19 May

Do Doulas Need to be Certified?

01 CAPPA Certified ProudToBeDo Doulas Need to be Certified?

Do doulas need to be certified? The short answer is, no. Truthfully, anyone can say they are a doula. At this time, there is not a governing body that oversees certification requirements and ensures doulas follow a universal standard (but there is legislation in place working to change this!). This can contribute to why some hospitals are hesitant to have doulas in the room. Some “so-called” doulas may challenge the staff, speak on behalf of the patient, encourage patients to do things that go against medical advice, etc. I’m shaking my head because this is NOT what professional/certified doulas do at all. To learn more about what our role is, click here!

What are the benefits of hiring a certified doula? This depends, but to put it simply, the doula is required to maintain the Code of Conduct, Scope of Practice, etc., and complete an intense education and practical learning process of her (or his) governing organization, before being granted certification. In other words, you can be assured that your certified doula has been trained in a serious way! There are many training organizations for birth professionals. When pursuing training, a doula often selects an organization that most similarly aligns with her philosophy of offering services and maintaining her private practice. As a perspective client looking to hire a doula, you may ask the doula which organization she trained with and look into her program if you are curious.

On the flip side…There are many fabulous doulas who are not certified! *gasp* That’s right, some AMAZING doulas are not certified. Your doula may have been a doula for years and has more tangible experience than that of a professionally certified doula. Or, it’s possible the doula completed the professional training and did not go on to become officially certified. Or maybe your doula is in the process of becoming certified…it can take awhile.

In my case, I chose to pursue certification. I love that I am part of an organization of birth professionals that uphold very high standards and offer quality services for clients. To learn more about my certifying organization, visit: www.cappa.net. Furthermore, your momma instinct is going to tell you if you’ve found YOUR doula, certified or not!


Today, I received word that I am now an officially CAPPA Certified Labor Doula!!! I’ll add the fancy letters, CLD, behind my name. Throughout my journey as a doula, I have been so blessed to work with beautiful families as they bring their little ones into the world. I am grateful for each experience as it has contributed to the long road that has lead to me pursuing and completing this professional certification. THANK YOU to all of you who’ve contributed along the way!!! BIG hugs!!! – Doula Jenny



09 Mar

De-Cluttering with Joy!


untitledhouseI was talking with a very wise friend of mine the other day about my attempt to de-clutter my life. She suggested only keeping material things around me that bring me true joy. She is right. This simple concept has been immensely helpful in getting rid of things.

Several years ago, I unexpectedly left my successful government job to care for my firstborn child. I’ve had at least one professional job, at all times since I was twelve…until my son needed me. Just like that, I went from a 40+ hour/week money-earning Health Education Consultant to a 24+ hour/day cuddle-earning mom. That. Was. Weird. and HARD. Not only did I have to adjust to being dependent on someone else for income for the first time in my adult life, but I also had to adjust to a baby being dependent on me for…everything. My wardrobe went from a sharp Banana Republic girl to throwing on whatever Target ‘boyfriend-style’ tee seemed clean paired with yesterday’s jeans. And the shoes went from fun to functional, if I even wore shoes that day. That meant leaving the house.

For over four years, my staunch button-up collared shirts, fancy slacks, tailored skirts and gorgeous shoes (Oh, the shoes!) patiently hid out in my closet, waiting to be coordinated into what was once a very strong part of my identity. I enjoyed dressing the part of a business professional each day. My job that used to be helping with infectious disease control had now morphed into managing TWO tiny humans. My daily triumphs now included keeping the children clean, fed and alive. Those were also my challenges. 🙂

Last summer, I made the decision to train as a skilled Birth Doula and Childbirth Educator. I love being a professional mom, but I also missed that sense of accomplishment and challenges my ‘day job’ brought me. I missed talking to people my height and using words containing more than one syllable. I also missed helping people – grown-up people and families.

Last week, I took a long hard look at my closet and realized that I was never going back to the person I was in my pre-kids life. I think I kept my professional attire around as a safety net, just in case I needed it. I finally realized I’m not her anymore. I’m now a successful doula!!!! As much as I once loved these clothes, the likelihood of me wearing much of this business-y apparel in my present profession is not only impractical, but more importantly, no longer entangled with my personal identity. Can you imagine me offering counter-pressure to a laboring momma in heels and a pant-suit?!? clothescluelessThe memories associated with many of these clothes are that of my former life. Do they bring me joy? They used to, but they don’t anymore. My own transformation into motherhood and now in seeing other women transition into motherhood has offered me more happiness and joy than any of my clothes ever did. My new work uniform, which consists of my company logo t-shirt, yoga pants and tennis shoes now bring me the most joy and more confidence than I’ve ever had in a job…aaaaand they are a lot more comfortable.

