Pregnancy, Birth & Postnatal Doula Work
Why hire a doula?
You’re pregnant – congratulations! Maybe this is your first time, or maybe you’ve been here before. Either way you’re likely to be feeling a mixture of excitement and trepidation!
By now you know there’s a lot more to growing a baby than the fun of picking out colours for the nursery and settling on a name. You might have already been confronted with serious decision-making about prenatal tests, birth plans and healthcare.
With a doula, you have the reassurance of an experienced professional who can hold your hand, both physically and metaphorically, throughout your pregnancy and labour. This partnership gives you support to make choices that are right for you.
My aim as your doula is to make you feel safe, supported, listened to and held, so you achieve your best birth experience.
During our antenatal meetings, you, and your partner when possible, can use the time to talk about birth expectations and concerns, practise coping techniques, and make plans in an unhurried environment.
We can discuss the choices you have in pregnancy and labour as I help you unpick the evidence around your options and explore your intentions, hopes and plans. And, I will be there to communicate your wishes during labour – whilst also providing that all-important comfort and support you’ll need every step of the way.
Importantly, as your doula you’ve got my full and committed support and can contact me by phone, text, WhatsApp, email or even carrier pigeon any time.
I’ve been in the ‘birth world’ for over 15 years working as a National Childbirth Trust (NCT) antenatal teacher and a pregnancy yoga instructor. I’ve also worked at Stroud Midwifery Unit as a maternity care assistant and I have been in your shoes as a mum of three.
My experience includes supporting women and couples planning home and hospital births, induction and declining induction, Caesarean and water births.
My goal is to bring a calm, joyous and relaxed atmosphere to your birth experience. Testament to the success of this approach is the bond that I create with the women I support. A bond that thrives during pregnancy and far beyond.
How much does it cost?
There is a choice of packages but if you have specific needs, I am happy to customise an offering for you.
Core Care Offering - Pregnancy and Birth Doula Support
- Meeting with you at least two or three times to draw up plans, dispel any fears and ensure that you (and your partner) feel ready and excited about meeting your baby.
- On call for your birth 24/7 usually from 38 weeks.
- With you during labour as soon as you need me until after your baby is born.
- Postnatal support to help your recovery and feeding.
Bronze - Pregnancy and Birth Doula Support plus Yoga
The core care offering plus 10 hours of pregnancy yoga and 10 hours of postnatal yoga.
Silver - Pregnancy, Birth and Early Days Doula Support
This includes the core care offering plus 10 hours of personal postnatal support in your own home.
This support to ‘mother the mother’ enables you to grow in confidence with your new baby: supporting your feeding choices, helping with nappies, bathing and sling-wearing. I can also help with older siblings or light housework to enable you to recover and get to know your new baby.
Gold - Pregnancy, Birth and Early Days Doula Support plus Yoga
This is a full wrap-around care package. It features the core care offering plus:
10 hours of pregnancy yoga
10 hours of post-natal yoga
10 hours of personal postnatal support
Flexible payment options are available for all packages.
Choosing the right doula is an important decision, and the investment involved – both emotional and financial – is significant. To help you with your decision, and check the chemistry, I will offer a face to face or online consultation at no charge. Contact me here to arrange.
What have others said?
“Gillian is one of the loveliest people you’ll meet, she’s completely dedicated to her work and very well organised. The conversations we had before the birth gave me wonderful support and helped me to relax. She also helped me to create the birth plan and most importantly she was there to hold my hand and support me when I gave birth. I’m so glad she agreed to be my doula, I really could not have wished for a better support and will always be grateful that she was there for us when our daughter was born.”
IC, January 2021
“Gillian has the most calm and kind voice and is such a positive and knowledgeable person in her field. She was extremely responsive to any text I sent her and had good suggestions for any issues I was encountering in the last few weeks. On the day she knew what to do and helped me to stay calm and relaxed. Gillian was great at supporting me and my choices, I was extremely comfortable in her calming presence. A couple of days after the birth she arrived with amazing food and we spent some time discussing the whole experience which, thanks to her, was a very positive one! I would highly recommend Gillian as a doula. She is very dedicated, knows her stuff, has a very serene presence and makes you feel in control in any situation.
ST, August 2020
“Gillian was so super supportive in the time leading up to my daughter’s birth. I had a long pregnancy and having Gillian as my doula at this time gave me extra strength to follow my instincts. I felt heard and acknowledged with all I was going through, which was a very emotional time. During labour Gillian was wonderful. Her presence was gentle and supportive – just the right balance. And of course not only was she there for me, but she was supportive of my husband, too. Gillian had really understood the environment I wanted for my birth and helped create the space I had so envisioned. After the birth she made sure we were happy and ready for her to leave us after the long day we had together! Gillian was always present, always staying in tune with our needs and she did so in such a caring and gentle way.”
“From our first meeting, Gillian made us feel completely at ease. I loved that Gillian was my pregnancy yoga instructor as well as doula as it allowed us to form a stronger bond in the antenatal time. During labour, Gillian was a calming presence and used positive language. She gave us our own space and time as a couple during this time yet also was there when needed, working well simultaneously with my partner to support me emotionally & practically. She is knowledgeable, approachable, caring & thoughtful; the perfect doula!”
“Gillian brought the positivity to my birth. In the months leading up to the birth I felt that she was aligned with me. Her calm and smiling presence kept the mood serene at my birth. She consistently gave me encouragement and seemed to know intuitively what I needed. Her support enabled me to have the birth I had hoped for, a natural home birth.”
“Gillian was very empathetic and understanding and made me feel that it was ok to seek help. This gave me emotional support and increased my confidence as a mother. She is a very kind and empathetic fellow mother whom you feel you can trust with your baby and to have your best interests at heart. She is a very good listener and very respectful of your views and wishes. She was a great support to me at a time when I needed that extra support and help without judgement, and was always sensitive to my wishes.”
"Gillian provided postnatal support for several weeks in the very early days. In some ways, the things she did were so simple, but the care, love, and knowledge she brought had a profoundly positive impact on my experience of early motherhood. She came a few times a week when my partner went back to work and cared for my baby so I could catch up on sleep and shower after long nights breastfeeding. She brought me tea and often breakfast in bed, preparing nourishing food and helping me feel really cared for. She was a calm and knowledgeable listening ear for all of the thousands of questions and worries a new mum is has. I don't have any family nearby, so the kind of support she offered was invaluable. It's the best gift you could possibly give yourself."
“As soon as I knew Gillian was on board, I felt more relaxed. We met a number of times prior to my birth which was therapeutic and healing, discussing my last birth and preferences this time. She stayed by my side throughout labour, offering physical support which was exactly what I needed. It was very empowering to be able to trust Gillian implicitly and know that she knew my preferences and would advocate where needed. My birth felt de-medicalised as I made it my own and that was with Gillian’s support.”