I recently sat down with Lynn Jones of Assisted Journey Birth Services. Lynn is a mother of two girls, wife to a U.S. Navy service member, a military veteran, doula extraordinaire, and my good friend. Her and her family recently moved from Japan to Guam and she’s fallen head over heels for island life.
If you’re currently pregnant or even considering getting pregnant in the future you’ll want to get comfy and read Lynn’s words of doula wisdom. She shares how doulas not only benefit a mother during labor but also a doulas vital role in supporting the mother’s partner. Lynn explains how doulas even assist women having a cesarean birth. Doulas have a special ability to suit all types of planned and unplanned births. It’s proven that women who have their birth attended to by a doula are overall more satisfied with the outcome of their birth. Who wouldn’t want that?! She also shares how important her husband has been in supporting her work as a birth companion and the legacy she hopes to leave for her two girls.
I’d love for you to leave your questions for Lynn in the comments below. She’s such a warm soul that would be honored to answer your burning questions about birth and how to prepare. So, here’s my chat with Lynn.
A: Please describe yourself in 3 words.
L : Loving, passionate, mothering
A: Where did you grow up?
L : I was born in Atlanta, Georgia and raised by my grandmother in Mississippi till I was 5. Then I spent the remainder of my childhood living in Atlanta with my mother and little brother.
A: What is a doula? How is a doula different than a midwife?
L : A doula is a birth companion that gives physical, educational, and emotional support to a mother and their birth partner – before, during, and after the birth of their baby. The difference between a doula and a midwife is that a doula is non-medical. A doula is focused on preparing the mother for labor and emotionally and physically caring for her while she is in labor. A midwife is focused on making sure that the mother and baby are medically safe and healthy. The doula is a nice compliment to the birthing team because most of the time the mother feels that her emotional, physical, and medical needs were cared for while laboring.
A: What made you decide to become a doula?
L : Well, while we were stationed in Japan I heard there was a doula training being held. I had always worked in obstetrics while in the military and I missed being in that field. So I took the training; and let me tell you, I was blown away by the new insights and perspective I gained!
A: What is your favorite part about serving women during pregnancy and childbirth?
L : Pregnancy and labor marks the beginning of a new life. Whether it be of the new little human, the formation of a woman becoming a mother, or a man becoming a father. It is a starting point that can set the tone for a family’s journey.
I get a chance to impact a story that will be told for years to come.
A: What role does a doula play for a woman having a medicated or cesarean birth?
L : Professional doulas are non-judgmental, which means that we support the mother and every birth choice that she makes. If the mother chooses to have a medicated birth or needs a cesarean section, we support every mother just the same.
A: How do you support husbands during labor and birth?
L : We discuss the fathers’ desires and expectations during the prenatal appointments. Each client has different needs. Some dads may not feel comfortable being the sole support person, while other fathers may prefer to be the primary support person. Doulas realize that dads play an important role in birth and they need support and guidance as well.
A: What makes Assisted Journey Birth Services unique?
L : Assisted Journey stands out because it is the first professional doula service owned and operated here on Guam. I provide compassionate services to every mother. I look forward to expanding my services to reach more mothers in the community.
A: What do you believe your role is here on Guam?
L : My role here on Guam is to provide compassionate support to mothers before, during, and after the birth of their baby.
A: Tell us about your family.
L : I’ve been married to my wonderful husband for almost 12 years come this June. I have two energetic girls ages 7 and 5 and they are my world.
A: How has your husband supported you as you serve women?
L : I couldn’t do the work that I do without him. I mean, it takes a special kind of man to allow his wife to leave in the middle of the night to go to work. He’s had to adjust his schedule many times so that I could be available for my client. My husband is my rock, my partner, and he is the sole reason why I can continue my business.
My husband is very supportive.
A: What legacy do you hope to leave for your girls?
L : I want my girls to know that we have a responsibility to help and support others to the best of our ability. I want them to know that hard work and their love for God will help them understand what truly matters.
I hope my girls can look back at their mother and see me as a woman that exhibits grace, love, and compassion.
A: What book(s) are you currently reading?
L : I love reading. However it seems like at the present time I haven’t had time to pick one up. But I love reading either contemporary romance or paranormal romance books. The last book I read was Twelve Extraordinary Women by John MacArthur and I’m always referencing The Birth Partner by Penny Simkin.
A: What do you do for fun?
L : I enjoy taking my girls to the beach or going to the movies with my hubby. I tend to enjoy doing low key things that are relaxing.
A: What is something you’re currently dreaming about?
L : Well it’s my dream to make the doula profession a common household name here on Guam.
A: If you could give pregnant women a piece of advice, what would it be?
L : Eat healthy, stay active, and create a birth team that respects and acknowledges your birth wishes.
A: Where can people find out more about you and the services you offer?
Isn’t Lynn the sweetest? Lynn was gracious enough to share some gorgeous photos of the mamas she’s assisted during labor. If you’re a pregnant woman on Guam looking for intimate labor support or birth photography don’t hesitate to connect with her. She’s someone I believe is truly one-of-a-kind.