Credentials/education: DONA trained, certified Hypnobabies Hypno-doula (HCHD), certified essential oil consultant
Services offered: Birth Doula Services, Placenta Encapsulation, Essential Oils
Service area: Greater St. Louis region and South-Central IL
Hi, I’m Traci and I’ve been a birth doula for over 6 years. I completed my training with DONA after the birth of my first child.
Although I wasn’t unhappy with my first birth experience (it’s not what I would choose today, but it was appropriate for where I “was” at the time), I realized that even though I felt I was a well-educated, childbirth “researched,” and steadfast woman, I really could have benefitted from having someone other than my husband, family, and hospital staff there with me during the journey.
Over the next year as I met with other new moms and heard their birth stories, I just knew that a labor support role was just right for me. It combined so many of my interests and passions.
I worked as a hospital doula at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, IL for two years. During my time at St. E’s, I was able to experience a variety of birth situations including:
- c-sections (scheduled and “emergency”),
- medicated labors,
- augmented labors,
- natural labors,
- premature births,
- high-risk moms,
- long labors,
- adoptive birth mothers,
- midwife-delivered births,
- young moms
I might not otherwise have had the opportunity to experience these labors exclusively as a private doula. Although I’m grateful for these experiences, I really treasure the privilege of working with private clients and the relationship that we develop as we prepare for their birthing time.
I believe that so much of choosing the right doula for you is about meeting with that doula and deciding if she’s a “good fit” for your personality and your birth journey. I view a woman’s birthing time as a joyous event, one to be celebrated and enjoyed. As her baby nears earthside, she needs to turn inward and find her strength, while feeling safe and supported. My role is to appropriately assist and encourage her during these transformative moments, which differ based on the choices she has made, her body and what baby decides to do! My role is not only to support mama, but also to assist and support her ‘labor support team’ (whether that be their spouse, partner, parent, sister, etc.) This allows them to not only be cared for and encouraged, but frees them to enjoy the experience as well, without having to worry about what they may be forgetting to do or if they are ‘doing it right’.
I am also a Hypnobabies certified Hypno-doula and have had the pleasure of attending many births where the mother employed hypnosis. These births demanded a variety of support skills, many of which were outside the training/experience of a ‘traditional’ doula. If you are using Hypnobabies for your birthing time, I highly suggest you seek an experienced Hypno-doula like myself to assist you.
I’d love to meet with you (or chat over the phone) and I’d be honored if you chose me to provide emotional, physical and informational support for you during your birth journey.
Blaike C.: Our birth experience with Traci Kennebeck was nothing like I expected it to be, yet I wouldn’t change a thing. Traci was helpful and supportive all throughout my labor. When things got more intense, Traci was there to make sure we knew all was well. The unexpected part? I delivered my baby girl in the hospital parking lot into Traci’s hands. Our birth plan wasn’t much of a concern at that point, but once we got up to the delivery room (with our newborn baby girl) Traci was my voice. She made sure everyone knew my wishes and I didn’t have to worry about a thing. Our personalities meshed from the beginning and she was such an asset to our birth experience. I would highly recommend Purple Lotus Doulas and especially Traci Kennebeck.
Jami B.: I almost lack the words necessary to express the gratitude I feel towards Traci for helping to make my birthing experience perfect for me. Traci truly prepared me and my husband for the unexpected in our meetings before the birth, and tailored her planning and preparation to fit our needs. She was an amazing partner to us as we worked our way through labor and delivery. Her warmth, compassion, experience and passion carried me through a difficult labor. Although things never go exactly as planned, in the end, I walked away feeling like I had the perfect delivery for me. I can assure you that we will have Traci with us next time around!
Amanda M.: My partner Julie and I hired Traci to be our doula after deciding to have a natural childbirth experience. We met with her very early on in our pregnancy and knew she was the right person for us because of how we hit it off at the initial meeting. Julie and Traci especially got along very well, and that was one of the big reasons we picked her. Even though the doula is there to give the birth mother the experience that she wants, the truth was that Traci helped Julie so much during labor to be there for me that we both agree we couldn’t have done it without her. Our labor time, at the hospital, was 33 hours, including the C-section. Traci was with us through a very difficult labor because: my water broke without contractions; Pitocin got the contractions going, but very little dilation; horrible back labor and lack of dilation led to an epidural & internal fetal heart monitoring; after stopping labor to keep our son out of distress and then restarting it and then having a successful full day of labor that led to pushing, but no vaginal birth due to the way our son was turned; then the doctor said it was time to do the C-section because he wasn’t coming out. Throughout all of this, Traci was there with us. My partner Julie swears that if it hadn’t been for Traci, she would have lost it altogether because of the time and all the interventions. Honestly, at the end of it all, we felt like a good friend had been there with us, instead of this person we had only known for a short while. If we had the money, Julie wanted to pay her double her fee because of how amazing and supportive she was. When we have our second child, we will be hiring her.
