Birth Fee: $1800 to $2200
Fee Details: I have partnered with another doula, Kerri Evers. We started Doula Sisters to help fill the need in our community for families to be loved on and supported during their pregnancy, birth, and bringing babe home. Check us out at www.doulasistersnyc.com I provide 1-2 prenatal meetings in your home and 1-2 postpartum visits a few days after baby has arrived. If you prefer to have 1 prenatal and 2 postpartums (more help on the other end: nursing, baby care, pp support) I can do that too. My rates are based on my extensive experience and the family's need. I am extremely flexible with payments, so if you need a payment plan, I can put that together for you too. I offer discounts on placenta encapsulation services and pool rentals for doula clients as well. I also offer photographs too.
Birth Doula Experience: 10 years and 300 births attended
Clients per Month: 1 to 4Attends hospital births? All Hospitals
Childcare provider at Forefront Church's nursery Volunteer for Nomi Network
Languages spoken: English
Service Area MapArea of practice: Brooklyn, NY
I can't recommend Maggie highly enough.
As a first time parent, there is so much unknown as far as labor, delivery, postpartum healing breastfeeding, etc... A lot of times I felt like I didn't even know what questions to ask. Maggie gave great advice while supporting the decisions we made for our family. My husband and I learned so much from our meetings with her before and after our son was born.
At the hospital, Maggie made a great team with the nurses and midwives, and we felt 100% supported throughout the labor and delivery. She made our birthing experience so positive, and I really appreciated her breastfeeding support right after our son was born. Maggie is also an excellent photographer, and the photos she took are absolutely gorgeous.
On top of everything else, Maggie is a simply lovely person. She has a great sense of humor and is very calming. We absolutely plan to use her again for any future pregnancies.
My husband and I both agree that Maggie was the best investment we made during my pregnancy. I decided at 37 weeks that I wanted to work with a doula and found Maggie thru a recommendation in a Mom's group on FB. I knew that I wanted to work with Maggie based on her self-proclaimed "funniest woman you'll (ever) meet" on her website. It's true. The minute I met her in person I knew I would hire her, we just clicked--she is the perfect combination of down to earth, funny and smart and experienced so that she can empower you to be the best, most confident, strongest you during pregnancy, labor, pushing, and then Mama once your baby is here. Having her a text message or phone call away was invaluable before during and after--I have sent her photos of things that I would NEVER send to anyone else--and she is happy to receive them!
Regarding approach, I loved that Maggie was open to my having an epidural if I decided I wanted one, which I did end up having, and that she is so supportive of however YOU want to approach your birth. I was unsure if I wanted an epidural and when I had to go on pitocin because my contractions didn't start after my water broke, Maggie was able to keep me calm in the delivery room and had a whole bag of tricks that helped to dilate me faster. My OB was around more than I thought she would be but my nurse was annoying and Maggie was the perfect energy in the room to help keep me caon and collected and have the best possible birth experience.
During our prenatal appointment, I was concerned about not being able to make milk because I had a breast reduction years ago and Maggie kept telling me "your boobs work" and then showed me how to express colostrum--which worked!--and when I saw it I was amazed. And she kept repeating to me "your boobs work" whenever I would see her--and guess what--they do! My baby is 3 months old and exclusively breastfed.
Look no further, hire Maggie, you will not regret it!!!
Let me start my saying that Maggie is amazing and was an essential member of my birth team. She came highly recommended to me by a close friend of mine who also hired Maggie for her birth. I interviewed at least 5 doulas and was feeling unsure about each of them until I met Maggie. Maggie is funny, compassionate and no nonsense kind of gal. She is the best combination of nurturing and straight to the point. She is incredibly experienced and knowledgeable. She was there for me every step of the way. She guided my husband and I through a 31 hour unmedicated birth and then stayed with us to ensure that my breastfeeding relationship was off to a good start, that I was fed and hydrated, and that my husband had a baby 101 crash course. And, she takes awesome pictures as an added bonus!
