Hi! I’m Jessica,
…a doula that serves in the DMV, that is, the DC, MD, and VA area. But don’t get it twisted, I’m a true blue born and partially raised Athens Georgia Peach.
Five words I’d use to describe myself are: generous, compassionate, nurturing, loving, and genuine. I can also be super protective of those I care about or others that are being hurt in my presence.
You can typically find me doing one of the following if I’m not doing my birthwork: gardening, cooking and/or eating, sleeping, spending time with loved ones, crafting with my herbs/oils/butters, or relaxing next to a warm fire and/or water. I LOVE water, fountains, ponds, oceans, I love them all.
I have 2 amazingly awesome talented and smart kids. A 15 year old and an 11 year old who both inspire me to be my best self. Having children altered the way I thought about birth, as both were born via cesarean section. During my pregnancy with my 15 year old, I was stressed, scared, and nervous about being a mom so I took all of the classes available to me, and planned for his birth to the best of my ability. When I went into labor at Babies R’ Us, the day before he was born, I didn’t feel worry and it didn’t “hurt” as much as I thought it would. I felt confident, but I wasn’t prepared for what happened next. Later that evening, when my contractions were closer, I called my doctor, who told me to come to the hospital. I arrived at the hospital at 5cm. After a short time, several nurses had come in and “suggested” that I should get an epidural, which was not in my birth plan. A couple of hours later, I finally acquiesced and received the epidural. Next came the suggestion that they break my waters, and then came the “need” pitocin. After all of the interventions my baby went into distress. At 9cms I didn’t even get a chance to try to push before the staff rushed in and told me I was being prepped for an emergency C-Section. I was so hurt, so scared, I felt that my wishes went unheard and now my baby was suffering. Four years later with my second pregnancy, when I asked about doing a VBAC, my doctor, who I loved and trusted, whom I talked to about my life and goals to be a midwife, shut me down. She looked me square in the eyes and said “Oh No, we’re not doing that. Once you’ve had a c-section, you always have a c-section”. I was so hurt, because what I thought was going to be my chance at a better birth experience left me feeling empty again.
Years later as a trained doula, I now know that during my first birth I went to the hospital too early. I now know that I had options; I did not HAVE to get the epidural and other interventions that followed. I know that I could have found another provider for my second birth that would’ve supported my desire to attempt a VBAC. As a Doula, I have the training and knowledge to not just help women and their families as I have in the past, by grocery shopping, attending and/or transporting to appointments, cooking, cleaning, and giving foot and back rubs. Now I’m able to support them, to encourage them, to educate them, and to advocate for them. But more importantly, I’m able to help my clients make informed decisions, and to encourage them to honor and trust their intuition so that they feel comfortable advocating for themselves.