What path brought you here?
I have a journalism background, so it wasn’t an obvious gateway. I became a doula in 1999, shortly after my daughter was born. Her birth inspired me toward the realm of childbirth education and advocacy. Then in 2000 I joined the Metropolitan Doula Group as a cofounding member. We invited world-renown guests like Robbie Davis-Floyd, Elizabeth Davis and Michel Odent. It was an amazing time. But I love the arc of my career, how it’s evolved, and what I’ve experienced and accomplished along the way, and I’m really happy with what I’m doing right now.
What are you passionate about?
I love babies. So in a hospital particularly, anything that helps babies come into the world as harmoniously as possible–especially delayed cord clamping, immediate skin-to-skin and waiving the hospital newborn bath so the protective vernix stays on the skin and there’s no mother-baby separation. Unless you’re Sonia Rochel giving a Thalasso Baby Bath, newborns don’t need a bath to “clean” them right after birth. They’re exquisite as they are. They smell like honey.
How do you feel you’re most effective during the birth process?
In helping to establish and maintain the family bond in that magical, mystical hour right after birth. Capturing beautiful images (on my Iphone, because it’s silent and flashless) of labor and birth unfolding.
And what about postpartum, after the new family arrives home?
I think good nutrition is vital, so if I’m working with a family in the “fourth trimester,” as they arrive homeI like to get them set up with seasonal superfoods to keep them well nourished. So lots of leafy greens, veggies, soups and lean protein for sustenance, as well as fortified smoothies and juice elixers to boost the new Momma’s milk supply.
What is your favorite way to spend a Sunday afternoon?
Taking a good, vigorous yoga class, then cooking a delicious meal with my husband and then maybe watching a documentary or movie on Netflix, with or without the kids. They’re teenagers now, so they have they’re doing their own thing.
Any nonprofits you love?
There are so many excellent organizations doing great work.
Vitamin Angels distributes lifesaving and life changing vitamins and minerals to mothers and babies in need around the world. Circle of Health International is currently providing much needed assistance in Nepal. They work with women around the world in times of crisis to ensure access to reproductive, maternal and newborn care.