I ask clients for an honest written evaluation after their birth. Here are some of their comments:
"It was the hardest thing I have ever done, and I'm confident that I
can now do anything! Marathon? No problem, I pushed a baby out! ...Both [my
husband] and I feel like you were an integral part of the experience, and
that without you it would not have happened."
-Mother of three who gave birth vaginally after two cesareans, Greenfield
"We should have asked you to come sooner! You were such a help at the
hospital. [My husband] definitely needed your relief, and your moral support
was invaluable. The materials and preparatory discussions - how to prepare
for a smooth labor, tips to avoid a posterior position - were especially helpful."
-First-time mother, Northampton
"It was wonderful to have you there, to have your cool support and assistance
and knowledge, and to have another type of 'expert' around besides the hospital
people...an expert who we felt was firmly on OUR side. You helped make [the
baby's] birth an incredible experience and we're really proud of how everything
went. And proud of our lovely baby, too! Thanks also for taking those great
pictures. It's really nice to have a photo record of everything that went
-First-time mother, Brattleboro, VT
"You know all that I want for that moment, so it was not necessary to
explain [anything] in that moment. Just continue like this: very peaceful,
because in that painful moment, helps a lot to me that you are very confident."
-First-time mother, Greenfield
"I am left with only positive memories...You are very confident, well-organized,
and knowledgeable...with a very positive attitude toward natural birth philosophy,
but able to accept other methods if necessary. Your presence is calming and
grounded, strong and yet not intimidating. You are a sincerely caring and
honest person and a solid support, and very well able to work with others
- both client and rest of support team."
-Mother of two, Amherst
"I feel very positive about the birth. I could do it again....I think
a nice thing about having a doula is getting perspective on both natural and
'un-natural' or traditional methods. It's good to know the pros/cons of each
without judgment. The doctors won't have much to say on natural approaches,
but you were able to give information on both."
-Mother of two, Hatfield
"I can't thank you enough for all you did for me....You were especially helpful to me during the most trying times, also during the actual pushing part. There is such a soothing calmness about you, Anne, that I know you will be an excellent midwife." -First-time mother, Holyoke
"You were a wonderful doula! I really appreciate you staying for the
whole time instead of calling the backup. I'm glad you had that book
to refer to which had different positions to try. I think it saved me from
a possible C-section!"
-Mother of three, Greenfield
"Thank you so much for helping me feel like a woman, and the mother
I wanted to be."
-VBAC mother of two, Springfield