Sheila Toal Photo

Sheila Toal

Doula by Your Side

Windsor, CT Service range 30 miles

https://www.facebook.com/doula-by-your-side-birth-postpartum-and-bereavement-doula-services-378712926255792/?modal=admin_todo_tour

Birth Fee

$1500 to $1800

Postpartum Rate

$35 to $40

Availability Remarks: I own a private birth and postpartum doula practice and I am part of a local hospital doula program.

Birth Fee

$1500 to $1800

Postpartum Rate

$35 to $40


Birth Doula Experience

5 years

Postpartum Doula Experience

5 years


Birth Doula Certifications

  • Madriella Doula Network - Certified Labor Doula

Postpartum Doula Certifications

  • Madriella Doula Network - Certified Postpartum Doula

Doula Training

  • Madriella, January 2019

Type of practice: Solo practice

Clients per month: 1 to 2 births and 1 postpartum families

Attends hospital births? Some Hospitals
All hospitals within a 30-mile radius.

Attends birth center births? Some Birth Centers

Attends home births? Some Home Births
I support all home births provided there is a CNM or CPM present.


College Education

BA/BS


Special Services Offered

  • Baby sign language education
  • Bereavement doula (pregnancy & infant loss)
  • End of life doula services
  • First Aid and CPR
  • Military families support
  • Miscarriage support
  • Photography - Birth
  • Reduced rates for women considering adoption
  • Sibling support (for your older children at the birth)
  • Virtual and remote doula support

Relevant volunteer or advocacy work

I provide birth, postpartum, and bereavement doula services through my private business, as well as through a local hospital doula program. I have volunteered my services for single clients experiencing unplanned pregnancies. I currently volunteer at the ABC Women's Center in New Britain as a client advocate and options counselor.

Fee Details

Because I accept only 1-2 clients per month, it is rare that I would have to use a back-up doula. Reduced rates to military families, low income families, and repeat clients. For longer distances or hospitals other than MMH, St Francis and Hartford, I require the higher fee.

Service Area

Windsor, CT Service range 30 miles

Certifications for Sheila Toal

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Certification

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Client Testimonials for Sheila Toal

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Bridget

7/1/2023

I’m so glad that I had Sheila as my doula! Even before I gave birth, Sheila had a variety of strategies and resources that helped me feel much more prepared for the labor and delivery process. During labor, Sheila was an extremely supportive, knowledgeable, and calm presence. I had been very nervous about giving birth, but my experience was very positive, thanks to Sheila’s help. I would 100% recommend Sheila if you’re looking for a great doula!

Braden Lemire

3/21/2023

Not gonna lie... When my son's mother and I first discussed the possibiltiy of a doula, I was skeptical. I didn't know if there would be a need for such a service. Boy did Sheila prove me wrong... Her informed opinions, warm demeanor and solid work ethic made her an essential part of the actual birth of my son. As a first time parent I had no idea what to expect from a birth and Sheila was there helping and guiding us the whole way. Her service was worth every penny and more and I cannot recommend her highly enough if you are considering a doula for yourself. Thanks again Sheila, for everything!  

Anne

10/14/2022

Sheila was wonderful from start to finish. She cared about what I wanted and did not bring or push any preconceived notions about what type of birth is "best". She helped me to elucidate my preferences going into labor and helped me through a bunch of false alarms toward the end. I wanted a calm environment for my labor and birth. I was flexible about other outcomes, but had preferences. Sheila balanced reminding me of those preferences while supporting me when my preferences changed. My birth was calm, beautiful and I remember it as fun and fondly. As someone who works in womens health I know how traumatic birth can be. I am so grateful to Sheila for supporting me, my husband and our baby through birth. I am confident that her presence and support kept us calm and centered. If I ever have another baby, Sheila will be the first call. 

Mary

10/14/2022

My husband and I met with Sheila several times as we prepared for the arrival of our first baby. Each meeting we had together was comfortable and informative, helping us to get to know each other. We were planning for a home birth, so getting to meet with Sheila in our home was so helpful.

What a crazy experience laboring for your baby can be! My labor was 22 hours, and having Sheila with us was the blessing and support we didn't know we'd need. Being at home, our midwives weren't with us the whole time, and I really think laboring at home, just me and my husband, would've been so different and so much harder without Sheila's kind and gentle pressence. Having Sheila as additional support for both of us made that difficult day so much smoother. Sheila would stay with me, putting pressure on my back if my husband needed to step away; she would suggest different postions to help baby move down; she brought me food and things to drink while I worked, to keep my energy up; she prayed with and for us, continuing to bring a calm gentleness into the room. I feel that my husband was able to be a better support to me as well, because of Sheila being there with us. Looking back, it was such a blessing when she took care of little "behind the scenes" things during the day, like feeding me, helping to prep the birthing tub, suggesting I get in the shower if I needed a change, or timing some of the "timed" postions we did during labor. 

