Asheville Doula: What is true Continuity of care?

You may or may not have heard a lot about continuity of care in the birth world or in your own pregnancy. NCBI explains: “Traditionally, continuity of care is idealized in the patient's experience of a 'continuous caring relationship' with an identified health care professional. ... Continuity in the experience of care relates conceptually to patients' satisfaction with both the interpersonal aspects of care and the coordination of that care.”

In pregnancy this typically looks like meeting all of the doctors or midwives in that particular medical practice and then seeing one of them after birth for a follow-up visit or two. But is that true continuity of care? Is that truly continuous?

While one can appreciate the effort towards patient connection I can’t help but feel completely dissatisfied by this model.

As doulas we are in a unique position to fill in gaps of standard, one-size-fits-all healthcare. Doulas focus primarily on the emotional health and needs of their clients. Our work allows us to do so because we are not medical staff, we aren’t employed by the hospital or medical establishment, we are employed directly by the birthing person. The birthing person is our “boss” and no other outside force or organization. This allows us the privilege of supporting each person’s individual emotional and educational needs during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum.

The average pregnant person will see their provider once a month or so until the third trimester. After the third trimester pregnant people will see their provider once a week until birth. During birth their OBGYN or midwife will pop in and out during active labor and catch baby. At that point patients typically see their provider at two weeks postpartum, then six weeks postpartum, and then…. Nothing. After six weeks postpartum, after nearly a year, care is gone.

After arguably the most monumental thing your body and spirit could do, after nearly a year of growth and changes, after clearly being in the most vulnerable state of your life, that relationship and care basically ends at a few weeks postpartum.

Is that a continuous care relationship? Truly, it doesn’t sound like much of a relationship at all.

We all understand the physical constraints of medical providers. But what about doulas? What about the person you hired for emotional and educational support? In many doula trainings birth workers are encouraged to taper out the relationship with the birthing person a few weeks postpartum as well.

I’m honestly not sure why but it seems as if everyone leaves in the postpartum time. Doctors, midwives, doulas. There’s a whole build up and flurry of activity and anticipation surrounding birth but then postpartum we are saying goodbye? And we are shocked at postpartum depression is rampant? Isn’t it clear what’s happening?

New mothers need, and deserve, just as much support and tending to in the postpartum as they did during pregnancy. If not MORE SO. With lack of sleep, breastfeeding or bottle feeding challenges, isolation, hormones dropping, body and emotional changes, parents need MORE support- not less. Certainly not a “tapering off” of care.

I believe the answer is a shift in peoples’ perception of postpartum and a true offering of real continuity of care. I believe we can be the generation that changes the narrative around postpartum needs. No more “bounce back” nonsense. No more pretending to have life together. No more mothers going back to work 2 weeks postpartum (like I did with my first baby.)

We need more postpartum doulas. We need more family members buying postpartum doula hours for new families instead of buying stuffed animals and fancy baby clothes. We need a better awareness of the raw realities of postpartum and how challenging it is.

We need more postpartum classes and education for new parents. Birth lasts hours… Postpartum and life with a new child is virtually never-ending… Yet almost every new parent is unprepared.

New mothers need people willing to listen to their birth stories, meals brought without question, dishes done, sunlight, showers, encouragement, and a whole hell of a lot more than just a six week follow-up visit to talk about birth control.

And I suppose I’m sort of radical in a way that I, as a doula and student midwife, do not taper off my care. I fully believe in true continuity of care. I still check in on clients who are years postpartum. I aim to develop true relationships. Real relationships don’t end. I feel this is what doulas should be doing. I think doula care should extend beyond birth. I am a friend and resource for life after being hired as a doula.

Doulas are in a unique position to provide that continuity of care and I believe that extends beyond the birth room.

Asheville Doula Trainings: Pt. 2

I’ve mentioned before my love for training and mentoring doulas to support birthing people. With much interest and success I’ve decided to expand my mentoring options in 2019!

If I’m being honest with you, traditional doula trainings leave a lot to be desired. I can’t tell you the disappointment i’ve encountered spending sometimes over $600 to attend a doula workshop or training and sitting for hours watching birth videos and practicing hip-squeezes. Mainstream doula organizations can severely miss the mark in explaining the intricacies of being fully present for a birthing human. The physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual toll on the birthing person, the partner, and the doula/support people is immense and rarely even mentioned.

Furthermore, I feel many mainstream doula organizations instill fear in the birth worker and not confidence. With a lot of unnecessary hoops to jump through for “certification” in which, no one “owns” the right to say you can competently support a birthing person or not. I believe it’s our birthright to hold that space for another person, if they so choose, and we feel able.

All of that being said, what I have seen to be most beneficial, is sisterly doula support. Support that has seen birth, been in the birth world, knows the ins-and-outs of the business of birth work, and can encourage and guide a newer doula on her unique path in this wonderful profession.

What I’m excited to provide is just this! I’ve broken my offerings up into pieces depending on your needs.

