My Story

“The wisdom and compassion a woman can intuitively experience in childbirth can make her a source of healing and understanding for other women.” – Stephen Gaskin

Ina May Gaskin

Ina May Gaskin

Being a professional Doula weaves together the core strands of my life into one deeply fulfilling and passionate journey. I was raised by a nurturing circle of creative and empowering women who taught me the value of appreciating other cultures and religions, art in it’s many forms, the beauty of the natural world — and most importantly, being kind and reaching out to others.

In the absence of my biological father, I learned that being a parent sometimes encompasses more than biology and can be equally special in the form of a doting grandfather and – my special hero — an adoptive father. “Family,” however it is composed, is the community that offers love, nurturing, and can be counted on for support.

In college, I was drawn to women’s studies as well as cultural and medical anthropology, especially the cross-cultural stories and images in ancient and modern civilizations where women gathered together to support one another during childbirth. This experience had a profound effect on my personal feelings of modern maternity care and how I viewed myself as a young woman. I began to see women as powerful, wise, healers of themselves and others, sources of inspiration and capable of accomplishing whatever they desire.

The creative world has also played a key role in enriching my life. It’s what brought me to New York from the Bay Area. I’ve worked in interior design, fashion, print and film industries in San Francisco, New York and Paris. I’ve developed an Apple App “Iknowalittleplace” as well as a series of biographical CD’s, “Conversations with Michael Murphy,” co-founder of Esalen Institute, the world’s most famous personal growth center and an author of acclaimed fiction and non-fiction books. Prior to becoming a full-time doula, I devoted my time as a manager at the New York Open Center which deepened my knowledge and appreciation of alternative medicine, holistic studies and natural healing modalities. These worlds have added flavor and spice to my doula-ing. You’ll always look good .. be well prepared for anything at any time, have fantastic photos of your journey and my “Mary Poppin’s bag” as one Mother calls these resources, is overflowing with holistic skills. local professional resources and evidence based knowledge.

I strongly believe being a Doula is an on-going educational journey. In addition to my DONA International Birth Doula training & Certification with Debra Pascali-Bonaro. I eagerly continue to keep current with birthing and breastfeeding newly published evidence based information, and attend workshops and events across the city to promote and protect women’s birthing rights and choices. I am Bradley Method of Natural Childbirth mentored and trained which I am wildly passionate to share with every couple I support. I am Certified in Infant CPR, attended Holistic Infant Care workshops, achieved certification as a Lactation Counselor with The Center for Breastfeeding, Healthy Children Project and part of the Sacred Pregnancy community as a Mother Roster and Mini-Retreat Instructor. My Sisterhood of doulas and birth workers remain my greatest and most valuable educators of all. My bookshelves overflow with my ever increasing collection. A genuine birth and Postpartum Library. I am excited to share I will begin training for my Lamaze International Childbirth Teaching Certification in January 2016.

I have completed a 9-month Prana Yoga teacher training certification with Jeff Migdow, Director of Yoga and holistic physician at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health. I immersed myself in a long-term training program in Western Herbalism with Peeka Trinkle a renowned herbalist, former childbirth educator, Doula and co-producer of the ground-breaking “Art of Birthing” conference series. As friend and mentor, she generously shares her vast knowledge, love of herbs and personal recipes.

I continue following my Doula path, eagerly adding to the skills and knowledge that will most benefit my mothers and families, before, during, or after childbirth. I am a deeply committed member of a global community of birth workers focused on the goal of offering women a safe, empowering, birth experience of their choice through informed decision-making, childbirth education, emotional support and advocacy. I’m proud to be part of a 2,000 year-old tradition that serves to provide care and comfort during a time that has been described as “the most profound initiation to Spirituality a woman can have.” It’s certainly been mine.

 

Contact
Kim Kushner

CD(DONA) Birth & Postpartum Doula
CLC Certified Lactation Counselor
Holistic Newborn Care
Classes/Workshops

(m)  646-221-7278
(e) dk.kushner@gmail.com
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