The Gorilla Tragedy

My opinion on the gorilla

I think it’s a tragedy. The tragedy is that the gorilla died, and that we are so quick to judge. I’m not perfect, chances are that you’re probably not perfect either. So why do we expect that mom to have been perfect? If you have never made a mistake then go ahead and blame her for the death of the gorilla. But If you’re like me, sometimes you mess up,
People make mistakes. That’s just what this mother did. She made an assumption. She assumed that the exhibit it was safe, but now we all know that it wasn’t.
Instead of blaming a mother, who is probably already questioning her own mothering abilities, we should be thankful. Thankful that the child is alive. Thankful that the mother didn’t have to watch a gorilla kill her baby.
I wish I was an animal expert, and I could have offered a solution that didn’t include killing the gorilla. But I’m not. I don’t know why they could bate the gorilla with food, or use a tranquilizer.
I also don’t want to assume that any one life is more important than another. Animal, or human. But I also know that if it were my child, I would quickly decide that my child’s life was worth more than anyone else’s.
It is easy to blame the mother. It is easy to wonder why the solution was ending the Gorilla’s life. But it’s hard to be truly empathetic. We don’t want to envision ourselves as that mother. We want to believe that nothing like that would ever happen to us. I’m sure that’s what she thought just a few days ago. But it did happen to her. Life is so fast. Children move so quickly. Things happen. I hope that they never happen to yours, or my family. But if they do, you can guarantee I’m not passing blame. I will only share support and empathy.

Our Doulas use Passion

An acronym we use to support couples during birth is PASSION.

We like to PREPARE ourselves and our clients before labor. We do this through workshops, and our prenatal meetings. At these meetings we develop a birth plan. This is a chance for expecting parents to think about what they want their birth to look like.

We ATTUNE to our clients. We do this every time we meet. Being the best doula means this comes naturally to us. We aim to see our clients as individuals, and meet those individual needs, during birth, and postpartum.

We SUPPORT our clients. Weather this be physical support during contractions, or emotional support during transitional labor. This support is of all your choices, without judgment.

We encourage you to SLEEP, and we sleep when we can. Labors can be long, being a great doula means being well rested while on call, and resting when the laboring woman rests. This also includes encouraging mom to sleep when she can. Labor is a lot of work, and to be their very best, everyone needs enough sleep.

We INVOLVE the entire birth team. These people are in the birth room for a reason, lets include them. We can do hip squeezes together, and take turns applying counter pressure. Your birth team probably knows you really well, and we’ll see what advice they have for you.

We remind you that you have OPTIONS. We do this through your birth plan. That plan can come with you, and remind you of any choices you’ve decided to make. We will of course support a change in that plan, as birth doesn’t always go exactly to plan.

We NEVER take any of your choices personally. This isn’t our birth, it’s yours. We are supporting the choices that YOU are making, not our own.


When we use PASSION at our births we are able to provide you with excellent support.

Frequently Asked Questions

What training do you have? Every doula on our team is trained by ProDoula. We choose ProDoula because they have a standardized curriculum, this means all of our doulas are going to have the same base of knowledge.

Do you have a back up doula? Since you hire a pair of doulas, you are hiring your backup immediately. You will have the support of two doulas during your pregnancy. They will share a call schedule, and when you go into labor you will call the ‘on call’ doula. They will come to your side and support you during your birth.

How much experience do you have? Each member of our team has vast experience  supporting families. Another reason we love ProDoula is how prepared it leaves our doulas. Whether it is their 100th birth, or their very first we believe that they have the intuition and knowledge to support you.

What is your philosophy on birth? Our philosophy on birth is that women need support during the process, and we want to give you that support. If you choose un medicated, all the medications, cesarean section, or if the plan changes along the way- we will be by your side the entire journey.

Can we call, text, or email you? Upon contract signing, you have 24/7 access to your doulas for emails and texts. Doulas do have up to one business day to respond to non-emergency emails and texts.

When will you join us during labor? We will be happy to join you when you are ready. Although we love a heads up, we just need 2 hours notice for when you would like us to arrive.

