Ricky Issler Photo

Ricky Issler

Comforting Hands Doula Services & Village Birth

Website: http://www.comfortinghandsdoula.com

Phone: (780) 929-4669

Birth Fee: $900 to $950

Fee Details: I offer a $50 discount on my doula fee if you are also attending my Hypnobabies Prenatal Classes. Please see my website for a breakdown of my fee and the extra add-on's that are available (birth photography, birth pool rental, birth story). I also charge a small "out of town" fee (usually around $40) if you are more than 35 km (20 miles) from me. Payment plans available.

Birth Doula Experience: 9 years and 250 births attended

Birth Doula Certifications

  • DONA International - Certified Birth Doula
  • Hypnobabies - Certified Hypno-Doula
  • The Matrona - Certified Holistic Birth Doula

Doula Training

  • DONA International, February 2010
  • Hypnobabies, July 2011
  • The Matrona, April 2018
Type of Practice: Partnership with 2 or more doulas

Clients per Month: 1 to 4

Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
I attend births at all Edmonton and area hospitals. (Grey Nuns, Lois Hole Hospital for Women, Miseracordia, Sturgeon Community Hospital in St. Albert, Camrose and Wetaskiwin Hospital and Care Center).
Attends birth center births? All Birth Centers
We are very fortunate to have The Lucinia Birth Center here in Edmonton. It is so beautiful and I love attending births there!
Attends home births? Any Home Birth
I love to support women planning a home birth and I have a La Bassine Birth Pool available for my clients to use for a small rental fee of $100 (includes everything needed + set-up and take down).

Childbirth Education Certifications

  • HCHI Hypnobabies Childbirth Hypnosis Instructor

Breastfeeding Certifications

  • Breastfeeding training course through DONA and Step 2 Breastfeeding Essentials course

Other Relevant Certifications

  • Rebozo Training
  • Reiki Practitioner
  • Spinning Babies® Aware Practitioner
  • "Becoming Dad" Certified (with Darren Mattock) I also have a general background in Homeopathy and offer remedies to my clients during pregnancy and labour

Specialized training or previous experience

  • Cesarean birth
  • Clients on bed rest
  • Expected stillbirth
  • Families conceiving with ART and IVF
  • High risk
  • Home Birth
  • Induced and high medical technology labor & birth
  • LGBTQP Families
  • Multiples
  • Over 40
  • Plus size mothers
  • Single parents
  • Survivors of Previous Life Trauma
  • Twins
  • Vaginal breech birth
  • VBAC
  • Waterbirth
  • Women and Families of Color

Special Services Offered

  • Acupressure
  • Aromatherapy
  • Birth Pool rental
  • Childbirth Education Services
  • Military families
  • Miscarriage Support (Before, During or After)
  • Pregnancy, birth and/or newborn photography
  • Surrogates and intended parents
  • TENS units rental

Relevant volunteer or advocacy work

Current member and executive member of DAE (Doula Association of Edmonton)

Languages spoken: English

Certifications for Ricky Issler

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Client Testimonials for Ricky Issler

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My wife and I were thrilled with the Hypnobabies class we took with Ricky, as well as our experience with her as our doula.  Hypnobabies is both effective and provides far more information than any other prenatal classes out there.  It is definitely worth the money and time spent!  

With respect to hiring Ricky as our doula, Ricky's calming presence during my wife's birthing time made all the difference.  She was able to get my wife to relax and focus on her hypnosis which ultimately allowed us to have the natural vaginal birth we were hoping for.  My wife was very close to asking for an epidural until Ricky's suggestions and calming presence came to our rescue.

Thank you, thank you Ricky!

Posted 8/8/2019

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Sarah Harris

When we became pregnant with our second son, I knew we needed to hire a doula. Even though I had an incredible homebirth with my first baby, labor had been long and exhausting and without a doula I didn’t feel I had the support I needed. So when I started researching doulas for my second birth, I was looking for someone who could assist me throughout the whole labor, give guidance to my spouse, and inform me and help me make decisions should that be necessary. From the moment we met her at our initial consultation, I could tell Ricky would be exactly what we needed in order to have a positive birthing time. And indeed, I came away from my birthing experience feeling supported, empowered, and incredibly grateful. Towards the end of my third trimester, my family was involved in a traumatic incident which led to a lot of unexpected anxiety and stress. I started feeling incredibly unprepared for birth and anxious about getting everything ready in time when I was so overwhelmed with the aftermath of what had happened. At our prenatal meeting with Ricky, we practiced hypnobabies scripts and cues, learned Spinning Babies principles, and practiced pain management techniques. Teaching us these skills in person gave me so much more confidence for my birthing time despite circumstances. In addition, Ricky has an amazing intuitiveness about her which allowed her to support me and my husband perfectly during my birthing time. Her encouraging words, hypnobabies cues, and guidance for my husband as he supported me through each wave, gave me the ongoing support and strength needed to birth my beautiful baby. I came away from this birthing experience truly in awe of how remarkable it was to have her there with us through labor and in that intimate and breathtaking moment when our son came into this world. I am incredibly grateful to Ricky for her calming, intuitive, and supportive presence.

Posted 6/3/2019

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Noshaba Qureshi

Ricky was an amazing resource and was very helpful in my delivery. I was sucessful at getting my vba2c and she was a great support! the photos she took during the delivery were so precious and the storyline she wrote of the birth was also really nice! I would definatley recommend her to anyone looking for a doula!

Posted 3/18/2019

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Darcy & Leah Guderjan

Once again, hiring Ricky was honestly hands down the best choice we ever made. She stood by our side through the painfully long whirlwind birth of our first daughter, and helped guide us through our journey once again at the birth of our second daughter. This time we opted to do the hypnobabies online which was, again, a really good choice. We can't reccomend Ricky highly enough, she brings a wealth of knowledge and her calm cool and collected energy to your birth and she also gives the worlds best neck rubs while you're in labour!Once again, thank you so much for everything you do Ricky, you helped us to finally achieve our peaceful home birth! 

Posted 3/17/2019

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Emily Sangster

Ricky played a pivotal role in making the birth of our son in October 2018 a positive and empowering experience. She took the time beforehand to get to know us, gain a thorough understanding of our priorities and needs, and send us a wealth of information on various birth and baby care topics. During the labour itself, she helped us avoid several unnecessary interventions by reminding us of our options and encouraging us to advocate for ourselves. She provided Greg with valuable backup and helped him support Emily in the best way he could. She also drew on her wide range of comfort techniques and equipment to support Emily directly as well. There's no doubt we would not have had the autonomous and largely drug-free (aside from laughing gas) hospital birth experience we did if she had not been there.

Posted 1/25/2019

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Melanie d'Haene

I recommend Ricky to every pregnant woman I know.  She was such a calming and helpful presence during our birthing time.  She provided support and suggestions to help things along.  She knew what I needed before I knew!  I know for sure that we would not have had the birth experience we did without Ricky.  My husband was so grateful both for her expertise and the breaks she allowed him.  Thank you so much, Ricky!

