We were very fortunate to have Amber present and participate in the birth of our second child. We did not have a doula present for the birth of our first and it was not an ideal environment/situation. For our second, we wanted to make sure everything went smoothly and that we have a supportive environment. That is exactly what we received.
Before the birth, Amber was attentive, responsive and overall a great resource. It was really easy to talk to her and to get her feedback. While she was extremely knowledgeable, she also had a really relaxed attitude towards birth and it was very calming.
During the birth, she was complete there for me. She was supportive in every decision I made - and allowed me to make the decisions (while still providing her insight to help make an informed decision). She also got along tremendously with the hospital staff, which was very important for us.
Even when my husband was 100% involved, Amber remained a constant. She added tremendous value, and it gave me the courage and the strength to have the birth that I wanted - unmedicated, relaxed and meaningful. Later, she told me that I had back labor - which was even more impressive for me! Even when there were problems with placenta delivery, Amber remained at my side, being extremely supportive. It was very frustrating at that moment, and I remember looking up and feeling her holding my hand and thinking to myself, it's amazing that I need that right now and I didn't even realize it.
Looking back at the birthing experience, it was the birth experience that I wanted and needed - and we could not have done it without Amber. Thank you so very much, Amber!!! :-)
I am more than willing to speak to anyone considering Amber as their doula - please let me know if you have any questions.
Amber is an amazing doula! From the moment we met her, both my husband and myself had a feeling that Amber was the perfect fit for us. We appreciated the way she listened to our birth wishes, asked gentle questions and made us feel understood. Amber went above and beyond as a birth doula; she educated us on babywearing, breastfeeding and pumping, and prepared us to answer difficult questions in a hospital setting. She was always quick with her responses anytime I reached out to her, which was comforting for a first time mama. Amber made me feel incredibly secure and supported during the bith of our son. A medical condition took our birth wishes in another direction and when my desire for an intervention free birth became impossible, Amber helped me to see that it would be OK and that I could still have a beautiful birth experience. My labor was LONG and Amber was there for as long as we needed. She provided calm encouragement, massage, aromatherapy and counter pressure (just to name a few). Amber made sure I stayed hydrated and offered constant suggestions for what might make me more comfortable. Looking back, I appreciate how she was there for my husband as well; giving him a companion and someone to laugh with. Amber respected every decision we made during the birth of our baby and my experience was more positive because of her. Amber gave excellent postpartum support as well. Before she left the hospital she made sure my baby and I had a good latch and that we were heading in the right direction. I also recommend Amber to anyone looking to encapsulate their placenta. She quickly got my placenta capsules back to me and provided instructions and guidance on how to consume them. With another baby I wouldn't hesitate to ask Amber to be our doula again and can easily say she would be a true GIFT to anyone looking for a birth doula!
My husband and I decided to hire a doula just 2 weeks prior to our due date because the midwife we had been seeing at MGH seemed increasingly opposed to us having a natural birth despite my pregnancy being low-risk. We thought we'd need the back-up of a doula if we wanted to stay the course of a natural birth, and decided to contact Amber for an interview. I liked Amber right away as she seemed extremely confident and knowledgeable, yet had a gentle demeanor about her. I also appreciated that Amber had prior experience at MGH, and knew ways of getting around a medicated birth if it was not necessary.
Amber was great at checking in on me via phone, email, and text. As this was my first pregnancy, I had a number of questions, and Amber came with strong answers and suggestions (i.e. raspberry leaf tea to help tone the uterus, pelvic rocks to get my baby to turn as I was having back cramps, etc). She was also very upbeat and fun to communicate with.
Labor finally started and we met Amber at the hospital. My husband and I had taken a course on husband-coached labor, so Amber was wonderful in respecting my husband's role as the primary coach, and at our request, stepped in only to offer suggestions, to relieve my husband when he got tired, or just to run and grab ice chips and drinks for us. There came a point in my labor where I began begging for an epidural and my husband asked Amber for suggestions on what to do. We laugh about it now, but there was such a cool confidence in Amber's voice when she said "I have two ideas..." (and they actually worked and we had a completely natural birth ;)
I would highly recommend Amber as a doula. She is so knowledgeable and can help you prepare for labor, and is so clutch to have with you in the delivery room. During our birth I most valued her gentleness and confidence – she definitely brought a calmness to the delivery room and we are so, so glad we hired Amber!
