Lisa Brook says:
I did not consider finding a doula until near the end of my pregnancy but I am grateful I did and so very grateful to have met Crys Melton! As I write this almost a year later, I recognize how much Crys helped us not only prepare for the birthing experience but also gave us so many tools and connections to help us as new parents.
Crys was very flexible with meeting times for birthing classes and my husband and I appreciated her balanced approach of providing information with differing opinions and allowing us to make informed decisions for ourselves and prepare a birth plan that met our needs.
Throughout a very long labor, Crys was incredibly supportive and attentive. It was a relief to have someone with us at home and then at the hospital to be our advocate for allowing the labor to progress at it’s own pace and later help us navigate the decisions and procedures required for a safe delivery.
Crys went above and beyond and knew exactly what I needed to hear as a new mom in those postpartum days and weeks after the birth of our son. She also helped us get involved in some great support groups for breastfeeding and baby wearing that continue to be a source of support and learning on this never ending journey of parenthood.
Crys is a fantastic doula and mentor for all stages of prenatal and postpartum care. I am so happy she was part of one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of our lives!
Crystal Heinecke says:
When expecting my 5th baby, and as a doula myself, I knew the benefit of having their support, but never could’ve anticipated the impact of finally hiring one for myself. My biggest regret was not having done it many babies ago. My 5th birth and the postaprtum period that followed were some of the most cherished experiences of my life.I have no doubt that was in large part due to the support that Crys offered me. After a traumatic birthing history, and battles with postpartum depression, I was allowed the birth that I needed to heal because I was guided through what birth could be by my loving birth team, of which Crys was an integral part. My following 6th pregnancy, and life surrounding it, took many unexpected turns. She met me in all of them and was with me through a labor that started, but took 5 days until a baby was in my arms. Though both very different births, as all births are, both were made better by the presence of having Crys. I was supported. I was educated. I was made to feel safe and space was held for me, She was my reminder of what birthing was about, and helped me focus when the labor roar in my head yelled too loud. She helped me to stay present with my postpartum recovery and self care. She accepted where I was at in every moment.The birth world is a far better place for having Crys in it.
Katie Miller says:
When I had my first child, my husband and I were nervous first time parents who built our birth team based on who and what we knew at the time. We hired our child birth education class’s instructor as our doula, and she was wonderful. After my birth, as I attended support meetings held at my midwife’s office my eye was drawn to a very outspoken woman, a woman who flew into the room and hopped from mother to mother, baby to baby, expressing extreme love and support for each one. This woman had an aura to her that I was intrigued by, yet being an unsure new mother and extremely introverted; and was also slightly intimidated by. That being said, she wowed me from afar and made me ask myself “what if….”
Fast forward roughly a year later to when my husband and I found out we were expecting baby #2. Reflecting on my pervious birth and birth team I knew I wanted something different for birth #2. I needed something different. My midwife was a pillar in my birth team and her presence was not negotiable, and of course my husband would need to be there too, so that really left me with the doula piece to play around with. As wonderful as my first doula was, my heart and soul were screaming that this birth, this baby, needed someone different, someone amazing. This burning need was like a needle poking me – reach out to her… just call… no, send an email… (Did I mention that I’m an introvert? I also don’t like to call strangers on the phone – even to order a pizza). So finally, after procrastinating long enough, I emailed Crys and inquired about hiring her as our doula. She sent me her information, we set up an interview, and the rest is, well, history.
We interviewed her in our home and had the most wonderful conversation. It was hard to let her leave. We hired her immediately; we loved her from the start. Crys is one of those people that you didn’t realize was missing from your life until she enters it. She has a power and a presence that is intense and infectious. Her knowledge and passion for all things birth is trumped only by her immense love that she has for her clients. As our pregnancy progressed, Crys did spot checks to make sure all was well. We talked birth plan, insecurities, hopes, dreams, etc. When we entered the due date window, Crys checked in regularly via phone, text, or visiting. She got to know our family and truly became an advocate for our birth plan, our baby, and our family. We were planning a home water birth and Crys was instrumental in making sure that everything was ready. When I went into labor, my husband let Crys know and she was there at our house quickly, they set up the birth pool, while Crys talked me through contractions and reminded me to trust my body. Since we had developed a good relationship and rapport with Crys, there was also a bit, okay a lot, of fun that was had during our birth. Our room was full of laughter and joy and Crys was a huge part of that. She also acted as our photographer and took some amazing photographs that night. She cared for us and guided us so that we could focus on what was most important – welcoming our baby into this world. She made sure both my husband and I kept hydrated, she made sure I ate something to keep up my strength after the baby was born, and she made sure we could get some rest after our birth high wore off.
In the days following our birth, Crys was very present. She encapsulated our placenta and gave detailed instructions about taking the pills. She was also a huge advocate of our breastfeeding journey with our second baby. I had extremely low milk supply with my first daughter and we were hopeful that my milk supply would be different with baby #2. Unfortunately that was not the case, but Crys was there with us side by side with encouragement, love, and support as we proceeded to walk down the path of donor milk supplementation yet again.
The care that Crys provides is not just care. It is a complete envelope of comfort, respect, knowledge, and trust that she surrounds you in because you know, without a doubt, that she has you and your baby’s interest at heart, yet she does it with a flair that is empowering, and awe inspiring at the same time. Given all of that, it is no wonder why we hired her again for baby #3 and had just as much of an amazing experience as we did with baby #2, if not more.
As I look back on the care that Crys provided while I was pregnant, delivering, and postpartum with our second daughter and our son, my heart explodes with love, joy, and gratitude. Without Crys our births would have been completely different and I would be completely different. Crys is amazing and if you are looking for something different, something powerful, something awe inspiring for your birth Crys is the doula for you.
Bethany Lobocki says:
I’ve experienced just about every hospital-based labor and delivery scenario with my 6 children, from an unmedicated and intervention-free VBA2C to a planned c-section. For the first time, during the birth of my youngest child, I had a doula present for my preeclampsia-induced, urgently scheduled c-section. Crys’ presence during this time was invaluable to both to myself and to my husband. Not only did I still benefit from having an additional advocate present, but I had an extra set of hands and an extra voice of support during a time of uncertainty. With a busy family, Crys’ presence took the pressure off my husband to wait with me in a busy, loud, and uncomfortable triage unit while we waited for an available operating room. Her knowledgeable and supportive presence was the exact thing I needed in that moment. Another significant benefit was that my husband (and I!) didn’t feel torn between staying at my side vs. with our newborn. Someone was with baby at all times, and someone was with me at all times. I’ve had two c-sections without a doula, and now that I’ve experienced this type of birth with Crys’ support, I will never have another c-section without her.