Jackie H.: Traci was my doula for the birth of my second son. I had a strong desire to have a natural, intervention-free birth so I took several steps to help make that a possibility. By having Traci as my doula and using Hypnobabies (hypnosis for childbirth) I was able to get the birth experience I wanted. Traci helped my husband know how to help me which was exactly what we were lacking for our first birth. She made sure all of the hospital staff knew I was using Hypnobabies and stepped in when they would start to ask me questions or make statements that are not helpful to a Hypnobabies mom. Her familiarity with the hospital was also key. There was no wasted time waiting for a nurse to get or tell us where to find ice, drinks, or blankets. This also allowed me to have someone with me at all times which I needed. Traci could go get something so my husband could stay with me or she could stay with me while my husband took a break. By using my Hypnobabies tools I was able to relax during pressure waves (Hypnobabies-speak for contractions) and most importantly when I got off track, Traci helped me refocus by using her Hypno-doula training.
Both my husband and I believe that we could not have done this without Traci. We highly recommend Traci as a doula and would hire her again if we decide to have another baby in the future.
April G.: We chose Traci as our doula because we knew that we wanted someone with several years of experience, who was Hypnobabies certified, and who could keep the atmosphere during our birth light and fun. And, our personalities meshed right from the start. We had two prenatal visits where she helped us sort through all our choices, answered our questions, and got to know us better. She helped me to feel more confident in my ability to have a natural birth and eliminated some of my fears of the unknown aspects of childbirth. When my water broke I called her and she was fast to explain what my options were in moving forward. She arrived soon after we were checked in to the hospital and immediately got going on notifying hospital staff that we were using Hypnobabies. She ensured that everyone was aware of my birth preferences, reminded me to use my hypno techniques, had my husband turn on the birthing track, and got me comfortable with the birth ball. She kept an eye on my progress and assisted me in using various positions to keep things progressing smoothly. When I had pain in my hips and lower back, she applied pressure to get me through it. When I felt waves of nausea, I’d breathe in to find she had peppermint oil for me to inhale. Just having her there alleviated any worries I may have had. In my husbands words: If there was no Traci for April’s labor, I would have:
- not been calm
- not known exactly what do or say to comfort my wife
- felt uneasy about the fact that the doctor hadn’t arrived yet
- been upset if we randomly drew a bad nurse (we got a great nurse, so that was a bonus)
- been clueless, getting in the way of the medical people
Traci made it easy to feel comfortable and confident, knowing that she was there to support both my husband and I. We honestly believe we couldn’t have done it without her and will definitely have her with us next time!
Becky S.: We chose Traci as our doula because she is Traci. My husband and I wanted to attempt a med-free VBAC using the homebirth method (we had used Bradley with our first, no doula) and we knew that we wanted a doula to help us enjoy the process rather than survive it. She helped us achieve the VBAC albeit assisted with an epidural. One of the many great things about Traci is that she is judgement free. We knew that if the labor started going like the first, pain management was going to happen. We discussed as many possibilities with her beforehand and Charlie’s delivery ended up being very “me” because of Traci. My doctor even appreciated her presence (something I hear is uncommon). Meet with her. If the vibe is right, choose her as your doula. It’s the best money we ever spent!
Lynn P.: I highly recommend Traci as a Doula. My first meeting with her she immediately made me feel comfortable. She helped educate me about my choices with my doctor and once I arrived at the hospital. She met with me twice before I went into labor and we had my preferences all set so she knew my wants and needs once the day arrived. At the hospital she was calm and collected as I was in chaos. She gave my husband small tasks that helped him feel like he was a part of the experience. In the end I was able to have a natural childbirth experience…exactly what I was wanting. My husband and I both agree we couldn’t have done it without Traci’s help!
Alyse K.: Traci was amazing before, during and after the birth of our daughter and a key component to our positive childbirth experience. From the moment I initially contacted Traci about her doula services she was warm, helpful and calming to us as first time expectant parents. In our first meeting with her, Traci explained her role in the labor process and how she can help not only the mother but the father as well. She had my husband hooked on the idea from the beginning! During our actual labor she was communicative to me as the laboring mother, to my husband as a fellow labor support team member, and to the hospital staff. My husband and I truly believe we would not have had the natural child birth experience we had without Traci.
Experience, Availability and Pricing
- Traci has been a doula for 7 years, and has attended 87 births.
- Traci takes up to 2 doula clients per month. Price for doula services is $750-$900. Check Traci’s doula availability: DoulaMatch profile
- Traci takes up to 8 placenta encapsulation clients per month. Traci does the encapsulation in your home. Check Placenta Encapsulation page for details and pricing.
- Traci’s service area is the greater St. Louis region
Ready to contact or interview Traci?
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