Through over 10 years of experience as a Newborn Care Specialist and Sleep Training Educator and 6 years as a Birth and Postpartum Doula, I've learned that at its core, all these different roles share one fundamental objective- to support new parents wholeheartedly and unconditionally on their journey to parenthood, whatever it might look like from family to family. This objective is my greatest passion and privilege.
When it comes to Labor, I find that so much depends on, and is determined by, the birthing person's emotional state and wellbeing, the atmosphere in the delivery room, and their ability to labor at their own pace, in their own unique way. As a Birth Doula, I make it my goal to help you establish your ideal birthing conditions, leading you through different laboring positions and pain management techniques, all while keeping you informed and in control of your own experience.
In my Postpartum Work, I help new parents set systems, use all sorts of baby gear, organize their space, and prepare for all the many firsts in a baby's life as well as teach basic newborn care. I introduce healthy sleep habits for the little ones, using gentle techniques and finding each baby's own cues and rhythms. I bring with me a decade's worth of knowledge and wisdom on how to raise happy, healthy, curious, and loving little humans while supporting new mammas and papas alike in their transition into parent life.
"I had a very long labor (60 hours induced laboring + ultimate c-section) that was unexpected in that I had an unplanned induction. Varya was great - she kept us looped in while she was at another birth, connected us with the on-call doula, arrived as soon as she was able and never left our side the entire birth even post c-section. My birth experience was difficult and the quality and support of the medical team was varied over the different days but what was constant was Varya -- together with a great labor nurse we also had she formed an A+ team that was always on our side and gave us the confidence to have a positive birth."
"Varya made a world of difference and helped me achieve my dream about natural delivery. During my second pregnancy, I was fully confident that it would be a much easier and faster delivery comparing to the first one, so wasn't even bothered to look for any extra help. However, little did know that my second labor would last 18 hours! Luckily, I ran into Varya in my last days of pregnancy. On the day of labor, Varya arrived to the hospital about the same time as us. As she walked in my room, my labor pains were still tolerable and we started walking the halls. As the labor started progressing her support was becoming tremendously important. Throughout the whole process she was attentive to my needs, collaborating with the nurses and midwife on positional changes and ways to progress the labor further. I was able to be relaxed under her guidance, she was the person who fully was on my side and, what's more important, I could feel that she is the person who loves what she is doing! And she was doing everything wholeheartedly for me and my baby! My husband and I are both extremely happy with our labor experience. We would definitely recommend Varya as a doula to anyone who is looking for assistance and support during their labor, especially if one wants to take it the natural route regardless if that is your first or subsequent pregnancy."
"Varya served as our birth and post-partum/night doula, and was just fantastic. Varya was a calm and reassuring presence as we prepared for delivery, going through our questions thoughtfully and thoroughly, showing us different positions and pain management techniques, and following up promptly when we needed anything. My delivery ended up going very quickly but with several false (silent labor) starts, far from textbook, and Varya made pivots adeptly, keeping in constant communication (even when we failed to do so!), supporting us, and going with the flow. When we brought our son home, we really saw Varya shine! We had a very hungry little guy, who rarely slept longer than an hour or two before wanting to eat again, and who always wanted to be held (we did not have a 'good sleeper'). I was an absolute wreck. Varya made sure I got the rest I needed to get through those first few weeks. Varya patiently and lovingly extended our son's sleep periods, using little tricks to gently 'shape' (not 'train' as newborns are too young for this) his sleep, while still ensuring he got enough to eat in those critical early days. This was our second kid, so we knew what it was like to go through the early weeks without help, and I can say confidently that Varya saved us! We could actually enjoy the first few weeks with our newborn, instead of walking around in a sleep-deprived stupor, thanks to Varya."
"My wife and I were fortunate enough to secure the services of Varya Dominici as our doula. We sought out a doula for the birth of our third child - it was our first birth in the United States. We wanted to have a natural birth and felt it would be prudent to have a knowledgeable hand to help us through the process and remove the stress of going at it on our own. Varya allowed us to do exactly that. She was a wealth of information and a great resource for everything from what best foods to eat, labor positions, pain management, and much more. Beyond that, she allowed us to have the exact birth experience we were hoping for thanks to her encouragement and support throughout the process. We are ever so grateful to have had her there to witness and take an active role in what can only be described as the most intimate and cherished moment a family can share. highly recommend her services to any family or mother in need of such an invaluable support person. Please do not hesitate to contact us if further information is required."
"Varya was the doula for both of our out-of-hospital births. Her presence and expertise was very reassuring at all stages. Varya helped us to feel more at ease with the at-home stages of labor, and let us know when it was time to go to the birthing center. As first-time parents it was great to have someone there to provide us with the confidence that things were going according to plan, even when my wife's pain seemed scary. We had no doubt that we wanted Varya there for the birth of our second child. And a good thing we did, too! She really came through when one of the midwife at our birthing center was late in getting there, and the baby would not wait: Varya was calm and collected and stepped up to assist the one other professional on hand to help deliver our son. I cannot recommend her highly enough!"
