9 years and 25 births attended
Type of practice: Solo practice
Clients per month: 1 to 2
Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers
Attends home births? Any Home Birth
If finances are an issue (WIC-eligible), please let me know; I can offer a sliding scale.
Ludington, MI Service range 40 miles
Three cheers for Suzie! How fortunate that we had someone so professional, focused and empowering along for our first pregnancy and birth. Initially I was worried about having a doula--I'd heard they could be overly aggressive when it came to supporting a natural birth above anything else--and I was looking for a happy marriage of modern medicine and natural birthing methods.
To my happy relief, Suzie helped create, sustain and see this vision through. She is 200% commited to respecting a mother's wishes and cultivating the type of birth experience that is centered around empowering couples in whichever ways *they* see fit.
During the actual birth, Suzie was a wellspring of support for both me and my husband. She stayed in contact with me from the time my water broke until she reached the hospital; upon arrival, she was a continual source of strength and comfort, helping me focus through contrations, encouraging me, and making sure my preferences were being respected by hospital staff. I ended up having the *exact* birth we were all hoping for--and I know that some of that is pure luck--but it also had a lot to do with Suzie's excellent care and guidance.
In addition to all of this, Suzie provided constant support throughout the pregnancy and postpartum period. Like I said, three cheers for Suzie, a superb resource for those expecting!
I had not planned on having a doula, but I am so grateful that I did. Suzie was an incredible support to both me and my husband, and my husband was able to support me better because he was able to follow Suzie's lead. I was in labour for 21 hours, with back labour, but, in large part because of the support I had, I was able to make it through without any painkillers. I had really wanted a natural birth, and I am grateful that I was able to have it, but I am fairly confident that I would have chosen differently if it had just been my husband and I in there. Despite all my reading and our childbirth class, and my eagerness to see what my body was capable of, birth can still be scary, and hospitals, no matter how friendly, can feel sterile and cold. It was so reassuring to have Suzie there. She was calm and collected the whole time, and offered suggestions to help us get through each contraction. Her knowledge, confidence and care helped my husband and I to go through the labour with confidence ourselves. I cannot imagine not having had here there.
Suzie's support hasn't stopped since I gave birth. We met once to debrief the experience, which helped me to wrap my mind around some of what I had experienced, and she checks in with me to see how breastfeeding is going, and answers whatever questions I have.
Suzie would have, of course, supported any decision that we made, but if you are hoping to have a natural birth, I can't recommend her highly enough. Giving birth was probably the hardest thing I have ever done, but on this side I am so grateful and proud that I was able to do it without an epidural. I don't know that I would have been able to do that without her there.
It's hard to express how grateful we are to have had Suzie as our doula through the 21 hours of active labor we endured. It's hard to even imagine having gotten through it without her support, encouragement, patience and expertise. When we needed direction she led the way. When we needed support she gave her all. When we needed hope she kept us going. And when we had questions her years of experience proved to be invaluable - all while remaining respectful, professional and compassionate. If you are able to, we recommend inviting a doula to be a part of your birth experience and highly recommend Suzie Knoll as a doula that we've had a great experience with.
I cannot say enough about what having Suzie at our labor meant to both me and my husband. I had back labor for 12-13 hours and started to get urges to push at 5 cm (never made it past 5) before deciding on the epidural. I know for a fact that I never would have made it as far as I did without Suzie's coping techniques and support.
Our meetings with Suzie before the birth made us feel very supported. She was always encouraging, and helped us to do the research and be well informed before our birth. Suzie made me feel confidant in my ability to have a natural birth and helped me to focus on that. She made me feel powerful before, during and after labor. My husband also felt very supported during the labor.
After the birth of our daughter, Suzie has been a great resource and always willing to give advice when she can. She has been great for breastfeeding and just trying to deal with a cranky baby.
Overall, we loved having Suzie as a doula and cannot imagine having it any other way.
= Available. Calendar last updated: 07-15-2020