Birth Doula + Massage Therapist + Rebozo Instructor
It took the birth of my first child in 1998 to give these passions a more clear purpose. Since then I have been inspired to help other woman on their journey through pregnancy and childbirth. Through the birth of my three babies, I discovered the joy and satisfaction of making my own choices and realized just how important this can be in a woman’s life. I love being able to advocate and educate mommas and couples by supporting them through labor and by helping them process and feel satisfied with their choices.
I have witnessed births in hospitals, at birth centers and home births. My experiences include medicated and unmedicated birth, and I have supported a variety of birth needs and circumstances including VBAC, induction, cesarean, twins, sexual trauma, over 40, high risk, single parents, water birth, non English speaking spouse/family members, to name but a few.
As your Labor Doula my goal is to provide comfort measures and to support and guide you on your birth journey. I will help educate you and your birth team about your birth options, provide continuous labor support and help you process your own personal birth experience. Every birth is unique. It is my goal to provide non-judging care, compassionately and calmly. I will work with your partner and your care providers to create a more relaxing birth environment.
I am also a Certified Rebozo Instructor and I am Dad Certified. I feel passionate about using the Rebozo to help create a more comfortable environment for both mom and her partner. I use relaxation techniques, visualization and comfort measures with my Rebozos. I enjoy helping Dads/Partners feel more relaxed and prepared during labor. My goal is to give the Birth Partner tools to feel more able to assist in comfort and to feel more mentally present with the birthing mother.
In my free time I enjoy cooking and sharing food with my friends, spending time in nature, sitting on my front porch staring at the night sky, treasure hunting at garage sales, creative writing, creative decorating, and spending quality time with my three children and husband.
Birth and Postpartum Doula + Childbirth Educator + Placenta Encapsulation Specialist.
My doula journey started in 2007 after the birth of my first child. His birth opened me up to the birth world and made me realize that birthing-people deserve to have options during pregnancy and birth and deserve to be advocated for throughout the whole process. I read book after book, pored over websites and publications, attended birth and postpartum workshops, and talked to just about anyone and everyone that I could about their birthing experience(s). After about a year I realized that my passion for birth had only amplified! I had an “aha moment” and just knew that I had found my calling; I knew that I was meant to be a doula and to work with birthing and postpartum families.
In 2008 I was trained by Birthingway College of Midwifery, in Portland, Oregon, as a Birth and Postpartum Doula.
I was born and raised in Eugene, Oregon but have lived in Portland for the past 16 years. I live in Lake Oswego with my husband and 3 sons and was a gestational surrogate in 2011. I enjoy hanging out with my family, singing and dancing, cooking and baking, reading, listening to podcasts, taking care of my plants, riding horses, watching horror movies with my husband, and being out in nature as much as possible.
My style as a Birth Doula:
As my birth client you can expect me to be your own personal pregnancy/birth/postpartum mentor. I will make myself available to you during your pregnancy to answer ALL of the questions that will arise so I can help calm your fears and empower you to have the birth of your dreams. I can assist you in finding a care provider (OB/GYN or Midwife) that will fit your style perfectly and will listen to and respect your birthing wishes. I will help you and your partner create a birth plan, too, if desired! I am a highly intuitive person and ask all of the right questions to make sure that my services are tailored precisely to your needs. I have a calming and grounded presence and will make sure that you feel totally comfortable while I’m around. I am often told that I have a motherly, loving energy and am able to put my clients at ease just by walking into the room. I don’t sugar coat things and tend to be straight to the point, but always speak from a place of compassion and empathy. I am a fierce advocate for my clients and will do everything in my power to ensure that you are receiving the care you desire and deserve. I love to laugh and be silly (when appropriate) and don’t take myself too seriously. I work closely with partners during pregnancy and birth to make sure that they feel empowered and capable of supporting their partner during this journey, too. I want this experience to be about you as a couple, as a family, and will be there to support you both as a unit.
