Leona Starnes Doula
Minneapolis, MN Service range 10 miles
$800 to $1000
$800 to $1000
7 years and 23 births attended
Type of practice: Solo practice
Clients per month: 0 to 4
Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
I support birth givers birthing in hospitals whether you are planning a medicated or unmedicated birth, vaginal or scheduled cesarean.
Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers
Attends home births? Any Home Birth
I attend home births attended by a licensed midwife.
My fee includes 2 prenatal visits, 24/7 on call availability from 38 weeks until your baby is born, continuous labor support, 1-2 hours immediately following the birth to help initial breastfeeding, one postnatal visit, and access to support and resources throughout pregnancy and the early postpartum period. Our initial consultation visit, to determine if we are a good fit, is free. Please feel free to contact me regarding my fee. I am able to work with clients to create payment packages, or trade agreements. I can accept cash, check, card or HSA/FSA.
Minneapolis, MN Service range 10 miles
When my husband and I started planning for labor and delivery, we weren't sure we needed a doula, but we decided to meet with a few candidates because my due date was coming up. When we met Leona, we liked her calm, easy-going personality. I planned to have an unmedicated birth, so we decided it would be nice to have someone in the room with knowledge and experience who could help with pain management and keep us calm.
During the prenatal visits, we were impressed with Leona’s level of knowledge, and we felt comfortable talking with her about sensitive topics. As my due date approached, I was scheduled for an induction because of hypertension. When the day arrived, Leona met us at the hospital. For the first several hours not much was happening, but Leona stayed with us the whole time. She helped explain things, kept us calm, and even got food for my husband. We were very grateful to have her there.
Around 2am I began active labor, and Leona and my husband worked as a team to get me through each contraction. In this intense part of labor, I didn’t want to move, but Leona knew that laying in the hospital bed was not the best position for managing the contractions. She encouraged me to move and gave suggestions for different positions that would help manage the pain and move things along. I would not have made it through an unmedicated delivery without her help and support. She helped keep me going and stay in control of myself. I gave birth to my daughter after 20 minutes of pushing, during which time Leona and my husband stood on either side of me, supporting me the whole time.
A few days after we got home from the hospital, Leona came to check in and talk about the birth. It was very helpful to have this "debriefing session" after having a few days to process. Hiring Leona was the single best decision we made in preparing for labor and birth. We cannot thank her enough; she was an invaluable part of our care team.
We hired Leona at the recommendation of a friend who is also a doula. I had a very complicated pregnancy and knew that I would need a doula with high risk experience to anchor me in this stressful experience. When we met Leona we told her about our struggles and worries and were very impressed with her experience and gentle confidence in helping us get through this. She met us before our birth to answer questions, think through best ways to support us given all possible outcomes and make good suggestions about preparing for our birth and hosiptal stay. I did develop pre eclampsia with severe features and had to deliver via c section 6 weeks early. When we were informed we had to go to the hospital to deliver we were also turned away because our hospital's NICU was already full. We called Leona scared and confused about where to go, getting little help from our doctor or insurance plan. Leona went to work researching options and found an excellent alternative within an hour of our call. Her effort in this was nothing short of heroic and we will be forever grateful just for this help. She arrived early the next morning to help us think through the day and offered wonderful comfort and anchoring during my c section; she also managed to grab a barf bag before surgery just in time, even before the excellent nurse saw it coming! She captured some very special first pictures of us and our beautiful son, gave me gentle neck massages as the surgery finished up and helped me advocate for my needs during all of this. She visited us in the hospital to talk through the experience and brought lactation tea. She met with us again at home and gave me some exercizes and resources to help with the post partum experience. We will recommend Leona to anyone looking for a doula. She's very knowledgeable, gentle and navigates both the hosptal and anxious parents with such grace and wisdom.
Since we were having our second child, I wasn't sure we needed a doula this time. I thought we would probably be able to handle it on our own, but I was so wrong! Hiring Leona to be our doula was such a great decision for our family. She was able to meet us right where we were. She listened and tailored her services exactly to what we needed....of course we had done this before but what would it be like this time? What would it be like adding an infant to a family with a toddler, what did I want or not want this time that was different from my previous birth... Leona made sure we were prepared for our prenatal, birth and postpartum needs. She was quick to respond anytime I had a question or concerned. She kept me on track and encouraged me with positive self talk throughout my pregnancy and birth. Leona has endless resources and if she doesn't know the answer, she finds it. To say she goes above and beyond is an understatement. I knew immediately upon meeting her that she would be the right fit for myself and our growing family, and I would recommend her for any mother looking for someone she can trust and count on.
Leona was an important part of our birthing team. Being new to the birth experience, our sessions prior to labor were helpful as we prepared fully for the big day. Leona was supportive and accessible any time we needed her and provided many extra resources based on our conversations. Her communication was excellent and checked in regularly during the final weeks of pregnancy. On the day of our baby’s birth, our plan changed considerably due to medical complications. Leona was there every step of the way to support us and be an objective voice while we made many new decisions, in a different environment than we had originally imagined. Leona also looked out for my birthing partner, giving helpful suggestions, and reminders of essentials like eating during long labor. She made us feel more confident in our new plan and worked super well with our care team too. It was also helpful to debrief with her days after we came home from the hospital, and provided more resources for the postpartum phase. We felt very supported in every part of our journey and would gladly work with Leona in the future!
There are not enough good things I can say about my experience with Leona! I met Leona through my birth center, Health Foundations, and hiring her as my doula was one of the best decisions of my pregnancy. Our first meeting with Leona was for coffee, and after speaking with her for 20 minutes my husband and I hired her on the spot! We met with Leona two more times before my birth and she was so prepared, coming with literature for me to read, exercises for me to do, and also a wealth of knowledge for any questions I may have had. The relationship that we built before my baby arrived was invaluable, I trusted her and I felt safe with her, and as a first time mom that was so important to me! My husband and I agreed that Leona was the reason that I was able to progress so fast at home after my labor seemed to be stalling. She knew exactly what to do to get my contractions to come hard and fast and after about 3 hours we were ready to go to Health Foundations so I could have the water birth that I wanted! My birth experience was everything that I had wanted and I am so thankful that I had Leona there by my side. She was so amazing and I would hire her again for all of my babies to come! Thank you so much Leona, you will always be like family to us!
Leona was our doula for the birth of our first child. From our first initial meeting through labor, birth and postpartum, she was supportive, calm and comforting. Leona was an invaluable presence and resource for our family.
Leona provided prenatal education and support in the form of multiple in person meetings at our home. She prompted us with thought provoking questions about what we wanted and hoped birth would look like, and gave suggestions to help us prepare.
She calmly provided support in our home while I labored and gave my husband a much deserved break. It took the pressure off of my husband to know that the two of them could tag team supporting me. After laboring at home, Leona knew when the time was right to drive to the birth location.
We had taken a birth class and generally had an idea of what we were supposed to do but Leona's experience was essential. She gave multiple suggestions, encouragement and guidance through the entire birth. She also reminded us to eat and stay hydrated.
Leona provided a postpartum support through quick text check ins as well as a home visit.
We are so thankful for her support and would absolutely hire Leona again!
= Available. Calendar last updated: 02-17-2020