Posted 12/22/2018

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Kristen Janzen

From the moment I met Ricky, I knew I wanted her to be my doula. Her calm, peaceful character, combined with her experience and expertise with hypnobabies was just what I was searching for in a doula. 

Ricky was an amazing doula! She was all that I hoped for and more. She sent us lots of information about labour and post-partum topics. The two appointments we had before the baby came were informative and encouraging. She asked my husband and I some good questions about our hopes and plans for the labour, which helped illuminate things we had not talked about yet. I especially apprecaited practicing different labour positions in one of these appointments. Ricky was very open to helping me work through any fears and anxiety I felt about the labour. 

I was 12 days overdue. During that waiting period, Ricky checked in with me to see how I was doing. She was always prompt in responding to any texts, emails, or calls that I made to her. On the day of the labour, she was ready to come help us at any time. When we called her for her help, she came right over. Having Ricky at our home, prior to us going to the birthing center, felt like such a great gift. She was encouraging and calm. I felt like I could really trust her and lean on her expertise. She helped me trust myself too. She made suggestions for different positions to get into to help alleviate the discomfort of the contractions, which I really appreacited. The hip squeeze was a life savour! 

When we arrived at the birthing center, I remember Ricky continuing to be encouraging and confident in me. When I doubted in myself, I remember her telling me I could do it! Her steady presence and encouragement was a huge help to me throughout the whole labour, especially during transition and during the delivery.

Ricky is very respectful, professional, and kind. I would highly recommend her as a doula! 

Posted 12/4/2018

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Sarah Shaughnessy

I cannot express how grateful  I am that I found Ricky and was able to include her in my birth.  Having her there gave both my husband and myself the confidence to relax, let go of fears and find joy in the birthing process.  From our first meeting I was struck by her calm, caring and professional presence and knew she would help to keep me focused as things got 'real' when the time came.  When my baby was late in arriving and it became clear I could no longer have the home waterbirth I had planned, Ricky helped me deal with my dissapointment and assured me the birth could still be a beautiful one.  Boy, was she right! After the change of plans, I had a wonderful hospital birth that felt intimate, safe and powerful, just as I'd hoped.  It was one of the best experiences of my life, and I honestly do not think I could have done it without her support.

My husband and I took Ricky's Hypnobabies course which was extremely helpful in preparing mentally for the birth and also a very thorough prenatal class.  I would definitely recommend it, and I knew that because Ricky was teaching me the Hypnobabies tools she would be well-equipped to support me to use them when it counts.  It was a bonus that I got to spend more time with her during the classes. 

I feel so good about the choices I made surrounding my birthing, and Ricky was integral to all of it.  I hope in the future if I have another baby I will be lucky enough to have Ricky by my side again. 

Posted 11/14/2018

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Montana DesJardins

It's been 2 years and 4 months since I gave birth to my son and to this day, I thank every ounce of life that we had Ricky as an integral part of our team.

Working with Ricky allowed me to experience birth fully and concentrate on what I needed to do in the moment. I trusted her knowledge, her caring of me, and her advocacy of my rights and birth wishes in the hospital.

My partner wasn't sure what a doula did and how he would fit into my relationship with one but after working with Ricky, he found that he couldn't have done it without her. He said that she empowered him to do a better job of supporting me and was able to enjoy our child's birth because of that. Ricky made us both feel empowered enough to allow the vulnerability of birthing wash over us.

On the day of birth, Ricky was with us for over 10 hours and her calm support didn't waver once. She was there in my home, came to the hospital and then come back to my home as a follow-up. For me, feeling comfortable in the knowledge that she is a true advocate for women's right and stood by my side in my birthing decisions was imperial. She helped me in my decision to have a natural birth and she helped make me feel stronger in those times that I myself wavered in my decisions. In the end, Ricky suspended all judgment, empowered my family, and was completely knowledgeable and committed to her time with us. I could not have asked for a better team member beside me in the room.

I find that even after two years of thinking about what to write in a testimonial for Ricky, I am lost for the words to properly communicate what an impact she left. I will share this: my family now lives in Ontario and when I am ready to have my second, I will be going back to Alberta to give birth if it means I can work with Ricky again.

Much love from Montana, Lucas, and Rome (and Rigby, the three-legged fur baby).

Posted 8/31/2018

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Angela Prefontaine

I feel so grateful that I was able to have Ricky present as my Doula for the birth of my first child. She is absolutely wonderful at what she does, and you can tell she loves it too! I found her to always be very reassuring, knowledgeable and supportive. Her energy is calm, positive, encouraging and non-judgemental.
Together, my husband and Ricky helped me to have an intervention free birth. Honestly, the physical support Ricky provided during my birthing time was indispensable! She physically helped to spin my baby from an occiput posterior position to the more desirable occiput anterior position while I was in labour by suggesting position changes and by performing belly sifting. She helped me utilize my hypnobabies skills and kept me feeling calm and confident throughout my birthing time.
I have already recommended Ricky to several of my friends who are expecting. I can’t say enough good things about her as a person as well as the work she does as a doula. I will absolutely be giving her a call for my next pregnancy! Thank you Ricky!!

Posted 8/20/2018

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Cynthia Priest

It was pure luck when we got in the last spot with Ricky's Hypnobabies classes in April of 2016. Ricky went the extra mile and came to visit us to provide breastfeeding support when my baby came earlier than the rescheduled last class. That was a difficult & long birth with a change of plans; my poor husband didn't get any bathroom breaks. I knew that if I was pregnant again, I want Ricky as my Hypno-doula. The birth rehearsal was very comprehensive; it really was helpful for the actual birthing day.

During my second pregnancy, Ricky was a wealth of knowledge! I had so much fun looking into belly dancing classes for fitness as one of her information sheets suggested belly dancing for prenatal fitness.

Both Mike and I are super grateful that Ricky and him could take turns watching my toddler as I was focusing on relaxing and saying, "Open, open, open" as each wave was getting stronger. Ricky knew when to call my midwife back. Ricky set up/took down the birth pool and took amazing birth photos that we will cherish for many years.

Ricky's presence was very reassuring. She helped me get into positions that would encourage my pelvis to open while resting. She knew what to do when things were getting intense for me; it was so helpful to have Ricky help out with the Hypnobabies tracks and the verbal Hypnobabies cue while I was still in centre. Both Mike and I felt so supported. I don't think we could have had the healing peaceful and comfortable (and pain-free) Hypnobabies birth without Ricky. If I had to do it all over again, I would contact Ricky to be my doula! (P.S. Ricky's reiki session was amazing!)

Thank you so much, Ricky, for bringing Hypnobabies to Edmonton and for being an amazing Hypno-doula. Our family felt very supported during the birth.

