Lauren Smith-Donohoe has been teaching childbirth education for over 10 years in various settings, from formal classes and one on one private sessions, to long discussions over tea with her doula clients. Lauren has 3 children, each with very different labors and births: a 72 hour labor with some positioning issues, a 6 hour unplanned unassisted labor and birth with a genetic diagnosis at birth, and a precipitous (really fast) labor after many hours with broken waters and no labor. These births offer some foundations to draw on, but it is the families who she’s been honored to attend in labor that have given her a real education.
Lauren has worked in the field of birth in various capacities for 13 years and aspires to grow as a community resource, bringing back the traditions of community midwifery. She has completed the Heart and Hands midwifery course by Elizabeth Davis, attended workshops with Maria Iorillo (LM, CPM), Pam England (Birthing From Within), Jeanine Parvati Baker (midwife and herbalist), Michel Odent (MD), and Suzanne Arms (Immaculate Deception), among many. She has worked on and off as a birth attendant in the role of doula and apprentice midwife over the years in the margins of her parenting.
The heart of Lauren’s philosophy is that evidence-based information and real-life support prevent fear-based decision making and lead to empowered birth scenarios. Wherever birth occurs and however simple or complicated it is, what keeps families safe and whole is access to information, respect for their choices, and tangible support.
“One of the things I love most about Lauren is how her face lights up when she talks about anything on the topic of pregnancy, birth, or babies. She says every piece of it, even the less commonly known, like it’s the greatest thing she’s ever shared with you. I deeply appreciate and value her wisdom. The comfort and care she has given and continues to provide is the gift of strength to move forward with the confidence that someone has my back and that I can succeed.”–Mera