One-on-One Doula Sister Support


Prior to being a full-time birth professional, I worked in corporate leadership, marketing, and social media. As a doula I have worked with countless families, births, hospitals, and birthing centers. These skills have served me well in building my own thriving doula practice and assisting my husband in his clinic here in Asheville. With my combined skills we can make a plan to take your doula practice to the next level. .

This sistership spans over the course of 3 months (and can be renewed for longer depending on needs and my availability). I’ll take inventory of your unique skills and strengths and assess areas of growth. Together we will map out your personal business goals, go over the fundamentals of social media, website design, SEO, and marketing. We’ll also pinpoint your perfect client and how to attract them!

During this time I’m also on-call for you with text support to morally support you through any births, consults, prenatals, or postpartum shifts you attend. I’m available for mental and emotional and informational support. A doula for a doula!

These consults are done one a month over coffee and I’ll let you know what materials and information you need to bring along. This can also be done in person or virtually over FaceTime or Skype. Leaving this mentorship you will have a clear picture of where your practice is heading, your ideal client, attainable goals, actionable steps, general view of your own social media and website presence and how that can be improved upon. If you found me online, through one of the many classes I teach, or through a friend, and you admire my unique flare for my work- If you’re ready to jump in and make birth work your career— this consult is for you! The cost for this service is $350 for 3 months of individualize support.

1 Hour Doula Mentor

A Quick Consult for Anything!

Have questions about building your doula practice? A recent birth got you stumped? Curious about how to attract clients? Don’t know what training is best for you? Need some quick professional guidance?

This meeting is done by phone or FaceTime and is about any questions you have about your doula practice. I’ll send you an intake form to help organize your needs so we use our consult time as efficiently as possible and I’ll also follow-up with a write-up of our meeting with actionable steps you need to take forward.

The value of this offering is: $50 and can be put towards my doula sistership if you decide to pursue that afterwards.

I’m so excited about these offerings and can’t wait to better serve the birthing community. If any of these interest you please reach out.


phone/text: 828.778.1889

I look forward to connecting!


Asheville Doula: Nausea Tips

Here’s some tips from your friendly neighborhood doula on making it through first trimester nausea 🕷 .
🍦 Eating HELPS. Small snacks/meals every two hours will keep the morning sickness at bay. It feels counterintuitive but not eating makes it worse. .
🍏 find a flavor you can tolerate and stick to it. Most pregnant people prefer sour, sweet, or salty. .
🍟 don’t worry about diet bullshit or being “healthy”. Listen to your body. You have months left to worry about getting the right nutrition in. If all you can tolerate is fries, GO FOR IT. Actually, many women prefer fries, fats, carbs, chips etc in the first trimester because resistant starches are what our bodies crave to maximize our energy and do little work digesting. Our bodies are freaking magic. Get that burger, girl. 🍔 .
🍇 Small snack ideas: limes, 🍋, grapes, crackers, 🍎, berries 🍓, lolly pops 🍭 dried cranberries .
🍫 keep crackers by your bed so you can have one in the middle of the night and first thing waking up. Low adrenals at night or early morning with make morning sickness worse. .
💆🏻 ACUPRESSURE... did you know there are several very easy acu points for morning sickness? They’re magic. You can find out more or take the entire online course from @acupressureforbirth OR hire a doula who has knowledge of this! .
What’s your best tips for first trimester nausea?

Asheville Doula: Konmari

Raise your hand if Marie Kondo has come to your home this weekend 🙋🏻‍♀️ Raise your hand if you and your husband are holding things and asking, “Does this bring us joy?” 🙋🏻‍♀️ Raise your hand if your dresser drawers are starting to look like little bento boxes of origami shirts and leggings 🙋🏻‍♀️ Raise your hand if you’re bracing yourself to be laughed at when you tell your children to “say thank you” to items before they throw them out 😂🙋🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️ We’ll see how this experience pans out. But I do know that the rescue mission is about to get lots of “thanked” bags of clothes that no longer.

I’m finding a lot of things refreshing about the Konmari method. I really like the emotion she brings to tidying up. Being very intentional about surrounding yourself with only the things that bring you joy and passing on the rest with gratitude. I have definitely found that I hold onto things that I don’t need out of insecurity. What if I need these old maternity jeans?? Haha! It’s time for those things to go.

I also like how it’s a process. Most self-help or DIY models make it seem like everything should be instant. But it’s a process of weeding out the bad and highlighting the good.

So far my dresser, my kids’, and husband’s dressers are all stocked with little rolled shirts and pants. We’ve gone through our closet and gotten rid of all the random things. It’s crazy how much emotion I have assigned to seemingly inconsequential items. I picked up a couple of, albeit pretty, dresses that I deeply associated with a job that I worked and hated. I realized in that moment that holding onto them did NOT bring me joy. I thanked them for how they helped me in the past and said goodbye. THAT felt pretty freeing. Funny, right?

Energetically it feels great to be getting rid of the old and making space for all of the new and exciting things we have coming this year.

