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  • Microbirth Screening at Enhancing Doulas! Hey y'all!Enhancing Doulas is hosting a screening of the award-winning 2014 documentary Microbirth January 28, 2017 at 3 p.m! This event will qualify for continuing education ...
    Posted Jan 16, 2017, 10:12 AM by Ariel Purkeypile
  • 5 Things You Might Not Know About Daylight Saving Time, 1 Thing You Better Know Right Now, and a Bonus Question About Fetuses Growing up, I was told that daylight savings time was created so farmers would have more light to work during the busy season between spring to fall. That made a ...
    Posted Nov 6, 2016, 10:03 AM by Ariel Purkeypile
  • Raynard Kington and His Mom Are My New Favorites! Raynard Kington is my new favorite!! (His mom is also my new favorite, you should read this article just to love his mom.) He has a wonderful appreciation of both ...
    Posted Nov 4, 2016, 7:11 AM by Ariel Purkeypile
  • Why do researchers love doulas so much? The Evidence for Doula Care Being a doula is my favorite thing. But I didn’t begin my career in birth work as a doula. I started as a labor ...
    Posted Nov 3, 2016, 6:22 AM by Ariel Purkeypile
  • Is your medication contributing to a mood disorder? A new study describes a link between some commonly used prescription medications and increased risk of mood disorders like depression. Doulas can reduce the risk of mood disorders in moms ...
    Posted Nov 3, 2016, 5:50 AM by Ariel Purkeypile
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Microbirth Screening at Enhancing Doulas!

posted Jan 16, 2017, 10:11 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Jan 16, 2017, 10:12 AM ]

Microbirth Screening at Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, Texas
Hey y'all!

Enhancing Doulas is hosting a screening of the award-winning 2014 documentary Microbirth January 28, 2017 at 3 p.m! This event will qualify for continuing education for doulas and will be a lot of fun for everyone!

Buy tickets here!

Learn more about Microbirth here!

5 Things You Might Not Know About Daylight Saving Time, 1 Thing You Better Know Right Now, and a Bonus Question About Fetuses

posted Nov 6, 2016, 6:51 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Nov 6, 2016, 10:03 AM ]

Daylight Saving Time at Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, TexasGrowing up, I was told that daylight savings time was created so farmers would have more light to work during the busy season between spring to fall. That made a lot of sense at the time, especially spending summers on the huge, bustling farm owned by my mom's parents and siblings and worked on by my grandpa, uncles, and whatever cousins and hired help were around. Grandpa was up and in overalls before the sun came up until he was in his 70s, he definitely needed more light. But as it turns out, the real story of daylight saving time is much more complex. 


You can skip ahead to:

5 Things You Might Not Know About Daylight Saving Time 

#1 - Hold the "S"
You may be saying it wrong. It's "Daylight Saving Time," not "Daylight Savings Time." Or you can call it "DST" for short. It's got a little nickname! Cute, right? However, DST has only been around since the 20th century. Maybe when it's all grown up it will insist on being called by its full name. And if it does, remember to hold the "S." 

While we're getting into the details of DST, it's important to know exactly where, when, and how the change takes place. We'll get to why on #3.


places that observe daylight savingsDaylight Saving Time isn't universal. More countries in the northern hemisphere observe DST, but there are variations even within countries. In the United States, Arizona, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Island don't use DST, and Utah may stop soon.

Want to know who gets the short end of the stick here? Truck drivers. Time is really important for truck drivers, who have to keep up with their log books, driving times, ETAs, etc. Image result for allied truck volvoMy husband and I spent four months in the summer of 2001 driving around the country moving people in a truck that looked like this cute toy truck, only enormous. (Well, he worked, drove, and moved people. I was there for moral support.) Sometimes we'd drive through Arizona or move people in or out of the state, and doing the math while driving just blew my mind. I had to think a lot harder than I maybe should have. Truck drivers have a cool skill set. Don't even get me started on parking those things in reverse.


