We hear a lot about hiring a doula for childbirth. As a doula/birthkeeper myself the most important role or thing a doula does is to walk the journey with you.
Having a knowledgeable person as your mentor through the ever changing stages of pregnancy is where the doula is worth every penny. Doulas, birthkeepers, birth companions are up to date on the best practices, they know how pregnancy have an effect on our mental, physical and emotional being. We are your private Google engine. But unlike being overwhelmed with millions of results we can be honest and up front with you on what is best for your individual case. Having a doula is more than coaching someone through labor. To be honest, we don't need coaching. Our bodies and our babies already know how to do this work.
A doula is needed for when we have hard days emotionally or mentally. For when you aren't sure about physical discomfort. For when you get cold feet and are covered in fear. A doula is a listening ear. That's where the trust starts. That's where we start reducing interventions, childbirth trauma, mortality and morbidity.
Building a relationship with a knowledgeable person that cares for you and want to see build in confidence, stand up for yourself, know your rights, and have a positive childbirth story. Someone who trusts you.
Once you build this bond with your doula/birthkeeper just her presence alone regulates your system. If there isn't anyone in the room that gets you, it's going to be her. She can read you without saying a word.
To me that's the definition of a birth companion.