During the birth of my own children (2013 and 2016) I learned how connection and trust are of crucial importance for the birthing process. That's why I decided to become a doula myself. As a doula I want you to feel safe, to trust yourself and your body. What that looks like depends totally on your needs and your wishes. Some mothers need lots of physical touch during labour, like massage or acupressure; while others do not want to be touched at all and only want verbal reassurance or complete silence. My job is to tune in to your needs in the right moment.
I also host the monthly Positive Birth Movement meetings in Amsterdam with the aim to challenge the epidemic of negativity and fear that surrounds modern birth, and help change birth for the better.
I offer doula services and pregnancy massage. I am a certified Holistic Massage Practitioner and also studying to become a Massage and Movement Therapist. Holistic massage works on all levels, including physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. A real treat for body and mind. Read more about my qualifications.
I speak German, English and Dutch and a bit of Spanish.
QUALIFICATIONS AND TRAINING
CERTIFIED BIRTH DOULA
BiA Doula Training is a comprehensive training to become a professional birth doula: a support for the pregnant mother (and partner) during pregnancy, birth and immediate postpartum. The training is composed of different elements: in-person training, self-study and several internships in hospitals and at midwife practices.
As a doula I followed additional training to be able to offer (partial) massages to my clients. These include the lower legs & feet, the lower back, the belly, polarity, face and neck. I can also offer a full body relaxation massage. I have learned about contra-indications, when not to massage and which pressure points not to touch.
AROMATHERAPY FOR PREGNANCY AND BIRTH
In this training I have learned which carrier and essential oils to use for pregnancy massage and massage during childbirth, and which essential oils to use in a diffuser during pregnancy and birth. I have learned about their properties, how they work, different ways in which to apply them and about safe usage and dosage.
CERTIFIED HOLISTIC MASSAGE PRACTITIONER
Holistic massage is a form of massage that takes into account a client’s emotional and spiritual wellbeing. The word 'holistic' comes from the greek word 'holos', which means 'whole', meaning the treatment focuses on the whole body. The massage can lead to better blood circulation, less physical tension and deeper breathing.
Spinning Babies promotes better fetal positioning during pregnancy and labor through the use of specific techniques that help soften and balance pelvic ligaments and muscles that support the pregnant uterus and pelvic floor. In this workshop I learned how to relate pelvic alignment and mobility to an easier and shorter birth.
LANDSCAPE OF LOSS
During this training I learned about supporting mothers and families in case of pregnancy loss or stillbirth. Certified bereavement doula Laurina Cerredo facilitated this course to support new parents in an empathetic and sensitive way when they experience the loss or serious illness of their baby.
MY DOULA JOURNEY
I was raised with the belief that giving birth is scary and dangerous. I was sure that if I ever get pregnant, I want a c-section, under general anesthesia. Fast forward a decade and I am pregnant with my first child, following a HypnoBirthing class, planning for an unmedicated birth in the birthing center. Friends and family back in Germany attributed this ‘crazy idea’ to the fact that I have lived in The Netherlands for too long. But as I was preparing for my own birth I did a lot of research and thoroughly questioned all my fears around birth. Equipped with all this fact-based knowledge I was able to approach birth based on trust and not fear. Trust in the physiology of birth.
As it often happens, my birth didn’t go as planned*. I ended up in a hospital with midwives around me that I never met before. There was a lot of commanding and bossing me around. I didn’t feel heard or seen. My husband was there to support me, but it was also his first birth experience after all, and he was also caught by surprise.
So when I was pregnant the second time around, I carefully selected my birth team. I had a fantastic midwife, a wonderful doula and a great kraamzorg (maternity nurse) who attended my home birth. Being surrounded by people who believe in me gave me the confidence to trust in myself. I wasn’t just a number in a hospital; I was in charge and I was in control of my body and my baby.
This second birth was such an empowering experience that I decided I want to support other women during pregnancy and labor, so that they can also have a positive and powerful birth experience.
I also host the monthly Positive Birth Movement meetings in Amsterdam.
* No, you cannot plan your birth but by writing a birth plan you can evaluate your options and make informed decisions. I can help you with that.