Vikki Young talks about her work as a birth doula at Vikki Young Doula and how she got to work in a profession she feels so passionate about.
Birth Doula’s, Being Who Mama needs.
My name is Vikki Young. I am a birth and postnatal doula living in Hampshire. I support women and their families on their birth and postnatal journey.
A birth doula can be hired at any point during pregnancy, the earlier the better so we can build a lovely strong relationship by the time women birth and also to utilise our fabulous skills to the max!
We are whatever the mother needs us to be, listener, confidante and cheerleader providing informational and unwavering unbiased support. We listen to women and what they require, sign posting them to the most up to date research available so they can make an informed decision on the care they would like to receive. Then we hold their hand and support them through it.
I typically go on call 2 weeks before the due date and am on call until the baby comes. So no drinking, eating garlic or spicy foods, no perfume wearing and staying close to home as we anticipate the exciting call!
Providing Unbroken, Unwavering Support.
I arrive during labour as soon as the mother requests and stay until she is carefully tucked up in bed and cuddling her newborn. That can be just 2 hours after I arrive to 50 (current record!) We don’t leave, no shift changes just continuity of care. The support can take many forms, massage, pressure, positional help, rebozo work (traditional Mexican cloth) advocacy, food passer, drink maker, brow mopper, reassurance, partner support and most importantly space holder.
Women need to be able to focus on the job in hand, get in to their zone and switch the thinking part of their brain off in order to allow oxytocin (the wonderful hormone responsible for falling in love, sex and birth) to flow freely. We have been called oxytocin factories.
Birth doulas cover all births. Whatever the women chooses or develops along the winding birth journey. That can be hospital, an induction of labour, a c section or a home birth. We come with you wherever you go and provide support.
It Doesn’t End at Birth.
As a postnatal doula I help with all aspects of caring for the new mother. Lots of listening and birth debriefing, tea maker, occasional hugger, freezer filler and reassurance that she’s is doing splendidly. I help with baby care including feeding. Help with older children, light housework and even dog walker! Whatever helps the new mother is my goal.
It really is a such a delightful job. I have been at home raising my own 8 beautiful children for almost 18 years and was desperate to get back in to the birthy world. Its something that has always drawn me since I was a young teenager. A brief midwifery spell confirmed that it was what I wanted to do. Being a birth doula means I have the lovely continuity of care for my clients and I can see their pregnancy journey right through to the end. I LOVE it!
Vikki is an independent doula at vikkiyoungdoula.com
Have you worked with a birth doula before? How did the experience impact your birth? We’d love to hear from you in our comments!