Place of Birth: Constantiaberg Hospital
I didn’t have the goddess natural home birth I had wanted so badly. I laboured at home for 24 hours and then we all had to pile into the car and race, over the mountain through a blazing fynbos fire to the hospital to have an emergency c-section just before midnight on a Sunday
This could have had disastrous emotional repercussions for me, had it not been for Charlene. We had done the hypnobirthing course with her and admittedly I longed for the rose petalled intimacy of a home birth and had hired Charlene as our Doula.
My baby was breech for a long time before turning and it looked like I would have to have a c-section. I remember Charlene sitting on our couch sharing her insights and knowledge about cesarean births with my husband and I. She addressed all our concerns, shared her wisdom and experiences, made us laugh and gently helped me to let go of the outcome in order to prepare me for whatever was to be.
She assured us she would be there whatever happened and she was. An emergency c-sect can be frightening, traumatic even, but I felt safe and supported even through the worst of the contractions right before they administered the spinal block.
Charlene was an incredible support to my husband as much as she was to me and we are both so grateful to her for sharing her skill and being there for the birth.
Charlene has a mystical quality to her but she is a grounded, earthy, compassionate person whose ability to empathise is remarkable – these attributes make her invaluable as a doula.