Maggie was an amazing resource throughout my pregnancy, delivery and post partum experience. She was super helpful in explaining what to expect during labor which helped to allay some of my fears going in. During labor she was there every step of the way. When i had to wait to get an epidural, she was there to calm me down and work through the pain with me. When I ended up having to push for 3.5 hours, she was there holding my legs, encouraging me when I was so discouraged and tired. She was also an advocate when questions such as whether we should consider pitocin came up. After delivery she was so helpful in answering all of my questions about breastfeeding and recovery. She provided incredible support at an especially vunerable time and did so with compassion, patience, and humor. I cannot recommend her enough.
My husband and I were expecting our first child and decided to hire a doula since neither of our families lived nearby and thought we could use the extra support. My husband had no idea what a doula was, but was happy to hire one if it was going to make me feel more comfortable. We met with a few doula's and we really loved how friendly, easy-going and knowledgable Maggie was... she knew her stuff! Choosing Maggie as our doula, was probably one of the best decisions we made regarding our delivery. She was AMAZING during labor... her voice, her touch, her energy and her confidence gave my husband and I unbeleivable peace of mind. When I think back to my delivery, I'm so grateful that I have such beautiful, fond memories instead of fearful, traumatizing ones. A lot of that is due in large part to Maggie's presence. If we have another baby, we would hire Maggie again in a heartbeat!
Maggie is an extraordinary person and doula and we cannot recommend her highly enough. You will be so, so happy that you asked Maggie to be your doula!
We had our first child in July. I was over a week past my due date and was being not so gently counseled to induce by the hospital staff where my testing was being done, and was anxious and upset by the landscape that seemed to be emerging. Via text and phone, Maggie was available and present, helping me to trust myself and navigate all the decisions with just the right words and timing. She made it possible for me to feel safe while laboring at home and ultimately to deliver at the Brooklyn Birthing Center, with our wonderful midwife, Linda.
Once my labor really got going, Maggie came over with her dreamboat energy, humor and relaxed, confident presence. She was totally present and supportive to both me and to my husband, Daniel during the hours of contractions and pacing in our small apartment, the insane cab ride and throuhout the night at the Brooklyn Birthing Center. She has a rare sensitivity to timing and tone, and knew exactly when to step in and offer encouragement, and when to step back and create space for us to just be together or to just allow for silence and focus.
I had low fluid and Reuben had the cord wrapped around his neck, so Maggie strategically coached me for hours and hours, helping me to pace myself while making steady progress... when to walk, when to rest, how to breathe, and of course, how to push! It is just such a pleasure to be in the company of someone so knowledgable, and it was so cool to realize in hindsight all the tiny, critical moves she was making the whole time without our knowing to make Reuben´s entry into the world smooth and healthy. What a truly incredible teacher!
Maggie was an absolutely fantastic doula - I would not hesitate to hire her again! My daughter arrived via induction two weeks late after my water broke, but labor didn't start. It was such a stressful time for me, but Maggie was a lifesaver - she was in constant communication with me as my due date approached and fielded about a gazillion questions from me! Shas a warm, funny personality and she was a calming, reassuring presence throughout the birth. When she showed up at the hospital at 2 am my husband and I both breathed a sigh of relief! She did so much to help me manage the pain - without her I would never have been able to avoid the epidural. She was also super helpful to my husband and allowed him to take a nap during my 18 hours of labor! She is a wonderful resource, especially for a first time mom and she also helped me with breastfeeding after my daughter was born. Even now, months later, I know I can reach out to her for advice or just a trusted second opinion. Maggie is a wonderful doula and an awesome woman - I cannot recommend her highly enough!
I knew that I wanted to work with Maggie after looking at her website for about 30 seconds, but I went through the process of meeting with her anyway and then was even more sure within 30 seconds of meeting her in person. Not only is she extraordinarily qualified in multiple ways to assist with a birth, she is also someone who I could instantly trust and get along with. She set me at ease for concerns I hadn't even admitted to myself that I had. She helped my husband and I orient ourselves toward true partnership in the birth process, and she made us feel so prepared for something that you truly can never be fully prepared for. On the day of my daugther's birth, Maggie was so incredibly supportive, and yet her presence was quiet and spacious. I was so comforted just by knowing she was there, especially because she really focuses not just on the Mom, but on the family as a unit, and so I knew that my husband had the support he needed as well. It's difficult to explain exactly how wonderful she is without this turning into a book...
