Loree Scheyli wants new mothers, fathers, babies and families to experience "smooth, happy, healthy starts" to their lives together.
The Northwest resident is offering classes, "Childbirth education for birth and beyond," from 1 to 3:30 p.m. Saturdays in the Oro Valley Town Council chambers. The first four-week series of classes is open to students. It begins June 19. Another starts July 24, a third Aug. 28.
Scheyli describes herself as "passionate beyond belief about helping families" get off to a good start.
"The current state of affairs for childbearing families is a bit sad," she said. "Most women have uneventful pregnancies that too often are ending with surgical births and other oftentimes avoidable complications."
The U.S. has a higher incidence of postpartum depression. While breastfeeding initiation rates are high, "the number of women who give up on nursing is staggering," Scheyli continued.
"Our country doesn't seem to realize that pregnancy and birth generally don't feature illness and disease of any sort, yet women commonly defer decision-making to their caregivers," Scheyli said. "In reality, women are the most satisfied when they are fully informed of their options and actively involved in decision-making.
"Simple practices can reduce cesareans, reduce birth trauma, and dramatically increase success with breastfeeding, all the while leading to healthier and happier starts for both moms and babies (and save gobs of money, too)."
Scheyli is a doula, assisting women in a non-medical way during the birth process.
"It's like taking someone Chinese to China," one of her clients told Scheyli. "You know how this place works."
A doula can help a woman "get the care that leads to a great, happy experience," addressing "the ins and outs of how to get good care in a kind of automated, mechanized system."
In the class, "we treat it as you're having a baby, then you're taking it home, breastfeeding, new parents, function without sleep," Scheyli said. "The whole big picture."
A "huge focus of my classes is on building confidence in the process and on discovering what helps and what hinders the experience."
The course costs $70. People may register by calling Oro Valley Parks and Recreation at 229-5050.