"Keli makes me excited to plan for a second baby, I couldn't imagine giving birth or doing it again without her! " Angelina
"I can't imagine having gone through my pregnancy without Keli's guidance- she literally had my back through 30 hours of labor. She is a gem!!" Amanda
As a birth doula, I work for the mother and her partner, providing education, support, and comfort during the prenatal, birth, and postpartum periods. A doula recognizes birth as a key moment in life and knows that it is a time a mother will always remember. My goal is to help make birth the best possible experience for the parents so that you look back at birth as one of the most joyful moments in life. I am a DONA and Hypnobabies trained doula serving the Greater Philadelphia and Wilmington area, My experience includes working with natural births, medicated births, cesarean, VBACs, waterbirth, twin deliveries, high-risk births at CHOP, single parents, teens, and same sex parents. Wishing you joy through your birthing journey.
Research has shown that women who have a doula present at birth were:
I felt an instant connection to birthing during the birth of my niece in 2008. I look back at the experience as one of my fondest and most life changing memories. I've worked as a birth doula for over six years attending over 200 births. In addition to birthing, I am also a childbirth educator, Hypnobabies teacher, postpartum doula, prenatal yoga instructor, and Ironman triathlete. I also offer breastfeeding support and belly binding. I enjoy all things health and wellness related. I love what I do and am passionate about childbirth. Birth can be a joyful and beautiful experience.
My goal is to develop a trusting relationship where you learn your choices in childbirth, explore your birth preferences, to provide information, physical support and emotional support throughout pregnancy and birthing, and for you and your partner to feel supported with your choices in childbirth. Prenatal visits enables you to develop a relationship with birth professionals that you know will attend your birth. I am available to you from the moment we start working together so that you will always have someone by your side when you need it most. You choose how you prefer to birth. I support all birth choices and outcomes. I have working relationship with other wonderful doulas within a doula collective so that I can provide additional professionals and resources to you upon request. We take time together to address your physical and emotional needs to ensure that your prenatal and birthing experience is one that you feel good about. Services can be tailored to meet your birth preferences. Once you begin birthing I stay with you from the time you need support until after your baby arrives. I remain in contact during the postpartum period and do a followup appointment shortly after you return home with your baby.
Outside the birth world I enjoy all things health and wellness related. I love nature, running, cycling, swimming, yoga, hiking with my love, and this year I'm often at Orange Theory Fitness. Staying active makes me happy and plays a positive roll in my life. In 2015 I raced my fourth Ironman triathlon in Kona at the Ironman World Championship. The experience of training for and completing in an Ironman has been another life changing experience. I have found so many parallels between birthing and triathlon. Triathlon reminds me to never give up, to believe in myself and be open to making things happen. Knowing that some of the best things in life require preparation, training, do not happen overnight, but they are worth it. Yoga also plays a big role in my every day life. I am grateful for my doula clients, childbirth education and yoga students because I am always learning as both a practitioner and teacher.
I love animals, learning, exploring, and cooking, appreciate maintaining a clean home although fun fact...I do not enjoy the moments spent cleaning it!! I believe in the power of positivity. Our experiences begin with the mindset. It may not always be easy during life’s most challenging moments, but I always try to reframe my thoughts and look for the good.
Dads and Doulas….a wonderful team! Having a doula doesn’t replace Dad or birth partners. Not only does a doula support a woman during labor, but a doula is also present to support the partner during this time. A doula works with the couple in the prenatal appointments so that the father knows what to expect and is able to best support the mother while feeling comfortable throughout the birthing process. The presence of a doula often allows the couple to be more connected. The doula brings education and confidence to the birth process, helps the partner by allowing him or her to take breaks, and because the doula provides physical comfort measures, the partner can focus more intently on the mother. With a doula present, the mother can lean on the partner while the doula might apply therapeutic techniques helpful during your birthing time.
Does a doula advocate for me? During pregnancy and throughout delivery the doula provides information for the couple to make informed decisions. A doula does not make decisions or speak for you.
Epidurals & Pain Medication: Will a doula support me? YES! Doulas support every king of birth! Whether you plan a birth without drugs, medical intervention or a planned cesarean birth. We are trained to view childbirth as a natural and normal process, however that there is a place for medical intervention. We provide emotional, physical and informational support to all mothers and couples. Doulas want every woman to have a positive birthing experience. For some women that means giving birth with as little intervention as possible and for others it is not even a consideration for personal or practical reasons. We do not suggest our opinions. We provide education and options so they each woman can make informed decisions. Our job is to support those choices whatever they may be. We will not decide for you and doulas should not provide biased information. We want you to have the best birth experience possible with the healthiest outcome.
What if I’m plan a cesarean or birth by unplanned cesarean? Whether you are scheduling a planned cesarean or an unplanned one a doula can support both you and your partner through birthing by cesarean. I have experience supporting birthing in the operating room and am able to explain to you and your partner what to expect, help you prepare mentally, and support you as you meet your baby.
Does a doula perform medical procedures? A doula does not take the place of the healthcare team. We are part of the birth team. Primary care providers are responsible for the medical health needs of the mother and baby. A doula helps ensure that the mother’s needs are also met. A doula provides constant care throughout the entire birth including informational, physical, and emotional support, and immediately following the birth. Doula provide the information for a mother to make informed decisions and does not make decisions for the mother.
Does a doula come to my home when I’m in labor? This depends on the doula and would be entirely up to you. It may also depend on how your birthing begins. Many couples prefer their doula to meet them at their home and stay with them while they labor until it is time to go to the birthing place. Other couples prefer to meet at birth location.
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