Posted 8/17/2018

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Melanie F

We had an amazing experience with Ricky. Even though we didn't have a very particular birth plan in mind, we wanted a doula since it was our first birth and it made us more relaxed knowing we would have someone in the room on our team who had done this before. Ricky helped us understand our options and issues that could come up during labor (and many of them did!) and because she had gone through everything with us, we were able to make informed decisions in the moment. Ricky also gave me a breastfeeding lesson before the birth, and I was so much more prepared when I attempted with my daughter for the first time. The nurses at the hospital were impressed with how fast my daughter and I were able to establish a latch and I think that is largely due to Ricky. On the actual birthing day, I was in intense labor for 21h and Ricky was with us the whole way. Contractions started at 1:30am and she was with us until 1130pm that night. And in the end, the birthing story she provided us had so much thoughtful detail. It is something my husband and I will treasure forever. I highly recommend Ricky. She will make an already special day more special.

Posted 7/28/2018

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Melissa Sebastianelli

We hired Ricky after recommendations from two friends that used her as their doula.  We took the Hypnobabies course which Ricky facilitated and found this course very valuable and it prepared us well for our birthing time.  As our doula she answered any questions we had throughout the pregnancy and provided us with many different articles, information and support so we could educate ourselves and be prepared for our birthing time.  

When I went over my guess date by ten days the doctors wanted to induce me so Ricky gave me some suggestions of things I could do to bring on my birthing time naturally. Her ideas worked and when the pressure waves started she came right over offering never ending encouragment and support the entire time.  At the hospital she introduced herself to the medical team, created a calm, quiet environment in my birthing room, played hypnobabies tracks, gave me massages, supported my boyfriend, held my leg during side lying, stepped in when my boyfriend needed a break, reminded me of my options, and offered other supports and tools we learned in our Hypnobabies class.  My labour was lengthly and tiring, my birthing waves were long and very intense with little breaks inbetween.  My labour didn't go as planned but Ricky's support and encouragment did not waiver the entire 17 hours we were at the hospital.  With her by my side I was able to stay focused and strong and in the end I did truly have a postive birthing experience. 

Ricky's calm presence was very welcome and she was amazing support for me and my boyfriend.  He says that it was great to have her there and he doesn't know how he would have done it without her.  When she wasn't helping me, she was suggesting various ideas to him which allowed him to better support me and keep himself focused. I would without hesitation recommend Ricky as a doula.

With love, Melissa, Jeff & Ian

Posted 5/7/2018

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Tallitha Campos

I have no words to descrive how much I admire Ricky's work as a doula. My husband and I were so much more confident working with her. Ricky is a very calm and knowledge person. Thank you for the incredible work you do for pregnant couples. 

Posted 1/22/2018

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Candase Wolff

I will make this simple... if you're looking for a Doula, hire Ricky.

I can’t recommend her enough! I have a VERY involved husband who did more than I expected in the birth prep as well as my birthing time and yet there were moments where I told him I didn’t want him, I wanted Ricky. She has such a calming voice and demeanour about her that she was the best person I could have had in that room with my husband. One of our biggest requests was that we had a doula that would allow my husband to be 100% involved and she definitely did that! She went above and beyond so many times and made sacrifices when my birthing time took 4 days from start to finish!

She was my advocate, I trusted her and I would hire her again in a heartbeat and not think twice.

When I hit transition, and cried because I thought I would have to get an epidural (I was petrified of them) she calmly reminded me that there were other options to try first. She helped me have the birth I wanted (for the most part, the parts that were in my control) by believing in me and being my advocate.

Long story short I could write a novel about how incredible this woman is and how she treated both me and my husband with absolutely zero judgment and total support. Hire her, you wont regret it! I would pay $5,000 for a person like her, her rates are a bargain for the woman you get to have by your side on this incredible journey.

Posted 1/13/2018

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Christina Ignacio-Deines

We hired Ricky for our second birth after a traumatic first birth and severe PPD left us nervous about birthing in hospital again without extra support. I was skeptical about doulas but a good friend enthusiastically recommended we try her. Ricky completely changed my mind about doulas and I now recommend her to all my friends. Leading up to our birth, Ricky was always available to answer our questions or concerns, and she stayed on top of communication when we were too busy to reach out. In creating a birth plan, she was thorough and able to explain the pros and cons of different approaches, pointing us to helpful articles or directing us to another professional if we needed more info. During our birth, Ricky was a warm, focused, rational and calming family-centered support, guiding us through intense sensations and emotions, reminding us of available options, and keeping us on track with the intentions of our birth plan. I tried for a VBAC and ended up requiring a c-section, but working with Ricky showed me that even an intervention-filled birth can be a positive and empowering experience and I would gladly hire her again.

Posted 11/14/2017

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Jeff Coole

When we first met Ricky we knew right away she is the perfect fit for us and i knew she was exactly what I was looking for in a doula.Her calm, confident demeanor had me right at ease with all the fear i had about childbirth.

During the birth Ricky kept me calm and focussed, which allowed me to sucussfully follow through with my natural birth plan

Ricky is sweet, kind and very knowledgeable.Ricky is amazing at what she does! highly reccomend her and will definatly be using her again as our doula if we have more children.

Thank you Ricky from the bottom of my heart. Your the best!


Posted 4/25/2017

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Kelsey Forbes

When i became pre I know that I wanted to use a birth doula. Through some research I came across Ricky and from our first contact I knows that I had made the right choice . Ricky was a very positive presence in my pregnancy and birth and the information we learned thorough her hypnobirthing class was invaluable. The class was also a great opportunity to get to know Ricky as well as other couples who had similar views on pregnancy and birth.

My baby ended up being over due and throughout that time Ricky offered me support and advice and even though I eneed up having an unplanned induction I feel like I was in control and informed the whole time. When my birthing time came Ricky was in constant contact and was quick to arrive at the hospital once we said we needed her. Throughout my birthing time Ricky offered quiet and calm support to both my husband and I and her help enabled me to be able to have the unmediated birth I wanted despite the induction.

I would not hesitate to refer Ricky to anyone who was wanting a birth doula and anyone interested in Hypnobirthing.

Posted 4/11/2017

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Kerri Roper-Martens

We had such a wonderful birth experience with you! We had a different doula for our first birth and were not impressed but you went over and above our expectations. Right from the beginning you made us feel comfortable and confident in our decision to have you as our doula. You read about a perfect birth experience and I never thought it was possible for me but with your guidance it was possible. It was such an amazing, peaceful experience. .. you held my hand throughout and provided massage and acupressure to help me achieve a short birth and no pain medication, even with an induction!!

Thank you so much Ricky! We will definitely recommend you as a doula to all our friends and family!!!


Posted 3/2/2017

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Robin P

Ricky was an indespensible source of knowledge, comfort, and reassurance. I am so glad she could be there to help guide me through the birth of my first child, She was there for me whenever I needed her throughout my pregnancy, she helped me and the other people present at my birth to give me the support I needed and make the journey as smooth as possible. I would highly recommend her to anyone I know.

Posted 12/27/2016

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DonavinAndDenise Stefanic

My husband and I first met Ricky as our HypnoBabies Instructor when she and the course came very highly recommended to me by co-worker. 