Suffice it to say, I have moved out of state since the birth and I'm seriously considering renting an apartment in Brooklyn when I have my next baby so that I can work with Maggie again. She is a treasure.
Maggie is incredible. my labor began on Tuesday morning, on wednesday morning the doula (who was also a good friend)I had planned on using for my entire pregnancy backed out due to a family emergency. Obviously I was stressed out.I got Maggie's contact and as soon as I spoke with her on the phone I felt immediately relieved, safe, heard and supported. My Labor continued for 2 more days!!! Maggie was there for me and my husband the entire time. Maggie helped me and supported me in ways I didn't even know I was going to need. She gave me options but helped encourage and support me through the birth plan she knew I wanted. My baby boy was born at 12:10 am jan 23 2016 during the worst snow storm NYC had the entire winter. Maggie stayed with me after my birth and then trecked home through the shut down streets of Brooklyn because she is dedicated loving and passionate about what she does. She is the best doula. And my original doula quitting wound up being the best thing that happened because i couldn't have done it without Maggie :)
Hiring Maggie as our doula was one of the best decisions we made as first time parents. She was there for us for any questions or needs we had in weeks leading up to the pregnancy, throughout the delivery, and even up to the post partum period. I immediately felt comfortable with her. I knew she would be a great coach for my husbannd and me when the time came for my baby to meet the world, but I didn't realize how much emotional and mental support she would provide as well, like a good friend I've known for years in whom I was able to give my utmost trust. And in return she gave me solid, foundational, and caring advice based on her years of experience helping numerous families in the past. When I realized I was going to deliver early and my birth plan wasn't going to unfold as I had hoped, she became my voice of reason and my comfort as I as about to enter uncharted waters that I wasn't ready for. She not only had my best interest at heart, but also my family's. When doctors were dictating my delivery and my mind was no longer comprehending what was about to happen, she explained the medical procedures in detail and gave me the reassurance and confidence I needed to deiiver my baby. And when I had breastfeeding issues at the hospital after the birth, she quickly whisked by my side, and showed me how I can have a healthy start to breastfeeding. These are all things I was never able to get from any of my breastfeedng or birth prep classes. She was able to help me in such a caring and intimate way, because she truly understands and was able to relate with what I was going through. She was always available, day or night, via text, email, or phone. She was extremely flexible in working with our schedules and payment plans as well. We couldn't imagine going through all of this without her! We couldn't have asked for a better doula.
Maggie was wonderful! From our initial meeting with her in a coffee shop, we could tell that she was an expert. She always made us feel like we were in good, competant, capable hands, while never making us feel like our questions or concerns were silly. She provided us the information we needed, and continually reminded us that the decision-making was in our hands. She supported both mama and pappa in the journey of bringing a new baby into the world. We felt like a team of three. Our delivery lasted 36 hours, and Maggie stayed overnight with us in the hospital -- stepping in at all the critical moments, giving us space when we needed it. I don't know how we could have done it with out her. We recommend her HIGHLY to all soon-to-be parents.
Maggie was a such a pleasure to work with!! I had a great experience with the placenta encapsulation. Maggie made it so easy for me and my family--by picking up my placenta from the birth center and delivering the pills to my home several days later. I felt great taking my pills. As compared to my first birth (my son, who is turning 4 in August), I healed WAY faster, had far less bleeding, my mood was great, I slept well and I had a lot of energy. Now that I am taking the pills as needed, each one has the effect of a strong cup of coffee. If I am having a day when I'm extra stressed and feeling down, the pill plus a walk always does the trick. I love how Maggie packaged the placenta pills and dried cord beautifully. I also ordered a placenta tincture lotion, and a print as well. The lotion is helping my husband's psoriasis more than any other cream he has ever tried!! Amazing. The print is beautiful and Maggie also sent me a photo of the placenta with the cord shaped to read "love" (as it is in the print). While I didn't use Maggie's services as a Doula (my friend from college is certified and was with us for both births) I really liked her calm and caring demeanor and recently recommended her to a friend.
