Birth (Recognised since July 2021)
Lives in: London NW2
Local info and availability:
I cover most areas in North London, North West London and parts of West London, Hertfordshire, Barnet, Middlesex & Harrow. North London, North West London, Willesden, Kensal Rise, Queen's Park, Maida Vale, Hampstead, Highgate, Muswell Hill, Crouch End, Finchley, Edgware, Stanmore, Wembley, Harrow. Please enquire as I may be able to cover your area!
My name is Laura. I live in Willesden Green with my husband, two daughters and two cats. Before becoming a mother, I worked for charities supporting prisoners and ex-offenders and then went on to be a primary school teacher for 10 years before choosing to stay at home as a full-time mother.
After a challenging start to breastfeeding my first daughter, I received amazing support from my local network, which inspired me to train as a breastfeeding peer supporter. I trained with the NHS Harrow breastfeeding team, under the leadership of Alison Spiro, as well as completing the Mother Supporter course with the Association of Breastfeeding Mothers. This was the start of my journey supporting other mums and mums-to-be and I went on to regularly support new mothers at a weekly Breastfeeding drop-in group. Along with NCT Breastfeeding Counsellor, Cordelia Uys, I also co-founded two online breastfeeding support groups for women in north-west London, and I continue to regularly support women online.
The importance of continuous care
My experience of being pregnant, giving birth and becoming a parent has shown me that it is made significantly more manageable by having a good network of support and care available throughout.
The most significant difference between my own two birth experiences was during my second, where I received continuous, unwavering, caring support throughout by case loading midwives. We had time to build up a rapport, I felt comfortable and safe in their presence and they were both there alongside me for the duration of my birth. In a similar way, having a doula can minimise fear around who will be present at your birth.
Feeling first-hand the difference this kind of support can make has been a huge part of my inspiration to help other women achieve the positive births they are entitled to.
Why hire a doula?
A lot of pressure is placed on our chosen (or default) birth partners. Many of them are undeniably amazing in their roles, but a doula can hold the whole family and assist the partner to better support the mother. Bringing the energy of a supportive team to a birth goes a long way to ensuring the mother gets exactly what she needs.
Training & philosophy
I completed my doula training with Kicki Hansard at Birth Bliss Academy and knew immediately this was where I was supposed to be. I believe there is no one way to have a positive birth; it will look different for everyone. But what is fundamental to having a positive birth experience is that a woman feels empowered, respected, heard and most importantly – safe. And this is where a doula can help. I am committed to supporting my clients make informed choices and I can help you navigate these and process information during your pregnancy. I can guide you to the latest, most reliable research to help inform your decisions. I can find out what your specific needs and wishes are and will be there throughout to help you achieve them. I will listen to you and I will support your choices and I hope to help you feel excited and positive about your birth.
I don’t believe we are designed to raise babies alone and it really does ‘take a village’. I love supporting new mothers and understand how overwhelming it can feel in those early days. As a postnatal doula I can provide you with some daily support to help you while you find your feet as new parents. I offer a range of services which can be modified to suit your own particular needs. From practical assistance such as helping you with feeding issues, signposting relevant services in your area, or helping you to safely use a sling or baby carrier, to simple physical assistance such as making you food, doing a load of laundry, walking your dog or holding your baby while you have a shower/bath/nap. I will be there to listen to you, help you understand your new baby and reassure you about any concerns you might have.
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A huge thank you for your support yesterday, it really meant so much to Amie and I to have you at the birth. Not only that but thank you for all the support you have given us over the pregnancy itself. The stability of being able to call or message you and have you on our team has been immense and has been absolutely key in us getting the birth we wanted, which was fantastic beyond words. I think its extremely important that fathers are on board with any decisions. Having you there was so helpful to both Amie and myself, and if anything it made me feel more supported as a birth partner because I knew you had our wishes in mind and that had I needed to ‘fight’ with the midwives or anything that you would be on our side. It was an incredible experience for us and I’m so happy you were there. (Max C, January 2020)
“Laura was our doula at the birth of my son in March 2019. It was the most wonderful home birth and everything I’d hoped. Laura kept me feeling incredibly relaxed throughout; I just remember her being present in a comforting non-intrusive way. Laura was an incredible support in the lead up to the birth too, and I know that even if things hadn’t “gone to plan” she would have made sure my birth was a positive experience, and that my child entered this world as calmly and beautifully as possible. She is passionate about helping people achieve the type of birth they hope for, and is flexible in the way she can support you. I would highly recommend her. Laura was a frequent source of emotional support prior to labour. I often discussed my birth choices with her and shared anxieties and concerns I had over the labour. She pointed me towards places I could find relevant information and reminded me of my birthrights. Laura is open and flexible as to how she will support each individual or couple, and takes time to listen and reflect upon what she has heard; how she can help; or what might be useful. She is empathetic towards previous birthing experiences, or other experiences/anxieties that are shared with her. I found her extremely patient, nurturing and calming before, during and after my labour. I genuinely don’t feel the birth could have gone better both physically, emotionally and practically and Laura was crucial in enabling this – it simply wouldn’t have worked without her.” (Rebecca B) ‘Throughout both my pregnancies, Laura was a constant source of information and comfort, particularly when I had my first child and things were new and scary. Laura has the most kind and generous heart and cares deeply for those around her. She is a champion of women and mothers and raises them on high so that they can give and be their best. I couldn’t have gone through my pregnancies without Laura’s help. She gave me strength, knowledge and empowered me to believe that I could have the birth I wanted. Without her, I have no doubt in my mind that both my labours would have been terrifying ordeals where I felt I had no control. To this day, I know that I will always have Laura’s support and for that, I am extremely thankful.’ (Jaye C) ‘I met Laura during a very hard time of poor health and breastfeeding difficulties. Laura has a huge heart and was very kind, understanding and empathetic. She was able to reassure me as well as offer me some clear, positive breastfeeding advice which was a huge help and for which I’m eternally grateful.’ (Hayley W) ‘Laura is an amazing person and friend. She has given me so much advice, love and support which has given me the strength to carry on breastfeeding at times. I love breastfeeding and my journey is because of her. She is always there to listen and offer non-judgemental advice and information.’ (Caroline O) ‘The early years of motherhood are truly amazing, and amazingly tough. Through being there for me and my son, Laura was such a wonderful support. She is such a caring, genuine person and made me feel instantly comfortable, was extremely knowledgeable and always positive. Her support was invaluable, particularly around areas which helped me to build such a strong bond with my baby such as skin to skin, co-sleeping, breastfeeding and baby-wearing. I would have absolutely no hesitation in recommending Laura.’ (Amanda V) ‘When my son was born two months premature I felt so desperate and alone spending weeks in the hospital. Laura and her support network of local mothers held my hand and with their support and encouragement I eventually managed to breastfeed my baby boy confidently and with the enjoyment I should have felt from the day he was born. Without Laura and her unconditional support and genuine love, compassion and first hand experience of mums and their new babies and breastfeeding struggles, I would never have taken my baby home as soon as I did. I was a second time mother and although the support from the NHS was medically amazing they just didn’t handle me with the care that I needed. If Laura had been by my side from the moment I went into labour I wouldn’t have felt anything other than love and support and me and my baby would have been home where we belonged so much sooner. Laura has a very special gift and if there was ever a reason to have another baby it would be to have her by my side.” (Catherine R)
Please get in touch to discuss packages and availability.