My friend, Chris, could not have been more right when he told me how wonderful Ricky is and how great the HypnoBabies course was. 

After taking the course with her, we hired Ricky as our doula and she was priceless during the birth of our child; Ricky's calm and confident demeanour and experience during the birthing process made me that much more confident. 

Neither my husband nor I would hestitate to hire Ricky again and we both recommend her as often as possible. Ricky is so so awesome at her job and we are so happy we met and call her a friend. 

Thank you Ricky! So so much :)

Denise and Donavin

Posted 10/15/2016

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Lisa Borin

Working with Ricky was a wonderful experience. From the first time we heard her say 'peace,' a common hypnobabies relaxation cue, we knew she was a great fit! We relaxed instantly. Without a doubt, we knew that she had the presence needed to hold a safe and calm space for our birthing time. Ricky came through for us in so many ways. She was generous with her time and knowledge before the birth and after wards through the postpartum period. Ricky is a wealth of information, she has a calming and relaxing presence, and she is an amazing birth support for both mom and dad. We were also deeply touched by the way she seamlessly captured fantastic photos, details about the day for the memorable birth story, and was with us every step of the way. We both highly recommend Ricky!

Lisa, Ravidass and Asha Miller

Posted 6/13/2016

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Funmi Omotade-Tan

"After extensive research into Doulas, we decided to commission the lovely Ricky as ours. One of our main reasons for the choice was the quality and quantity of information that she had included on her website, which  included her fees & the doula process. A few weeks afterwards, we also decided to commission her as our Hypnobabies Instructor.

This meant that we had the double advantage of having Ricky as our Doula and our Hypnobabies Instructor, an important thing for us as we needed all of care team members to understand our frame of minds about the whole birthing process.

Ricky is a highly experienced Doula who was a joy to work with and it was also clear that her easy-going demeanour meant that she worked well with our Midwife and the Sturgeon Community Hospital staff. We are truly grateful to Ricky for the attention to detail and to us throughout the pre-natal period and for the early part of the post partum time (as per her normal service duration).

Our daughter's birth was a fully natural and quick one! Actual pushing time was 2 hours. The information we learnt from Ricky during the Hypnobabies class was fundamental in helping us to relax and enjoy the birthing time. Ricky and my husband took turns taking some beautiful and cherished photographs with our camera.

Immediately after our daughter was born, I was really hungry for a three-course meal and was about to ask my husband to go and get me some food, when Ricky offered to go and purchase it with our funds. She said she wanted us three to stay together and bond instead. A true helping hand indeed."

Funmi & Adrian.

Posted 6/2/2016

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Becki Pawliw

My first two births, a csec and an augmented vbac, "happened" to me. i felt powerless and was in pain i didn't understand how to manage.  I didn't know what could be different but for my 3rd pregnancy i prayed and started searching. Funny enough i found a "Birth Issues" sitting in my doctors office.

I immediately felt God was tugging at me to pay attention to this magazine advocating for midwifery, doulas and hypnobirthing at home .. in pools.. without assistance from medical staff, pain medication or interventions if at all possible. I found Ricky's name in an ad for Hypnobabies and read a story from a mother who had a birth using this method with a supportive birth team. Why couldn't this be my story? My husband and I took the classes and were so floored by the detail and support from Ricky as a teacher that we asked her to be our Doula. She sent me everything i needed in terms of information to make better birthing decisions and talked over strategies to calm my fears and confront obstacles to my better birthing scenario. Her help and training was the reason i gave birth with confidence in each stage and what my body was doing and how to stay focused and prepared. Her support encouraged me to complete the classes, arm myself with knowledge and believe i was capable of a calm and natural, intervention free birth. It was so much faster and i felt much more in control and relaxed. What a blessing to have come across a woman with such a wealth of knowledge and experience. Thank you Ricky!!  

Posted 4/3/2016

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C Bolanos

We couldn't be more pleased with the service and relationship we enjoyed from Ricky. Her calm and kind nature was only echoed by her reverence for how intimate the birthing experience is for a couple. She had open lines of support and communication during our pregnancy and leading up to our big day, providing helpful information on various pre and post-natal care.

During our birthing time, we couldn't have asked for better support. She was very much involved with the whole process, while allowing the space for us as a couple to enjoy the experience as well. 

Hiring a doula is maybe seen as an extra expense to take on for the birthing experience, but for us, it would be a must! My husband was able to support me throughout our birthing time with confidence, aided by the expertise of Ricky.

Thank you!

Posted 3/29/2016

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Dawn McAtasney

I hired Ricky at the start of my second pregnancy as my first labour & delivery did not go as I had planned (I was induced, ended up having an epidural). I had so much fear and anxiety built up I knew I needed help this time around. After the first meeting with Ricky I knew I was in good hands. Ricky has a very calming yet powerful presence to her. Throughout my pregnancy Ricky met with me and sent me information to help me mentally and physically prepare for an easy. fearless birth. By the time my due date rolled around I had prepared for my perfect labour and was excited. I ended up having a super fast birth, we barely made it to the hospital! As soon as I saw Ricky I knew it would be ok. I truly believe that all my mental and physical preparation allowed me to stay focused, relaxed and with no fear, thus allowing an easier birth. I couldn't have reached this state without Ricky's help. I would highly recommend Ricky. The birth story and the newborn pictures that she took were bonuses to a perfect birth!

Posted 3/7/2016

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Jolene Gach

I (We) were so blessed to have Ricki at our birth. She is a genuine caring and loving woman with a calming peace about her. She helped me have a positive birthing experience. Just when I thought I could not keep on she guided me through it ,with what I call her gift , to the arrival of a beautiful baby girl. 

She is very knowledgeable and obviously has extensive experience as a doula. The amount of support she offers before and after the birth is also an important part . I definitely want her presence at my future births. 

Thank you Ricki. 

Posted 12/21/2015

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Amy McCrum

Ricky was our doula for the birth of our first child, and as soon as I became pregnant with our second, she was the first person I contacted!  She had made such a huge difference in our first birth experience, my husband and I knew we had to have her by our sides for the second.  Again, Ricky was beyond amazing.  I had hoped for another labour without interventions, and thanks to Ricky's gentle encouragement and thoughtful and knowledgeable assistance (including an incredible back masage!), I was able to achieve a med-free birth a second time.  Ricky inspires confidence, peace, and strength.  Without her, I would've found it very easy to become overwhelmed and scared, but I found myself calm and feeling capable instead.  She knows exactly what to say at any given time, and what to do.  I think I mentioned this in my first testimonial, but she once again seemed to know what I needed before I did; for example, as soon as I started to feel hot, she already had a cold towel to my forehead.  When I began to worry about how far along I was, without my even saying anything, she told me exactly what I needed to not get discouraged.  She was so supportive to both my husband and myself.  Hiring Ricky is one of the best decisions we've ever made, and now in addition to two great birth experiences and two wonderful little girls, we have a wonderful friend for life as well.  Thank you Ricky!  