I’m constantly learning new skills to enrich my doula offerings to ensure that my clients are receiving top-notch care from me. Some of the extra modalities that I bring to my clients are: rebozo use during labor; guided meditation; belly casting; essential oil guidance during pregnancy, labor, and postpartum ( I’m a certified Essential Oils for Birth Consultant); intuitive counseling; honey facial massage; Bengkung belly binding; preparation of placenta medicine; and more to come soon!
My style as a Postpartum Doula:
As a postpartum doula I will help guide you through those first few days, weeks, months after baby is born. I know how challenging (and shocking!) it can be to have a new little one join your family, no matter if it’s your first child or seventh. Each addition sends a ripple through the waters of your family unit and sometimes it takes some outside help to bring everything back into balance. I will be your best friend, advocate, personal assistant, chef, housecleaner, nanny, counselor, mentor, teacher, and your biggest cheerleader! I help families with many things during my postpartum visits, but here are just a few of the things I can assist you with: help with breastfeeding/bottle feeding/sns feeding and pumping; processing and documenting your birth story; meal prep; baby soothing techniques; babywearing; setting up nursing stations and bedroom(s); belly binding; c-section recovery and positioning; baby care; mama care; older sibling care; responding to emails and/or phone calls; setting up a meal train; placenta medicine; herbal sitz baths for mama; driving mama and baby to and from appointments; running errands; and MUCH more.
Birth Doula + Childbirth Educator + Evidence Based Birth® Instructor
While I enjoy supporting unmedicated births, my passion really lies in supporting the pregnant person and any partner or support person they have in discovering what is important to them and helping them through whatever challenges they face. There is no one way to give birth. A successful, joyful birth is in the eye of the beholder. Whatever a good birth means to you, I will work to help you achieve that. If plans need to change, I will help you navigate and process the change in plan.
My Style & Ideal Client
My style in prenatal meetings is to be frank, informative and slightly irreverent. I can laugh about the more uncomfortable aspects of giving birth and I really seem to connect with families that use humor to cope with difficult situations. My favorite clients are the ones who ask a LOT of questions because it helps me understand what they know, what they do not know, what their worries are and what they feel confident about. I really get to know clients this way and can tailor my services to their specific personality.
Having been a gestational surrogate, I also really enjoy supporting surrogates and Intended Parents (IPs).
In my doula work, I frequently use a piece of fabric called a Rebozo for comfort in labor. I’ve also received training in Spinning Babies (spinningbabies.com) techniques for optimal positioning and Acupressure points for pregnancy and labor. I also have additional training in lactation.
I am a native Portlander, who was born at home in the late 70s. I’ve been fascinated with birth since I was a teenager. When I had my first child–a daughter–in 2002, my fascination only intensified. Between my first and second child, I decided to become a childbirth educator. That second child, a son, was born in late 2006 and by 2008 I was certified to teach childbirth classes. Not much later I began attending births for friends and it was clear that this was something I had to keep doing. So I did! I have been certified through DONA since early 2011 and have attended over 150 births to date. Our family is complete, but in 2013/2014 I was pregnant and gave birth as a surrogate gestational carrier for a same-sex couple. And in 2017 I carried another baby for a heterosexual couple who had experienced infertility.
Jenny Kowalski (formerly Gullen)
Birth Doula + Birth Photography + Childbirth Educator
It is my belief that women never forget how they are made to feel during their birthing experience(s). My goal as a doula is to help my clients and their partners or fellow birth team members feel supported. I like to use education, emotional and physical coping strategies, as well as emotional bonding to help serve as a guide through pregnancy, labor and delivery, and the early postpartum period. It is my passion to work together with my clients in creating a solid birth environment that will serve as a secure foundation for a positive birth experience. Even when things might not happen as anticipated.
I will help you navigate through the choices and challenges presented to you without judgment. We can work through it all, regardless of your birth desires; and it’s always an added bonus if we can laugh a little while we get there! I am an eternal optimist, but also a realist, and enjoy clients who take pride in keeping things real.
Personally, I have given birth to two boys of my own, one born at a hospital, and one born at home. I also have experience working with gestational surrogates, twin pregnancies, and members of the LGBTQ community.
