My 1st little boy was a pretty uneventful hospital delivery in Sydney. It was only when I became pregnant again and began to reflect on his birth that I realised that he was a vaginal delivery, not a natural birth. I felt very let down by the midwives in the birth centre where we thought he would be born and this heavily influenced my decision not to have a homebirth. As an older mum I also experienced some anxiety about receiving pressure from hospital staff while I was vulnerable during labour. So I decided that I needed a doula and was recommended Bron. I loved her gentle nature and also sensed a great strength in her. As a health professional who has worked with pregnant woman for the last 15 years and always recommended that they look at getting a doula I was finally able to experience all the benefits for myself!
I know without a shadow of a doubt that the hospital midwives present during my labour were far more respectful of my birth plan - a list of "I do not consent to...." because of Bron's presence. I have a fairly big streak of stubborn in me and I thought that Bron was just going to be there to support my husband so I could ignore him and everyone around me and get on with labour in my own way! Bron was wonderful - this calm, gentle presence in the background with a gentle word of encouragement here, a quietly whispered suggestion to change position there and the most amazing massage when I didn't even realise how much I needed it (and this is from someone who hates to be touched when vulnerable). I know in my heart that my little boy Ben was born gently into the world, in his own time, free from drugs & intervention and his mumma free from birth trauma thanks to Bron's wonderful support and presence.
We were able to spend our first minutes, hours, days and weeks falling in love and getting to know one another without processing trauma from unnecessary interventions during our birth together. If you're pregnant you should seriously think about a doula. If you're planning to birth your baby in a hospital you should have a doula. And if you're thinking about using Bron, stop thinking and just do it!
Thank you Bron XX Sarah, Phil, Fred and baby Ben.