Hsiu Mei W., Posted 8/21/2014
Madeline is a wonderful doula. She was there every step of the way for us. We had originally planned to have a home birth however late in the pregnancy we had discovered we had complete placenta previa which meant we had no option but to change plans and have a casearean birth. This was quite a shock to us and Madeline was very supportive throughout the whole process, helping us prepare both physically and mentally in knowing what to expect. As we were very lucky to find an OB practice that practiced family-centric cesareans, had did debate whether to have a doula at the hospital. I am so glad we did. Madeline was very knowledgable and had fantastic ideas to help us make the best of the situation and “own” the experience. She was brilliant at talking to the nurses and advocating for us in the prep room, keeping us calm during an anxious time – she even came with aromatherapy oils and gave me a foot massage whilst we were waiting. These small things make the world of difference. Madeline was in the operating theatre with us at the birth of our son. She was in charge of the camera, so we have amazing photos of the birth, for which I am so grateful as there were so many things happening all at once that it is nice to have captured the moment. She never left my side, which allowed my husband to be with our son at the warming table and know that I was being looked after for those precious few minutes. For me it was comforting knowing I had someone I could trust with me and the baby at every moment. Madeline would get ice-chips, so my husband could stay with me and our son. She reminded my husband that he should eat and grabbed lunch for him. All these little things matter and contributed to the best c-birth I could hope for. Madeline also provided wonderfully supportive advice on breast feeding. My son fed in the OR and has been going strong ever since, thanks to her support early on. I can’t say enough about Madeline and what an angel she is.
Heather P., Posted 10/29/2013
Madeline is an amazing birth partner. My husband and I agree: we can’t imagine our birth experience without her! She was so supportive of our birth plan and when the plan had to change (as it often does!), Madeline drew on her experience to guide us through our options in a calm and confident manner. We are so grateful to have had her with us on this journey.
Because I had to be induced nearly 3 weeks before my due date, many of the elements we hoped to have in place for the birth of our daughter went by the wayside, but I’m so happy we had Madeline there for the duration. She was able to explain what the process would be like and tell us what we needed to know in order to make informed decisions. She was so caring and helpful that we both emerged with nothing but positive feelings about a very difficult experience. Madeline knows how to encourage, support and imbue others with the strength and courage that they may not be feeling. She helps to remind you how powerful women in childbirth are. We are so grateful to her for her part in our birth story.
I recommend her highly and without reservation.
Talia B., Posted 10/28/2013
I really can’t say enough about how wonderful Madeline was. I had a very long (50+ hours) labor, which ended in an emergency c-section due to fetal distress and despite that I look back on the whole labor and delivery and feel it was a very positive experience, and I am sure I would not be able to say that if it were not for Madeline. She has a wonderful calm manner, a great deal of practical information to share, and an incredible generosity with her time and her self. She was able to help me decide how I wanted to proceed during the labor by guiding me to see the big picture and allowing me to talk through the options. When I wanted to be pushed to try move the labor along quicker, she was able to raise my spirits and my energy. On the other hand when I needed to rest and recover she could be a calm and quiet influence. She supported my desire to for a natural birth, helping me cope with the contractions without an epidural for many hours, until I decided I was too tired to continue, and by talking through my decision with her I felt confident about choosing an epidural when I was ready.
After the c-section Madeline stayed well beyond the call of duty to help me in recovery and with breastfeeding. She got us off to a great start and followed up again when we were home to help iron out any problems.
I really feel confident that she is a wonderful partner to have for any birth and that you will be so glad to have her support.
Anna C., Posted 11/18/2013
Madeline is wonderful. We couldn’t have had the experience that we did without her… Highly, highly recommended.
My boyfriend and I weren’t sure we needed a doula for our birth. We were planning on delivering at the Brooklyn Birthing Center and felt confident that the midwives and birthing assistants would be enough to help us through. The midwives encouraged us to find a doula, and we are definitely glad we did. We found Madeline and didn’t look any further. Her calm and collected energy felt comfortable to us both, so we went with it.
My water broke (but no contractions began) on my due date in the early morning and Madeline was in contact with me throughout the day. I drank castor oil to get it going at night, and it worked! Contractions began around 11pm and Madeline came to our home at 1am. She kept me together and in the zone through the contractions, helped boyfriend help me, and offered many different comfort measures as we labored into the early morning.
At 5:30am we went to the birthing center and were already 6cm, yay! Madeline and boyfriend never left my side throughout the night and into the morning, both keeping me hydrated and encouraged. After only a few more hours of laboring, then 2 hours of pushing, our baby girl arrived at 11am!
Madeline stayed with us until we were able to go home that evening. She stayed and helped while we breastfed, slept, ate, did paperwork and were released to go home and enjoy our little girl. She came to visit us a few days later bearing warmth, smiles, support and the cutest onesize she had made. Madeline went way above and beyond what we expected from her. We were just looking for a little labor help, but what we actually got from her was the encouragement to make our birth experience beautiful and more than we thought it could be. We are forever grateful!
Carolin H., Posted 11/13/2013
Madeline was our doula for the birth of our first daughter in July 2013.
16 weeks into parenthood and I still think back to that magical moment right after the birth, when the doctor placed this little baby right on my chest, and Madeline was seemingly everywhere – taking pictures for us, getting me ice chips, helping baby latch on – all such valuable tasks, while giving my husband and I time to just take everything in.
We had talked about having a doula for a while, since neither of us have family living close by, but I had my doubts. It was my husband who convinced me that having that extra person might be beneficial. I’m so glad he did. And so happy that person turned out to be Madeline. We didn’t even interview a second doula, feeling very comfortable with her right from the beginning. For our prenatal meetings, she came to our home and talked with us about different scenarios, showed us various massage techniques and comfort measures, and overall made us feel less anxious.
Our plan was to have a birth with as little intervention as possible, and I believe that Madeline played a key role in helping us achieve that. We had a fairly quick (but very intense) birth without much prelabor, so we met Madeline in triage just as my water broke. Things got so intense right away that all my intentions of avoiding an epidural went out the door. Madeline was able to get us to focus by using pressure points and even through contractions that seemed to come without break in between, she was so encouraging to my husband and I. She was that second person to hold my leg while I pushed and to this day I can still hear her count to 10 (and sometimes to 14!) when my eyes are closed.
Madeline is very caring, knowledgeable, highly professional, and was the perfect fourth member of our birth team. I would recommend her without having to think twice and I hope to be able to hire her again one day