I am so thankful for the people who were with me through this experience, and Sheila made all the difference! What a blessing it was, after our baby was born, to look around at those who were there with us, helping and encouraging for hours on end, to get to this point. Sheila was there too when our baby girl began to nurse for the first time, and gave me some loving pointers (as it was my first time too). 

So thankful for Sheila and the work she does! What a positive impact she made on that day! 

Chelsea K

9/6/2022

I cannot speak highly enough of Sheila.  From our first meeting, I knew she was the right doula for me.  At our prenatal meetings, she came with activities and questions to help me think about my labor and birth preferences and prepare for labor and birth.  She was very supportive of my preferences.  Throughout my pregnancy, I was able to reach out Sheila with questions and she always responded quickly and was able to provide recommendations for things like prenatal yoga and massage therapists when asked.  When my birth partner got COVID just a few days before I went into labor and my mom stepped in as my support person, Sheila helped fill my mom in on my labor/birth preferences and current childbirth practices that had changed since my mom last had a baby.  In labor, Sheila provided constant support, making suggestions, encouraging me on and reminding me of my birth preferences when I started to doubt myself.  She helped keep me and my mom calm when there were concerns about my daughter's heartrate.  She stayed with me in the hospital for a bit after my daughter was born, making sure I had everything I needed before she left.  After my daughter and I were home, Sheila came to visit and brought a home cooked meal and spent time processing my labor and delivery.  She even brought a typed up copy of some of the important moments from my labor/birth, many of which were a bit of a haze for me.  I would recommend Sheila to anyone looking for a doula and would not hesitate to use her again if I have another baby.  

Aubrey Hines

2/16/2022

We hired Sheila through ECHN’s doula program. She immediately made us feel comfortable upon first meeting her and helped prepare us for the delivery of our baby girl with 2 prenatal visits where she got to know us and also helped us build our birth plan. Due to both of us having COVID and circumstances beyond our control, Sheila was not able to be at the hospital when I delivered but she was on the phone with us, giving me different positions to try, instructing in breathing techniques, and being a liaison between the medical team and us when they wanted to talk about an induction. The postpartum visit was also so nice! Sheila is a compassionate person who clearly enjoys what she does and cares about her clients. If we have another baby, I’d love to have her help us again!

Crystelle Vardal

6/21/2021

My first born made his appearance on 3/18/2021. I’m so glad my husband and I hired Sheila to be apart of our journey. No one in my family or his (or anyone I knew) ever had a Doula. I wanted an extra support person to be by my side, especially during a year like 2021 with COVID. Only one support person plus your Doula could be in the hospital room.

Upon meeting Sheila I already knew I made the right choice. She has the absolute sweetest energy that radiates from her effortlessly! She took time to meet with us and made me feel confident to take on birth. After she practiced some techniques with me- I joked with my husband later that she made me feel more comfortable than him! When it was baby time, she came right away. Labor was harder than I ever imagined! Sheila stood by my side the entire time along with my husband. May I also add my labor wasn’t just a few hours… more like days !!!

There were moments where I absolutely wanted to give up but I felt loved and heard. I would do it all over again a million times. Meeting my baby was the best day of my life! Thank you so much Sheila!

Michelle

1/21/2021

I'm so glad we met Sheila and had her present at our birth. She stayed with us for a very long, overnight labor and was a wonderful support for not only me but also my husband. This was our first child and giving birth during a pandemic added an extra layer of stress. Having Sheila with us helped to ease a lot of anxiety. She is kind, gentle, knowledgeable, reassuring and a true professional. I am so grateful she was there to help bring our beautiful girl into the world. 

Anna

10/17/2020

Sheila was absolutely wonderful during my long labor and birth. She was with us the entire 28+ hours! While in labor she helped me cope with contractions and supported my husband in helping me as well. She encouraged me during my long pushing phase and helped both my husband and I stay calm during high stress moments. She was supportive of all my decisions and helped calm my nerves.
I feel everyone should consider a doula no matter what your birth plan is, and I highly recommend that doula be Shiela. I’m not sure how I would have handled my birth without her!

