noun  dou·la  \ ˈdü-lə \

a trained professional who provides continuous physical, emotional and informational support to a mother before, during and shortly after childbirth to help her achieve the healthiest, most satisfying experience possible.

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I believe that women have an innate intuition when it comes to our own bodies. A mother specifically, can use this “super power” when she is in labor. If she has the knowledge of when and how to follow her body’s cues and has the courage to do so, she can determine how she responds physically and emotionally to the intense moments she may face during childbirth.

I want to support women by guiding them through this process. I believe in your intuition and I want to help you tap into your super power. You deserve to have a satisfying birth experience that empowers and inspires you.


My Story

Looking back, I believe I became a doula the day my son was born February 1st, 2012. I acted instinctively, and I advocated for myself. As a first-time mom this wasn’t easy, but to have the birth I desired I felt that I had to stick to my instincts. I followed my intuition and in the end, I did have the un-medicated birth that I so wanted. I was proud of the hard work my mind, body and baby did to give birth. All of this was a positive outcome, but there was a piece of this story that I carried with me for a while. In advocating for myself, I felt alone. It took me a while to come to this realization because I gave birth with my husband at my side who was so loving and supportive along with my mother in law who was kind and knowledgeable and had experienced child birth 3 times before. I had a midwife and nurses who tended to me and a hospital full of people. What was the missing piece?

Fast forward to April 2017 when my friend texted me from the local hospital. She was on her own, waiting for her support people to arrive when she found out she was going to be induced. My heart sank at the thought of her being there alone. There was that word again, alone. The memory of that feeling and that word that I had pushed to the back of my mind, but five years later was still there. This time was different, I had the power to change the way she would remember this day because she wasn’t alone. She had me. I immediately went to her side to offer support until her friends and family arrived.

I was surprised by how grateful she was that I came and that she wanted me to stay by her side. Because the only births I had been a part of were for my own two children I felt that I didn’t have much to offer. Still, I didn’t want to leave her. I stayed close and I did my best to be calm and positive and to anticipate her needs as they arose. I supported the decisions she made and adapted my approach when needed. Little did I know at the time, I was being her doula.

I was so focused on my friend and her needs that when her son came in the wee hours of the morning, I couldn’t believe that I had been with her for 12 hours. The time had flown by! I was in awe of what I had just witnessed, in love with what I had just been a part of. I felt like I floated home on a cloud. How could I make this happen again?  Since I wasn’t getting any sleep with all this excitement, I started researching. There had to be a name for what I just did and if there wasn’t I would make a name for it because I realized that every mama needs a “me” in their corner. After a short web search, I found it: DOULA. That’s me. That is what I was for her that day; that is what I am.

-Alana Catanio


"You deserve to have a satisfying birth experience that empowers and inspires you."


Call or Text: (415) 488-5432


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