Posted 11/17/2015

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Mat and Erin

Ricky was the first doula we met with. As soon as we left the meeting, my husband and I looked at each other and immediately agreed that she seemed extremely knowledgeable, prepared, and calm. However, we felt we should do our due diligence and meet with 2 other doulas but no one compared to Ricky. Right from the start, Ricky was a great source of knowledge and support. She provided us with material to look into and read up on to help us prepare for the upcoming birth of our baby and she always replied very quickly to any questions I had. Unfortunately, due to complications towards the end of my pregnancy, I had to undergo an unplanned c-section. Although Ricky was not able to assist me in the traditional role of a doula, she was still an immeasurable source of comfort and support. She came to the hospital right away, provided many comforting measures that helped me relax while I awaited surgery , talked with me to explore my feelings regarding the rapid change of plans, and went over what to expect during the surgery. She also came to my hospital room post -surgery, helped me get settled, assisted with breastfeeding and baby care, helped me in any way I needed, and brought me a post surgery care kit. My husband and I both couldn't agree more that Ricky being there for us at the hospital lifted our spirits and benefited us more than words can say. In all aspects, Ricky always went above and beyond and I would recommend her to anyone looking for a doula.

Posted 7/8/2015

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Erin Burton

I cannot begin to explain how vital Ricky was to our birthing process. I am so grateful for her experience in hypnobabies, her gentle and calming words, her understanding of womanhood, and her guidance she was able to provide my husband; together they were the best team I could ask for. I am a nurse who has previously worked in labor and delivery and now work in a neonatal intensive care unit. Needless to say, the birth process has been very medicalized for me! I have always believed strongly in the importance of natural birth while being respectful of the changes that modern medicine has brought to the safety of mothers and babies. I did a lot of research to find a doula that would help me to "demedicalize" the birthing process and help me to get out of my head (sometimes ignorance is bliss!). Ricky absolutely met all of my expectations, and then some. My labor was lengthly and my delivery was not how I had anticipated it might go but Ricky was at my side, helping me to utilize my hypnobabies skills and guide my husband to be the best partner he could possibly be. When there was a change in plans, Ricky was supportive and helped me to accept what my birth story would be. I honestly feel that I was able to leave "nurse Erin" at the door and just focus on being a woman and a mother. I certainly will be including Ricky in our birth for our future children and am forever thankful for the gift she gave me in enjoying the birth of our son. 

Posted 6/22/2015

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Christina Epp Penkala

I was lucky enough to be Ricky’s 100 birth! We had met and talked with Ricky a few times before my current birth (Jan 2015) as I had a couple miscarriages, prior to that. Ricky was so supportive and I knew I would be hiring her when it would finally happen for us. And that we did when we found out we were pregnant again. Ricky also suggested taking the hypnobabies class that she instructed and I am very glad we did. The classes were long but went by so quickly as there was so much to cover. It was a lot of work, but well worth it! Ricky was a great instructor but an even better doula! She was always there for me when I had a question prior to the birth and even after the birth. She was a great resource helping us get into contact with the right people when we needed something!

During the birth, she was so extremely helpful and I seriously don’t know how I would’ve done it without her. She just stepped in right away and helped me find a peaceful place to know that I could do this birth. She helped guide me and keep me calm….from her touch on my back to the words she was saying, it just helped me relax. During the pushing stage her words of encouragement and knowing exactly what I needed was incredible. My husband was also very glad she was there as she helped him quite a bit and when he wasn’t sure what to do, Ricky stepped in right away. He was very happy to have her there.

I honestly cannot say enough good things about Ricky! I would hire her again for my next child in a heartbeat!!! Thanks so much for everything Ricky!!

Christina & Matt

Posted 4/1/2015

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Deah Neves

The moment my husband and I met Ricky we knew she was the doula for us. When we first met Ricky it was immediately apparent she was very experienced and answered all of our questions before we asked them. Ricky has a very calm and relaxed personality. Although time and distance limited us from taking any extra classes with Ricky we were able to benifit from her visits and informitive emails. Ricky was always quick with responding to emails and texts. Ricky always was there to answer our calls.  When i was in labour Ricky was there for us from late at night to the early morning hours. She was our rock and support through it all. We were so comfortable with Ricky there. She kept us informed suggested ideas but never made decisions for us. Ricky helped my husband support me when he may not have known where to be or what to do. We are so thankful for everything Ricky has done for us and already plan to use her for our future births. Ricky made bringing our beautiful daughter into this world just that more amazing.  Thank you Ricky 

Posted 3/17/2015

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Amy Lockhart Chilton

Ricky brings experience with depth and breadth.

Her calm presence is like warm water running over the body, as energy is balanced. Amy and I experienced a unique path of pregnancy...full of the unexpected. At each instance Ricky was available and offered her insight to help us gain perspective on a multiplicity of complications.

Even though our path led us away from our desired a midwifery/birthing centre birth, Ricky supported us through a natural as can be Hospital Birth.

The pressure of a hospital environment can be quite demanding, shift work, agendas and best practices are met with the confusion of a first time birth. But, Ricky, advocate for women, families, babies and Comforting Hands Doula was able to help confused, over-tired, exhausted parents to be, to make wise choices.

We can’t imagine going through a birth process without an Angel like Ricky.

(A + A + a)

Posted 2/11/2015

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Megan Skelton

Hiring Ricky as my doula was the smartest choice I made regarding my pregnancy and birthing. She supported me during my pregnancy with a lot of information I would not have researched or known about on my own, and was always available to give advice.

During my delivery Ricky is was constantly by my side and seemed to know what I needed before I even knew. She helped keep me calm, so that I could give birth to my baby totally relaxed and peacefully. I will definitely be calling her for my next pregnancy! 

Posted 12/15/2014

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Leah Guderjan

It's hard to put into writing how amazing Ricky was during the birth of our daughter. She knew what I needed when I needed it and stuck it out until the bitter end. I don't know what we would have done without her during our 42 hours of labor and delivery. We had an unplanned hospital transfer which she helped me accept and feel okay with, her presence was calming when the terrifying possibility of a c-section was mentioned and she shared in our joy as we all celebrated the final natural birth of our baby girl Zoe.

At the hospital she made sure I understood everything that was about to happen to us and reminded us to communicate our wishes to the hospital staff. She helped my husband stay relaxed my laughing and joking with him and she also made sure to grab our camera every now and then to help capture the beauty of the moment.

Ricky will forever hold a very dear place in our hearts, more than these short few words here will ever be able to convey. I feel like I would be able to do it all again if I knew I'd have Ricky by my side!