In the US, DST begins in the spring and ends in the fall. You can use the mnemonic "spring ahead, fall back" to remember which direction your clocks should be going. The spring change takes place at 2:00 a.m., when the clocks skip over the 2 o'clock hour and are reset forward to 3:00 a.m. The fall change takes place at 3:00 a.m. when the clocks are reset back to 2:00 a.m. and repeat the 2 o'clock hour. So you lose an extra hour of sleep in the spring but get it back in the fall. I sometimes like to imagine what I was doing in the extra hour last fall and see if I'm doing it in the spring. But that's easier for insomniacs, night-shift workers, and on-call birthworkers. All the "normal" people are probably just missing sleep. 

DST around the world and through its history has used a number of amounts of time, including changes of more or less than an hour, progressive changes over a few days, and differences in when the changes happen. We've got it a lot easier than doing 20 minutes changes over 4 days. While doubtlessly easier on one's health (see #2), can you imagine the chaos? I say we do it all at once, like ripping off a bandaid. Most governments appear to agree.


We have it pretty good today when it comes to DST. Digital clocks are easy to reset and many devices now automatically update their times as their owners move between time zones and in and out of DST. Back in the day, clocks had to be changed by hand, and many couldn't be wound backwards. So they'd have to be moved forward 11 hours in the fall. That's a lot of winding!

Fortunately, the hardest part for us is figuring out which clocks we've already changed and which still need changing. It's recommended that you change your clocks before you go to bed on the Saturday night prior to the change. Pay special attention to the devices we take for granted, like your coffee pot's alarm, DVR, sprinkler system, etc. If you have a roommate or partner who is "helping" with the switch, split the devices down the middle so you don't repeat one another's work.

#2 - Daylight Saving Time can kill you. Or maybe save your life.

DST has

#3 - Follow the money


#4 - That time Congress saved Halloween


#5 - Apparently farmers don't love saving time

You know who doesn't love DST? Farmers.

^ Go to top ^

1 Thing You Better Know Right Now

+1 - Clocks changed this morning

Daylight Saving Time ended on Sunday November 6, 2016 at 2 o'clock in the morning! Are your clocks correct?

Question: Can fetuses tell time? 


Raynard Kington and His Mom Are My New Favorites!

posted Nov 4, 2016, 7:10 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Nov 4, 2016, 7:11 AM ]

Raynard Kington is my new favorite!! (His mom is also my new favorite, you should read this article just to love his mom.) He has a wonderful appreciation of both the special misery of the "mommy wars" and his own position of male privilege. Here's my favorite quote about parenting from the article:

"It’s not that I don’t feel incompetent as a parent at least once a day. In those moments of craziness and despair that every parent of young children has, I ask myself: What made you think that you could pull this off?"

I love it! Here's a college president, former deputy director of the NIH, married to a child psychologist and their kids STILL run circles around him. Is it weird that I find it comforting that we are universally humbled and united by our parental "moments of craziness and despair?" If so, I'm ok with being weird. Come be weird with me.

As a parent, so much of what we strive and sacrifice for is not just thankless, but often completely unnoticed, especially by the primary beneficiaries of our hard work, our kids. Which is (a) fine and (b) the way it is even if it's not really fine. But it's refreshing to see someone so appreciative of his mother for the specific gifts she gave him. Mommies, skip ahead to paragraph 9 and just imagine your kids saying all this to you.

Can we just take a moment to celebrate this moment when a wildly successful, happily married, gay African-American parent lists being born black in the 1960s among his advantages? He describes it as a world that "prepared its young to become accustomed to defying expectations, if not to ignore them completely." We still have so much work to do, but this reminds me of how proud I am of our nation, our people, and our history of relentlessly moving towards the best in ourselves. That's a reminder we all need this week.