I absolutely loooooved working with Maggie through my birth. She has an amazing attitude towards everything, she put me at ease and gave me a lot of confidence. Her massage was absollutely out of this world during my labor...Every touch decresed my pain about 50%. She gave me the right guidance and advice due to which I ended up giving natural birth. Im so thankful to her for that. Otherwise I would have been pushed to get a C section and would have hated the scar. My post natal appointments went really well as well. She helped me with breastfeeding, sour nipples, and the big lump under my arm. Oooooops, my baby started crying, so I have to run...But in short, I 100% recommand Maggie as a duola for someone who wants to have a much better birthing experience.
Maggie was absolutely wonderful! She encapsulated my placenta and even delivered it to my home shortly after my birth journey. She provided such a beautiful presentation, and I was delightfully surprised to receive a piece of the umbilical cord as well. I could tell that the placenta balanced my energy and as I was anemic, it balanced my iron levels as well.
I highly recommend Maggie and her services!
Having Maggie as my doula was such a delight! In such a vulnerable state, Maggie's presence and support was very refreshing and comforting. She respected my preferences and fought for my wishes.
She cared for my physical wellbeing as she helped ease the pain of each contraction through pressure points and massages. She also made sure I was staying hydrated and comfortable.
She was also caring for my emotional/ mental wellbeing through encouragement and positive support.
What I appreciated most was that Maggie also gave personal time for my husband and I. Every so often
she stepped back or would leave the room, allowing my husband to fill in and give that emotional/ physical support. They were very intimate and personal moments and I appreciate that Maggie gave us that.
On the contrary, she would step in and fill in for my husband, leaving him to rest for a bit allowing him to nap while I labored on. She made sure he was eating and staying hydrated as well.
Giving birth at the Brooklyn Birthing Center with Maggie was a bonus as she knew the insides and out of it. It was great to have that connection.
All in all, It was very important to me that I found a doula that I felt comfortable with. With Maggie, I got that. She's very down to earth and amiable.
When I first got pregnant, I knew I wanted to work with a doula. My husband and I interviewed a whole bunch, but we found all of them (who came with good recommendations) to be either a bit cold and too business-like, or too new-agey and likely judgemental: a few said right off the bat that they only work with people planning a natural birth and planning to breastfeed - even though I was planning on both, this really turned me off. Why not be open to different types of people and choices?
When I met with Maggie, I knew right away she would be great. She was warm, open, loved dogs, had recently gone through delivering her own little cutie, and it just felt right. Coincidentally, my brother knew of Maggie from a birthing center where his daughter was born, and gave her rave reviews to me based solely on her "vibe." Maggie came over for a few meet-ups prior to delivery and gave us good tips and support. Then, around my due date and the days following (I was 6 days late), she was very available and supportive, always checking in via text message and offering her thoughts and advice on what I was going through (I'm uncomfortable! How do I induce with castor oil? Will accupuncture work?!).
When I finally went into labor we didn't have time for Maggie to meet us at home, but she met us at the hospital and was such a great help. My husband, who had attended many birthing classes and who had felt "prepared," described seeing Maggie as a "humongous relief." She was very involved in helping us both (suggesting positions, the shower, etc), but she stood back enough so that she didn't overpower the situation. She eased both of our minds, through labor and right after - there was an issue with our baby and she let the medical team handle it and stayed with me, making sure I was comfortable and okay which I was so grateful for.
When we have our next baby, we will 1,000% ask Maggie to be there with us again. Couldn't recommend her more.
Maggie Torrence was AMAZING! She was understanding, encouraging, sensitive, and respectful. She made us feel secure before, during, and after the birth. We felt that we could completely rely on her expertise for both emotional support and practical knowledge. Maggie also helped to advocate for me with the hospital staff which was so important. I also strongly recommend her placenta encapsulation services; it made a HUGE difference.
Choosing Maggie as our birth doula was such a good decision! She prepared us for and guided us through 24 hours of labor with gentle strength and unflagging support, and her advice for late pregnancy, labor and delivery, breastfeeding, and postpartum recovery was invaluable. I would recommend her without reservation to any expectant mother.
