So I have managed to secure a doula, all for the price of free!!! This is great, especially since we live in San Francisco where the average rate for a doula is a $1,000. Yes, you read that right–$1,000!!! And because I’m a SAHM, our budget is very limited especially with the out-of-pocket cost for this pregnancy. There’s no way we could fit a doula in our already tight budget.
Wondering how I found my free doula? I contacted the local trainer for DONA International. They are the international governing body who certifies doulas around the world. Part of becoming a DONA certified doula is attending three births after you are done with your coursework. Usually, these doulas-in-training have a hard time charging for their services initially because they aren’t certified and don’t have any births under their belts. So most, not all, are willing to offer their help for free as long as you are ok with someone with little to no experience.
I managed to find one who also happens to be a massage therapist by trade! Score!!! She said she would be able to help my husband do some massage techniques to help with the pain of labor. We definitely lucked out with this find, and I’m so grateful.
You must be wondering why I want a doula to attend my birth after having said I am by no means a crunchy mom in my previous post. So there are two reasons I’ve decided to find a doula.
First, I’m worried that we will be in the lurch if I go into labor and can’t find someone to watch my son, even if it’s for a few hours. So rather than having me left alone in the hospital, it would be nice to have a doula there to help me if my husband has to be away to make sure our son has some where safe to go for a bit. Right now my parents are planning on coming out from the East Coast for my due date, but any parent knows labor is never on a schedule. So it is nice to have that extra piece of mind.
Lastly, I think we would benefit from the extra support to have a vaginal delivery. Like I said previously, I would like to have a successful VBAC. I want to make sure that I recover quickly so that I can immediately return to being a mother to my son and new baby. If the doula can give both my husband and I that extra push and confidence to achieve VBAC, then why not have her there? She knows my story, and knows that above all else I want a healthy baby. And contrary to popular belief, doulas aren’t necessarily there to push natural child birthing. This doula was very sympathetic and open to epidurals, and never pushing any of her agenda or what she thinks birthing should be like. So I’m very happy with that and I feel like she knows what is important to us and our birth. I’m hoping that her skills and knowledge will help us.
So yay for free doulas!!! 🙂