Desirae Whittle, CD(DONA)
I am a mommy and step-mother, a wife, a birth doula, and an infertility warrior.
When my husband and I decided to add to our family, I began to worry about the support I would receive during my pregnancy and labor. With limited family nearby who could offer that support, I asked people what they did? I said there must be someone who can help me. That’s how I learned about doulas. I became fascinated with the idea of not only having a doula, but becoming one myself.
My plans were put on hold as conceiving our daughter was harder than we hoped. I was worried it would be hard for me to be in the room supporting women in labor when that is what I wanted more than anything. I realized as women from my infertility support group became pregnant, pregnancy after infertility is often challenging emotionally, and these warriors would also really benefit from a support person; a doula.
My support group encouraged me to pursue my dream of becoming a doula, and I’m glad I listened. I obtained my certification through DONA International, and attended workshops such as childbirth education, multiple breastfeeding classes, Spinning Babies, and Hypnobirthing. My first client was an infertility warrior, and after helping her welcome her miracle into the world I knew being a doula was the only thing I wanted to do. It was what I was meant to do.
Fortunately for us, through the help of IVF, we became pregnant and welcomed our baby in 2017. I quickly learned a few things I bring with me to my practice daily. The first is that having a strong support team- ideally a loving partner and a trained and experienced professional is invaluable. The second is even the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry. I had every intention of having an unmedicated, vaginal birth. I ended up being induced at 37 weeks, and 6 days later, after a few unforeseen complications, had the most beautiful belly birth (cesarean).
The amazing thing: I walked away having a beautiful and empowering birth experience. That is my goal for each and every one of my clients.
Regardless of your ideal birth desires: home, birth center, hospital; unmedicated, epidural, or a combination of pain management interventions; cesarean or VBAC; if this is your first child or your fourth; if you conceived your baby the first time you tried, or if this child has been years in the making, it is my mission that you always feel supported, informed, encouraged and empowered. The birth of your child is a miraculous event and I want you to reflect on that day with joy, peace, and happiness.