I had been going back and forth about whether I wanted a doula. I have a supportive and loving husband, and am pretty self-aware, and I had researched a bunch, so I felt it would almost be selfish of me to want a doula as well. I am so, so, so, so, so glad I decided to reach out and hire Amber. Amber helped me have a natural birth in two major ways: she helped make me feel safe and comfortable, and she helped me trust my own instincts about the birth. My labor kept slowing down or stalling, even after the cervidil, and we were getting closer to the 14-days-past-due-date cut off. The midwife on call made me feel uncomfotable generally, and she was recommending we go to pitocin. With Amber's knowledge and her and my husband's moral support, I made the decision to go home. Amber was very gentle and perceptive, and helped with the lighting, the pain, and getting rid of the tension in my body. My husband's comfort and confidence levels were also higher with her presence, and he felt he had a purpose applying the counterpressure technique Amber had taught him. In this setting, my water broke and I went into active labor right around when the midwife's shift ended. We headed to the birth center and I gave birth about two hours later. I hadn't realized how important it is to feel confident and safe, even when - espeically when - things don't go as planned, so I am very grateful to Amber.
Amber has been (and continues to be) an amazing resource for me from the moment I met her. From our intial meeting, I knew that she would be the support I needed and wanted this time around. My first birth was less than ideal; induction, epidural, episiotomy and 8 months of postpartum anxiety was enough for me to desire something different. I knew it would start with a doula. Amber was the right choice for me because of her experience and gentle nature. Once hired she was always available for any questions or concerns I had.
Unlike many women, or perhaps some, my husband was less than thrilled about the birthing process and felt very much out of place. In that respect, I valued Amber's presence even more. She was a solid rock for me to lean on, literally and figuratively. She guided my husband in ways he could help and be supportive, and stepped in when he couldn't. Having a gentle female presence with me from start to finish, reminding me to release and let go of the tension I was holding during contractions helped more than I realized at the time. Even when I didn't think I could do it, she was always reminding me I was. With her help, I did it. I had a 100% natural birth. It was incredible.
I also chose Amber because of her placenta encapsulation services. Having my pills postpartum helped immensely and instead of dealing with anxiety and tears, I spent the first few weeks with my new family feeling alert, happy, and calm, even admist the chaos.
I would gladly recommend Amber to any woman who believes she deserves support in her most raw moments, because you do.
My husband and I were looking for a doula for the birth of our first child. We wanted ensure we had a good support system in place to achieve the best birth experience possible.
At 36 weeks, Amber came to our house to meet us. She listened to us talk about our birth plan (natural) and asked us questions about a few things we hadn't thought about. She also tought us excercises and techniques for baby positioning that we found extremely helpful.
At 37 weeks I found out I was already 3cm dilated. My OB said she wouldn't be surprised if I gave birth within the week. Over the next 2 and a half weeks, Amber was wonderful as she put up with my many "this could be it" text messages. She offered the encouragement I needed to hear to keep the frustration of false labor at bay.
At 39 weeks and 4 days I started to have real contractions around 3pm. They came on fast and when I called Amber around 4:30 they were already 2-4 minutes apart. I felt terrible giving her such little notice, as I knew she had to arrange for childcare, but she was so supportive and ready to come meet us.
We arrived at the hospital at 6:45pm and I gave birth at 9:05. Amber met us in our labor and delivery room and helped us thorugh those intense couple of hours. Throughout the labor process, Amber was great. She offered quiet support and encouragement to both myself and my husband. What I apprecaited most was her calming presence. She helped us maintain the peaceful environment we wanted while also making helpful suggestions for positioning and comfort.
Overall, we are so thankful to have had Amber with us during our birth. She certainly helped us achieve the wonderful natural birth experience we were looking for.
