Melissa has been a doula since 2012. She has taken training with ProDoula, DONA, BAI and IPPA. Since the birth of her first child, Melissa has had a desire to help new mothers discover their true strength in the journey that is parenthood. Melissa first started in this role when she became a La Leche League leader in 2000 and began to support mothers and families in their breastfeeding goals. She also supported many families with a New Mothers group at a local hospital, which shared information on a wide variety of topics including CPR, carseat safety, baby massage and even local music classes for babies. These years helping mothers find the joy in nurturing their children led Melissa to doula work in 2012. Melissa is a mother to 5 children, and has experienced both frustration and joy in her own birth experience. By working with expectant families in Fresno and Tulare Counties, she hopes that they can find joy in childbirth and the growth of their family.
Melissa completed Birth & Postpartum certification training through DONA in 2001 and has completed additional training through DONA, CAPPA, and ProDoula. She is currently cross-certifying through Birth Arts International. She is completing her postpartum doula cross certification and Placenta Encapsulation Specialist certification through IPPA . Melissa began her journey in birth work in 1999 when her first pregnancy awakened an intense interest in the miraculous process of pregnancy and childbirth. In 2000, she experienced a very traumatic birth and the loss of her first baby. Through her healing she developed the desire to support new parents and to make sure all parents had access to evidence-based information so that they could make informed choices for their care and birth. This journey led her to become a doula and start A Mother's Touch in 2002. Melissa loves to share her knowledge and excitement with expectant mothers in the Central Valley of California, and guide them to build a supportive birth team.
As an experienced doula, Melissa knows how important it is for parents to have a knowledgeable support person who is familiar with pregnancy, birth, and newborns. The guidance and encouragement Melissa provides as a doula allows her clients to feel confident in themselves. She loves to assist women through balancing education, physical comfort techniques, and emotional support, and truly listens to her client's needs. She empowers women to find their confidence so they can decide what is best for themselves throughout their journey of pregnancy, birth, and as a parent.
Working with new families since 2000, Melissa has seen how important knowledgeable and caring mentors are to new families as they navigate through the beginning and growth of their family. Melissa's experience with breastfeeding and the newborn period allows her to support the new family in this life changing event in a way that allows them to feel confident in their choices for their family. Bringing this knowledge to the family during pregnancy and postpartum, allows for even greater empowerment. She feels that watching families grow and thrive with knowledge is amazing!
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