Miriah Phares 03/17/17
"This was my second pregnancy. I knew without a doubt I wanted a doula and that I would most likely choose Natasha. We had already clicked online because of our shared views on birth and life. When my husband and I met with her she was as warm as I imagined she'd be. She was very helpful and professional throughout my entire pregnancy, and though she miss most of my labor (no fault of her's. I progressed VERY quickly) when she did arrive she jumped right in in supporting me 100%. After birth she was absolutely. amazing. I recommend her to all of my expecting friends and acquaintances."
Emily Howell 1/11/17
"When I moved back home pregnant, with a deployed husband I knew that I wanted to have a natural birth and I knew I wanted to hire a doula. Hiring Natasha was the best decision I could have made for my birth. She was caring, supportive, and could literally give me tons of information on any question I had about pregnancy and birth! I highly recommend her to anyone looking for a doula!"
Tiffany Tuckett 08/26/16
"Natasha is extremely professional and personal at the same time! She gets all of her info from evidence based studies. She really is truly dedicated to helping women make informed choices about their births. She is kind and gentle. She is extremely respectful. She supports any type of birth so long as the woman is safe and informed. She is an advocate for women! We have a bond that will last a lifetime!"
Nikki Turner 03/09/17
"It was an absolute pleasure working with Natasha! We were expecting our first child and were looking for a doula to support us through the process. Natasha was incredibly helpful throughout the pregnancy and through birth. She would check in regularly to see how I was feeling and I could tell she was genuinely interested in supporting me. It was really helpful to have someone else to share the highs and lows of pregnancy with and someone to check-in with after doctors appointments.
Natasha made us feel very prepared for the child birth experience. We were well informed about the stages of labor, what to expect throughout the process and she taught us various coping techniques. She was always there to share resources and various perspectives, but never pushed us towards a particular point of view. We felt empowered to make our own decisions and had enough information to make an educated choice. We also felt great as we prepared for the birthing experience, as we had gone over the birth plan and various scenarios with Natasha in advance.
Finally, Natasha had a very calming presence during the birth. I knew she was there for support and guidance, but also felt like she gave my husband and I the space to have our experience. She also helped me achieve my goal of not introducing pitocin. My labor stalled towards the end and Natasha had me try a position that helped my labor progress. Without her, I'm not sure we would have had such a positive birth story.
I'd highly recommend Natasha if you are looking for a doula. She is very friendly, knowledgeable and supportive and we're so glad to have worked with her."
AshLee Cano 07/03/16
"Natasha was the perfect choice for our doula. There was an immediate connection between us when we met, she was just that comforting to me from the beginning. She was always there when I needed her, just a message or phone call away and she'd be there for us.
With our visits she really helped my husband and I get excited about labor, and be better prepared for managing labor before she would come.
When labor finally did come she was there in what seemed minutes after we told her we needed her and immediately brought relief with just her presence. Our birth plan went a little out the window due to medical issues so we didn't get to use all the pain relieving labor tactics we had wanted, but she was there the whole time I just wanted to hold onto her and her hand. She was there for me, she made me know everything was ok, and got me through our labor of love to meet our beautiful second son.
It is a happy thing to finally have our son in our arms but I get a little sad knowing I will truly miss my doula! I would in a heart beat (if our military travels didn't hinder this), have her at every birth of ours in the future. She was an essential part to my pregnancy, labor, and delivery without a doubt in my mind. :) "
Heather Williams Duke 12/22/15
"When I became pregnant a second time I knew I wanted to use doula again. Natasha was great to work with as I was looking... for someone who supported my decisions without being over the top or judgemental. As an RN I was already pretty knowledgeable in the field of labor and delivery so there were times where I felt I wasn't using her to her full potential. Nevertheless, she continuously provided me with resources geared toward preparing me for birth. Knowing she would be there to provide me support during labor kept my mind at ease. On the night my son was born Natasha didn't disappoint and met my every need-she wasn't pushy and just let me do what felt right. In the end I was able to have my second unmedicated birth with her support. Natasha was also instrumental during the postpartum to talk through my birth experience. Her recollection helped me to work the entire experience out in my head. I will definitely recommend Natasha in the future."
Natasha provided endless compassion and support for myself and my family during my pregnancy and birth experience. She helped me evaluate every step and made sure I always knew my options. I am so happy with the experience I had and would definitely use Natasha again in the future.
Leslie Reneé Moniot 06/29/15
"As a single mom, I first became interested in hiring a Doula because I needed a birth partner that didn't have to be my baby's father. He and I are on good terms and he's a committed dad, but he lives out of state, and there was no guarantee he would make it on time for our daughter's birth, so having a Doula was the ideal solution. During my pregnancy Natasha proved to be the perfect choice. She has an extremely mindful approach and you can tell her experience as a mother of two gives her special insight in how to talk to a pregnant woman. She made a point of checking in with me, at what I always felt was just the right time, ready to offer help and advice without asking me the same annoying questions everybody else was asking me. During our consultations I felt very confident in her knowledge and intuition, and I always felt she was very prepared. In the days before my due date, she was on call 24 hours a day for any questions I had, or should I go into early labor. When the time came, I was 41 weeks and went in for a scheduled induction. Many people think a Doula is only for a natural birth, but I was medically induced and had an epidural and Natasha was supportive and knowledgable about it all. In the end, my baby's father was there for the whole birth, but I still found Natasha to be indispensible. She helped me relax, coached me through the pain (yes, there was plenty of pain, even with my epidural) and she used special techniques to help my labor speed up naturally, specifically with the way she helped me position my body at various points throughout my labor. Yes, not only was my birth less stressful and more successful, it was actually shorter! I was so impressed by how she worked with my birth team. My mom and my baby's father also relied on Natasha's cool head and great ideas, and she was a great team player with my doctor and nurses. In the end, a great experience."
