Updated: Nov 16, 2020
Most in-person interactions have been moved to virtual meetings. One of the most impacted events in life right now, is pregnancy. A time usually spent with the company of others celebrating must now be experienced virtually. Doula support, along with it, has changed too. Meetings are online and beginning next week, some hospitals will reinstate last spring's covid-19 policies of only one support-person allowed per birthing person, such as at Methodist hospital, while others are firmly supporting a two-person support policy like all Allina systems. We understand the emotional toll the pandemic and its constant changes are having on you and your family. That is why now more than ever it is important to have a doula there for you. So let's talk about it. Virtual Doula support begins the same way in-person support does, with a free consultation. Your doula will chat with you over video-call about your birth plan, hopes and expectations, and answer any questions you have. If you choose to go forward with a doula, you will have two prenatal video meetings (or more) going over the usual things we do, such as building a birth preferences sheet, breathing techniques, comfort measures, coping mechanisms, as well as up-to-date and evidence-based information and research regarding pregnancy and birth. Our goal is to help prepare you as much as we can for labor and delivery, but with the added necessity of how to do it considering covid-19 and safety.
We can all agree that we're all feeling a little antsy and disconnected in a very odd way because we are also so 'connected'. Comfort, presence and touch are what doulas are known for, so it begs the question again, why hire a doula? Well, we know the education and emotional benefits are still there through virtual prenatal meetings and 24/7 access through call or text, but the support during labor that we love so much (hip-squeezes, am I right?) is lost. Another goal we have is to guide your partner ahead of time through the prenatal video meetings on how to give you that 'doula touch'. We will go over different labor positions and ways to ease discomfort. During labor, we can help you get creative, as well as remind and guide your labor partner on those positions. Your doula is a text or video call away from the time you hire them, and is on-call for your labor and delivery just as they would be for an in-person birth.
A Virtual doula will still provide the small things that make a big difference, such as reminding you to drink water, use the bathroom, move around, change positions, BREATHE, and use your B.R.A.I.N. We are a click away for advice, tips, to be your nonjudgemental sounding board, facilitator of peace, and your personal cheerleader.
Doulas has access to information because of our vast birth network. With things constantly changing, we know it's hard to get reliable information. We want to prepare you for labor and delivery, but also with the ways that covid-19 is impacting birth. Your doula will help your research efforts by narrowing things down with our suggestions, experience, and networking. With constantly changing covid-19 policies, we make it our priority to find out and let you know of any last minute changes usually before you can find out alone. These times are trying, they are uncertain, and it is hard to be pregnant through all of this. We see you. We are tailoring the virtual doula experience to support you in the ways you need to be supported.