Do you get along with my Doctor/Midwife/Partner? Yes. All of our doulas work with your entire birth team. This gives you more support and keeps the room comfort during the birth of your baby.

Do you keep current CPR First Aid? All of our doulas keep current on their CPR and first aid, for infants and adults.

How will my partner be involved? We love families. We want the entire birth team to feel included. If this is a high concern for you, we highly suggest you take our workshop ‘Partner Plan’ or ‘Birth Team Plan’.

How to Start a Fight on the Internet

I talk about all sorts of topics. Blog posts are fun to write, and provide an awesome place for me to refer clients back to. I use blogs as a cathartic exercise to process my opinion, and thoughts. But here’s one thought I can’t have a voice on.


This one topic gets people riled up like no other. The truth of the matter is that there are very polarizing positions on this topic. Lots of people have VERY strong thoughts on circumcision. Let me take the chance to lay out my thoughts.

I’m a doula. The largest aspect of my job description is “provide nonjudgmental support to parents”. We are all humans with opinions, and positions, thoughts, and ideas. I have an opinion about the way things are done in my own home, and in my business.

My personal opinion of circumcision is that you make the choice that best fits your family. No one should bully you into making a choice that you are not comfortable with. Find a doula who supports you. That doesn’t mean she makes the same choices as you do. What it does mean that she will stand by your side while you make the best choices for your family.

All About Cloth

I recently attending a cloth diapering class at Buddha Baby- a local San Diego baby boutique. I walked into the store and felt instantly greeted by the abundance of all things baby. My favorite feature of the store is a wall of ring slings. Seriously. It’s beautiful, colorful, and full of texture. I was greeted warmly, and directed to a hallway that leads to a room full of moms and babies. The store owner patiently showed us all about cloth diapers.

Many parents make a choice to use cloth diapers instead of disposable. This can be for the environmental benefit. Disposable diapers are the number 2 item in our landfills, and paper bleaching utilizes more water than any other industry. That means cloth diapering saves money, paper, and water. Cloth is also so soft on your baby’s bottom. I was shocked by just how soft the cloth diapers were. Some parents try to be reduced, or completely chemical free- cloth diapering helps limit that exposure for you baby. Cloth diapering can also reduce the amount of blow outs you and your baby deal with.

I was shocked by how easy a ‘flat diaper’ actually was. When you think ‘old school diaper with pins’ that is a flat. It’s a large flat square that you fold by yourself into a diaper. It is amazing to watch, and a great option for newborns. It’s also slimmer, so you can get your baby into some skinny jeans for that adorable San Diego beach photoshoot I’m sure you’re planning.

There are so many styles of cloth diapers. From flat diapers, to fitted, to special overnight diapers, to all in ones, to all in twos, just so many choices. What these diapers have in common is that they have an absorbent layer- a diaper, and a layer that keeps everything in- a cover. There are even hybrid diapers, with disposable pads, and the washable covers. This class outlined many of the benefits of certain diapers, and which cloth diaper style would be best for which situation.

My biggest take away was that cloth diapers have come a long way. Although you can use a flat and fold your own diaper like magic, you can also buy an all in 1, and have something almost as easy as a disposable diaper. With so many options, cloth diapers are completely customizable. It’s a system that is good for the environment, good for your wallet, good for your baby, and possibly the right choice for your family.

If you have any questions, or want to explore your options. I recommend going into Buddha Baby and getting your hands on some cloth diapers. Also that ring sling wall, even if you don’t plan on baby wearing, just go look at it because it’s beautiful!

How do I know I have the best doula agency in San Diego?

I am so confident in my doula abilities. As the owner of an agency, I have 100% confidence in everyone who works for, or with, my agency. My purpose in creating an agency was to provide families with professional, reliable, and nonjudgmental support during what could be a very challenging, but super amazing new journey. My secondary priority was finding the best doulas in San Diego, and providing them with a business to work for. How can I be so confident that the Southern Pacific Doulas team makes us the best doula agency in San Diego?