Also, Raynard's mom was obviously phenomenal. I mean, really, someone give this woman a hug for me. We need these male feminists (uh-oh, I used the "f-word") if we're to reduce the disparities between the male and female experience of parenting so that all parents are honored for their effort and choices as parents and professionals. Right now, it's like male parents get to have their cake and eat it too while female parents get to bake the cake, hand it over to a guy so we can throw him a "Yay, you did some parenting!" party, and then feel guilty because she was too busy to make cookies for a PTA bake sale. That sounds silly, but you know what I mean. (Today, I'm primarily celebrating his refreshing attitude towards gendered parenting, but this man has an amazing educational background and professional resume. I put a Wikipedia link down at the bottom so you too can be impressed.)

Doula training and all of our care at Enhancing Doulas include focus on social support in large part because the process of parental role acquisition and adaptation tends to be brutal, beautiful, and baffling, all at once. Of course we work hard to help daddies thrive as parents (hello, doula! Doulas are for daddies!), but its a very different experience for moms. Sometimes it's nice to have someone see all the parts of your mothering for the rich gift they are. So mommies, call your doula so she can remind you that you're rocking it even though it can be so, so hard, or read paragraph 9 again. Paragraph 9 is the bit where Raynard says,

"the reality is that I couldn’t truly be in my mother’s position, because it’s different for men — society doesn’t put the same pressures on us. And the choices we make are not judged in the same way."

That's it right there. Hugs to your mom, Raynard.

P.S. And if you're reading this and wondering how I had time away from getting ready for our Open House event this weekend but didn't have time to put up part 2 of the post on why researchers love doulas so much, what can I say? The heart wants what the heart wants. I was up in the middle of the night, read this article, and just had to pass it along. Come see us this weekend and I'll get the evidence part 2 post up ASAP next week. Who knows, maybe I'll even make this post prettier then, too!…/im-gay-and-african-americ…/

Why do researchers love doulas so much?

posted Nov 3, 2016, 6:04 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Nov 3, 2016, 6:22 AM ]

Evidence on the benefits of doula care from Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, Texas

The Evidence for Doula Care

Being a doula is my favorite thing. But I didn’t begin my career in birth work as a doula. I started as a labor & delivery nurse, and I’m also a lactation consultant and board-certified holistic nurse with a certification in MotherMassageTM. The reason I became a doula and have spent the majority of the last five years being a doula and training doulas is that research shows doula care is one of the most effective and evidence-based ways to improve outcomes for women, babies, and families with no evidence of side effects or other risk. So today we’re going to discuss the evidence for the benefits of doula care.

You can skip ahead to:

We may be “touchy-feely,” but our touchy-feely is evidence-based.

Part of why it can be surprising that doulas can have such a positive effect is that doula care isn’t clinical. That means that we don’t do clinical tasks such as giving medications or doing vaginal exams and that we don’t share in clinical care planning, such as deciding whether or not to induce labor or break water. Doulas provide informational, emotional, and physical support. Enhanced Doulas are also trained in helping our clients access and make the most of their social support networks. A lot of what we do might be described as “touchy-feely.” And we’re ok with that. If helping our clients understand and feel empowered and involved in their birth experience through hands-on care is touchy-feely, then we’re touchy-feely. But our particular brand of touchy-feely stuff is backed by decades of evidence and support from all major medical and professional organizations related to childbearing in the United States.

Modern doulas were “discovered” by researchers.

The modern doula movement was “discovered” by pediatric medical researchers and has been nurtured by decades of evidence since. To hear the story of how birth doula care was discovered (really, there isn’t a better word for it!) from the people who were there, watch a bit of this brief documentary Doula: The Missing Ingredient from DONA-International. The story starts about 44 seconds in, but really, the whole thing is less than 15 minutes, you should just watch it.

To summarize if you’re not watching the video, in the 1960s, some pediatricians wanted to investigate the effects of keeping mom and baby together in the hospital postpartum, also called rooming-in. Hospitals in the US kept newborns away from their mothers almost all the time after birth because they mistakenly believed that this would reduce infection in the newborns. US hospitals wanted proof that rooming-in wasn’t a crazy idea before they would allow it, so the researchers went to Guatemala to do some research and find that proof. They had a bilingual research assistant doing intake (explaining the study, getting consent forms signed, etc.) for the study as women came to the hospital in labor. When women in the study had significantly better outcomes than women not in the study, they discovered that the research assistant had stayed with the women during their labor. Even though she didn’t “do” anything and her presence wasn’t a part of their study, the difference in outcomes was so strong that the researchers stopped what they were doing and trained a few local women as doulas to see if the results could be replicated. Spoiler alert! The results were replicated, the women and their babies benefited from doula care, and some of the researchers went on to form what would eventually be known as DONA-International, the oldest organization that certifies doulas. Fascinating!

