Michelle: How did you give birth to the children that you have?
Debbie: I have three children and all three were born in a birth center with a midwife. I was adamant about not doing any drugs or going to a hospital. I think that I basically used tools like visualization, relaxation and breathing to approach my birth. I also trusted the process of birth and what my body was designed to do. I didn't even know when my labor started for my first child. I was working on puzzles when my labor with my second child began.
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Michelle: Is there anything that you would do differently now that you have all this knowledge as a doula?
Debbie: I would have breastfed my first child longer and I would have had all my kids at home. I stopped breastfeeding the first time very early, at about a month or so, because I lacked support and information. I wish I had breastfed my first daughter for a year to two years, like my other two children.
Michelle: Why did you decide on going to a birth center instead of having your kids at home?
Debbie: I was raised to make sure that whenever people were coming over, the house had to be spotless, so I worried about having the house clean when I was going into labor. I feel so silly about that now.
Michelle: So what sparked your interest in working in childbirth and postpartum?
Debbie: Well, I loved being pregnant. Every moment was something completely new and unique. After having my kids and supporting my friends when they were pregnant, and through labor and birth, I knew that I wanted to learn more about supporting other women. The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn. I also felt that support was so needed. I am very passionate about what I do, and I wouldn't choose to do anything else.
Michelle: What advice do you have for moms who are wondering how and when to start weaning?
Debbie: There is something called "baby-led weaning." As babies develop in different areas, they start to separate themselves from mom. They transition to eating more solid foods, which should be provided to them. Still, every mom and baby are unique and will do what is best for them.
Michelle: What do you think when you hear, "I am petite and my baby was too big to deliver vaginally"?
Debbie: I think everything should be taken on a case-by-case basis. I don't think that anything is impossible. Some doctors will tell you that your baby is too big for you to deliver. I have seen many small women deliver big babies.
Michelle: Why choose Debbie Benton?
Debbie: My goal is to always exceed expectations, and I really hope that I bring something to the table without overdoing anything. I want to be the best support I can be in helping to create the best outcome possible. I feel that I have a certain level of intuition; I know when to do and not do something, and I truly care about my clients. I can be present to give guidance, encouragement, and information without judgment. I have approximately 15 years of experience and was initially trained as a midwife assistant and an advanced doula. I have continued my education and I am currently certified as a natural health consultant, a certified Dr. Sears wellness institute L.E.A.N. Expectations Coach (acronym for Lifestyle, Exercise, Attitude, Nutrition), a certified doula specializing in acupressure for pregnancy care and labor support, and a Level 1 Reiki practitioner. I am currently in the process of completing my certification as an ICEA childbirth educator and pursuing my degree in nutrition.
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To hire Debbie Benton as your personal doula, please contact us at EmbracingBabies.com.