Asheville Doula: Cold Floors

A wise Japanese okasaan (grandmother) once told me to never let my feet touch cold floor. I believe we have so much to learn from our elders and the wise women among us- and this truth is simple but something I’ve carried and thought over. .
👞 for one, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda, teaches that warmth is life and cold is death. We always want to be adding warmth and life to our lives. Keeping exposed and weak parts of our bodies warm, especially in the winter months, is vital. Feet, hands, throat, head, and ears. This even goes for your own home. Put only warm foods and liquids into your body too. Bye iced coffee 😫 hello tea 🍵
👞 my second takeaway is beyond the science. Our feet are primal body parts that we rarely think of. They get us from here to there, they carry us, transport our bodies. But true self care isn’t lavish outings and fancy spa days. True self care is loving ourselves from the ground up. It’s as simple as not letting our feet touch cold ground. It’s warm slippers, it’s surrounding ourselves with kind people, it’s monitoring our own “warmth” *life* *qi* *energy* and knowing when it needs something. Like socks, or a hug, or rest, or French fries 🍟. .
👠 so my reminder to you all today. Don’t let your feet touch cold ground. Care for yourself from the ground up. You are more than worthy of that. .

Asheville Doula Acupressure for Birth: E-Course and Birth Service

my practice of acupressure for birth is included in all doula services

As a doula I’m an oxytocin junkie. The “love hormone” promotes relaxation and feelings of calm. These hormones help birth progress quicker and with less pain. Any avenue that can increase oxytocin during birth the easier the birth will be. Acupressure plays into oxytocin response in a profound way.

in this photo i’m using two acupressure points in tandem while mother labors through a contraction. these points are for fear and nausea.

in this photo i’m using two acupressure points in tandem while mother labors through a contraction. these points are for fear and nausea.

Acupressure is an age-old practice stemming from traditional China. Derived from acupuncture, which uses needles, acupressure uses finger pressure at certain locations to relieve you of stress and pain.

The therapy works by stimulating different points on the body and maintaining the energy flow throughout the body, removing any blockages in the way.

It is thought to stimulate labor and also help ease pain and discomfort associated with different stages of labor by stimulating the release of endorphin, the natural painkillers of the body

I have been practicing acupressure in the Asheville area for over three years now. I have trained extensively with Asheville’s longest practicing acupuncturist and am in the process of developing a training course to teach other birth workers how to incorporate this invaluable healing modality into their work.

Utilizing relaxation acupressure techniques using traditional wooden acupressure tools while mother labors.

As a doula, my hands and my heart are my most valuable tools I bring to a birth. Equipping my hands with knowledge of acupressure has proven to be my most utilized therapy to aid birthing people. Few skills sets are as versatile as acupressure. I’ve found it to be beneficial during inductions, cesarean births, unmedicated labors, medicated births, and even postpartum.  With just some light pressure on certain points of the body I’m able to ease nausea, calm anxiety, and even relieve pressure off the womb.

Call or email me today to schedule your free consultation and find out how this unique therapy can enhance your birth experience! (828) 778-1889 &

Additionally, alongside my husband who is an acupuncturist, we have developed an online course, Acupressure for Birth, to train birth workers and supportive partners in acupressure therapy. If you’re interested in taking our e-course please follow the link here for more info. If you’re interested in us teaching a workshop for your practice- please email Stay on the lookout for more courses and trainings!

Asheville Doula Meets Ina May Gaskin

This past week one of my lifelong dreams came true… I had the privilege of meeting Ina May Gaskin! Ina May wrote, “Spiritual Midwifery” the book that really began my journey in birth work and my passion for women’s spiritual and emotional health. Ina May started a worldwide movement in the 60s of midwifery care and trust in a woman’s body. Her work brought forth amazing stats with less than 1% cesarean section rates in thousands upon thousands of births.

In her workshop this past weekend, Ina May shared techniques she learned from indigenous tribes in Guatemala and Brazil… I saw a beautiful should dystocia delivery as well as several breech births. All of these in film from the 70s-80s and would be considered automatic surgery today.

Apart from the techniques I loved hearing Ina May’s personal stories of her own birth experience, and the first 10 or so births she attended. Did you know she had never even witnessed a birth before age 30? The first birth she attended was with zero training, in a bus in a parking lot. But it changed her profoundly. In a time where women’s husbands weren’t allowed in the room with them when they birthed in a hospital, and they were put on horrifying drugs that made them basically forget the entire experience, Ina May was a revolutionary woman in fighting for women to have ownership over their own bodies and birthing experiences.

At the end of the workshop I was able to meet Ina May and have her sign my old, battered, kid-colored-in copy of Spiritual Midwifery and dang if that wasn’t a highlight of my career. Just being next to such a matriarch was an honor.

It was also great getting to meet doulas, nurses, doctors, midwives, and birth workers of all kinds. It was all-round such a treat and I’ll be sharing and unpacking my notes and what I learned in the coming weeks. For now, here’s some photos!



Ina May Gaskin and me… Upstate Birth Expo 2018

Ina May Gaskin and me… Upstate Birth Expo 2018