We are the best doula agency in San Diego because all of our doulas are Pro Doulas. We may also carry other certifications, but this is by far the most important to me. I’m a Pro Doula, and we are simply the best. Pro Doula covers a comprehensive, and standardized curriculum. This means that every Pro Doula has learned from the same materials, and carries the same values. I can be confident that they have the knowledge to support clients during birth. Since the curriculum is standardized, working with two doulas at the same time is almost seamless. We all bring our own skills to the table, and we carry our own experiences, but the best doulas minimum standards are going to be the same. By only hiring Pro Doulas in San Diego, I know that I am hiring the best.

We are the best doula agency in San Diego because we offers a pair of doulas. This is awesome because it takes out any room for your doula to miss your birth. I can tell you with 100% certainty, one of the doulas that you hire will attend your birth. Neither will have a family emergency, or miss your birth because they are super sick. When you hire a pair of doulas, you are hiring your backup doula immediately.

We are the best doula agency San Diego because we take our business, and you seriously. This seriousness includes carrying insurance, utilizing contracts that clearly spell out the services we offer. Contracts are a place to discuss expectations for both doulas and parents, this limits miscommunication and misunderstanding. Our seriousness also makes you a constant priority.

We are the best doula agency in San Diego because we practice within the scope of a doula. What that means is, we don’t give you medical advice, and we don’t practice anything that could harm you or your baby. We are well connected in San Diego, and happy to refer other fabulous professionals when you may benefit from them.

We are the best doula agency in San Diego because we support your parenting philosophies. Our mission isn’t to push any one specific way to be a parent. Our mission is to support you in your individual parenting journey. We strongly believe in you, your ability to make the best choice for your family, and when you need support or seek advice, we are ready to support you.

How to ensure that you hire the best doula in San Diego

Most people never conduct an interview in their lives. This can make interviewing a doula really challenging for expecting parents! How do you know she’s an amazingly fabulous fit for you? Here is the greatest list of questions you should ask a doula during an interview.

You should ask a doula how many births she attended. Please make sure to find specific numbers on the amount of vaginal births, cesarean sections, inductions, and epidural use- even if these questions don’t relate to your birth choices. You want to make sure that your doula will have experienced your exact birth before. Since this is nearly impossible, she should have an excessive number of births under her belt.

You should ask a doula what her relationship is like with care providers. If she tells you that she works well with doctors find someone else. If your doula isn’t an avid doctor hater she isn’t a good doula. Because our San Diego hospitals and doctors aren’t the best. You need to make sure that your birth room is super awkward when your doula is fighting against your doctors medical professionals.

You should ask a doula how she will advocate for you. Going along with the uncomfortable birth room theme, make sure that she will loudly advocate for your choices during your baby’s birth. Because you don’t know what you want, you aren’t enough, and you clearly need someone to advocate for you.

You should ask a doula if she has reliable back up care. If she tells you “Don’t worry about my back up, I haven’t missed a birth yet!” you’re in the clear! Chances are your birth won’t be the first that she’s missed. And if she is busy, maybe she can find a random doula online to be your backup.

In all seriousness-

Ask your doula how she adapts to changing birth plans.The best doula in San Diego is going to support an ever changing plan without judgement.

Ask your doula what she’s doing to work with care providers so that you can have the best birth experience possible. The best doula in san diego will work with your doctors, nurses, and midwife.

Ask your doula about her certifications, and insurance. The best doula in San Diego really should be trained, and carry insurance!

Ask your doula how she engages your birth team. The best doula in San Diego should add, not take away from your partners position.

Ask your doula what her back up situation is like. People have lives, even doulas, make sure that she has a plan for if she is unable to attend. The best doula in San Diego will have back up that she knows personally, and introduces you to before your birth.

One final suggestion- makes sure you feel an authentic connection with your doula. Oh, and be sure to call us for a complementary consultation with the best doula agency in San Diego.