"I was very fortunate to have Varya as my doula at the birth of my daughter. This being my first birth, I wanted to have someone who understood what was going on right by my side. Varya gave me and my husband peace of mind, helped me to believe in myself and the processes. She was able to provide much-needed relief through my entire labor, by applying pressure on my lower back, I don't know if could bear the pain otherwise. When the time came to push, I was only able to hear Varya's instructions, not even the midwife's. I was pleased to have had a natural and unmedicated birth without any complications, thanks to the amazing team that was there with me. I hope Varya will be there at the birth of my future child too."
"After our consultation call with Varya, my husband and I knew that she was the right fit for our family. Subsequent sessions with her were so informative and we felt extremely supported going into labor and delivery. We were being very covid conscious, so our prenatal sessions with her were all virtual and we did not meet Varya in person until we were admitted to L&D. She walked in and we instantly felt a connection, like we’d known her for years. Her presence made me feel more empowered and grounded. Varya’s calm and kind demeanor instantly brought a special energy into the room. Varya came in and immediately turned our hospital room into a sanctuary with fairy lights, soft music, and essential oils. Not only was she extremely present during every moment, she somehow managed to keep detailed notes of everything as it was happening + took amazing photos PLUS made prints of my placenta to take home. All things we didn’t even expect, but are now so grateful to have.
My goal was to have little to no medical interventions and her healing touch and gentle coaching were exactly what I needed to achieve that. Her pelvic squeezes are MAGIC. And her use of the TENS unit brought instant relief and felt incredible. Her and my husband quickly became a team and it was so wonderful to see them collaborating together. Her involvement absolutely allowed us to stick to our birth plan as closely as possible. Varya’s support of our family did not end when our baby was born, she has continued to check in and offer loving, non-judgmental guidance and encouragement. I just know that Varya will always be a part of our lives. I highly highly highly recommend her and have told every pregnant mama I know that she’s incredible and to book her fast! We love you, Varya!"
"Varya was an incredible doula for us before, during, and after the birth of our son.
Before the birth, she ensured my partner and I (both first-time parents) knew exactly what to expect for a hospital birth. We worked through any concerns and fears I had around the birth and built out our birth plan together, leaving us feeling as ready as we could be for the big day.
For the birth itself, I had been hoping for an unmedicated vaginal birth. It was going smoothly for hours, but ultimately ended up a 23 hour labor with various tools and assistance needed towards the end and, finally, a c-section (our baby was a big guy and just couldn't fit through my pelvis!). Given the stark contrast between the birth plan and how things played out, one might think that I was disappointed, but both my partner and I were anything but. Without Varya I wouldn't have made it more than a couple of hours without pain medication - I know this for a fact. With her help, I essentially had the birth I wanted until my baby just physically couldn't make it as I'd hoped. Varya provided the most amazing emotional support, helped me to tap into a strength I didn't know I had, responded to my every need (I still feel bad for how demanding I became during labor!), and provided the most incredible hands on relief to get me through my contractions. When assistance was needed, Varya ensured my partner and I always had the information we needed before making a decision.
Aside from the care and support she gave me, I was in awe of how well Varya looked after my partner, my mum, and how professional she was with the nurses and my OB. She was a force of nature, present at the beginning of my labor, right through to the recovery room with unwavering energy. About a week after the birth, Varya came to our home for our postpartum session. I found this really therapeutic as we talked through the birth. Her account of it really helped me to recall exactly how the hours played out, which I greatly appreciated - it's amazing how much you forget so quickly! She also helped us with questions and concerns we had as sleep deprived newborn parents trying to figure things out.
I cannot speak highly enough of Varya and my partner and I am beyond grateful that she was there for us for the birth of our little boy."
Varya was such a helpful addition. My baby was arriving at 42 weeks so my original birth plan of going to the SF Birth Center didn't happen but Varya made the hospital experience a lot better. The small details like dimming the lights in the bathtub in the hospital and adding oil diffusers and tea lights really helped me relax and manage through my labor pains. She was an amazing advocate for me throughout the process.
I can't speak highly enough of Varya! She was an incredible support for me and my husband throughout pregnancy, labor, and birth. She is deeply knowledgeable, energetic, soulful, non-judgmental, caring, and intelligent. Her presence during the labor process was comforting and inspired confidence. She helped me trust my instincts and my body, and helped me translate that trust into real-time decisions in the hospital that aligned with my intentions and preferences. We absolutely loved working with her and will always be grateful for her support.