I’ve enjoyed supporting families through their childbirth journey since obtaining my doula certification back in 1998. Since then, I’ve attended over 500 births in the Portland metro area, trained as a midwife and counselor, and teach a variety of classes for birth workers.
Shortly after becoming a certified doula, I pursued a career as a homebirth midwife and completed three years of midwifery training and apprenticeship before deciding that my real passion lay in supporting families through the special relationship formed with their doula. In 2008, I completed an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy and since that time have worked in private practice with a special interest in counseling focused on the emotions, concerns, and transitions that arise during the childbearing year. I now apply those years of specialized midwifery and counseling education to my doula work and take pride in being able to offer support on a variety of levels. I also have a passion for training newer doulas in the art of doula care and currently teach the Labor Doula Workshops and Perinatal Psychology courses at Birthingway College of Midwifery.
As a doula, I’ve worked in all the major hospitals and birth centers in the Portland metro area, enjoy working collaboratively with hospital and birth center staff, and feel confident in my ability to successfully support a variety of labor and birth experiences including: homebirths, water births, unmedicated hospital births, epidural assisted births, vaginal births after cesarean section (VBAC's), twins births, high risk births, and cesarean births.
I work in partnership with another doula and we welcome clients of all backgrounds, diversities, ethnicities, sexualities, genders, and family structures.
OUR PARTNERSHIP MODEL
I work in a doula partnership with Rebecca Durlin Smith and together we bring 23 years of birth experience to share with our clients. Hiring one doula means hiring both of us and receiving the benefits of a doula team, which includes drawing from each of our extensive knowledge bases, knowing that if one doula is away the other doula is still available, and having the reassurance that a fresh doula is available if your labor lasts a while and your other doula starts getting fatigued. You basically get two doulas for the price of one, and our clients love the continuity of care that this model ensures.
OUR Doula Philosophy
- We believe in honoring the labor and birth experience as a transformative life event.
- We believe there are as many ways to give birth as there are women in the world, and that a doula’s role is to encourage and unfold your distinct birthing style while offering complimentary suggestions and information.
- We believe it’s a doula’s job to support and encourage the couple’s relationship before, during, and after the birth process so that their entry into parenthood is accompanied by a sense of teamwork and success.
- We believe that every family is unique, and that a doula needs to understand and respect your family’s beliefs, preferences, communication styles, and coping techniques in order to provide you with the individualized care you deserve.
- We believe that birth’s journey can sometimes be unpredictable and mysterious, and that a sense of openness, flexibility, and reverence may be needed.
- We believe in informed consent and offer parents balanced information about the risks and benefits of procedures so that they can make well-informed decisions about what’s right for them.
- We believe that all families deserve the additional support of a caring and knowledgeable birth doula, who will help them navigate the experience of labor and birth with greater ease and confidence.
Birth Doula Fee: $1,800 (sliding scale for those who need it, please ask)
SEND US A NOTE:
"We feel deeply grateful to have had Brooke and Rebecca by our side through pregnancy and birth. They were unfailingly present with support, guidance, and resources as we prepared for our daughter’s arrival, and our prenatal visits and (many!) texts gave me the confidence to let go of the anxiety I felt around labor and delivery. Their wisdom also helped us make choices that supported the type of birth that felt right for us and our baby. Even more helpful still was their gentle coaching on how to let go of control and be with the birth process as it unfolded. When it came time for our daughter to be born, labor went much faster than we expected. In the midst of that whirlwind, I remember so well the feeling of reassurance and safety I found in Brooke’s presence. She offered just the right words to help me trust in my intuition. So much of childbirth is out of our hands, but Brooke’s nurturing presence allowed me to believe in my ability to bring our daughter into this world safely and swiftly. A few months into motherhood, their postpartum encouragement continues to feel integral to our journey. As I reflect on becoming a parent, I cannot imagine birthing without the support of these two remarkable women. They are truly a gift and I look forward to calling on them again as our family grows."
