Second in my doula series is Jessica Fuss. When I met Jess, it was at a DoRI event, and I fell in love with her. She’s like a big sister, mother and best friend all in one. Although Jess had another client when I was due with Addie, we remained in touch, and she is still one of my biggest supporters in motherhood! From her beaming smile to her incredible knowledge in all things birth, cloth diapering and motherhood, Jess is such a super-woman! I asked her a bunch of questions, and wanted to share her thoughts with you and a bit more about her doula services at Soft Touch Doula.
To be a doula to me means to take care of a woman…To find out what her needs, her desires, her likes and dislikes, her wishes are…then to do my best to surround her with so much nurturing love that she feels protected and safe to be whomever she needs to be in order to birth her baby in the best way for HER.
It also means for me to provide enough information and assurance to the partner so that I can take away all of his/her fears and worries so they can just be the partner and provide the support they have always wanted to be.
My niche is Birth. I’ve heard it say I’m very good at being that doula who “mothers the mother”. I’m very nurturing. It chose to be purely a Birth Doula (not a postpartum as well) because it just fits. I have always wanted to have ‘something’ to do with birth, ever since I was a little girl and read my mom’s Lamaze books. When I found out about the role of a birth doula, where I get to purely support and care for the couple, and not to have to do any of the medical care, I knew it was for me.
Back in 2012 I stopped counting at 100 births attended. I’m sure I’m up to somewhere around 150.
Ahhhhhh… My favorite moment. My favorite moment is special to me. It’s when I see by the woman’s soft face, hear by her orgasmic sounds, can tell by her loose body, that she has truly given over to the Birth process. She has surrendered to the intensity. There’s no more fighting the surges. She is now purely allowing her body to flow and open. If one was in the next room and didn’t know what was going on, it would sound like she is having a wonderful orgasm. But in reality, the sounds a woman makes at this precious moment in her labor is exactly the same.
5. Hardest part of your work?
The hardest part of this job is most definitely for me the anxiety involved. There is anxiety of not knowing when each momma will go into labor. I am pretty much always on-call. And when that momma does go into labor, who will be available to watch my kiddos. It’s the unknown that is very stressful. And the anxiety also carries over into the birth itself in not knowing how short or long the labor will be.
I think the most rewarding part of being a doula, for me, is knowing that something simple I might have done, (for instance helping her get through that “wall” that often comes up during transition when she often cries “I can’t do it any longer”, but in reality she’s almost done!) and it has helped to completely change the outcome for that woman’s birth…That simple act of support and encouragement helped her to achieve her goals for her birth. When I leave after the birth, I quietly smile and know in my heart that I did a good job.
Empowering, tiring, amazing, overwhelming, fulfilling, glorious, momentous.
Southern MA, Eastern/southeastern CT, all of RI.
9. Your hope for the future of your profession?
My hope is that the Insurance Companies will recognize the role of a doula as incredibly beneficial in that it reduces the need for SO many interventions that cost them money. I wish for Moms and Dads that the services we provide could be universally covered by their insurance companies.
I love how doulas know they are awesome, but give all the credit to mamas! Raising a child takes a village, but birthing a child is totally teamwork (at least for me!). You can contact Jess HERE, and get to know more about this amazing woman!
What was the most amazing or helpful part of your birth experience?