gaetane is a mother of 3 vivacious kids in Tampa. She started her journey in 2010 as a Doula and CLC after the home birth of her 2nd child. Gaetane believes that every woman should have a positive birth experience and her goal is to make that obtainable.

Gaetane Ring sling picture

1. How long have you been a doula and what lead you to pursue doulahood?

As a young girl I always had an interest in birth. In high school I decided to volunteer in my local hospital’s Labor and Delivery. During that time I witnessed 2 births and knew that my interest as a young girl would soon lead to my aspirations into my adulthood. I decided to train as a Doula in 2010 after a successful HBAC (home birth after cesarean) of my daughter. Since then it has been an honor to be a part of the many family’s lives as they embark into parenthood.

2. Having a doula is shown to reduce the amount of time a woman may spend in labor. Physical support is a contributing factor to this reduction. What physical support do you provide during labor?

Research has shown that investing in a Doula has reduced the amount of time a woman spends in labor. One of the contributing factors to reducing the time women spend in labor is the physical support we provide to her. As a Doula, we provide non-medical support. One of the techniques that I have used that has been successful is the use of counter pressure. Most may not fully grasp how useful this technique may be until they are in labor. I have received quite a few praises for knowing how much pressure to counteract with during a contraction. Some of the other physical support that I provide would be temple massage, shoulder relaxation techniques, and assisting mothers during labor to change positions often.

3. You are also a Certified Lactation Counselor {CLC}. Do you think having a doula benefits a mother with establishing a breastfeeding relationship? In your doula practice how do you help a mother prepare for breastfeeding if she’s planning to do so? 

 As a CLC, I have experience assisting mothers with initiating breastfeeding and addressing concerns that may arise. Because we are aware of the correlation between birth and establishing a breastfeeding relationship, a mother will benefit by investing in a Doula. Once a mother delivers her baby we assist her in initiating skin to skin immediately. Skin to skin not only helps newborns regulate their temperature but it also makes it easier for baby to latch on for the first time. As a CLC and Doula, I will assist a mother with more than just initially breastfeeding. During pregnancy, I educate mothers on topics such as the anatomy of breasts and the overall health benefits of breastfeeding for mother, baby, and family. Once mothers deliver, I help mothers by suggesting different holding techniques, observing and correcting an improper latch, and evaluating feeding: such as sucking and swallowing. For some mothers, breastfeeding may not be as smooth as they may have expected. As a CLC, I am here to provide education and support to mothers to ensure that she feels empowered to breastfeed.

I’d like to thank Gaetane for her participation with the doula spotlight. Gaetane is servicing Hillsborough, Pasco, Pinellas, and Polk County in FL. Check out her website at www.seedsofmommysoul.net for services and to schedule your free consultation.

HEY YOU! are you a doula? would you like to contribute to the doula spotlight? send an info request to heymomjeanz {at} gmail {dot} com. thanks! Also, would you like a t-shirt? {smile & wink}

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