So, I challenge you to take a look around your home. What items bring you joy? When looking at something, think about the memories this item recalls. What emotions do you feel? If it’s not joy, then maybe it’s time to be enjoyed by someone else.


Next up, sifting through the rest of my wardrobe. Watch out jeans – I’m coming for you! Oh, and in case you were worried, the shoes are still safe. A lady can never have too many pairs of shoes.


03 Mar

Birth Doula Information Session: Sunday, March 22nd at 3:00pm

warning doula


FREE EVENT for all expectant parents!

Decoding Doulas: Birth Support for Every Expectant Mother!

Expecting a “bay-bee”? Did you know that many local healthcare providers are now recommending their patients seek out doula support?

Join Jenny Bare, of Bay Bee Birth Services for this FREE casual monthly 1-hour information session that breaks down what doulas can do for your birth experience, on either of the following dates:

  • Sunday, March 22nd at 3:00pm
  • Sunday, April 26th at 7:00pm

Location: I am super excited to be hosting this event at Yoga-Treat on the Concord/Walnut Creek border! They offer so many great classes (including childcare options) for families! The building is located behind Trader Joe’s.

Yoga-Treat (In the Oak Grove Shopping Center Plaza)
2956 Treat Blvd, Suite B
Concord, CA



There is a lot to consider when having a baby, including who you wish to support you during your labor and birth. Numerous women and their partners find enormous reassurance and report a more positive birth outcome by having a doula (pronounced “doo-luh”) by their side.

This session will cover the doula’s purpose and Scope of Practice, how doulas and dads/partners work together, general doula fee ranges, what the research says, common misconceptions, and helpful guidelines when making birth decisions. Finally, you’ll gain some tools to assist you in finding the right doula for you; including key interview tips and where to search in your area.

Whether you’ve already considered hiring a doula for your child’s birth or if you’re simply curious, come check out this informative session. You may be surprised to learn that doulas are just as diverse as you are!

RSVP’s for this event encouraged. To RSVP or for questions, please email baybeebirthservices@gmail.com, call 925-381-9563 or click here.

02 Mar

Now Sponsoring: Hilarie’s Helpful Hints

Bay Bee Birth Services is a new sponsor for Hilarie’s Helpful Hints and the featured March business!!! Hilarie and her team provide information about a wonderful array of activities for over 2,500 families and mom’s-to-be in the Greater Bay Area including infant massage, baby-and-me yoga, music classes, gymnastics, toddler cooking classes, day trips, ticket discounts, playdates and much more! Later this month, I’ll be hosting my first informational class about doulas. More information about that here! – Jenny

28 Jan

Client Testimonial: Katherine W. – Winter 2015

My husband and I chose Jenny Bare as our doula for the labor and delivery of our son at John Muir Medical Center in December 2014, and we could not be happier with our decision.

20141223_Wade_IMG_9746_edit_editedFrom the very start, Jenny presented herself professionally with clear and constant communication with us. She presented many resources that helped us as first-time-parents figure out what our preferences for what sort of birth we wanted. She did not push any sort of agenda on us, but listened to us with insight and empathy and offered helpful tailored advice. She was able to identify what sort of coping-style I had, personality-wise, and met my needs perfectly– often even before I was able to articulate them myself.

20141223_Wade_IMG_9742_editDuring my labor, she worked smoothly with the nurses and OB smoothly while still advocating for our birth plan. Her constant support (including physically supporting me in various positions during contractions) not only got me through twenty-five hours of active labor without an epidural, but freed up the hospital staff to focus on monitoring the baby and other vital medical functions.

20141223_Wade_image1Without her empathetic, positive, and practical support, I know we could not have had the positive birthing experience that welcomed our little one into the world. Jenny is a wonderful person and I highly recommend having her by your side before, during, and after your birth.

30 Dec

It Takes as Long as it Takes: How do Affirmations Help You?

affirmation_smaller‘It takes as long as it takes.’ Such simple, yet meaningful words to me. I repeat these words every day. Multiple times as day. They are my mantra, my affirmation, and my saving grace with having two young children. I was comforting my daughter, who unexpectedly woke up after sleeping for a mere 30-minutes tonight. I heard her cry out to me on the monitor and sighed. I had work to do. Immediately upon picking her up, she melted into me. Her breath so soft, her cheeks so warm, she found her comfort in me and I found mine in holding her. My work can wait…again. It takes as long as it takes to soothe her, to help her fall back asleep, for me to just be there. At nearly 14-months, she wakes up multiple times a night. I don’t count anymore. I don’t look at the clock. I just repeat my affirmation and reassure myself that I cannot rush this process of her growing up. Her mind and her body are figuring things out, too.

My older child, my son, slept in 45-minute increments the first four months of his life. I most certainly did not always have this patience…err, attempt at patience…with parenting. Let’s be real. I was a sleep-deprived zombie mom and it took nearly a year for me to get back into my groove after having him. Read More