Ashley Prince Rodriguez 04/27/16
"My husband and I hired Natasha for a two hour birth prep class. Natasha came to our home and present information about labor and delivery in a clear and concise way. She was prepared, well spoken, and extremely informative. My husband and I were able to ask questions and Natasha put us both at ease. I appreciated her discussion of so many of the options available to us during birth. And I was impressed with her ability to customize her class to our needs, wishes, and circumstances. We hired Natasha for our birth prep because we were having a hard time finding a traditional class setting that worked with our schedule. We couldn't be more happy with our choice and highly recommend Natasha and Gulf Coast Doula. "
Lauren Cunningham 08/17/16
"Naasha is just simply awesome. I hired her early on in the chance that my husband wouldn't be able to make it home due to the nature of his job. But as we talked and I learned more about what she really does, I realized I wanted her there even if my husband was going to be home. He was skeptical at first, but as I pointed out that he might need a nap, to eat, use the bathroom, etc. he realized she would be helpful so I wouldn't be alone. She was amazing throughout the pregnancy giving me resources so we could make the decisions that were right for our family. During the birth, his reasons for her being there changed. She helped bring a calming presence to both of us. When I needed to lean on him, but felt like I was falling apart down there, she did these amazing hip compressions. Without her, I wouldn't have been able to have the natural VBAC I wanted. Definitely hoping that she'll be available for our next baby because I don't know what I'll do if she's not!
Lindsay DeValue Miller December 12, 2017
If I could give 1000 stars to Star Croucher, she would be deserving of every single one. She is the creme de la creme of birth doulas, and I absolutely could not have had the natural, beautiful birth I did without her by my side, loving and supporting me, rooting for me, and comforting me every step of the way.
Early morning, on the day I would birth my baby boy, I had absolutely no idea that I was in active labor due to my wildly unpredictable and patternless contraction durations and frequencies. I simply assumed it wasn’t the real deal. After alerting Star of the questionable activity, she immediately came over just to monitor and sit with me, and only an hour after leaving me to rest, having experienced no contractions for at least an hour, she would immediately come back again to find me in transitional labor and complete at 10 cm, barely able to even speak. It was at this time that all I could think about was relief, desperately just praying it would end. I didn’t even have to say anything as Star could see it in my eyes. I remember her saying, “Lindsay, you’ve already done the hard part, and it’s almost over! You will not give up now. I won’t let you. You know you’re a tough, strong, feisty Jersey girl. You’re amazing. You know you can do this. You’re fighting it. Stop fighting it and relax into the wave....” It was these words of love and support that kept me pushing through every single wave. She motivated me, encouraged me, and comforted me, blanketing me with her tender, motherly air that effortlessly and naturally surrounded her. She treated me as if I were her own daughter, dressing me, ensuring I drank water, feeding me, wiping my sweat with cool cloths, holding warm compresses to my perineum so I didn’t tear, keeping my hair out of my eyes, and continuously reassuring me that I was a rock star. She emanated a quiet, yet powerfully strong inner confidence that manifested in her every action and word to me, eliciting in me my own sense empowerment and allowing me to find a deep rooted strength I had no idea I possessed.
Her wealth of knowledge and vast experience regarding the entire birth process is truly remarkable and completely calmed my fears and anxieties; thus, easing my mind as I undoubtedly knew we were in the most capable and trustworthy of hands as we brought our baby earthside. We looked to her for guidance at every turn, and she was always right there, quick to offer helpful and objective information, presenting pros and cons to every obstacle we encountered. For example, after barreling into labor and delivery almost at the point of pushing this baby into the world, the nurses thought it imperative to check me for dilation progression in order to inform my OB to come ASAP. However, My OB and I had previously agreed on very limited cervical checks by her only. Without even checking me, Star knew I was complete before we even left my house, and she gently urged me to let the nurse check so that my OB would know to get to the hospital now. Star was absolutely right, and it’s a good thing I relented (I am very stubborn), and let the nurse check me. Then, when meconium presented itself in my amniotic fluid, I immediately looked to Star for direction, as now I knew the baby would not be placed directly on my chest, and they would need to take the baby for suctioning and observation. Knowing I wanted the baby directly on my chest, without hesitation, she reassured me that meconium was extremely common, and that baby would be in my arms on my chest for kangaroo care in no time, reminding me that the end goal was a healthy baby. In the end, Baby Nico busted out with a Nuchal hand, therefore causing a small tear on the inside. Star knew I was deathly afraid of needles, and she stayed with me, by my side the entire time, holding my hand, while my husband went with the baby and the pediatrician to be monitored and suctioned due to the meconium.
She’s just simply extraordinary. There is no other word to describe the love and compassion she has for a birthing mama, and it is crystal clear she does not do this for the money. I don’t know what I would have done without her by my side.