Why Your Doula Shouldn’t be Messing with Essential Oils

Lots of people love essential oils. They believe they have these wonderful healing properties, the ability to keep you healthier, calm you down, amp you up, help you sleep, help you focus, all sorts of wonderful stuff. Whether or not you believe in the use of essential oils it’s important to understand why your doula should not be using them on you.

The first major reason is that I, as a doula, am not a specialist in essential oils. I’m a professional doula, not a professional aromatherapist. If you needed to replace the breaks on your car, I would be in no way qualified for that. However, just as I’ll happily hold the flash light for you while you’re doing car work; I’ll happily hold a cotton ball soaked in the EO of your choice for you during labor.

The second reason is that I don’t know how your body is going to react to anything that I put on it. As I’m sure you are already experiencing, your body goes through some tremendous changes during pregnancy. Not only does your belly grow, but you could grow sensitive to oils or lotions you were not previously sensitive to. If I covered your arm in an essential oil, and it caused you to break out in hives, during labor, I would feel personally terrible. Worse, you would probably feel physically terrible. Sometimes during labor, a scent that you usually like becomes intolerable. If it’s on your skin, you can’t really get rid of it.

The best way to use an essential oil during labor, is to soak a cotton ball with the oil of your choice. It is easy to gain any benefits, and take the oil away the moment you decide you don’t need or want it. The best essential oil to use during pregnancy and labor, is one that you have personally researched, and purchased. If you need help, I will gladly refer you to an aromatherapist who is an expert, and would love to show you how to safely use essential oils.

Why Should You Hire A Doula?

When you hire a Doula, you can be sure that you are making a great decision. There are so many decisions to make while pregnant, and they just continue after. A doula can be a fabulous resource for you. Here is just a few reasons why.

1. Hiring a doula will reduce stress- or at least give you someone to share the load with.

                Your doula wants to be a part of your journey. Friends are fabulous, but giving yourself a support network  that doesn’t judge you can be priceless. When your nipples are sore, you haven’t slept in days, and you’ve worn the same pair of sweat pants for 3 days straight, you can schedule a shift with your postpartum doula. She can suggest new breastfeeding positions, creams, care for baby while you take a nap, and even run a load of laundry while you take that nap.

2. Hiring a doula empowers you.

                Having someone in your court is awesome. Always. Just knowing that your doula supports you entirely can make you more capable of making tough choices. In the event that your birth plan changes during labor, you know you won’t be disappointing her- she supported your original plan, and she continues supporting you through your new plan.

3. Hiring a doula gives you a reliable support.

                Friends are awesome, but they have lives. If you go into labor at 2am, and stay in labor until 2am the next day, your friends might not be so excited and supportive. And that’s okay, maybe they have a family or jobs to get to. Your doula is there for you as long as you need her. She knows how to keep herself perky, and you calm. She will stay by your side as long as you need her to. She’ll be only a phone call away, or beside you for your entire labor.

There are so many more reasons why you should hire a doula, but these are our top three. What are your favorite reasons to hire a doula?

Today’s Woman

How should a lady act? She should she be classy. She should always have her legs shaved, her hair done, and a full face of makeup on. Oh, and she’d best have dinner on the table by 5!

These stereotypes aren’t accurate. A woman can certainly wear high heels, and make dinner every night. If she chooses to do so. A woman can also wear sweats and be a working professional. Again, if she chooses to do so. The beautiful thing about a woman, is that she can be anyone that she wants to be, while being incredible and amazing. She is capable of being strong, courageous, brave, and independent.

She can cross her legs, and laugh politely- but if she’d prefer she can use curse words, let her armpits grow out, never buy makeup, live in T-shirts, and do whatever she wants.

These stereotypes have held women back for many generations. Today’s women are so strong, and powerful. If she truly wants it- she can do, or be anything. Stereotyping women, or anyone for that matter, isn’t relevant anymore. Not only are they capable of being, but women are lawyers, doctors, farmers, athletes- in fact it feels silly to make a list of what they can be, because they can be anything!

No matter what the task at hand, keep in mind that you are a powerhouse, you can be successful, and you can even define success for yourself. In times where you find yourself struggling, you can find strength through a network of support you build yourself.