My husband and I are so grateful to have had Maggie by our side during the birth of our daughter— she was a fabulous resource throughout our birthing experience. As background, my husband was initially skeptical about having a doula with us during this very intimate time— after our baby was born he was so happy that she was there with us. Maggie prepared our expectations for labor and provided great comfort and reassurance as my birth plan of minimizing all possible interventions quickly unraveled. She helped me to put things in perspective when I wanted to go to the hospital earlier than I had initially planned and wanted an epidural much earlier than I had anticipated, always reminding me what we had already accomplished and focusing on each contraction getting us closer to meeting our baby girl. Maggie kept things positive as our baby’s heart rate dropped during labor and I had to gather the strength to breathe into an oxygen mask to try to avoid a c-section. This allowed me to hold it together and stay focused on conserving strength and oxygen for our baby when my initial instinct was to worry about all the possible scenarios. She kept us as calm and focused as possible during a very stressful turn of events and helped guide my husband on how he could best support me. When I ultimately had to have an emergency c-section, after trying to push caused our baby’s heart rate to plunge even further, Maggie’s expertise and calming presence reassured me that we had done everything we could and come to terms with it being the best way to meet our baby safely. We are so happy we had her with us through every step!
Maggie is wonderful - we were so happy and grateful to have her as our Doula for our homebirth! Maggie went to great lengths to understand not only our preferences and hopes for the birthing process, but also to prepare (as much as one can!) for what my needs might be and how best she could respond. She has beautiful intuition and great non-verbal communication skills. Maggie always always put us first - she never tried to influence our preferences and she was incredibly responsive and knowledgeable with whatever question or need I had. She also had a fantastic rapport with our 2 year old son, who was present for the entire birth.
Maggie obviously loves her role as Doula and takes it very seriously. I would HIGHLY recommend her to any mom-to-be!
I cannot imagine my pregnancy, labor, and delivery story without Maggie in it. She was so comforting and encouraging through the whole process. I felt like every time we met, she really listened and provided outstanding support. We were not the kind of parents who read every book, so we relied on Maggie's wisdom and advice for so many things. We trusted her to direct us to useful information and to filter what we were being told from friends and family.
Maggie helped us create a birthing plan that made sense for our family. When she arrived at 4 am to our apartment, she was a calm and reassuring presence while I labored through early contractions. At the hospital, she reminded me of things I had forgotten and did not leave my side. I don't remember everything clearly, but I do remember her comforting words, encouragement, and advocacy. At some points, the medical staff was asking her to assist them.
My husband took his cues from her and with their combined encouragement, I remained calm and relaxed through the delivery. Maggie helped me understand what was happening at every stage, so I was never left in the dark. The hospital staff was so impressed by her that they asked about her afterwards. We were truly blessed by her attentiveness, strength, and knowledge. She will forever be part of Zella Ruth's birth story and life and we are so thankful!
Maggie's love for mamas and babies is deep and genuine. She was also incredibly supportive of my husband and our marriage throughout the process. She was reliable, professional and chock full of knowledge, that was clearly gained by real experience. She gave us information and care tailored to our needs and wants, which prepared us in a way that no class or book could have. She laid out all our options, without bias and then supported us in our choices without judgement. She was a bedrock of calm and then quick to make a funny one liner, just when I needed it!
We rode to the hospital in a taxi, my husband and I in the back and Maggie in the front. She was so in tune to me while I was in labor that she actually knew when a contraction was coming at the same time I did and was there telling me it would be over soon. Then when it did end, she gently told me I could let it go. I was so grateful for that, especially the latter because I hadn't even realized I was hanging onto it and that it was time to breathe! I didn't even have to speak.
Immediately following the delivery, she was helping me and baby latch, snapping a few pictures of our new family and preparing me for the next hours of postpartum, telling me what I could expect and what I could let go of and not worry about. She came to visit us at home soon after and sat in with me duirng a breastfeeding session and held little Caspian and cooed over him and answered all my questions about everything from nipple care to burping baby to sleeping schedules to hormones.