— Emily & Meg
"I was fortunate enough to attend births with both Brooke and Rebecca as a baby nurse and knew I wanted to hire them even before our interview. I can't say enough about how amazing they both are. As a nurse and doula myself I'm comfortable with the birth process but knew that it was unknown territory for my husband. Brooke and Rebecca did a beautiful job supporting us both through nine days of prodromal labor followed by a quick active labor. Their calm, reassuring presence was exactly what we needed as we navigated days of uncertainty with contractions that came and went as baby turned herself into a less than ideal position. We talked to them each by phone (as they traded off call and attended other births) and Rebecca came to our home to help us through some Spinning Babies maneuvers and to talk through our frustrations. Brooke attended our delivery and was such a soothing presence as contractions hit hard and I pushed out my big, beautiful girl exactly the way I had envisioned. She managed to get some beautiful photos that I will always treasure. My midwife was so impressed with Brooke that she asked for her card to refer other families and we gladly recommend this fantastic duo to any expectant parents."
— Johanna & Mac
"My wife and I could not have been happier with Brooke and her co-worker Rebecca as our doulas. They worked seamlessly together and we appreciated their different personalities but coordinated approach. They helped ease our anxieties leading into labor and brought support, guidance and warmth to what ended up being a lengthy labor. Plan on using them again if there is baby number two!"
— Sloan & Kate
" Brooke and Rebecca's care was impeccable from the beginning. Communication was clear and prompt and my husband and I instantly felt we were in good hands at our first complimentary consultation session. They asked many questions of us and we of them. They were well organized and complete. We felt informed about every step of the process and in creating our (loose) birth plan. As I neared and passed my due date, induction became a hot topic. I was of advanced maternal age and with some of the stressors in my life I was feeling a bit of pressure to usher Matthew into this world. I had many a phone call with Brooke (who was to be on call for my labor) discussing pros and cons. She assured me she was on my team no matter what I chose to do. I ultimately chose to be induced and Brooke helped me anticipate what would happen at every step along the way. Matthew was born perfect and Brooke even captured photos of the bittersweet moment for me. All in all, I don't know how I would have survived my birth without Brooke. I could not have asked for a better resource, advocate, or friend in this process. I would not do birth without Brooke or Rebecca, for sure!
— Erica & Kevin
"I can't imagine going through a birth without a doula, and Brooke is a top notch one! My wife and I were looking for a doula who would be comfortable working with a same-gender couple, and Brooke expressed ease and comfort with us. She truly is oriented toward the couple, not just the birth mom, and we both felt incredibly supported through the entire experience. The tools she brings- her previous history as a midwife, her listening skills, her genuine compassion, her sense of calm, and even her photography skills were so appreciated. We had an unexpected C-section, and Brooke was wonderful at shepherding that event in a way that helped us come to terms with what was happening, and in the postpartum visits, to help us process and tell our story. I highly recommend her!"
— Hilary & Jennie
"My two experiences of childbirth were remarkable and empowering transitions. Brooke was my doula for both my sons’ births, and it’s impossible for me to recall the magic and amazement of delivering them without thinking of her too. Brooke’s endless patience with my endless questions, her sense of humor, compassion and respect, her confidence in my health and the health of my unborn sons, as well as her confidence in my ability to successfully deliver gave me so much comfort and belief in myself. Any family or woman who is able to work with Brooke during pregnancy and delivery will not only have second to none care, they won’t be able to imagine having the experience with anyone else."
— Polly & Patrick
"Brooke was our doula for both our daughters’ births, and we cannot sing her praises highly enough! As our doula, Brooke provided support, reassurance, and encouragement, in addition to being able to interface with hospital staff collaboratively and helpfully. We are so grateful to have shared two of the most profound life experiences with Brooke, and should we be blessed with a third babe, we would welcome the opportunity to work with her again."
— Lauren & Zach
"A true professional! I knew that I would hire her within the first 30 seconds, as she has an energy about her that is really incredible and warm. She was a tremendous source of strength for me when my due date came and went and I was extremely frustrated and had many decisions to make. During labor, Brooke's presence completely transformed my birth experience. Her calm and soft demeanor made every contraction more tolerable and I felt completely safe and cared for in her presence. As a nurse, it was of utmost importance to have a doula that worked well with the medical team and Brooke's professionalism and people skills allowed her to seamlessly mesh into the team. I will never have a baby without her."
— Korie & Stu