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Shannon Murnaghan
Certified Labour Doula
(CAPPA Certified) 
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About Shannon

I am the proud mother of four wonderful children, three daughters and one son. As well as being a full time mother, wife and household manager, I have been passionate about being a Doula and Prenatal Educator since the birth of my first child in 1992.

In my view, pregnancy, labour and birth are absolutely fascinating natural experiences that we are privileged to have and in which our partners are privileged to participate. I have always felt (and lots of women think I’m crazy) that while painful, labour and birth are also exhilarating and much too short a climax after 9 months of pregnancy!
Since I have decided that four children is it for me, I have redirected my passion for this experience to empowering expectant mothers and their partners to have the birth experience they desire.

I hope to help both partners to relax and derive as much pleasure as possible out of this magical, life-changing event. I would consider it a privilege to be present at the birth of your beautiful baby.

I am a Certified Labour Doula (CLD) with CAPPA Canada. CAPPA stands for Childbirth and Post partum Professional Association. CAPPA was founded in 1998 and CAPPA Canada in 2004. The association was founded to offer the highest level of professional membership and training to childbirth educators, labour doulas, postpartum doulas and lactation educators.   »

TESTIMONIALS: What Real Moms Say about Shannon...

"As first time parents, it is very stressful not knowing what to expect and how to cope with the labour and postpartum experience. We are so glad that we met Shannon, who is very knowledgeable and has a very calm and sincere personality that helped ease our anxiety and strengthen our understanding towards the birthing experience. Extremely supportive, encouraging and accommodating, Shannon made us feel very comfortable throughout our condensed learning sessions with lots fun and interaction. (We even often forget about time as we enjoyed the learning so much!) The various breathing exercises we practiced in class helped us greatly during our labour. The role play allowed our partner to have a better understanding of the experience and reinforce our learning on how to care for a newborn without any doubts. Shannon is very dedicated to her work and went above and beyond during postpartum to guide us on how to properly allow the baby to latch on. Even after the course was completed, she always makes herself available for any questions that we may have. Highly recommend anyone who is ready to embark a positive parenting journey to reach out to Shannon! "

~ Tony and Catherine, August 2018
"My husband found Shannon online while looking for a wholesome and holistic course. I was looking to gain knowledge in hospital protocols and procedures; however our expectations and knowledge goals were surpassed. Shannon's guidance on "birthing from within" covered our needs and so much more. The course was poetic, wholesome and it triggers your intuition and it helped me believe in my body and its capabilities and it gave my husband the confidence and the techniques to be the best supportive partner during labor. The course happens in an open environment where we immediately felt comfortable to express our doubts, fears and questions and we felt like we were right at home among family. The birth of a baby and the birth of the parents is no easy task but Shannon gave us the inspiration we needed. Every birth path is different for each one of us but the peace, confidence and strength we walked into our birth experience is thanks to Shannon. "

~ Lilia and Rogelio, September 2018
"We took Shannon's Birthing from Within classes while preparing for the birth of our first baby. The classes taught us about common medical practices, and focused on techniques to labour and birth naturally. I was especially impressed by how Shannon was able to convey information in an effective and clear way to my husband, who knew nothing about labouring and birthing naturally. Shannon was open to answering any question that any student had and was completely judgment free. I enjoyed how she drew on her own personal experiences and was open to sharing them as a teaching tool. You could really feel that Shannon cared about her students and cared that they were learning about what they wanted to learn about. I would recommend these classes to anyone who thinks they want to pursue having a natural birth, and for those who recognize birth as more than a medical experience, but a spiritual one. "

~ Jennifer and Nicholas Leclaire
"Shannon and the classes were amazing! From the first time I met Shannon I felt instantly comfortable with her, she is very warm, caring, and an extremely knowledgeable Doula. I enjoyed our five week course which covered everything from breathing techniques, caring for baby, breastfeeding, postpartum and much more. She integrated many fun and emotionally connecting exercises between not only us and our partners but with the group. I would definitely recommend any parents-to-be to take Shannon’s course as I feel that I gained a better understanding of the birthing process and gained the confidence to know I can do it, all thanks to Shannon’s guidance and support! "

