After acting as an informal birth companion to friends and family for years, in 2017 I took the next step and trained as an NCT licensed doula. I have experience of many different kinds of births, from home water birth to emergency caesarean and many in between, and feel strongly that even challenging labour and birth situations can be made beautiful and fulfilling, with the right support. I am very accepting and non-judgemental, and have experience working with LGBTQ+ couples. I am committed to helping you work with your medical practitioners to achieve the birth that is right for you. I am also open to supporting free births. I only support clients in the Colchester area (less than 30 minutes travel time from CO1).
Through my own birth experiences (an emergency caesarean, a planned caesarean, and a home water birth) and the births I have attended, I am constantly amazed by the intricacy of the human body, and how well and how delicately nature contrives what’s best for us and our babies, when we give it a chance. My goal is to ensure this perfect choreography, this dance of the hormones, which enables birth to proceed optimally, is protected and preserved. To do that, I offer knowledgeable and steadfast support – emotional, physical, interpersonal, and practical. My job is to free you to do your job, the most important job there is, of birthing new life into the world.
American born, I have lived in Colchester since 1995. When I'm not attending births, I like to hang out with my five mostly grown kids/stepkids and hugely supportive husband, and our labradoodle Morgan – walking, reading, cooking, playing guitar, writing poetry and travelling to places with sunshine.
Click below to read more about my qualifications, training and philosophy
Here is a short video of me explaining what a birth doula is, what she does, and what the research says about the positive effect of a doula on the birth process
B I R T H D O U L A
A birth doula is a non-medical supporter of a woman and couple during pregnancy, labour and birth
H Y P N O B I R T H I N G
Hypnobirthing is a method of using self-hypnosis techniques to help you enhance your birth experience. I am a qualified KG Hypnobirthing™ instructor
P O S T N A T A L D O U L A
A postnatal doula provides support in your home following the birth of your baby.
"I can’t say enough to express how competent and compassionate Melanie is and how grateful we are that she was part of our experience. She exposed us to resources and ideas that we otherwise would have missed in the deluge of information thrown at parents-to-be and these resources ended up directly influencing the pregnancy and birth in such positive ways. Game changers. We love the way she took time to not only share her wisdom and experiences with us, but also to explain the mechanics and context behind various options and tools at our disposal, empowering us and treating us as parents with agency. It very much felt like a partnership working with Melanie. And most of all, we appreciate how closely she listened to our desires and our fears and encouraged us all along the way to find our unique pathway. The happiness and confidence we feel now, starting this new phase with a newborn, is a direct result of Melanie and we will always feel immense gratitude to her as his life unfolds."
Dania, mother of Ralph