Posted 11/17/2014

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Rebecca Godin

Ricky is what a Doula should encompass. A combination of by the book professionalism and relaxed energy in a room. Her professionalsm helped me feel so safe and I could trust in her vast knoweledge of birthing and her amazing calming energy eased my fears and worries throughout the whole pregnancy and birthing. Ricky was so committed to her role as our Doula in every way, from sending me helpful links to being by my side for almost two days of birthing. Her photography and birthing story that she wrote for us was icing on the cake. We were so blessed to come across her! I highly recommend Ricky Issler to any birthing couple! Many thanks to her and to her family for understanding that a doula's schedule is very up in the air! ;)

with love,

Rebecca, Daniel and baby Piper

Posted 8/22/2014

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Sisavath Phonharath

We heard about Doulas from friends and family and did our research to see if it would be a good fit for us. Our first meeting with Ricky went extremely well and we knew from that point on that we really wanted to work with her. It was because of Ricky that we learned and used Hypnobabies training. We had such an amazing and wonderful experience with Ricky and could not have done it without her. 

Posted 8/11/2014

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Julia Stratis

My name is Alex, and I am a proud new father of a beautiful baby girl. When we found out Julia (my wife) was pregnant, I was excited, but nervous at the same time. Julia did a lot of research about natural birthing methods, and decided she would like to use hypnobabies techniques. We signed up for hypnobabies with Ricky - it consisted of 6 classes on the weekend, and was not only extremly helpful, but helped to put my mind at ease with the birthing process. About halfway through the classes we decided we would like to have Ricky as our doula. As a new father these words do not even come close to doing Ricky justice, she truly was amazing, I would recommend her to any new father having a baby! Julia was induced at 1pm and started really feeling pressure waves at around 7pm. I had been texting Ricky throughout the entire process. During the afternoon we didn't feel it was neccesary for Ricky to be there, but Ricky cancelled her evening hypnobabies class just in case things started to progress. I sent Ricky a text around 7:30pm saying it was probably best she come, as Julia was asking for her. During this time I was massaging (well trying to anyway) Julia and trying my best to keep her comfortable. As soon as Ricky walked in the room she started to massage Julia, and using some hypnobabies cues. She was a very calming spirit in the room, and made me feel at ease just knowing she was there. There were a few times when Julia had said she might want some pain medication. Ricky was able to talk Julia through the pressure and discomfort, and keep going all natural. Ricky knew exactly the right things to say, and when to say them! I can say with 100% confidence that Ricky was the reason Julia was able to stay close to her original birthing plan, and have a baby the way she wanted. I was a little concerned about the cost in the beginning, however after being through the process, I could not put a price to the support Ricky provides, it was invaluable.

Posted 7/18/2014

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Katie Sorenson

I started looking into prenatal classes when I came across Ricky's website. She offered Hypnobabies classes. I had never heard of a Doula or Hypnobabies before but was intrigued. Upon further investigation I decided that I needed to have a Doula at my birth and I wanted a Hypnobabies birth. The moment I met Ricky I knew I had found the Doula I wanted to support my birth. Ricky has such a calming pressence about her, I immediately felt comfortable and knew she would be the perfect addition to my support team. She took the time to answer all my questions and I was looking forward to working with her. We got to know her better once our hypnobabies classes started. Every week I would look forward to these 2 hrs or so dedicated to finding peace and listening to my body. Before Ricky and hypnpbabies I was very fearful of the birthing process as Im sure most first time moms are. But her classes took away all fear and left nothing but excitment and confidence in myself and my body. My birth day arrived quiet early, Ricky offered support via text message until I decided I needed her there to help with my hypnosis. Things started to progress quickly and we decided it would be best if she met us at the hospital. From the moment she arrived she got straight to work helping me achieve comfort with my hypnosis. My birth was long and didn't go as planned, but Ricky was always there and seemed to know just what I needed. It took a lot of pressure off my husband and they were able to work as a team getting me through what was a difficult birth. Ricky was an amazing contact to have afterwards. She was able to answer any questions and help with breastfeeding. Being a Reiki master too she was able to do some Reiki on myself and the baby afterwards that really helped me find inner peace and come to terms with a birth that did not go as planned. Ricky was worth her weight in gold. I would hire her again and again. I am looking foward to working with her again for my next pregnancy

Posted 7/2/2014

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Amy McCrum

Ricky is absolutely incredible at what she does!!  Our goal was to have a birth with limited medical interventions and without the use of an epidural, and I firmly believe that it was because of Ricky that we were able to achieve this.  She has an incredibly calm, capable, empowering and positive presence, and from the point at which we met her onward, we found our attitude towards birth (as first-time parents) shifting from fear to excitement.  Any questions I had were always answered quickly, with a list of credible articles and resources I could refer to, and with a reassuring tone.  I felt strongly about not being induced, and thanks to Ricky, I had the resouces I needed to hold off (since all my fluid levels etc. were still looking good), and successfully went into labour on my own.

I had a long labour - 44 hours in total, and Ricky spent 19 of those with me in my active birthing time.  From start to finish, she knew EXACTLY what to say and do to get me through each pressure wave - it was amazing, it was like she knew what I needed before I did.  She was a wonderful support to my husband as well, by reassuring him that things were normal and safe, and by letting him go and get a bite to eat without him worrying about leaving me alone.  Although it was definitely intense, I found that because of Ricky my labour was completely manageable without pain medication or interventions.  We now have a happy, healthy little girl, and are definitely hoping that Ricky is available when our next little one is on the way!  Thank you Ricky!

Posted 2/24/2014

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Tiffany Edmunds

Ricky was recommended to us by a coworker and from our first meeting we knew we had the right doula for us. She was kind, considerate and very informative, which was exactly what we needed being first time parents!

In addition to being our doula we signed up for her Hypnobabies class and it was a great experience! Learning to relax and take control of our pregnancy and birthing was amazing. The class left us feeling prepared, confident and ready to welcome our little one into the world.

In the days leading up to our birthing time we kept in touch with Ricky via text and email; she was always right there with words of comfort and encouragement! Not to mention helpful suggestions to encourage little one to come out and meet us as naturally as possible - I was getting a little impatient at 42 weeks.

The (very early) morning of Ricky met us at the hospital and went straight to work; she introduced herself to the attending nurses and immediately helped set a calm mood with hypnobabies music and relaxation cues. Our birthing didn't go 100% as initally planned but the Hypnobabies training and Ricky's comforting presence gave us the courage to vocalize and discuss our concerns with the doctors while remaining calm and still feeling prepared for any situation. Our baby was born happy and healthy, we couldn't ask for more. 

Thank you Ricky for all of your support!

If a baby brother or sister is on the way, you will be call #1.