After experiencing a much less than ideal birth experience with our son (30 hour labor, including every intervention in the book, except a C-section, though my son was delivered with the help of forceps because I was so exhausted by that point!), my husband and I knew that we wanted to have the assistance of a doula for the birth of our second child. I met Amber during my 5th month of pregnancy. She was actually the only doula candidate that I met with, because after our initial meeting, I knew that she would be a good fit for us. Amber is kind, friendly, knowledgeable, and was very responsive to any and all questions we had leading up to my labor (and after our daughter was born, too).
I began having sporadic contractions on the night of December 30th, and was in touch with Amber briefly that night (where she was attending another birth!) and during the next day, by text & phone. When my contractions got more regular & intense during the late afternoon of the 31st, I asked Amber to come to our home (as one of my goals was to labor at home for as long as possible). Amber arrived around 6/7pm and helped me work through contractions (a huge help, as my husband was distracting our son from what was going on with his mama). She worked her magic to help me get through the contractions, and to make sure that I stayed hydrated & nourished. Around 9pm, it became clear to all of us that I needed to get to the hospital. Amber followed my husband & I to the hospital, where, 50 minutes after we arrived, my daughter was born. I felt so positive & empowered after this labor experience (a complete 180 from my first), and I truly have Amber to thank. I would not hesitate to recommend Amber to my female friends & family members, and to you!
Emilie Moeckel Bolduc
I cannot say enough nice things about Amber and how she made our rather challenging birth experience so enjoyable. I had a very long labor, and Amber was there for every step along the way. She met us at the hospital, where I was told to go home because I was not far enough along. She followed us home and helped me through the beginning phases of labor. She came back with us to the hospital and stayed by my side providing comfort, strength, and peacefulness as I labored & pushed. She was extremely supportive when I learned I had to have a caesarean. I could not have done it without her. I know other women who’ve had similar labor experiences and who felt negatively about it, but I can truly say I had an enjoyable labor experience (despite the c-section). I have to thank Amber for creating such a wonderful birth environment.
I cannot recommend Amber's services enough. My husband and I hired her to help us with the birth of our first child. I was planning on having a natural childbirth and felt I needed some additional support. We met with Amber and knew she was the doula for us. First off, she is a genuinely kind, supportive person and just has a wonderfully calm demeanor. She was always available during my pregnancy to answer questions and offer support and suggestions for any issues I had. I can honestly say that I don't think I could have gotten through my labor without her. I started having contractions at 4:00am and checked in with her around 6:00am. I asked her to come to our house around noon when the contractions were getting tough with back labor and we labored together until 4:00pm before heading to the hospital. Of course, once we arrived at the hospital my contractions spaced out again. I had a 29 hour labor all together and it was very irregular, never settling into a predictable pattern. The nurses and midwives did not think I was in active labor at any point. I can honestly say that I don't think I could have gotten through it all without Amber by my side. It is really true that the midwives and nurses are there to ensure a healthy baby but they do not attend to the mom all that much. Despite my birth plan they repeatedly offered me interventions I did not want offered. I actually think I may have caved if I didn't feel like I had her support. She stayed with me overnight, coaching me through contractions and easing my back pain with arnica cream. She stayed calm and reassured me that I was doing great. Even in the middle of the night, a contraction would start and just looking over to see that she was there was so comforting. She spent over 20 hours with me, which I feel is over and above the call of duty. I am truly grateful for her. Amber is truly amazing and should we have another child we will definitely be hiring her again. (And you should too!)
Amber was an amazing doula. I found her on Doula Match and we met for coffee when I was about 5 months pregnant. I was instantly drawn to her warm and relaxed demeanor. She was very supportive of every decision I had for my birth. In the months/weeks leading up to my birth she was very good about checking on me and seeing if I had any questions. At my home visit, she showed me several ways to help relieve pain both at the end of my pregnancy and during labor, as well as a bunch of babywearing techniques and helped me make sense of the world of cloth diapering. The day before my son was born I told her I was going into the doctors to get checked because I wasn't sure if my water had broken and I was having contractions - she met me at my appointment. Afterwards we went for a walk through a park nearby and even though my contractions were getting worse, I didn't think I was going to have a baby that day so I sent her home, only to text her two hours later that I needed her to come back. She came right back to my house and was there with helpful massages and soothing words (and tips for my fiance) until we went to the hospital. There, she offered ways to help ease my labor pains but listened to my reactions to things that didn't work as well. My labor was fast and furious and I'm thankful Amber was there to ease my anxiety and pain and the same can be said (minus the pain) from my fiance as well. I'm really thankful for the birth experience that I had and I credit a lot of that to Amber, both leading up to my labor and during. Thank you Amber!!
