When Things Don't go as Planned 

Finding out that your baby is ill, or has been diagnosed with a life changing or fatal condition is an experience every parent hopes they never have.  Planning for the birth and the death or immediate NICU admission of your baby seems like an impossible task.  As a Doula trained specifically to assist and support families through these types of situations, I am equipped in the knowledge and skills necessary to come along side you as you prepare for your baby’s birth, admission to the NICU, or his or her short life.  It is an honor for me to serve you during this time.  It is a time that can be extremely difficult, but also beautiful.  It is my privilege to assist you as you make memories with your baby that will endure. 


 

Miscarriage, Stillbirth, Pregnancy Loss in Any Trimester

“I'm sorry, but...”  These are words every parent fears.  They cause a heartache unlike any other.  They also mean that a difficult road lays ahead.  As a Doula trained specifically to assist and support families through this very difficult time, I am equipped in the knowledge and skills necessary to come along side you as you prepare for your baby’s birth.  Many medical providers are not experienced in how to assist a family through the birth of a baby who has passed away (especially if it is in the late first trimester or second trimester). These medical professionals are thankful for the presence of a Doula who can be there to guide the family through the experience of giving birth to a baby whose heart is no longer beating and who can then assist the family as they honor their child’s life and body (however small). In some cases the Doula also helps the medical staff navigate the circumstances of the birth.

 

 It is an honor for me to serve you during this time.  It is a time that can be extremely difficult, but also beautiful.  It is my privilege to guide you through the birth and the bereavement process, and to support you as you make memories with your baby that will endure.   This is a very intimate, very special, very raw, and very emotional time for parents.  Having a Doula come along side you to help you experience the joy, the pain, and the sorrow is a blessing that many parents are thankful for.

 

These services – assisting and companioning families through a miscarriage, a stillbirth, or a loss in any trimester – are services that I offer free of charge.  I do not believe that families should have to pay in order to have someone come alongside them as they face one of the most heart wrenching challenges of their lives.  It is my firm belief that all children, regardless of whether they ever lived outside the womb, deserve to be born with dignity, their lives honored, and their parents affirmed and comforted.  As a mother myself, who has had 7 children precede me to Eternity, I know well the heartache, but also the hidden blessings and the hidden beauty that can be found in these circumstances.  I consider it the highest honor to walk this uncertain road with you.  Please contact me through the Contact Link on the website.  If you are currently in the hospital and are seeking immediate support for an immediate situation, you may call 540-514-1607

Unexpected Prenatal Diagnosis

Discovering that your baby may have a life-altering or life-threatening illness or complication is terrifying, confusing and intimidating. To make things even more difficult, the standard of care is all too often to counsel for an abortion. (Sometimes referred to as "termination," "early induction," "induced miscarriage," or "clearing or removing the pregnancy.") It can seem like this is the only "option" available to parents. 

I want you to know that it is not. 

In fact, evidence and experience both demonstrate that carrying baby for as long as is safe for both mother and baby, and allowing nature to determine the outcome and God the timing, are the healthiest options - emotionally and mentally. It can be hard to understand how carrying an ill baby to term only to say goodbye is the best choice. It is tempting to think "I just want to get this over with!" But the reality is that the time you DO get to have with your baby is precious. I have never heard parents regret more time with their baby. I can assure you that I have spoken with many who regret having a medical termination. 

The biggest obstacle to carrying a baby with an unexpected diagnosis is often a lack of support. 

That is why I pledge to accompany you and offer support, resources and referrals as you navigate the difficult path that leads to meeting your baby, and if necessary, helping you to prepare to say good bye. You are not alone. 

There are many community resources for babies with special needs and medical technology is advancing at such a fast pace that some diagnosis aren't as dire as they once were. As your Doula I help you understand your baby's diagnosis and prognosis. I will help you plan for the future. 

If you have received a scary, unexpected, challenging, or sad prenatal diagnosis I urge you to call and explore the options and support that IS available to you. 

It is my honor and privilege to speak with you. 

It Is My Privilege to Serve 

As a birth and a bereavement Doula, I am able to assist you as you labor and welcome your baby into the world.  Then, if your child has been given a particularly difficult diagnosis, I am able to support you as you say goodbye.  This is a very intimate, very special, very raw, and very emotional time for parents.  Having a Doula come along side you to help you experience the joy, the pain, and the sorrow is a blessing that many parents are thankful for.

 

These services – assisting and companioning families through a labor and birth that may not have a “happy” ending – are services that I offer free of charge.  I do not believe that families should have to pay in order to have someone come alongside them as they face one of the most heart wrenching challenges of their lives.  It is my firm belief that all children, regardless of how long they may be expected to live, deserve to be born with dignity, their lives honored, and their parents affirmed and comforted.  As a mother, myself, who has had 7 children precede me to Eternity, I know well the heartache, but also the hidden blessings and the hidden beauty that can be found in these circumstances.  I consider it the highest honor to walk this uncertain road with you.  Please contact me through the Contact Link on the website.  If you are currently in the hospital and are seeking immediate support for an immediate situation, you may call 540-514-1607.

© 2016 FiLumena Birth, LLC. Proudly created with Wix.com

Tel: 540-514-1607

Laura Ricketts

FiLumena Birth

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