I can honestly say that I cannot imagine ever having a baby without Maggie. Without her, my anxiety levels would have been off the charts. She was the most incredible safety net and I knew that I needed her, even before my contractions started. Our little family will be forever grateful to her and we'll defintely be calling on her if we decide to grow.
Maggie was a true Godsend.
She had come highly recommended by a friend who sang her praises. We were lucky to have found Maggie pretty late in the game, about 2 weeks before my due date. I am eternally grateful that she was able to be there to support the birth of our daughter. We could not have done it without her - well, we could have, but without her it would have been way more scary.
Maggie has an extremely calm presence and she exudes knowledge and confidence. She is smart, honest, professional, unabashedly real, and she has a wonderful sense of humor that she only uses at appropriate times.
What I loved and appreciated most about Maggie was that she offered very effective physical support during my delivery (mainly massage and verbal coaching), which allowed my husband to focus on supporting me emotionally. We will never forget her for that.
If you are fortunate enough to come across Maggie and if you end up meeting and connecting with her, you will not be disappointed.
We interviewed several doulas before deciding on Maggie and we’re so glad we did! From the beginning, Maggie was incredibly present and in-tune with our needs as a couple expecting our first baby. In our pre-natal sessions with Maggie, she spent as much time as was needed to address our concerns and get to know us. She is a wealth of information about the birthing process, yet also was great at listening to us and helping us to define what kind of birthing experience we wanted. As someone who has worked at a birthing center as a birth assistant as well as attended so many births as a doula, we trusted her experience and felt comfortable asking her questions.
When our baby was breech at 36 weeks we turned to Maggie not only for support, but also for help navigating our different options for encouraging the baby to turn. By 38 weeks, when the baby had still not moved and we were looking at the real possibility of needing a C-section, Maggie walked us through that process in detail and really helped eased our minds as having a C-section was a big departure from the birth we had envisioned.
We ended up having a scheduled C-section at Maimonides (we had hoped to deliver at a birthing center) and Maggie was waiting for us in the post-op room (she wasn’t permitted to be with us in the operating room). She supported us in those first moments, when the baby was doing the breast crawl and working on her first latch. She helped us get settled in the hospital, navigate those first hours when mama was really out of it, and visited us two days after we arrived home.
Maggie was always just a text message away if we had any questions both pre- and post-partum. We loved her sense of humor and down to earth attitude.
My husband Joey and I learned about Maggie through a friend of ours. We both discussed wanting to hire a doula for the birth of our first child and so we began the interview process. Maggie was the first doula we interviewed and there was no need to interview anyone else! We both immediately felt that she was perfect and everything we wanted in a doula. Little did we know that she would far exceed our expectations.
From the very beginning of my pregnancy Maggie was a constant support and resource for my husband and me. As expectant parents we had a ton of questions throughout the pregnancy and a few decisions to make and Maggie was always available to answer questions and walk us through our options. Maggie taught us how to ask our medical providers the right questions, and when and how to assert our needs and desires. As first time parents, I felt less overwhelmed and lost in what can be an overwhelming experience. Because of Maggie my husband and I felt more confident as we awaited the arrival of our child.
As it turned out, my labor was very long (lasting four days) but Maggie was there every step of the way. She was always available to answer questions, provide relief, and came over to give my husband a break while she physically helped me through my contractions. She knew exactly what we needed in order to be prepared and rested for the delivery. She gave me useful tools to manage the contractions and most significantly, kept me positive and focused on the ultimate goal even when I felt like my labor was unproductive and never ending!
Maggie was a calming force throughout my pregnancy and labor. She was informative, generous with her time, supportive, and encouraging. My husband constantly tells people that Maggie was the best investment we made during this pregnancy. I couldn’t’ agree with him more.
I just had my first baby with Maggie as my doula and I can't say anything but wonderful things about her. We had a really good experience with her and I honestly now couldn't imagine going through pregnancy and labor without her.