Tiffany, Travis & Kellan

Posted 2/5/2014

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Amber Cardamone

As soon as I got pregnant the second time I knew I wanted to have a doula. The birth of our first son wasn't a very positive or memorable experience. I wanted it to be different this time. I had an initial meeting with Ricky & I knew I liked her. I had a roller coaster ride trying to find a midwife. From getting one and then being dropped from her care due to government restrictions to getting one again at 30 weeks. Ricky was there for a shoulder of support every time. My husband and I took Ricky's 6 week Hypnobabies class with 4 other couples that we have since become friends with. When Ricky read the scripts to us in class I could feel my body release as her voice is so calming and relaxing. (The same result wasn’t achieved when my husband read the same script later at home) Unfortunately my midwife discovered my baby was breech at 41+ weeks. This meant that I could no longer have a midwife deliver my baby or have the natural water birth I had been planning for. I felt crushed and defeated, like my body betrayed me. The next few days were filled with tears and disappointment that I know I couldn't have gotten through without Ricky by my side. I was induced as I planned to still try and deliver my baby. Ricky was at the hospital with my husband and me as soon as I called. She walked the halls with me, read me scripts from our Hypnobabies lessons, massaged my back, brought her exercise ball for me to sit on in the shower which was a big help. Most of the hospital staff wasn't very supportive of my new birth plan but I was able to stay focused with Ricky's guidance. My baby's birth ended being via C-section. If we have more children I know I will have Ricky as my doula. She was meant to be by women's side for the most important and emotional day of their lives. It could have been my best friend there, she makes you feel that comfortable. I have a spot in my heart for Ricky Issler.

Posted 1/19/2014

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Amanda Arbuckle

My husband and I hired Ricky as our doula for both my pregnancies. She is very knowledgeable and always provides lots of information for you to read so you can make informed decisions during your pregnancy/birth. I know without doubt that she is the reason I was able to have two natural births. My first was in hospital and my second was at home by waterbirth so I have two very different experiences. Ricky supported me fully both times and got me through each contraction by breathing with me and keeping me focused. My home birth happened very quickly and was missed by our midwife,(by 5 minutes!) however Ricky was there and kept me calm while encouraging me to follow what my body wanted to do. Our daughter was born in the water with Ricky there to catch her. It was exactly the way I wanted it to be.

Ricky is not just an amazing doula, she is a beautiful person and we are truly blessed to have had her touch our lives and help us bring new life into this world.

Posted 10/20/2013

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Shauna Tomanek

I'm happy to share my experience with Ricky.  After researching and meeting with a few doula's my husband and I decided Ricky was a good fit with us. She has a open minded approach that supported our vision but also provided us with information to make choices.  No pressure to go one way or another, she had open and honest conversations with us which made us feel confident and comfortable with her being a part of our birth.  We got to know Ricky better through her Hypnobabies course she facilitated.  This course was INVALUABLE in giving us the tools we needed to understand our birthing time and to prepare for the big day the best we could.  In my opinion a course like this was critical in feeling confident moving through this process of pregnancy and birth and had the added element of hypnosis which was a tremendous tool in coping with pressure waves (contractions) and finding the confidence in myself to make my way through an intervention free birth.  

Ricky supported us during the birth, providing my husband tools to use with me and also did hands on techniques from our Hypnobabies course and supported us using energy work, positioning and breath work.  The Hypnobabies course along with Ricky's  support was invaluable and I can't recommend it enough.  She had a fun approach to the course, left it open for discussion, answered all our questions and we left feeling empowered.  Her doula support outside the course helped us to navigate the day and understand choices we would be making the day of, running through different scenarios and asked us important questions before we were in labour - when we could think clearly!

I 100% recommend Ricky as a doula and as a Hypnobabies course administrator and would highly recommend that as a new mother especially you seek out support and information from a doula to help prepare you for your birth.

Posted 7/9/2013

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Amanda Arbuckle

During my pregnancy Ricky was great at answering any questions I had and always sent me the material to back it up. I felt very prepared for my baby to come into this world because of her. This was my second child and unlike my first birth I wanted this one to be drug free with as little intervention as possible. My labour lasted 2 days and Ricky was with us in the hospital the entire time. I am so thankful for the support she gave my husband and me. She kept me focused through each contraction and I am sure that without her I would have had an epidural. Ricky helped me give birth the way I wanted to and I would highly recommend her.

Posted 10/14/2012

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Shannon Clarke and Chris Mikulin

We had a great birth experience with Ricky as our Doula.  We knew that we made the right choice with Ricky when she walked in our door and our extremely hyper and high strung dog immediately became calm in her presence.  It was her calmness that made us feel so confident that we would have the birth experience we wanted.  We believe that having Ricky on board was one of the primary reasons I was able to have a natural birth without pain medication.  She gave us a lot of ideas for keeping calm and dealing with the pressure of contractions.  

I was scheduled for an induction after being a week overdue, and Ricky reassured me that if I didn't want to go through with the induction there were other methods that could get the birthing process started.  I used some of Ricky's homeopathic remedies and some of her recommended techniques and was able to begin labour without the medical induction.  Thanks to Ricky, everything went very smoothly from there and I had a short and easy labour and immediate recovery.  

Ricky is very kind, knowledgeable, and reliable.  The birth story that she wrote for us is so beautiful it brings us tears of joy.  We recommend Ricky 100% to anyone looking for a great Doula!

Posted 10/13/2012

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Lisa Bryden

I am definitely going to use Ricky for any more babies that come our way! She was so instrumental in achieving my goal of not using pain medication. She knew all the right things to say, she guides you in breathing through contractions properly, and she knows all the right places for physical support  and positions to try as well. She is there for whatever you need.
One of my favorite things about having Ricky in the delivery room is that she makes sure you understand what the nurses and doctors are doing and helps you ask the right questions. You need someone like that because you are so focused on the pain and the task at hand. (Husbands are great but they just can’t quite fill the shoes of a woman who’s been through labour).
Even when I first met Ricky I could just tell that she has the perfect energy for what I was looking for. Very calm but very confident as well. She really knows her stuff and goes beyond the labour part of things. I’ve had to ask her several things about my baby and she always has information that goes beyond the typical medical response.
She is so passionate about her job and I am so grateful that she was able to help me in the birth of my special boy. Thanks again, Ricky!!

Posted 10/10/2012

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Tessa Deringer

I was very determined to have a natural, drug-free birthing experience and wanted to ensure I had a awesome support system in my delivery room. Hiring Ricky as our Doula was the best decision I had made. She educated and informed us of all possible variables (lots we were not aware of) and helped us formulate our birth plan. She was supportive of our decisions from the beginning and we also took her hypnobabies class for extra education and relaxation tools. All in all looking back on my experience Ricky was awesome at the hospital. She was calm, helped direct my husband when he seemed at a loss, offered me water/juice, reminded me about changing positions or trying something new and most importantly supported me with her kind words. Ricky is an awesome person and doula and I am happy to say that I achieved a beautiful drug-free birthing experience. Ricky's services are worth every penny and we will be using her again when we have more children.

