Photo by Mandy Mohler

Angela Joy was essential to what my husband and I consider a positive and joyful birth experience. Given her vast engagement with the birthing community, medical knowledge, and nurturing character, she has clearly answered her vocation in being a doula! We were especially impressed with her availability and sincerity in developing a relationship with us many months prior to my delivery date. Thus, when the time came I felt confident and connected with Angela.  What is more, she demonstrated a real gift in her capacity to instruct and enable my husband to be effectively involved in the process.  What I find especially significant about Angela's approach in preparing me for labor was her ability to both support and inform the vision I had. She helped me identify certain attachments I had acquired (e.g., refraining from an epidural) in order to encourage an open mind about what it means to have a positive labor experience in the case that certain interventions might be beneficial or even necessary.  By helping to relax these attachments, I believe she inspired the very kind of mentality not only requisite to achieving a natural birth, but also for positively accepting the array of possibilities that might occur in order to best deliver my baby given the uncertain nature of labor and delivery.  That being said, she offers superb pain management.  At the most difficult point in my labor, Angela's gentle but powerful and direct instruction undoubtedly gave me the strength to deliver my daughter when it was most necessary. I feel blessed that I can look back to the (many) hours of my labor with joy and gratitude because of Angela's presence and graceful guidance.   She continued to offer postpartum support by providing placenta encapsulation, as well as a sincere interest in my family's well being and continues to be a touching presence and resource in my life. Many thanks to you, Angela. -Lauren

 

I can’t begin to express what a tremendous influence Angela Joy was on my positive birth experience. The very first time I met her, I knew she was special. Angela has a gift. She was always there for me, and was such a great source of support and wisdom. Her vast knowledge of pregnancy, herbs, labor, birth, and breastfeeding was a major factor in helping me feel secure when questions arose and I needed to reach out to her. My pregnancy ran quite over the due date I was given, and having Angela there to coach me through it day by day (literally!) was such an important help. Ultimately it made the difference between letting my body give birth when it was ready, and being medically induced.

Angela is truly committed to her clients. When I was overdue, she braved a snow storm to come to my home and administer acupressure in hopes of helping my body go into labor. That gesture blew me away. She is truly invested in every process of your pregnancy and delivery. I felt so cared for and knew that she really honored my birth process. Her assistance and expertise was worth every single penny and then some!! I will recommend her services to every pregnant woman I come into contact with! -Andrea

 

Angela is one of the kindest, most genuine people I have ever met, and her knowledge and passion for the birthing process is undeniable.  I am so overwhelmed with gratitude for Angela’s help with the birth of my son that I don’t even know how to put it into words.  I had a pretty traumatic birth experience and it is only because of her that I can look back fondly on that day.  Angela helped me to feel like I was still in control through all of the chaos and important decisions.  Also, her help with breastfeeding was invaluable.  I would have been lost and a lot more frustrated without her.  Angela truly went above and beyond to make us feel cared for.   It is because of her help that I can honestly say that the birth of my son was the best experience of my life. -Amber

 

I highly recommend Placenta Encapsulation and especially with Angela Joy.  Angela displays unprecedented professionalism and kindness. My postpartum experience proved joyful and energetic and I largely credit the capsules Angela created for me. When considering Placenta Encapsulation ask yourself, "why not?" and then choose Angela Joy. -Colleen Mother of three

 

“As a person who has suffered multiple herniated disks and had back surgery, steroid injections, acupuncture, physical therapy several treatments, both conventional and holistic to keep my low back pain and sciatic nerve pain in check, I have found that massage therapy has been the most successful.  That being said, I have also found that while other pain management professionals are good, Angela Boyce is by far the best therapist for my pain management out of the many other professionals I have tried.  She cares.”

-Andy Hurst, Carpenter/ Retailer

 

Angela Joy was a true blessing to our family throughout the birth process. I had previously had a rather traumatic birth, and never understood why. At our first meeting, Angela took the time to review all the details of my previous birth to help me understand why it had been so difficult and to release some of my fears for my second birth. She was the first person to actually provide me with information and knowledge about my experience, which was exactly what I needed. When the time came for my second birth, Angela was simply wonderful. From the time my water broke to the time I gave birth was almost three days, and yet she was available to us the entire time. Her deep knowledge of the birth process combined with her gift for massage and her comforting persona was invaluable to our experience. Thanks in large part to Angela's work with us as our doula, our second birth was a wonderfully fulfilling and gratifying experience. Our family is enormously thankful to have had her be a part of our birth experience.  -Katie

 

We interviewed a few doulas and were having a hard time deciding what to do until, on the recommendation of a good friend, we met with Angela. We liked and felt comfortable with her immediately. I remember that our not very well behaved dogs stayed relaxed and quiet when she came over for our interview and I thought to myself, “If she can keep them calm, she’ll be able to keep us calm.”

