DATE: September 9, 2020
TITLE: Labor Doulas, Covid, & a Vaginal Breech Birth
Denise is a mother, wife, daughter, sister , teacher, classically trained professional dancer and birth doula. Denise’s love for movement began with dance at the age of 6 and over the years she has shared and performed across Los Angeles, New York City, Santa Barbara and Avignon, France. Realizing her passion for not only dance but Yoga as well, she went on to become trained as a Yoga Instructor for kids and adults.
- Training doesn’t make you a doula. You have a different presence whether you are trained or not to support others in your journey.
- Doula trainings vary, and other trainings in other areas can make you a better doula (as is true for any area)
- What it looks like to be a doula in the time of Covid (educating on what different hospitals are doing, etc.)
- A labor doula is someone who supports you during your labor. They aren’t necessarily also birth educators. You might have to get your birthing education separately.
- Why it’s still a good idea to still have a labor doula in times of Covid and ways that they can support.
- Doulas help you advocate for yourself and find your voice when you may not feel comfortable with what your doctor or midwife is advising you. They help you ask for explanations you might not otherwise feel comfortable asking for.
- Hospital births don’t always help the birthing person get centered to give birth.
- The biggest role of a doula is to support.
- Why having a doula is so important for both the birthing person and the partner so the partner can be free to have their own emotional experience of watching their child come into the world rather than be a support person to the actual birth.
- Why we recommend a postpartum doula, especially for 1st time mamas. And why you really do need both a labor and postpartum doula.
- The nurses are already overworked and cannot also play the role of emotional support that your doula might play. Some of them can, but not all do or can.
- We talk about Denise’s experience with breech birth, and doing a vaginal delivery with her son, Lennon, who was in a Frank Breech position.
- There are 3 breech positions: Frank Breech, which is a V position, Complete Breech, which is a crossed legged pose, Footling or Incomplete Breech which is one foot down.
- Doctors stopped being trained on how to do vaginal breech births in 2000 after a single study showed that it was safer to deliver breech surgically. According to Denise (and other practitioners), the study was flawed.
- It’s all about informed consent – women should be given the information and be able to make their own decision based on their desires and risk tolerance. If they want a surgical birth for a breech baby, they should be able to choose that after being presented with all the information. If they want to try vaginal, they should be able to be able to choose that too, in Denise’s opinion.
- If a woman does want to try a vaginal breech birth – at least in California – there are only a handful of doctors who are trained to do them. So they have to pay out of pocket to do it, and it may not feel comfortable if they already had a team in place.
- Denise had a vaginal delivery and is willing to share the video with mamas who are breech and interested in seeing it.
About Denise Woods
Denise is a mother, wife, daughter, sister , teacher, classically trained professional dancer and birth doula. Denise’s love for movement began with dance at the age of 6 and over the years she has shared and performed across Los Angeles, New York City, Santa Barbara and Avignon, France. Realizing her passion for not only dance but Yoga as well, she went on to become trained as a Yoga Instructor for kids and adults. She is a graduate of the Rainbow Kid’s Yoga training, White Lotus Foundation, the Loyola Marymount University Yoga Therapy Program and obtained her Yoga Therapy certification through International Association of Yoga Therapists. She currently offers private Yoga Therapy sessions, in addition to teaching kids yoga and dance in various schools throughout Los Angeles. She has completed her fourth Yoga Retreat, leading week to weekend long trips with daily Yoga in beautiful locations. Denise is continually inspired by the way Yoga can positively transform a life at any age by setting constructive thoughts and habits.
In 2013, after witnessing the birth of her best friend’s first child, Denise became increasingly aware of the need for support through labor and felt compelled to empower birthing people through the role of birth doula. She incorporates her knowledge of movement and breath as she supports the family pre birth and through the birth experience. Denise finds the sparkle in each day when sharing the sacred practice of moving from within. She is deeply grateful for her family, friends, teachers and students for all of the guidance and support along the way.
Resources in this episode
- Prenatal, Postpartum, Pediatric Chiropractor Dr. Eliot Berlin
- Award Winning Childbirth Educator: Britta Bushnell, PhD
- Book by Britta Bushnell: Transformed by Birth
- Birthing From Within
- Midwife Christian Toscano
- Book: Angel in the waters
- Documentary Heads Up by Dr. Eliot Berlin
- Spinning Babies
- Dafna Laurie of Encompass Wellness in Pasadena
- Dr. Emiliano R Chavira, MD – Obstetrics & Gynecology – Maternal & Fetal Medicine/High Risk in Lynwood, CA