I am forever grateful that Jackie entered my life. Not only is she an amazing doula but also a beautiful person, with a massive heart and a nature that goes beyond many I have met. I am thankful to be able to call her my doula (but more than that I am lucky to know her as my friend.)
I am going to start near the end. Jackie feeding me cacao/coconut date balls, iced coconut water and brushing my hair out of my face “you did amazingly Tahnee, you guys were great. I knew you could do it”… It’s about 2.50pm on the 10th December 2018 and I’ve just given birth to my baby girl 30mins before. I did it, sure and strong, I did it. I am tired now but I am so proud of my new family. My partner Jaime is holding our little dark haired angel and Jackie is guiding me to the bathroom to help me wash off the blood, sweat and tears…literally. I am in a complete euphoric state. She tells me that she knew I would power through the way I did, she assures me I am strong, and she’s right. I’ve never felt more empowered, strong, emotional, and WOMAN.
50 minutes before she was holding me by my arms as my legs gave way to each contraction, every wave that flowed over me, she held me strong, calm, and gently as I bowed to the beautiful and indescribable journey my body was going through in order to bring new life into this world.
Nothing can prepare you for the motions you go through when in labour, the beautiful pain you feel, knowing that you will get to meet your little person at the end of it all. Nothing compares to it, but knowing I had support, knowledge and having full belief in myself was not something that was just there the minute I became pregnant. I have wanted to be a mother since the age of 5. At 26,I was finally pregnant and by 27 I had my baby girl. The fear that builds as you get older with the idea of giving birth is similar to that of riding a horse, or skydiving, or anything really that as you get older you think more about the pain and worry if you hurt yourself, rather than the adrenaline and the result at the end of it if you don’t fall off.
So although I knew I as woman was more than capable, I was tilting more towards the side of being fearful, unsure, not confident or powerful, not really knowing what I wanted or where I stood in terms of a birth plan, or how or what I would like my partner to be doing during the process, how to involve him. I was overwhelmed as to where to start with information about pain relief, things to expect, how to cope with labour when I was in it.
Jackie was my shining star throughout. Any questions I had, any worries, queries, anything whatsoever; Jackie had all the information.
She gave me the knowledge I needed, and the confidence to make informed decisions during my pregnancy and labour.If I was ever uncertain after an appointment with my GP or at the hospital; Jackie was a phone call away and always gave me ALL the information – not just what the medical system tell you. I was scheduled in for an induction as I went 14 days over my due date (which I had to fight for). I felt empowered going in to the process, calm, ready, any fear I had was pushed aside and replaced with excitement and of course a small amount of nervousness. There I was Monday morning, my waters had been broken, the oxytocin drip was doing its thing and I began going into labour. My partner there, helping me relax (using techniques Jackie had shown him), I remembered everything Jackie had told me, I told myself “I can do this” and I was doing it. Jackie arrived at the perfect time after a call from my partner to tell her how everything was going. I was in the throes of labour and completely and utterly in a trance when she arrived, but I knew she was there. She relieved my partner of his duties massaging and cooling me off with a wet flannel which allowed him to help birth our bub. Jackie was straight onto it, releasing my tension in my neck and upper back, the perfect calm scent of essential oils that floats around her, she held me firmly through each surge which took the weight off my legs (as I had been in this position for 2 hours already and was feeling the burn).
The calmness that Jackie brings with her, her strength, its as though she shares it with you simply by being in the room.
My labour was 3 hours and birth itself was 33 minutes, I had no pain relief, I had no tearing in my perineum. I was calm, I felt safe and assured, I knew what I wanted for my first birth and the type of environment I wanted my baby to enter the world in. I am so grateful it went almost exactly to how I wanted it, and I believe that a huge part of that is due to Jackie and her wonderful ways.
If it hadn’t have been for her, I wouldn’t have had the confidence to speak up when the doctors told me I needed to be induced as soon as possible because I had passed my “due date”. My body wasn’t ready and my baby sure wasn’t ready. If I didn’t know any better I would have trusted their advice and most likely would have had an emergency C-section, all plans out the window.
Jackie- YOU are truly a gift from another world and I couldn’t have asked for someone better to have been there with me and Jaime and little Maya. We are eternally grateful to you
LOTS OF LOVE xx