We use the best evidence available.

So research on doula care goes way, way back. Most of the doulas working today weren’t even born at the time research into doula care began, but we all benefit from a tradition that is based not only on millennia of women supporting women during childbirth but also on decades of research on our work. But we don’t rely only on data from 50 years ago, because the research on doula care is robust, ongoing, and continues to support our “touchy-feely” work. In developing the service offering, doula care and documentation standards, and client education and doula training materials for Enhancing Doulas, I primarily cite studies from the 21st century and the most recent positions and recommendations of professional organizations like the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). And I primarily cite medical groups because most obstetric care in the US occurs in hospitals where women are attended by doctors, but also rely on the wisdom of related fields like nursing and lactation consultation, because those are my home, where I grew up, you might say. A reference list is available on the Evidence page.

Doula care is widely recommended.

Doula care is recommended by organizations and institutions across the spectrum of birthwork professionals. We’ll discuss evidence for the specific benefits of doula care in a moment, but first will list some of my favorite direct quotes in favor of doula care.

Wise pediatricians will recommend a doula to their patients' parents.

From a 2004 article in Pediatrics, the official journal of the AAP.

One of the most effective tools to improve labor and delivery outcomes is the continuous presence of support personnel, such as a doula. . . . Given that there are no associated measurable harms, this resource is probably underutilized.

From “Safe prevention of the primary cesarean delivery,” a 2014 joint position paper from ACOG and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine (SMFM)

Continuous support in labour increased the chance of a spontaneous vaginal birth, had no harm, and women were more satisfied.” [Birth doula care] "has clinically meaningful benefits for women and infants and no known harm. . . . All women should have support throughout labour and birth.

From a 2013 review by the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, which is “internationally recognized as the highest standard in evidence-based health care resources”

Amazing, right? It’s uncommon for so many thought-leaders and investigators to make such enthusiastic statements. Doula research is so fun!

Second half of discussion to follow Open House event this weekend.

We’ll continue our discussion of the evidence supporting doula care on Monday, when we’ll discuss the specific benefits of doula care. We’ll be spending the time until then celebrating our new location with our Open House event, Saturday and Sunday November 5th and 6th from 1 to 5 p.m. both days. See you then!

Is your medication contributing to a mood disorder?

posted Oct 27, 2016, 7:08 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Nov 3, 2016, 5:50 AM ]

Medications & mood disorders at Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, Texas
A new study describes a link between some commonly used prescription medications and increased risk of mood disorders like depression. Doulas can reduce the risk of mood disorders in moms and dads! These meds are also used for conditions other than high blood pressure, like Raynaud's disorder, which makes your nipples change colors! (No, really, it does!)

You can skip ahead to:

Common meds affect mood disorders

Did y'all see this new study? Don't be deceived by the term "blood pressure medication," these meds are also used to treat a variety of other conditions like migraines, dysautonomia, and Raynaud's disorder. If you or a loved one are on a medication for any of these medications, you may be on a calcium channel-blocker or beta-blocker and not even know it! And while we should all know the signs of mood disorders like depression and bipolar disorder, it's especially vital if you or someone you love are on one of these meds. Talk to your doctor about how to monitor for mood disorders!

Doulas reduce mood disorders

Understanding mood disorders is especially important for parents in the perinatal period, the time during pregnancy and the first postpartum year. Both women and men are more likely to experience mood disorders during the perinatal period. Having a doula reduces the risk of depression and anxiety and the doulas at Enhancing Doulas receive training to help clients identify and cope with mood disorders.

