This first trimester is the most common time for a doula to meet a couple.
This is often a settled time for women. They are becoming comfortable being pregnant, and perhaps feel more organised with their choices. Feeling lots of movements and it is an important time for the doula to really encourage connection with baby. The most important thing both parents can do for baby is to talk, read books, poetry, discuss their dreams for baby, talk about how birth will be (quiet & relaxed & welcoming). This is a time for education, playing music and discussing what the piece of music is, who wrote it, who is singing, why Mum/Dad like it. Encourage parents, especially Mum to talk to baby as if they are on the outside. The more talking and connection all 3 have, the easier and more enjoyable welcoming baby into the world (labour & birth) will be. The women who have this connection during pregnancy, with their unborn baby, will find it naturally flows into labour and makes it pleasurable and easy for both Mum and baby. They WANT to meet each other. This connection is laying down the blueprint for life.
The number of meetings you have with your client and when, will be flexible. This will depend on when in their pregnancy they have engaged your service, e.g. if she was only 10/40 pregnant then you would have more meetings than if she was 34/40. Ideally the earlier you can begin your doula service the better as this allows plenty of time to really get to know the couple and develop good rapport so there is absolute trust during labour and birthing.
At each meeting it is important to keep things low key, normalise – everything! Reassure: you are a woman and perfectly designed to give birth. It would be a rare event for any woman to require medical intervention.
Trust: birth is a normal event and you have made some excellent choices in care to make sure you have the labour and birth you want.
Believe: a woman must have BELIEF in herself, in her baby, and her innate power and birthing wisdom.
At each meeting you must be able to adapt to whatever comes up.