~ Linsee and Gerrett Commeford
"Shannon was an amazing doula throughout my pregnancy and delivery. She was always extremely professional, offered advice and feedback that was not only helpful but tailored to fit the needs and wishes for both myself and my partner. She was able to take something that I was completely fearful of and turn it into a beautiful bonding experience between myself, my husband, my older child, and my newborn by taking the unknown anxiety and providing us with truthful and positive examples of labour. With her support and encouragement, I was able to give birth to my son without the need for medication or intervention, which was something I didn’t think possible. The end result was the ability to look into my beautiful baby’s eyes immediately after birth and see a bright eyed little person looking back at me so we could begin bonding immediately. Even after having gone through this experience once, I would not hesitate to have Shannon help us through any other pregnancies in the future as her guidance, wisdom and support were a huge part of our success. Thanks, Shannon! "

~ Allyson and Andrew,
on the natural birth of their first son, Mason
Milton, ON
March 2013
This was written as a Letter to the Editor of the local newspaper...

Title: Hire a Doula? Indeed!!

"I'd like to send out the some sage advice to all expectant couples - get a doula! After having two children, one with a midwife and no doula and one with an OB and a doula, I'd like to say that having a doula was the best investment that we could have made as a family. I must admit that previously, with my first child I wasn't convinced that I needed one; I had a midwife, and wasn't that that same? Nope, not at all. From my experience, while a midwife is the preferred route for pre-natal care, midwives are there to deliver your baby and assume a medical role during delivery, not an emotional supportive/coaching one. Doula's on the other hand are there for you and your partner solely and come equipped with tricks, tips and techniques to help you and your partner stay focused and calm through the greatest marathon of your life. The emotional support they provide is so essential to helping you cope through and manage with the pain of the labour process - mind control is key. In fact, I am so impressed by the difference our doula (my birth plan was completely met with a doula verses a total lack of my birth plan being met with the delivery of my first child) I fully advocate for their inclusion in OHIP. So, thank you to Shannon Murnaghan, 'the' Doula of Glen Williams for her most amazing support in the natural delivery of our son 10.5lb son, Rowan Andrew Robertson Jammer, on October 17th at Milton District Hospital! We couldn't have done it without you Shannon - you were the secret to our success! "

~ Susan L. Robertson, BSc(Hons), MES(Pl),
October 17, 2012
"Dear Shannon:
I wanted to write and thank you for all your help during my teenage daughters transition into becoming a mother. The information you provided for my daughter was thorough and clear and it helped to remove anxieties and concerns to ease her mind. I wish you were there for me 25 years ago. Shannon I wish you much success as a Doula and I certainly recommend you to anyone and everyone at any age. You bring understanding and calmness in all situations. For any mother and grandmother Shannon is truly a blessing and a wonderful gift to any expectant mother. I am glad I provided this necessary gift to my daughter and granddaughter. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

~ from Evelyn,
on the midwife assisted birth of her granddaughter Kaylyn
Brampton Hospital
May 2012

"My intentions were to have natural births with my two previous pregnancies, but I was not able to. We had decided that for this birth we wanted to have a doula present with us, and felt that Shannon was the perfect one to share our very special day. With Shannon’s knowledge and experience I was not only successful in achieving the natural birth that I had always envisioned but also experienced a very calm and gentle birth in which the baby had benefited as well. During labour she offered the physical and emotional support that I needed, and worked as a team alongside the doctors and nurses without interfering in their work. My partner also appreciated having her with us. She was there for me and for him as well, coaching and supporting, yet respecting our intimate moments. It was a privilege to have Shannon as our doula, I cannot imagine going through another pregnancy or delivery without her.. "

~ Sandra & Marcel,
On the birth of their son, Marc Paul
born August 5 2011
Credit Valley Hospital, Mississsuaga
"Pete and I are both so grateful that you were there with us for Rylan’s birth. Although I had two interventions that I wasn’t planning for, I really believe there would have been more had you not been helping us. I will be forever grateful that you helped me stick to my birth plan as much as possible.
Thank you for:
   - Getting me into the bath which I know helped get me to 9cm. Thanks again for helping me stick to the plan
   - Being a calming presence and a support for Pete throughout the birth
   - Coaching me through the pushing and teaching me how to breathe