My husband and I were unsure about using a doula at first, but after talking with Maggie initially we both felt like it was the right thing. He was nervous that a doula might be watching over him during my labor and barking orders or criticizing him in trying to help. Maggie of course assured us that her aim was to assist him in helping me and filling in any holes he couldn't fill. And that's exactly what happened. Maggie and my husband were an amazing support team during labor, and she definitely did not step on any toes. I would say in the end my husband was possibly more happy she was there than even me (and I was more than grateful to her).
Throughout my pregnancy Maggie would check in on me and was quick to respond any time I had questions or random issues. She is very knowledgeable - she can tell you what's going on with your body AND give you helpful pieces of advice to help deal with your aches, pains, and other weird bumps in the pregnancy road. Her being knowledgeable was really important, but I think even more so was that Maggie makes you feel relaxed about what is going on with your body (which can be a really freaky process) and the little human growing inside you. She is a spiritual person who reminds you that a higher power is at work in caring for you and the little one growing inside of you, which one, keeps you steady and puts those crazy 9 months in perspective, and two, lowers your stress level - a huge benefit to your and Baby's health ultimately.
I would strongly recommend Maggie as a doula. After I had my daughter I believe I referred to Maggie multiple times as an angel - definitely a plus to have in the delivery room!
It's hard to articulate how grateful I am that Maggie was present for my birth experience. From the very beginning, she was extremely informative, always available, and very clear about what her role was going to be. She also let my husband know that she was not there to step on his toes; instead she was there to work with him as a team. She checked in with me regularly and was quick to answer all my questions via text.
On the big day, Maggie was there as soon as we asked her to be and she was an extremely calming presence throughout the entire labor. Unfortunately, immediately after our daughter was born I had to be transferred to the hospital for post-partum complications. Maggie instantly snapped into action and took charge; she printed my charts, collected my belongings, swaddled my newborn daughter, and talked me through every single step. At the hospital she literally held my hand the entire time while intentionally blocking my husband's view of what was happening. And when it was all over and we learned men were not allowed as overnight guests, Maggie got herself comfortable in the chair next to my hospital bed and spent the night there with me, filling in where the night nurses failed and helping me navigate the world of breastfeeding. It should be noted that all of this occurred the night before Thanksgiving, right before she had to go home and cook a holiday meal for visiting family members! Quite honestly, what she did was so above and beyond what we had expected from her... she even brought us Thanksgiving leftovers at our follow-up visit. My husband and I have since had many conversations about what that night would have looked like had Maggie not been there for us, and neither of us can even wrap our heads around it. Make this woman your doula... you won't regret it!!
It is difficult to put into words my appreciation for Maggie. I had a long labor (contractions starting 5 days before I actually delivered) and Maggie was with my husband and I every step of the way. She has the ability to provide calm and reassurance when needed-- as well as actual physical relief when that's needed as well. She has a wide range of massage, positioning, breathing and relaxation techniques that really made an enormous difference during my labor.
My husband and I both felt so comfortable with Maggie- when we describe our birth story to friends and family, her role is always central - as both he and I honestly feel that we are not sure we could have made it through the (very!) long labor without her. She much physical relief and mental solace to both of us. I truly felt she was a total partner to both my husband and I.
Additionally, because of Maggie's background and extensive knowledge of the birthing process - she was a great resource for any questions. And during the labor, if at any point I was confused by anything regarding directives from doctor or nurses- Maggie was able to skillfully guide us through any confusion. As well, any questions I personally had about what was happening, and why- she was able to easily answer. It was an amazing resource during, and after the birth.
Maggie played such a central, and positive, part of my birthing process. Her energy was always exactly right- never too pushy, but still definitely present. The amount to which she is involved is also exactly right -- she stays with you following the birth until you have a latch with your baby, and then follows up after the birth. It felt to us, without family living locally, that Maggie was that person who was going to make sure everything was okay with us.
I could not recommend Maggie as a doula more. I had such an incredibly positive experience with her. My husband and I both feel we are so fortunate to have found her.