My water broke at 32 weeks and I ended up in the hospital on bed rest until delivering at 34 weeks, so that calming influence was very needed and appreciated. Angela checked in with us often while I was in the hospital, and came over to help us work on our birth plan and for a prenatal massage. She did a lot of research into our situation and was able to offer a lot of comfort and gentle advice to us worried, soon to be parents. She helped us talk through what was going to happen, and understand that even though things would not be exactly as we planned for the birth, we didn’t have to give up everything we wanted. 

When I went into labor, Angela was a super hero. She was kind, supportive, always there when we needed her, but somehow managed to be unobtrusive. Labor took forever (40 hours!) but she never let any tiredness show. My husband and I agreed that he would stay with our son after he was born and had to go to the NICU, and knowing that Angela would be there with me made that decision much easier for him. 

Honestly, that day hard to write about because the whole thing is all a blur, but I can still hear Angela’s calm voice telling me I was strong, and could do it. I can’t imagine how we would have gotten through without her. 

One of the best things Angela does is the postnatal visit. There’s so much uncertainty those first few weeks of parenting, it was really great to have her share her experiences as a doula and a mother and tell us we were doing ok.  -Abigail

 

Angela was a great presence at our birth and I really appreciated the warmth and support she brought to our experience. She managed to be a part of everything while being unobtrusive, offering comfort measures that my husband and I never would have thought of (cool drinks, pressure, and cold washcloths at the perfect moments). I debated whether we wanted to engage a doula and I'm glad that we did--it was reassuring having someone there who'd done it before (and wasn't as lost in the moment as we were). I'm one of the lucky moms whose birth was quicker and better than anticipated but even a 'short' labor doesn't feel that quick when you're in the thick of it. Angela managed to both take initiative (filling up the tub as soon as we arrived to the hospital, introducing herself to the staff, fanning me to help cool me down) while following my lead and reading my body language. 

Angela was also able to capture the first few moments of our son's life, in addition to taking our first family photo. Her postpartum support and wisdom were also incredibly helpful--she provided bits of wisdom and was really good at checking in to see how my first weeks of motherhood were going, never making me feel like my many questions were anything but questions that needed to be answered fully! I've enjoyed working with Angela so much that I want to continue the relationship--regular massages. I love that she comes to me (it's hard to schedule massages at a place when you're a new mom) and she was able to perform specific techniques and adjustments for postpartum moms.-Jean

 

“I met Angela when my sister in law and I began a “momma day” of a massage and lunch once a month.  We continued the tradition after I found out I was pregnant with my second child.  I am confident that having a regular massage through-out pregnancy aided in preventing the body aches and swelling I experienced with my first pregnancy.  When I discovered Angela was an experienced Doula, it was a no-brainer to engage her as my doula for the birth while continuing to see her for regular massages.  She is very knowledgeable, respectful, and very good at her job both as a massage therapist and as a doula. She is a very caring and compassionate person, and I can’t say enough that continuing to have regular massages after birth should be a requirement for all new moms!”-Kati

 

After my first traumatic experience with birth that ended up in a c-section I knew that I needed a doula for my second birth. After interviewing Angela I knew she was the doula for me! I wanted a vbac this time around and needed someone who could support me and guide me through this process. Her knowledge of birth was incredible! She provided me with educational materials, DVDs, herbs (tea and herbal baths), and was always able to answer any questions I came upon even if it meant she would have to research it and ask around. She even helped me find a class at indigo forest on vbacs. She was always there for me whenever I needed her and her positive attitude about me having a successful vbac was just what I needed.

Something that really helped ease my pain during pregnancy was the prenatal massages that Angela provided. I would always look forward to those prenatal massage appointments. I remember having some pelvic pain and telling Angela about it. She brought her massage table and gave me a massage at my house to help ease the pain! Not only was it amazing but she really went out of her way to make sure I was comfortable during my pregnancy.

When it was time to go to the hospital it was awful because they tried to send me home since the hospital was too full and they also said that I was only 4 cm dilated (which should be enough to be admitted anyway). Angela really stood by me, calmed me, and even reminded me it would be okay to go home if it was really needed. I remember wanting an epidural and even a C-section at times but she reminded me of my strength and tried to find ways to ease my pain naturally.