~ Love Krista, Pete and Rylan,
On the gentle birth of their first son Rylan Robert,
born April 2011
7lbs 14oz
Milton Hospital
"In my husband’s words, Shannon (our doula) was 'invaluable' to us on the birth of our daughter. Before, during and after delivery she reassured me that all was normal and provided resources when I needed it. She was with us through the birth and was an extra pair of hands to give my husband a break and when all didn’t go as planned, kept me focused to ensure the goal was met of having a healthy baby. She is there, always supportive but never intrusive. I hope to always keep in touch with Shannon, she was with us on one of the greatest days of our life and it was made so much better that she was a part of it. "

~ Yvonne and Shannon(Yvonne's husband),
On the birth of their daughter, Wyette Jaclyn Frances
born March 30, 2011
7lbs 15oz
St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Toronto
"Thank you so much! We wouldn’t have made it without you!!! Although I found the natural birth quite challenging, it was truly a rewarding experience. It was best for the well being of myself and my baby. You were amazingly supportive, patient and helpful in more ways than we could have imagined. Thank you! "

~ Alexandra and Dominic,
on the natural birth of their first child Oliver Pavel Wo-Ping
born July 26, 2009
6lbs 12oz
St. Joseph’s Health Centre, Toronto
"Having Shannon as a doula made me feel confident in my abilities. Our meetings beforehand really prepared us a lot! I would not have been able to labour at home as long as we did without Shannon’s help, she provided suggestions like focusing on a picture during a contraction which was very helpful as well as positive reassurance during labour which made both my husband and I feel better. I felt that Shannon was putting my needs and wishes first during the delivery. Having Shannon as our doula made the birth experience more positive overall and she was very helpful with home visits and information after the birth. "

~ Stephanie and Gordon,
on the natural birth of their first child, Claire Elizabeth Louise
born July 25, 2009
8 lbs 10.5 oz
Georgetown Hospital, Georgetown
"I was planning to go drug free until 5cm and with Shannon's help I got to 7-8cm without an epidural. I am convinced this was a huge contirbutor to my successful VBAC (Vaginal Birth After Cesarean). Shannon thought of things I wouldn't have or couldn't have during the circumstances, eg. drinking water or gatorade, focusing on the 'right' breathing or putting my first daughter's picture in front of me to help me get through the contraction. Finally, Shannon was appropriately involved - she was in the forefront when needed and in the background when required - it seemed very natural. She showed such situational sensitivity and I believe that will be a huge success factor in her Doula practise. I can't thank Shannon enough - I truly believe that she was a very strong contributor to our successful VBAC. My husband and I will be forever grateful. "

~ Catherine and Ro,
on the birth of their daughter, Avery Violet Anadya
born Nov. 2, 2008
8lbs 10 oz
Women’s College Hospital, Toronto

"Having Shannon help us with our birth plan was awesome, it made us think about things that we normally wouldn't have considered. Then having her in the delivery room with us was reassuring. We had developed a trusting realtionship prior to the birth of our baby and it was nice to have someone knowledgeable, as well as familiar, with us to provide support and feedback when we had questions. There were plenty of times when there was no hospital staff in our room to let us know that everything was normal and OK, so having Shannon there was very reassuring as first time parents! "

~ Dan and Summer,
on the birth of their son, Lucan Daniel
born Sept.23, 2008
Southlake Regional Health Centre, Newmarket

"We had Shannon as a doula for the birth of our second child. My first labour and delivery saw me undergoing the entire 'snowball effect' of medical interventions and I had a lot of difficulty breastfeeding afterward.

For our 'second time round' I really wanted to avoid getting an epidural too early and having the same things happen all over again. Before the birth Shannon educated us on all of our birthing options and brought us up to date. She completly respected our birth plan choices and made us feel confident in what we were doing.

I definitely looked to Shannon for her experience and knowledge when I was feeling unsure and she totally kept me calm. I was able to labour without getting an epidural at all and after the delivery of our beautiful daughter breastfeeding was no problem at all. Overall, I would describe Shannon as a CALMING FORCE- whether you are having your first or your tenth baby!

~ Val and Leo,
on the natural birth of Camille Juliet
born August 21, 2008
8 lbs 5 oz
Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto
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