I chose to work with Maggie based upon a friend's recommendation, and she truly lived up to that recommendation. There was a high probability that my husband was going to miss the birth and that my family would be unavailable, so while I had not initially planned to have a doula, I realized that I needed the extra support. She instantly made me feel at ease, and I never interviewed anyone else. She also has a lot of experience in the medical field, which was very helpful in my circumstance since I had pre-eclampsia with my first pregnancy, and polyhydramnios with my second. I felt completely comfortable revealing some very painful history to her in regards to my pregnancies / miscarriages. During labor, Maggie was very calming and helped to remind my husband how to help me. She had many good suggestions to help ease my pain and to attempt to make my labor progress. Although I unfortunately ended up with an emergency C-section (due to the baby's heart rate dropping), it was through no fault of Maggie's, and having her by us helped me to cope with the disappointment of the C-section. It recently occurred to me to ask my husband what happened to Maggie during the C-section. He said that she had patiently waited until he told her it was okay to go home, and he had in fact completely forgotten that she was present what with all the turmoil. She was truly dedicated to helping us in any way possible. I feel like I made a true friend after even such a brief acquaintance. Maggie is the type of person that you want to re-connect with in the future, who makes you smile, who is wonderful with children, and was just brings warm feelings to your soul.
Maggie was wonderful, caring and supportive doula. We clicked right from the beginning and I can't image my labor and delivery without her support. Above all, Maggie was thoughtful and insightful; she knew when we needed space and when my husband needed a break. She was there with help before I even knew to ask! I would highly recommend Maggie to anyone who is looking for a warm and caring doula for labor support.
I made the last minute decision of trying to find a doula a few weeks before my due date. I had a few email exchanges with Maggie and she was very helpful in explaining the advantages of her services but didn’t place any pressure on me. I decided to hire her services and she came over on a Monday night to discuss things further. Right away we got along, she was very easy to talk to and she struck the right balance of asking my husband and I questions about our hopes for our labor experience (a natural birth at a birthing center) with information on what to expect, etc. I went into labor the next morning! From that point on Maggie was an absolute godsend and I don’t know what we would have done without her. She took everything she had learned about me and my husband in one day and was the most amazing support to us both. She intuitively understood what I needed during my labor such as talking me through my contractions in a way that worked for me. She also respected the time my husband and I had put in to learn our birthing method and gave us room to work together and bond during that special time. She and my husband seamlessly worked together to provide coaching and relief. At one point a doula in training came into the room and asked if it was ok that she participate. I didn’t want to say no (as I had probably signed something way back agreeing to it), but it soon became clear that her energy was not right for me. I didn’t even have to ask, Maggie sensed it and found a way to get her out of the room. Most importantly, Maggie is incredibly knowledgeable and I felt very safe with her around. Her medical knowledge combined with her doula experience makes her the best there is. I will love her forever for her service to me during a wonderful, scary, and deeply personal moment in my life.
My labor was one full of plot twists. At times it strayed so far away from my birth plan that the only real constant became Maggie. Maggie, helping me breathe my way to the end of the harder contractions. Maggie, rubbing my back in the car as I was transferred to the hospital. Maggie, reminding me of my power as I pushed my son into the world. Even with my mother and partner there, I found myself reaching for her when I felt most afraid. Her nurturing spirit, sensitivity and tirelessness kept me focused and comfortable. She often knew what I needed before I needed it, whether it was ice chips or encouraging words. I know my birthing experience would have been strikingly different if I hadn't had her there to, literally at times, hold my hand and walk me through it. I am forever grateful that she was a part of the most important day of my life.
My husband and I talked about using a doula (all of our friends used one) but he kept saying he felt like the doula was going to take over the room and basically cut him out of the picture, because this is what several of of friends had experienced. When we interviewed Maggie, my husband was instantly a huge fan and so was I. The interview where we asked all the questions went very smoothly. Other interviews we felt rushed and received only brief responses. I was really impressed that if Maggie didn't know the answer to something she said she didn't know but that she would find out for us. And sure enough, she emailed me a few days later with the answer. When labor came, Maggie met us at Methodist and came in very calm. She showed my husband all the techniques she was using and encouraged him to be an active participant as well. But when he was tired or needed a break, she was right there and never left either of our sides. I was so blessed that she was with us when we fell apart because I cried a lot, when we got ourselves back together, and when we welcomed Sam into the world. I hope to use her again!-xoxo Ginny, Palmer, and Sam
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