Do your nipples change color?image

Did you know you can get Raynaud's phenomena in your nipple? True!! It's often misdiagnosed and can be really painful, and painful breastfeeding can lead some moms to quit breastfeeding earlier than planned. Breastfeeding shouldn't be painful and lactation professionals can help! We have an IBCLC on staff at Enhancing Doulas who can even do home visits, and you can also get breastfeeding help La Leche League meetings and support groups. Breastfeeding help is out there, go and get it! Jack Newman's International Breastfeeding Centre and KellyMom, two of my favorite online resources, both have great info for families and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has this great article for pediatricians so they can best help moms who might have Raynaud's of the nipple.

Get the word out!

You can share this info with friends and family over on facebook or Twitter.

We're moving! Come visit us during Open House!!

posted Oct 20, 2016, 12:48 PM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Oct 20, 2016, 12:49 PM ]

We're moving and having an open house special at Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, Texas
We have a fantastic new space!

Our new location is in Security Park at the intersection of Marsha Sharp Fwy, 34th St, and Slide Rd.

To celebrate, we're having an open house November 5 & 6 from 1-5pm both days. We have great give-aways for everyone who stops by:

1 - Free entry in a drawing to win a "whole enchilada" package that includes birth doula care, postpartum doula care, private lactation consultation through pregnancy and after birth, and placenta encapsulation. If you're not pregnant, you can also enter to win on behalf of a friend or family member who is expecting.

2 - Voucher for a free class. Our classes start the 2nd week in November, but you don't have to enroll for a long series of classes, you just come to the ones you want. Saves time and money and gets you the info you want the most! Check out our classes page on our website

3 - $100 off doula services and $50 off add-ons (lactation package or placenta encapsulation). This is just one of many ways we make our services affordable for any family. We also have a registry, payment plans, and prepay discounts. When you come in to register, we sit down to talk about how we can make it work for your family.

To learn more about what we're up to, visit our website We have a new online store, have you seen it yet? You'll definitely want to check out our registry service! It's free to clients!

We'll see you at the open house!

2016 Flu Vaccine Recommendations from the CDC

posted Oct 4, 2016, 10:30 AM by Ariel Purkeypile   [ updated Oct 4, 2016, 10:56 AM ]

Flu Season is Upon Us!

Hey y'all! Flu season is officially here! Enhancing Doulas has got you covered with the info you need to stay healthy through to 2017. Flu season runs from October to April in the northern hemisphere, including us here in the good old US of A. Other parts of the world at the bottom of the graphic we built for you. There have been some changes in recommendations and types of vaccines available, so it's important we're all current on the best information possible from the Centers for Disease Control

No more nasal spray!

One big change is that the nasal spray version is no longer available. They found it wasn't as effective as initially thought, so it's back to the drawing board. In the mean time, it's important parents understand that the temporary pain and stress (for kids and parents!) of the injection version of the flu vaccine is far less than the pain, stress, and serious health complications that can come with the flu. 

Calling all preggers! And potential preggers! And people who used to be preggers but now have a little baby!

Pregnant women and those who might become pregnant during this flu season (October 2016 through April 2017) should get the flu vaccine. This not only protects you from getting the flu to begin with, it also passes on some immunity to baby after birth! Babies can't get the flu vaccine until they are 6 months old, and then it takes 2 vaccinations at least 4 weeks apart plus 2 weeks for the vaccine to take effect, so you're basically looking at your kiddo being at least 7 or 8 months old before they will be protected if they get the vaccine as soon as possible. Family members who will be caring for baby should also get the flu vaccine to protect baby during this time.

What, no lecture on herd immunity?

In the interest of getting you to the handy graphic sooner rather than later, we'll forgo the lecture on herd immunity and how important it is for us as a group to get vaccinated to those who can't be vaccinated or for whom the vaccine doesn't work. But it really is important!

So get a flu shot! Do it for yourself, your baby, your family, and yes, do it for our herd immunity (moo).

2016 Flu vaccine recommendations from the CDC in infographic created by Enhancing Doulas of Lubbock, Texas

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