Amber was absolutely amazing. As mentioned in many other reviews, she always knew instinctively what to do. She has a gentle, quiet yet strong presence that made me feel supported the whole time. She was with us at the birth center from about 8:30am until my daughter arrived at 5pm. It was a long day, and yet she remained energized, helpful, focused and retained an excellent sense of humor! Throughout my labor, she had helpful ideas for positions, offered great, natural energy renewing advice and nutrition, and assisted my husband with massage and counter pressure on my hips. I did not want to know my dilation, and Amber was an excellent go between, keeping us informed and helping us make the best decisions for the progression of labor. This was my second labor and all of my desires for pre and post care for both the baby and me were met successfully. This was due in large part to Amber’s help crafting a birth plan, her participation at the birth center and to the team of midwives at the center. It was a phenomenal, beautiful experience and my family is thrilled that Amber was a part of it. At the end of the experience, she felt like a dear friend. I definitely recommend her as a doula!
My wife and I decided to use Amber as our doula after interviewing a few different doulas, and found Amber to be a very calming personality. In that first meeting I was struck how Amber allowed my wife to do most of the talking as Amber just listened and sought to understnad the type of birth experience that my wife was envisioning. I was impressed.
The day my wife went into labor I checked in with Amber and she was able to meet us at the Birth Center very quickly that morning. Amber was amazing, and I can't express how comforting it was to have Amber there with us. Throughout the birth she was a calming presence who could advise us on what might be happening, and suggest ways to make my wife feel more comfortable through various positions as well as back massage techniques. Amber stepped in to massage my wife's back whenever I needed a break and she even drove to our home to grab some food (crackers and hydrating drinks that my wife likes) because, of course, we completely forgot to pack these items!
I really felt that Amber was part of our "team" as an active encourager who had a great understanding of when to step in to offer a suggestions, and when to sit patiently as my wife labored. Amber was with us for what I would consider quite a long time (probably about 8 hours? the timing of events on that day are now a little hazy for me!) and throughout the duration of the birth Amber was positive, a peaceful smile on her face affirming that my wife was doing wonderfully.
I greatly valued the insight and experience that Amber was able to share with us during the birth and throughout my wife's pregnancy. I think I felt more comfortable and confident having her a part of our team, and I would highly recommend Amber's services.
I would highly recommend Amber Therrien. As first-time parents who wanted non-medicated childbirth, we were very nervous and had many questions about labor, ways to manage pain as well as breastfeeding. My husband usually gets sick at the sight of blood so he was concerned about passing out and not being able to be there for me when I needed him the most. Amber was there assisting to both of us, helping us to go through the contractions one at a time, giving advice when asked, keeping me hydrated (I didn't get an IV) and her lower back massages... those really made a difference! It was very helpful and reassuring knowing that she was there for us, supporting us emotionally and physically and at the same time giving us all the space we needed. My husband even cut the umbilical cord! At the prenatal and postnatal visits, she answered all the questions we had, sent us links to useful information and showed me how to use my breast pump! Overall, an amazing birth experience thanks to her. Thank you Amber, thanks for being part of one of the most magical moment of our life.