Anyway the staff was wrong about trying to send me home because when we were considering going home in the hallway, my water broke and they had to rush me to the triage room to deliver! After I had finally pushed baby out (about 15 minutes) I had tore. Angela held my hand and comforted me through the whole experience! Although my hospital visit was awful, Angela's support and optimism made my second birth experience beautiful and I got my vbac!! My family and I are so thankful for Angela and would be honored if she was our doula for the next child we planned.  -Asma

 

Having Angela as our birth doula… 

Angela’s kindness and compassion were such important elements to making our birth experience rich and rewarding. At our first meeting we knew right away that she would be a comforting and important force for our daughter’s birth. 

She was always engaged, listening, and remembering specifics from previous conversations and always included an important personal element. We had briefly mentioned the importance of my grandmother at our first session. At the following meeting she asked about my grandmother specifically, and had thoughtful and kind questions about our family. It was easy to discuss personal issues. We always felt confident, due to her sincerity and warmth, to discuss all aspects of labor, birth, and postpartum, personal concerns, past histories, belief systems and especially the fun parts of the process. She was warm, sincere and compassionate in her interactions with us. 

Educational materials accompanied every session with her. She would bring worksheets, excerpts from books, questionnaires, and DVDs. We would review the materials and discuss our homework assignments while learning more about the labor, birth and first week’s home with our daughter.  Angela shared stories and listened to ours. It was easy to discuss all of it with her, and laugh about much of it while learning about the process.  All of the education provided confidence, which in turn diminished fear, and made the whole process fun!  

We had a healthy textbook natural 13-hour labor with a half hour of pushing! Once labor started at midnight we felt confident to call at anytime. We sent a short text letting her know it had begun. She contacted us and made us feel like we were not alone making decisions. As labor progressed at home my husband talked to her several times over the phone, at which time she helped us decide, in concert with our OB, when it was time to leave for the hospital. She met us as soon as we entered the labor room. 

My memory of labor and birth after arriving at the hospital are a bit fuzzy, but Angela’s presence was one of the driving forces in getting me through this amazing event. I could feel, see and smell my husband (the most important force in the room). I could hear Angela. She was truly my guide.  I could try to use words to explain her presence, but it would diminish her amazing-ness. 

My husband and I know we could have done it alone, but the experience was so much richer and safe feeling because of Angela’s presence. My husband felt that she guided him along, always feeling like he was in control. She helped him come to conclusions about the process instead of telling him what was going on making him feel like he was the most important person in the room. His favorite memory is how kindly she placed a towel under his knees on the tile floor of the labor room. This was no small gesture!

Our three follow up post partum visits were equally educational. She had information about newborn care, breastfeeding, baby blues and post partum depression, and development. She brought an amazing post partum bath soak, and endless knowledge about how we should feel as a new family, and me as a new mother, both physically and emotionally. Mostly, it was fun to discuss our amazing birth; sharing stories and laughing about some of the challenges that come along with sleep debt. 

We are so grateful for her presence and support with our daughter’s birth. Her kindness and compassion were of a grand scale, and will be cherished in our memories always. She will forever hold a special place in our hearts. If we have another child (which we hope to do) we would love to have Angela be a part of this amazing process once again. Prior to meeting Angela, I read a testimonial about a different birth Doula stating that she was worth her weight in gold, but Angela’s presence and support was worth so much more! -Jenny

 

Angela is the hour a week I most look forward to! I went to Angela both pre and post-natal prior to having my daughter, Ella at the beginning of this year. She has an amazing ability to immediately make you feel comfortable in her space as well as through her technique that is second to none. Additionally, Angela gives great advice, knows the areas to target and makes you feel 100% better than when you walked in the door. I would highly recommend Angela to anyone that is in need of some relaxation or looking to target specific areas of need!  -Erin

 

I first saw Angela-Joy at the beginning of my second trimester for  
some hip and lower back pain.  My experience was wonderful and upon  
leaving that appointment I could really tell a positive difference.  I  
felt so much better than when I arrived.  I saw Angela-Joy every few  
weeks during my pregnancy and found that those sessions eased many of  
the uncomfortable symptoms associated with pregnancy.  Angela-Joy's  
mannerisms and training all give me the highest  
confidence in her understanding of pregnancy and women's bodies.  I  
would highly recommend a visit with Angela-Joy to anyone looking for  
pre-natal massage, and to anyone in general (I'm even sending my  
husband to see her!). -Marjie