Birth (Recognised since November 2013)
Lives in: Harpenden AL5
Local info and availability:
I cover Harpenden, St Albans, Wheathampstead, Brookmans Pk, Gustard Wood, Kimpton, Sandridge, Luton and Redbourn Possibly London but let’s chat
HypnoBirth Instructor for over 15 yrs, Maternity Reflexology, Ante-natal workshops for refresher classes and birth partners, caesarean birth preparation sessions, from July23 I will also offer caesarean scar therapy. And if you have left it all too late then a birth power hour sessions to help positively prepare. I run a monthly free information session to explain my services if that interests you please contact me I'm the Doula UK Representative for Hertfordshire and organise regular meetings with local doulas.
Hi I’m Joan and you’re very welcome to my page. I support couples for their birth at home and in hospital and virtually if required.
I am also teaching my hypnobirthing classes face to face and via zoom.
I sometimes work with other Doulas to ensure you have all the support you need for your journey. I live in Harpenden, Hertfordshire with my husband, Ion,annd our dog Dolly.
I was born in Ireland and I am one of ten children. I was a homebirth. My mum said giving birth was her greatest achievement in life and knowing how to breathe properly and having loving support around her made it much better and easier. She loved hearing all about my work and amazing birth stories, she would have been a brilliant doula. I am a mum of three grown up children and YaYa (Granma) to three beautiful grandchildren. I have 33 nieces and nephews and I have hypnobirthed many of them over the past 15yrs.
I experienced three very different births. My first birth was an induction at eleven days past my due date. It ended with a general anaesthetic and instrumental birth.. I didn’t see my son for the next eight hours, I felt robbed of the whole birth experience. I transferred out of that hospital to a different one as soon as I was able to get up and be mobile. For my second birth I took control, by changing hospitals and consultant resulting in a beautiful positive birth experience but ended with a post partum haemorrhage and a long hospital stay.
For my third birth I laboured at home comfortably for most of the time using movement, music and water for comfort. I ate and drank nourishing energy foods (hot chocolate and biscuits). When I felt the time was right for me, we made our way to the hospital. I met my community midwife at the hospital and gave birth 45 minutes later. This was known as the domino system where you had one Midwife doing most if not all of your care. (Continuity of carer) I believe everyone deserves an enjoyable pregnancy and a positive birth whether they are planning a homebirth, a hospital vaginal birth or a Caesarean birth. As a birth doula I have gained experiences and hold a special interest in supporting mums with type one diabetes and families going through surrogacy. I believe a positive birth experiences goes hand in hand with the right support and the continuity of care model. Even as an experienced nurse I still felt vulnerable and intimidated by the hospital and medical staff. I remember feeling very frightened and alone at my first birth and my husband felt helpless. It took having a third baby for me to be able to have the birth experience I wanted and deserved. I had most of my labour at home, relaxed and comfortable in my own safe environment.
Now as a Doula I aim to help other women achieve the kind of birth they deserve and are entitled to: calm and gentle, as nature intended, with them in control. The right birth for mum and baby on the day is what it’s all about. I aim to support and protect women and their partners for their birth choices, maintaining a calm environment for them to labour and birth. I am constantly learning new things but one thing I do know is that naturally we know how to birth babies and this is why being a Doula naturally feels right for me. I am a trained General Nurse, a pregnancy and birth Reflexologist, Aromatherapist, Reiki practitioner and a HypnoBirth Instructor and soon to be a Caesarean scar therapist.
In hypnobirthing I am trained in The Mongan method, the Katharine Graves method and the Wise Hippo Birthing programme. What I teach is the best of all three programmes but especially what I see working for mums as a birth doula. I did the Paramanda Doula course with Dr Michel Odent in London and further training with Kicki Hansard at the Birth Bliss Academy. With my training and qualifications plus my three different births and life experiences I feel I can bring positive support to birthing mothers and partners on their special birthing day plus a good sense of humour.My own three births has given me a huge insight into what birth is all about but most importantly what a birthing goddess is capable of. For the last 20 years I have been supporting women using reflexology, and relaxation techniques to prepare them for their positive birth experience. I’ve taught HypnoBirthing for 15 years to over 1800 couples. I have supported over 100 families as their birth doula over the past 12 years, at home births and hospital births (Luton & Dunstable, the Lister in Stevenage, Watford and Barnet and Chelsea & Westminster). During the pandemic time I supported couples virtually and physically as the sole birth partner when this was the couples only choice. Being invited to support women and families at such a special event in their lives is both an honour and a privilege. I now appreciate even more what a positive role a Doula brings to a birth. Helping protect and hold their birth space and experience is such an amazing role. I wish you every success and joy on your birth path. You are a strong and powerful woman, you have everything within you to birth your baby confidently and comfortably. Enjoy your journey and make it the best day ever and if I’m there I will help you manifest your dream birth. As your doula my role is to provide you and your partner with the emotional ,physical and nurturing support whilst also educating you on your choices. As your doula my aim is to provide you with precisely what you need when you need it. I look forward to our journey together.💚