Postpartum and Fertility Doula for York Region, Ontario
Postpartum means ‘after the birth’, of course, and we know a Doula helps the family and the newborn get acquainted with each other. But how does a Fertility Doula help? Obviously that process comes before the pregnancy.
The Fertility Doula shares information and gives dietary, lifestyle and emotional support when couples are trying to conceive. Or she may give advice on preventing pregnancy and put women in touch with health resources. And she can present options of assistance in overcoming infertility. Her object is to help couples have a healthy baby and welcome the newborn into their family.
Doulas are all very individual, as we are in our company — there’s no aspect of what we do that is separate from ourselves. Each of us brings other skill sets or specialties to the table as well. I focus on holistic health, safe and developmentally appropriate feeding, and gentle guidance through fertility, pregnancy, and postpartum.
Growing as a Doula
Since becoming certified as a Postpartum Doula, Keelan has thoroughly enjoyed helping families bond with their newest little ones. Guiding them gently into a nurturing, fulfilling relationship is one of her greatest joys. Wanting to share that happiness with more families led her to become certified as a Fertility Doula.
Currently, Hens and Chicks Doula offers these services in the York Region of Ontario:
- in-home postpartum support
- breast/bottle feeding support
- fertility support
Independent coursework is the foundation for Keelan, and her ongoing education is impressive. Not only is she concerned with the ‘how to’, but also, she knows the ‘why to’ is just as important. Keelan has completed coursework at several accredited universities and healthcare facilities. Contact Hens and Chicks Doula for a more complete list of expertise.
Keelan firmly believes that mothers need to be supported, without judgment or expectation. Her goal is to educate, support and uplift mothers and families to create a happy and welcoming environment for newborns.
Developing the Brand
I decided to rebrand my business because I didn’t feel my original name and logo really embodied who I was and what my business was about. Also, I have expanded my services with some new certifications, so this felt like a good time to put a fresh look on my business.
It took a little while to settle on a new name as so many typical mom and baby names are already taken! I settled on Hens & Chicks (like the plant, not the animals…) because I thought it gave a warm, cute feeling. I also felt like the succulent is a good fit for the whole village support system doulas portray, as the plant stays nicely tucked together no matter how much it reproduces. Also, I knew it would look nice in softer colours.
I approached ALP because they had example logos that displayed the style of succulents I really liked (a soft watercolour style). And I really wanted the logo to be simple, beautiful, and gentle. I chose soft greens and purples and requested the hens and chicks plant be in the logo.
The process was super straightforward and going through the questionnaire really helped me narrow down exactly what I wanted. Once I saw my four potential logos, I knew exactly which one felt right for me. Then it was just deciding on which font was perfect.
I think this new logo will help elevate my business because now I have a professional logo, with a colour palette and set fonts. These can be kept consistent across social media platforms and my website to create a clean, professional look.
Learning and Growing
From being a Baby Cuddler in a hospital nursery, to full-fledged professional, Keelan says she has learned so much in a very short time. But the biggest obstacle to doula success, in her opinion, is taking on too much. In any care-centered business, saying no is very hard. You want to support your clients 24/7. And being in the doula business is so much more than loving on sweet babies.
It’s important to take care of yourself, though. Learn to take time to renew yourself, and strengthen your own relationships. Set real business hours and stick to them as far as possible. There must be boundaries so the newly expanded families can learn to figure out things for themselves. The doula can guide and help, but it can be destructive to become mommy to multiple families.
Keelan’s greatest success so far has been ‘sticking with it’. As a young woman without children it can be hard to be taken seriously. It’s been quite a journey to build confidence in her own ability, and to learn that she does indeed deserve to have a seat at the table. Her continuing education proves that.
Also, the general public doesn’t yet understand what a doula does, and people often diminish the role of helper, in whatever area. When Keelan is confronted with being considered ‘just a doula’ or ‘a glorified babysitter’, she has learned to step up and be proud of what she does. And she’s not alone. Her clients testify to her successes in their families. Being praised by others one has helped always carries more weight than any personal declarations.
The future will always hold babies for me! Babies are my life and I love supporting new families. As I also walk the path of fertility doula-ing, the end goal is a baby. So these clients will just add an extra dimension to what it means to have a baby.