Hello and congratulations on your journey! My name is Michelle and I love to nourish and nurture growing families. The childbearing and postpartum period is a transformative time to adapt, grow new perspectives and reflect. The name “Eleven Moons” comes from the ten moons of pregnancy plus the following moon cycle postpartum, in which the family begins its new journey.
As a birth and postpartum doula, I hope to work with a diversity of families to support their personal parenting styles without judgement. I am an active listener who encourages partners to share their feelings and reflections around birth. I am motivated to work with families who do not conform to gender, sexuality or family-structure norms, including families formed by adoption or surrogacy. I strongly believe that ALL families deserve an intimate circle of doula support, regardless of economic means. I offer sliding scale rates for my services to be accessible to all families.
Why I decided to become a doula
After the birth of my first child, I was surprised at how unprepared I was for the postpartum period. Even though I had sought out supportive prenatal care—I felt completely caught off-guard when it came to newborn care, breastfeeding and the emotional rollercoaster following birth.
After experiencing the many ups and downs of the postpartum experience with my first baby, I took it upon myself to learn more about postpartum traditions around the world. In other cultures, it is common for the mama and baby to be sheltered in a sacred space for the first 40 (or so) days, with relatives, friends and neighbors taking care of household duties while the family bonds with their new baby.
I found myself craving this sacred time of “lying-in” with a newborn when I became pregnant for a second time. Having the wisdom from my first experience, I set about preparing my nest, pantry and freezer, before the birth of our second child. With this preparation in combination with the great babysitting support we had for our older daughter, our family had a much smoother transition as we grew from three members to four.
My doula journey began with a focus on supporting the postpartum period. One year into the work, families began asking me if I could also accompany them through their births as well. Now with my experiences at births, training with traditional midwives in Peru and Colombia, and childbirth educators and doulas in the Netherlands, California and Germany, I am happy to offer additional services as a birth doula.
I believe it is imperative that birthing families have the tools, guidance and support they need in this important transitional time. I hope my work as a doula can help foster a nurturing space for families to build strong foundations as they welcome a new life into their hearts.
Education and Experiences
- “The Art of Birth” Midwifery Workshops Online with Naoli Vinaver 2020-2021.
- “Taller de la Waltaska”/ Traditional Andean Postpartum Ceremony with Ruro Caituiro Monge from Escuela Peruana de Partería 2020.
- MAP™ for Better Birth: Prenatal Assessment Protocol & Corrections with Debra E. McLaughlin, CPM, CST. Berlin, Germany 2020.
- Organizadora de talleres “Cuidados del Útero” y “Cuidados en el Postparto”/ Organizer of workshop series including “Womb Care” and “Postpartum Care” with Ramiro Romero, traditional Muisqa midwife from Mujeres Bachué of Colombia. Berlin, Germany 2019.
- Intensive Doula Training and Mentorship with Camalo Gaskin and the Center for Doula Pathways. Berlin, Germany 2019.
- BiA Advanced Doula Training– Level 2 with Jennifer Walker of Spinning Babies. Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2018.
- Curso Intensivo “Reduciendo el miedo en el embarazo, parto y postparto” / Intensive Course “Overcoming fear in pregnancy, birth and postpartum” with Ina May Gaskin, CPM. Quito, Ecuador, 2018
- Aprendizaje Intensivo en Partería y Medicina Holística/ Intensive training in Traditional Midwifery and Holistic Medicine with Leonie Lange. Urubamba, Peru 2017
- Aprendizaje en Partería Traditional/ Training in Traditional Midwifery with Ruro Caituiro. Cusco, Peru 2017-2018.
- Infant, Child & Adult CPR Certified 2017, 2018
- Postpartum Yoga with Melanie Green. Berkeley, CA 2013, 2017
- Certified Postpartum Doula through Natural Resources. San Francisco, CA 2017-2018
- Pushing in Childbirth Workshop with Gingi Allen, LM. Berkeley, CA 2016
- Postpartum Circle and Infant Massage at Pacifica Family Maternity Center Berkeley, CA 2013-2014
- Prenatal Partners Yoga and Massage Workshop with Jane Austin, LM. San Francisco, CA 2013
- Birthways Childbirth Preparation Class. Berkeley, CA 2013