I could not have made it through the birth of my daughter without Amber, especially through labor! I labored at home for a pretty long time, and she arrived just in the knick of time to help me through all of those tough contractions. She used massage and helped me change into different positions to get me comfortable. The standing and swaying position and then massage on the lower back were definitely my favorite! I didn't even have to ask, and she knew it would be what I needed to get through the contraction. Amber also had tricks to help ease labor pains like cool compresses that felt awesome. She did an excellent job at keeping me relaxed, breathing and hydrated. After my daughter was born, Amber was very helpful with any questions or concerns I had about the baby. She helped me with breastfeeding, showed me how to use my breast pump, showed me how to use a Moby wrap carrier, and she even gave me a Boppy! That just goes to show that Amber was very giving through the whole process. Amber was also great help during pregnancy. She answered any questions I had and helped me plan for labor and delivery, as well as plans for the baby after birth. She sent me links to useful information and was always in contact. Thanks to Amber, I had a very successful pregnancy, labor, and delivery. I couldn't imagine not going through that without her help.
Amber was a wonderful blessing and a huge help to me in the process of giving birth to my twins. I was scared and anxious, but her calm nature and sweet spirit put me at ease immediately. As a single mom, it was a wonderful comfort to have someone like her by my bedside. If not for her, I probably would not have made it without medical intervention. Her passion for her work is evident, and I an so grateful to have had her with me during such an important time in my life. She met with me twice before the labor and delivery to answer my questions and concerns. She was very knowledgeable and helpful & whatever answers she didn't have right away, she was quick to find. I would recommend Amber to anyone looking for a Doula to assist in their child's birth.
Amber was the best doula a first time mother could dream of. She has this wonderful balance of soothing calm and energy that made me at ease knowing she would be there. She would find out about anything I wanted to learn about. Knowing that when the time came, she would remember all the little and large details of preganancy, birth and beyond that were most important to me. It made my husband's focus easier as well knowing that he could ask her for anything if needed. And as confident as I was she was a major part of that. Her constant strength and knowledge base helped so much to answer my questions. Past knowledge, she was the best labor partner one could ask for. She helped me focus when I got nervous, and seemed to intuitively know what and when I needed something. She did this one thing that i will forever love her for. She put cold cloths over my eyes and around my head when I felt overheated. I get overly warm and have the hardest time cooling and it was amazing. In the whirlpool she helped me through contractions. She made me laugh through the calmer moments and helped me find my strength in others. She was right there for everything we could want while giving us all the space we needed. I can not look back on those memories and not imagine her right there. From her coming to my house for the first false alarm, to the ride to the hospital for the real thing, breathing through contractions holding her hand, hearing her encouraging words, to birthing my fuzzy "kitten". She had a ton of hair :) She helped my husband and I through the most magical night of our lives. We will always be thankful for the caring energetic assistance she lent us, as well as the humor.
Amber was an awesome doula- she seemed to have an instinct on what I needed when I was in labor and is very intuitive. She's a great listener and is an advocate for your needs and your wants for your journey through pregnancy and childbirth. I would recommend her to anyone! I would definitely use her again.
Amber came down to Richmond, VA from New Hampshire to support me and attend my birth. Since we didn't know exactly when my daughter would make her appearance we scheduled her trip for the week of due date. As it turns out I went into labor the same time she got on the train that Saturday morning. A friend picked her up from the train station and they arrived at my home just as the baby was crowning. Ten minutes later I was holding my beautiful daughter. While Amber didn't actively participate in my birth she stayed for the week and was an amazing help with my postpartum nesting in. Her calm presence and loving support were invaluable. She made sure I ate and drank, helped with the house chores, sat with my daughter while I took baths, and helped remind me slow down. Her presence also made it possible for my husband to enjoy baby bonding time and not feel burned out from having to take care of everything on his own while I went through the work of learning to breast feed and tend to our child
I cannot express how much Amber Therrien's knowledge and experience helped me with my childbirth experience. I am a first-time mom and of course was completely unaware of what to expect before, during and after giving birth and it was somewhat overwhelming. I contacted Amber a few months before my due date and she spent time with me going over what to expect and getting to know me as well as I getting to know her. Amber was with me for the birth of my beautiful baby girl, Briella. The nurses as well as the few family members present during the birth commented on how calm I was and I have to say it had a lot to do with Amber's professionalism and experience. I would highly recommend Amber as a doula and know that she is very competent, dependable and responsible.
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