Amelia Avila provides birth doula services, childbirth classes, lactation counseling in all areas of Hampton Roads. She serves clients in collaboration with Liz Pelletier and Anna Nimmo. Two doulas are always on call, with a third acting as backup for each birth. We serve on twelve hour shifts, which helps clients to always have a doula that is rested and alert at their side. Additionally, when it becomes necessary to have a backup doula, due to sickness or two clients laboring at the same time, we serve one another as backups… which means clients receive a backup doula they’ve already met. Partnership also helps keep our overhead low, which means our price can be a little lower, too. Our fee of $700 is in the mid-range for doula rates in Hampton Roads, and reflects our combined experience and knowledge. We also combine our specialties and give discounts to our doula clients. They are:
Birth Doula – $700
Childbirth Classes – $149 with doula service, $199 without doula service (early bird price)
Placenta Encapsulation – $75 (offered to doula clients only)
Belly Casting – $25
Birth Photography (doula clients only, pro-bono while Amelia gains experience)
Extra Lactation Visits – $25
Interested clients are welcome to meet for a free consultation in order to meet us to discuss our combined services, as well as answer any questions you may have. There is no obligation whatsoever, and at that time we will leave you with a contract that you and your spouse/partner can read at your leisure and decide upon together. If scheduling a consult is difficult due to family work schedules, we are happy to arrange a video conference meeting (i.e. Skype, FaceTime, etc.). It’s your preference!
Prenatal Visits and Support
During your pregnancy, we are both available for you by phone, email, or text any time. We will both come to your home (or other preferred place, if you wish) for one prenatal visit before your baby’s birth, as your schedule allows. That way, we’ll have opportunity to get to know each other a little better before the birth. During these prenatal visits, we will help you develop a birth plan and become familiar with your wishes for birth, provide you with resources, and practice comfort measures.
Continuous Labor and Birth Support
As your due date approaches, we will be on call continuously until you deliver. During labor, the on call doula will meet you at your home or the hospital, and we will stay with you for the duration of your labor and birth, changing shifts as needed. This benefits our clients because they have a doula that is rested and able to be alert for clients when most needed. We usually work fairly quietly, using comfort measures, relaxation techniques, and encouragement as needed. Our philosophy is to have the laboring mom know that a doula is present, but to not take the place of her partner or the medical professionals. We endeavor to prepare you ahead of time on what questions to ask when interventions are suggested. Our job is to help you get the information you need in order to make the best informed decisions about your care.
Help With Breastfeeding
Once your baby is born, the attending doula will stay with you until you are resting and ready for some private time (on average about two hours). If you are breastfeeding, we will help if needed.
Our breastfeeding philosophy is as follows:
- Let the baby lead breastfeeding and not judge success or failure on whether the baby latches and nurses immediately following birth. Some babies prefer to just look at Mom and Dad for a while and are not so interested in nursing right away.
- After those initial hours, then it is more important to ensure a proper latch is obtained.
- Get professional help early, and as often as needed. International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLC) are the real experts when it comes to the physiology of breastfeeding, and the issues that frequently arise. We will encourage you to get help if you are having difficulties that are beyond our scope of practice.
- Nurse your baby as frequently as he or she asks.
- We believe that you can do it!
We come to your home for one postpartum visit about two weeks following the birth of your baby (or when it is convenient for you), to check on you, answer any questions, give you the opportunity to recount your birth, and to get feedback from you about our role.
Liz and I each have a lending library. Our clients have complete access to books on childbirth, breastfeeding, baby care and parenting, etc., along with a few videos and other materials. If there’s a book you want to read that neither of us have, we are glad to purchase it to loan it to you and later add to our libraries. View Amelia’s lending library page.
We are committed to helping teen moms or single moms who find themselves in a crisis pregnancy, and we offer our services at a discount (based upon financial need) as long as we are available for your due date. Additionally, we are committed to mentoring young moms on parenting skills, breastfeeding, support, resources, etc. If you landed on this page in search of court ordered parenting classes, check out the Hampton Roads Parenting Education Network.
Amelia’s husband is a thirty year U.S. Navy enlisted retired veteran, and her father served in the U.S. Marine Corps for twenty years. As a military brat and spouse, she knows firsthand the tight finances and sacrifices that military families have to make. Military families are eligible for a 10% discount for birth doula services.
Amelia will be starting a natural childbirth class series in January of 2018, and Liz will be assisting her. Each series will consist of 6 weekly classes. Amelia is certified by CAPPA, and both Liz and Amelia are working on a childbirth educator certification with Madriella.
Amelia’s childbirth classes are approved for the Midwifery Center, DePaul.
If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact one of us:
Photo Credit: Michelle Lynn, Hampton Roads Birth Photographer.