 

Betsabeth

4/16/2020

We are really happy to have had Sheila as our doula for the birth of our first baby. Since the first meeting she was always punctual, professional, easy to talk to, knowledgeable and was already giving us some advice. I wanted a natural non-medicated experience and she was open to learn and become familiar with my birth plan and hypnobabies method to better assist me during labor and delivery.

She was always available by text message. My husband got some massage tips and demonstrations during the prenatal visit that were really helpful during labor, and Sheila will take turns with my husband to assist me with anything I needed during that time. It was nice to have a Sheila reminding us stuff and giving suggestions while I was focusing on each birth wave.

I thank her for helping my birth experience be was I had envisioned, and I highly recommend her!

Deandra J

3/19/2020

We delivered our 4th baby on 02/26/20. This was my first birth having a doula, and both my husband and I agreed that the experience this time around was awesome! When you use Sheila as a doula, she has this amazing presence during childbirth; she was able to keep her composure and remind us of our birth plan when there was so much happening. There was a change of shift during the time we got to the hospital and delivery, it was nice having Sheila there continuously. With her help I was able to have a natural, water birth, which was part of my birth plan! Sheila was great checking in on us the next day after the delivery and checking on us via text messages after we got home from the hospital! We are so thankful and blessed  that we got to use Sheila as our doula! 

Jackie C.

3/18/2020

Sheila was our doula for the birth of our first son, born 3/6/20.  Sheila was supportive from the first moment we met her.  I was very anxious during the pregnancy and about the birth process and she never made me feel like any of my concerns were too silly.  Sheila validated all of my concerns and was able to listen and provide reassurances, when needed.  Additionally, she answered all of our questions and it was very reassuring to hear from her experiences to calm my fears.  She was always very responsive to texts and phone calls and took the time to meet with us once prior to the birth and then again for a longer home visit closer to our due date.  Our baby was also born 5 weeks early and that did not throw her.  She visited us at the hospital the night I went into labor (at that point we thought we were in for a long haul, so she went home to rest while my husband and I tried to do the same), however, when my labor began to progress quickly, she answered my husband’s call at 2am and immediately came to the hospital.  Her presence was always calm and reassuring and she was helpful throughout the remainder of my labor.  Sheila stayed for an hour or two post-delivery and even can back to visit the next day to check on us!  I also have had some feeding difficulties, and she has been able to provide guidance to me.  She frequently texts to check in since we’ve all come home to ask how we are doing!  I fully recommend Sheila!

Rachel

1/20/2020

My husband and I hired Sheila as a birth and postpartum doula, and we highly recommend her for both. When we first began our search, we weren’t exactly sure what we wanted in a doula. After researching local doulas on the internet and conducting interviews, we weren’t sure a doula would be worth the expense. Then we met Sheila. From the minute Sheila walked through our door for her interview I felt comfortable with her. Even before we hired her, Sheila began to teach us techniques we could use during labor. She has the perfect combination of confidence and calm. We felt like we could trust her, but we did not worry she would try to push any kind of personal agenda. During a 36-hour labor, Sheila’s guidance allowed us to share the experience without the stress of not knowing what to do next. Sheila quietly offered us different options for positions and comfort techniques so that we could find what worked best. She offered support when we needed extra hands, and she offered my husband the tools he needed to be a comforting and helpful partner. After giving birth, having someone I could trust with my home and my newborn baby was priceless. Sheila helped my husband and I get much needed rest, she helped us learn about our daughter, and she helped us keep our house livable. If we ever have another child, I want Sheila there with us.  

Sara Morganweck

10/15/2019

When I decided to have Sheila support my birthing experience, I had written up my ideal birth plan. Basically, I wanted to limit medical interventions to as few as possible and labor naturally.

While I knew Sheila would be a wonderful educater and rescource on all things baby, I was not sure what I would need from a second birth partner. Her consistently centered presence was such a comfort to me, and I drew such strength from her during moments of self doubt and pain.

Sheila has such a compassionate spirit and a way of bringing peace in with her when she enters a room. She deeply ministered to me and my family in so many ways and took excellent care to not only tend to my immediate needs, but also to keep a written record of my entire labor’s timeline.

I will forever be so grateful to have had her with me.. As my family grows, I know I want her to be there through it.

Birth Availability for Sheila Toal

= Available. Calendar last updated: 04-23-2024

Postpartum Availability for Sheila Toal

= Available. Calendar last updated: 04-23-2024