Having a baby is the most wonderful thing in the world! But those early newborn weeks can be full of emotion - love, joy, overwhelm, exhaustion - and the realisation that you're responsible for a whole new person! You are also transitioning out of pregnancy and recovering from birth.
As a society, our families and communities used to be physically much closer - these days, expectations around parenting are very different and much more isolated. But we know what a massive difference it makes having familiar support in those early weeks with your baby.
"We cannot recommend Rachel more for anyone who wants advice and support during or after pregnancy" - V & C, first baby
As a postnatal doula based in Tonbridge, my role is to support and nurture you all as a family so that your start to parenthood is gentler, as you find your feet and feel more confident in your new role. That support can take many forms, such as:
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- Holding your hand (metaphorically!) as you become more confident caring for your baby.
- Supporting you with feeding (I am a qualified Mindful Breastfeeding Practitioner). Research shows that breastfeeding mums are more likely to successfully establish breastfeeding with the support of a doula.
- Supporting you emotionally without judgement, whether that's connected to your birth experience or simply how you feel you are coping as a new mum. Research shows reduced likelihood of symptoms of depression with the support of a doula.
- Looking after your baby (and any siblings) whilst you rest, have a bath, sleep or simply get some space for yourself.
- Assisting with day to day life to take the pressure off - making you a nutritious meal, tidying up, putting a wash on, so you can focus on your baby and yourself.
- Sign-posting you to other perinatal specialists if needed.
“Whenever and however you intend to give birth, your experience will impact your mind, body and your spirit for the rest of your life” - Ina May Gaskin
I've had two babies myself and I remember what a shock to the system it was! I remember feeling utter disbelief as a first time mum when I realised just how relentless 24/7 parenting actually was. I've had two different breastfeeding journeys, each with their twists and their bumps, and I've had two little boys who are as similar as chalk and cheese! So I know that babies are all different - as are their parents and what works for each family.
There's no right way to parenting. You're going to have years of being on the receiving end of advice, whether wanted or unwanted! But I'm here to support you to find what works for you, and to do it at a pace that feels good for you. Unlike a maternity nurse who only looks after the baby, I am here to help your whole family as you adjust to life with a newborn. Your physical and emotional wellbeing are at the centre of my focus, in all my work with you.
I provide postnatal doula support in Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells, Sevenoaks and the surrounding areas on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday mornings, 10am - 12.30pm. Get in touch for a free, no obligation call to chat about how I can help you.
1 x morning of support - 10am - 12.30pm: £70
5 x mornings of support - 10am - 12.30pm: £330
I travel to you at your home (providing you are within 45 minutes drive of me in Tonbridge). Bookings are ideally taken during your pregnancy, so that you can guarantee my availability in the days and weeks after your baby has been born.
When looking to book a doula, it's really important that you find somebody you "click" with. We can chat over the phone, over zoom, or in person - and I really recommend that your partner (if you have one) takes part too.
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"Rachel definitely went above and beyond for us and it felt personal. It felt like we could ask her anything at any time" - J, first time dad