Sunday, June 1, 2014
My husband and I had lived in Cambodia almost three years before becoming pregnant with our first child. We decided to deliver in Bangkok. We wanted a natural birth but didn’t have the support we knew that would entail, as our families live in America. We found Mandy through the Doulas of Bangkok Facebook page. She helped us understand the birth process and to know what to expect from the hospital and physician we had chosen.
Our labor was much faster than we expected, and after six hours, we arrived at the hospital ready to push. Mandy met us at the hospital and was a huge help in the most difficult part of labor for us. She provided the strength and calming presence I needed to stay focused on bringing our son into the world. And after his birth, she stayed with me, helping me recover from the overwhelming emotional and physical shock of having given birth. She also visited us in the hospital and kept in touch via text messages in the following week. This gave me a way to debrief from the most incredible and difficult experience of my life.
I think a doula is so important, especially if you are giving birth the first time in a country without family support, as we did. I can’t imagine not having our doula present, as my husband and I had no idea how challenging giving birth would be. Even for us, with a seven-hour labor and only thirty minutes of pushing, we needed someone experienced to prepare us and guide us through the experience. We’re so thankful for her support!