In addition to my doula certification, I have taken trainings in lactation, childbirth education, and the use of the rebozo in pregnancy and birth.
A born and raised Michigander, I have lived in the Portland area for about 10 years. Currently residing in Lake Oswego as a single Mama to my two school-aged boys and our fur kiddos. I have worked as a doula since early 2013 and also offer photography services with Oak and Badger Photography and Films. I enjoy rock climbing, hiking, camping, theatre, puzzles, and good conversation.
Birth and Postpartum Doula + Childbirth Educator + Breastfeeding Support Specialist
I’ve been working as a doula since 1992, one year after the birth of my first son. I officially trained and certified in 1999 after my second birth, my VBAC. I began midwifery school in 2003 and became a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator in 2006. Since then I’ve trained hundreds of birth and postpartum doulas, started the very first doula agency in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, offering a more thorough, complete training with apprenticeship.
About my credentials
I’m a Healthy Birth Certified Doula, an Accredited Infant Massage Instructor, a Lamaze Certified Childbirth Educator and a Fellow of the Academy of Certified Childbirth Educators. I proudly serve on the Board of Directors for Lamaze International.
My passion is childbirth education, helping new parents find the resources that help them make the very best choices for the arrival of their little one. I’d love the opportunity to meet with you and hear about just exactly how you would envision your perfect birth! I’m a firm believer in setting your sites on what you WANT!
Please contact me by phone, text or email and we’ll get things started!
Birth and Postpartum Doula + Birthing From Within Childbirth Educator
My life as a Doula began in December 2011 and I continue to be inspired by the miracle of
birth. I am a Certified Birth Doula through DONA International and have received
comprehensive training as both a Birth and Postpartum Doula. I facilitate Birthing From
Within childbirth preparation classes to empower birthing people to connect to their own body
wisdom and provide Birth Partners with tools to confidently support the birthing person
physically and emotionally during labor and birth. I embrace the philosophy that birth is a rite
of passage and time of celebration.
I support pregnant people in the Greater Portland/SW Washington area by listening and
being in tune with my client and the birth partner, holding space, and teaching coping
techniques and comfort measures to assist families in fulfilling their own birth wishes.
I achieved a Master’s Degree in Social Work and while in school worked with pregnant
teenagers providing education and other tools to assist young mothers in their birth
experience. I have been serving children and families in a variety of settings for over 20 years
in the areas of pregnancy, birth, and postpartum, early care and education, advocacy,
counseling, crisis intervention, coaching, mentoring, teaching and more.
In my free time, I enjoy spending time with family and friends to share meals or play games
and getting outdoors for local hiking or bike riding. I am always on the lookout for ways to
give back in my community. One of the ways I do this has been to volunteer at free Infant
Cranial Sacral clinics offered by Carol Gray since I completed my training in July 2018.
I am happy to meet with you to learn more about your needs and share with you how I can be
of support to you during this very special time in your life.
Birth Doula + Counselor
Labor is an emotionally primal, wondrous and potentially transformative experience . My purpose is to allow mothers to experience birth as empowered, capable humans, intuitively bringing forth life. My role is to advocate with women to have the birth they desire through education, information and support.
I have always been fascinated with the birth process and been drawn to working with women through life transitions. As a young adult I advocated for women who experienced domestic violence and sexual assault. During the early years with my first child I began working in mental health and addiction field. Around the same time I began exploring birth assistance and birth education. After my second child I was able to pursue my goal of private practice, bringing together doula work and counseling to include prenatal, labor and postpartum support.
There are two specific parts to my role in the labor room; the tasks and the presence. The task can be anything from comforting touch, massage, labor position suggestions, encouragement, affirmations, food, drink, partner assistance and others based on individual preference. The presence is that specific gift that makes each doula and doula-client relationship different. The tasks (and tools) are given to doulas during training, but the presence is developed. My personal exploration, therapy experiences and past and current relationships shape my presence and being. I strive to “be a reassuring presence…who reminds you of your choices…., sees you and eases your pain with a touch, a word, a look.”