We all approach birth with a little trepidation; even after my ecstatic experience with my 2nd, I still didn't know what to expect with my 3rd.
The first step is to get yourself informed, read those positive birth stories, watch beautiful births on Youtube. Opt out of the dominant cultural conditioning of birth as drama & danger. Go to Birth Groups (I hold a free, monthly home birth meet-up in Lewes). Tell your friends & family: "good birth stories only, my baby's listening".
Find yourself a doula you get on really well with. We come in a variety of shapes, sizes & costs. What a doula does depends on what you need. There is no way your partner will be elbowed out; on the contrary, they will be more able to be there for you. I often find myself wondering how people manage without a doula.
I have a passion about love hormones & endorphins. Oxytocin, the hormone of love & birth, cannot co-exist with hormones of the adrenoline family. In my group, we look at ways of amping up the love hormones, to make your birth as loving & straightforward as possible.
I teach 'Spinning Babies' techniques for easier pregnancy and birth. I have had some astounding results with stuck labours and with avoiding c sections. I attend around 13 births a year, a lot of my bookings being for home births. Spinning Babies is pretty much unheard of outside of midwifery and doula circles, in fact I was the first person in the UK certified to teach it.
I also love taking photos at births and capturing images to be treasured for a lifetime.
"The midwife at my debrief session was very surprised & pleased that I had had a natural birth, & not an assisted birth or emergency c-section (the usual end to a labour with continued asynclitism). I am so grateful that Roma asked to do Walcher's manoeuvre. Without it, I believe I would have had to recover from a c section." Hannah
"We felt in safe hands with Roma & loved her humour, wisdom & respect for natural birth coupled with her understanding of our healthcare system and medical interventions. I liked that she didn't push any particular school of thought in birth, but was there with advice & options on the phone in late pregnancy as well as supporting us emotionally & practically through what turned out to be a difficult birth. Roma also helped after the birth, providing help around the house, cake & friendly grounding chats as I found my feet as a first time mum. I loved her 'Closing the Bones' massage which helped me 'close' the whole experience physically & mentally & come home to my body again. I highly recommend her as a brilliant doula and brilliant human, who gave us invaluable, grounded, wise, kind support and her irreverent sense of humour is amazing to lighten the mood at what can be a time of high drama." Kathy
I'm a mother of three sons, all born at home (not that the first was planned that way). My first birth was long & challenging. It lead me to doing my doula training with Dr Michel Odent in 2010, which was utterly fascinating. My second birth completely surprised me by being quite blissful in places. I'm sure having an experienced doula present helped make the birth so much more manageable & positive. Having experienced giving birth three times gives me empathy and insight into what women and birthing people want.
I love supporting families through their pregnancy & birth journeys. Each family's needs are different, but all of them need loving care.
The combination of my Spinning Babies, Biomechanics for Birth and Hypnobirthing teaching and skills really has brought my birth work to another level. With the mind and body ready, and a good look at where the soul can dig deep for this rite of passage, you really can look forward to enjoying your birth.
I love taking care of babies (& letting new mums sleep)! It's not just babies I love, it's women too. Postnatal help is not a luxury, it's essential.
When I'm not doula-ing, I enjoy playing cello & mandolin, gardening, baking & larking about with the kids. My partner & I have a festival cafe (The Beloved's Arms) & are converting a horse truck, for family adventures. I also have an unrelated Bsc Hons & like walking our cake-stealing Border Collie, Bramble.
Certified Birth Doula
Paramana Doula, Michel Odent & Liliana Lammers 2010
Member of Doula UK - recognised Birth & Postnatal doula
Doula Mentor for trainee doulas 2017
Trained as a Breast Feeding Peer Supporter 2011
Spinning Babies training with Gail Tully (techniques for optimal positioning/ easing stuck labours) 2013
Spinning Babies with Rachel Shapiro 2018
Spinning Babies Parent Educator 2018
KGHypnobirthing Teacher 2020
Advanced Biomechanics for Birth 2021
Infant Feeding Coach 2021
Talks attended: Dr Sarah Buckley, Ina May Gaskin, Michel Odent
Reiki: Following several experiences where poorly friends wouldn't let me take my hands off them, I got attuned by a Japanese friend in 1999. It's a practical thing. I don't do crystals, angels or woo!
Closing the Bones postnatal massage. Rocio Alarcon (Ecuadorian shaman, midwife & professor of ethnobotany) 2020 and Sophie Messager 2015.
NLP/ introduction to Rewind technique for birth trauma - midwife Mark Harris
BSc Hons - unrelated but the science aspect helps.
My three home born children; my greatest teachers!
Recognised Postnatal Doula
Infant Feeding Coach
I have supported close to 100 births & have experience of: home birth, freebirth, hospital birth, birth centre birth, water birth, breech, twins, IVF, LGBTQ families, induction, c section, low platelets, VBAC, HBAC, differently abled parents, mums aged up to 49, GBS, survivors, mums under the mental health consultant or on anti depressants, babies with a diagnosis of heart problems, cleft lip or Downs Syndrome. Breast feeding issues, gestational diabetes, women given the label of low risk or high risk, babies arriving between 36 - 43 weeks, single parents, nervous partners & confident partners.