Big babies: “I can probably do anything I ever wanted to do in the universe ever”

I’ve treated this birth story to its own blog post as I love it so much. Everything about it reminds me why I love my job. Wonderful Clare, who did the birthing and the scribing, is my first Whitstable client. We didn’t meet until a couple of weeks before her estimated due date but (and I fear for the sake of both of our livers) it is clearly going to be a long acquaintance.  If you are interested in a story about overcoming birth... Read More

NCT Pregnancy and Birth evening in Whitstable

This Sunday (the 24th June 2012) while I’m frantically bubblewrapping my birth pools and gently stuffing Ina May, Michel Odent and Janet Balaskas in packing cases, the Canterbury and District branch of the NCT are hosting a free and fab-sounding preganncy and birth evening. From 7-9pm All Saints Church Hall in Whitstable (over in my new East Kent neck of the woods don’t you know) will play host to midwives, doulas, antenatal teachers,... Read More

My body my choice: Human Rights in Childbirth

Last week I set out for The Hague to attend the world’s first Human Rights in Childbirth conference. Organised by the Hermine Hayes-Klein of the Bynkershoek Institute, it’s aim was to gather leading thinkers, professionals, practitioners and others from across the world and across the disciplines to discuss and debate the question: What are the Rights and Responsibilities of Birthing Women? I could blather on for months about the incredible... Read More

Far From Faddish: Doula Survey Shows Dramatic Decrease in Interventions

World Doula Week starts on Thursday 22 March and, while I expect many of you will shrug your shoulders, raise an eyebrow and think ‘World What What Week?!’, this new survey from Doula UK might just change your mind. With over 500 members, Doula UK represents the largest number of doulas in the UK. Its doulas work with women and their families to prepare for the birth of their baby, helping them to fully explore their options, make informed... Read More

Induction stations!

Something that loads of people I work with have to at least fleetingly consider is the possibility of induction. It’s a horrible word and always makes me thing of a lurching pregnant robot shouting, Dalek-style “induction, induction, induction” while mowing you down with a pessary. The good news is that most of the people who have to think about induction end up leaving those thoughts far behind them when their small person makes... Read More

Minimal Baby: The Hackney Doula in the Guardian

I learn most useful things from couples I work with and decided to share one big lesson in this week’s Guardian G2. Want to know more about attachment parenting? How to get by without a buggy or a cot? Intrigued by co-sleeping or just plain skint? Find out more about how to have a minimal baby here. Tweet Read More

How to be a positive birth partner. Part 2: during

Ok, so you’ve done your homework, read about how to prepare here and have helped your partner to feel excited and happy about the upcoming birth. Well done! Give yourself a pat on the back, a large chocolate muffin and wait for the fun to really start. Here are some ideas for ways to be a positive partner when labour stuff starts to happen. 1. At the first sign of labour take a big deep breath and remind yourself that you are the guardian of... Read More

Hackney Doula Free Event

I’m running an event with the lovely people at Born in Stoke Newington on 3rd July from 6-8pm. It’s all about giving birth in Hackney. More details here. There will be (free) wine, coffee and tea and a chance to talk about: – local maternity services (where are the good rooms, the quiet stairs for induction-stomping, protocol etc) – Homerton’s new homebirth team and service – local pregnancy/birth/baby resources... Read More

How to be a positive birth partner. Part 1: before

So, there’s a bump growing ever-visible. You’re assured there’s a baby in there (though most of the time it feels completely unreal) and at some point you know it has to come out. How the hell are you going to help? TV and films are deeply unhelpful in terms of the partner’s role. He stands there shouting ” remember to breathe” or “push” at an increasingly irate woman with a look of panic/horror on his... Read More

Birth pool to hire

If you are thinking about a homebirth in East Kent, it’s worth knowing that I have two professional-grade Birth Pool in a Box to hire out. You’ll get a brand-new, sterile liner delivered along with my pool, the thing to blow it up and the thing to take the water out afterwards. You will need to get your own hose and tap connector, but I’ll nag you about that often so you won’t forget. If you’d like to buy your own I... Read More

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The Hackney Doula

Doula UK Recognised