Posted 9/30/2012

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Monique and Wouter

It is without hesitation that we would recommend Ricky as a great doula. She is kind, knowledgeable, and takes her job as your support system and advocate seriously. Our journey with Ricky started with her Hypnobabies class. The tools and techniques we learned helped us in our birthing time (to cope with discomfort) and in the weeks after our baby was born (to assist with sleeping, expressing milk, and staying calm). Ricky kept the class small which provided for a safe and personal experience. We had not planned to have Ricky as our doula originally, but after only a few weeks of getting to know her in the Hypnobabies class – and learning all she had to offer – we started to second-guess that decision. Then the bag of waters broke! With our original doula out of town, we contacted the back-up doula, but it just did not feel right. And, things were not progressing in terms of pressure waves and baby’s decent. Something was emotionally holding Monique back. After twenty-four hours of this on/off birthing experience, we knew it was time to connect with Ricky. Talk about a last minute request! Ricky did not even hesitate – this speaks to her commitment and non-judgemental nature. Her response and genuine care was such a relief, and the birthing got going. Ricky was a fantastic support for us! She helped to keep us calm, offered encouragement, and kept notes all along. She engaged with the care team to ensure our wishes were considered and assisted in keeping the room positive and conducive to hypnosis. However, we appreciated Ricky the most after our little girl was born. Things got a little scary as she was born with a few congenital disorders. Ricky was with us in that most tough and vulnerable moment, and has continued to keep in touch, always offering friendship and care. We feel so blessed that Ricky was our doula.

Posted 8/19/2012

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Melanie Rousseau

Ricky was referred to me by friends who also used her for the birth of their first child.  I decided to contact her and see what she had to offer, even though initially I wasn't planning on using a doula.  Ricky changed my mind in our first meeting.  She was calm and confident about the service she offered and put me at ease immediately.  I not only decided to hire her to be my doula, but I also decided to enroll in her Hypnobabies program.  I had done a lot of research on birth preparation and I really appreciated the alternate approach and information Ricky and Hypnobabies offered.  I consider myself a planful person and I like to have as much information as possible to make informed decisions - with Ricky and her program I was able to completely engage in my own experience, making fully informed decisions every step of the way.  I not only entered my daughter's birth time calm and confident, but even though some times were harder than others, I was able to work through the process and I gave birth to a lovely, healthy, gorgeous daughter.  Ricky was a wonderful support to my husband as well. I know that they also had to work hard for me and they were a terrific team.

I have such vivid, wonderful memories giving birth to my daughter.  This was made possible largely because of the support Ricky provided to me.  Thank you Ricky!

Posted 7/25/2012

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Shawna S

Upon finding out I was pregnant, I immediately began searching out a doula for our first childbirth experience. I got a great feeling about Ricky the moment I spoke to her. She radiates calmness and serenity...that paired with a love of babies and a great deal of empathy makes Ricky an ideal doula for anyone!

Ricky was available for me to talk to anytime, and provided a lot of information throughout the pregnancy. At every visit I felt we got to know each other more and more, and it became easy to see Ricky being with us for the birth of our baby! I know that Ricky was there for us at anytime to answer any questions we had, and was a great source of information of all types. She stayed in touch regularly and is so good at bonding with people!

Upon finding out that I had a breech baby and low amniotic fluid, I completely panicked. Ricky was at the hospital with us and helped us through all the emotions, and was always there offering a cool cloth for my head and Reiki for my frazzled nerves. I had a c section, and she was there immediately, ensuring everything was taken care of, and helping us for quite some time afterward. I really appreciated that!

I highly recommend Ricky Issler without reservation to anyone who wants a calm, level presence during their birthing time. Ricky is someone you will never forget having with you during your exciting time!

Posted 6/18/2012

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Nicole Sailes

Ricky Issler was not only our doula, but also our Hypnobabies instructor/doula. She guided us through 6 weeks of prenatal classes along with 3 other couples. We are very pleased with everything Ricky did for us with the Hypnobabies program and the doula aspect. Before we even hired her, she took the time to answer emails, phone calls, and come to our house as soon as it was convenient for us. She was not pushy whatsoever and very informative about what she offers. We didn't really know what questions to ask since the whole 'doula' thing was new to us but she willingly shared information and stories with us. Closer to our baby's 'guess date', Ricky was very supportive in all of our decisions and provided us with information about the decisions facing us in addition to our own research and information. Ricky helped make me feel confident in our decisions and was very good at keeping in contact with us as the days progressed leading to our birthing time. The day of our baby's birth, Ricky came by our house even before we requested. She later met us at the hospital because we didn't feel we needed her at home before we left for the hospital although she would've come by again if we requested. Ricky was so passionate and helpful throughout our birthing time. She was very helpful in suggesting various ideas to make our experience even better. Ricky helped us in making the birth of our daughter very special, memorable, and enjoyable. I highly recommend Ricky Issler as a doula. She is so passionate about what she does and has a way of making you feel very comfortable when she's around you.

Posted 4/3/2012

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Erin, Matt & baby Rylan

I always knew that I wanted to have a natural birth, but I was scared/nervous/anxious about the entire process. I read many books and knew it was exactly what I wanted to do but was unsure I could do it without a great deal of support. After researching doulas, I came across Ricky and set up a meeting with her to see if she was a fit for both myself and my husband. As soon as we met Ricky, we knew she was perfect. She has an extremely calming presence and was always there for any questions or concerns that either of us had. After being 2 weeks overdue, the doctors really encouraged me to get induced. This was something that I didn't want and was not part of my birth plan. Ricky was always there to let me know the advantages, disadvantages, opinions but let me have my own voice in the decision making. The baby was just too happy in there, so after being over 2 weeks due and starting to get extremely uncomfortable, we decided to get induced. Ricky was there every step of the way and after 7 hours of labour, we welcomed a beautiful baby boy, naturally! Even though during the end moments when I desperately wanted drugs, Ricky and my husband were right by my side, encouraging me and trying every way to make me as comfortable as possible. I was so proud of myself in the end that I had delivered a 9 lb baby naturally even after the induction and slight change in our plans. Friends and family ask if having a doula is worth it in the end, and I always answer, I probably wouldn't have been able to have a natural birth without her!! So if you are even considering having a doula, Ricky is definitely someone who will make you feel so comfortable and strong in your own abilities.

Posted 3/15/2012

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Gord Lacey

Two minutes into meeting Ricky for the first time we knew she was the right Doula for us. She has an incredibly calming nature to her, but it's backed with confidence, perfect for someone that'll be beside you during the birth of your child. We got to know Ricky really well during my wifes pregnancy, as we were her first Hypnobabies couple; she had just been certified as the first Hypnobabies instructor in Northern Alberta.

We called Ricky a number of times during Kat's pregnancy, and every time the information she gave us was spot-on, and when the delivery day arrived, she was right there with us. A lot of people think the Doula is there for the woman, but Ricky was there for me as well. When my hands were tired after massaging Kat's back for (what seemed like) hours, Ricky was there to take over. She was there to read the hypnosis scripts, make sure Kat was hydrated, and comfortable. Our day was stress-free, the birth was great, and I know Ricky played a huge, huge role in that.

We're extremely happy that Ricky joined us for the birth of our son, and we've already recommended her to our friends that are expecting. She's awesome!

Posted 3/13/2012

Birth Availability for Ricky Issler

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