The Expectant Muslim Parents’ Guides to Birth©

Everything you and your husband need to learn to have an informed birth without leaving your home or attending an awkward childbirth class

Are you:

Are you expecting again?

Do you regret not being informed and not being given more choices during your labour and birth?

Are you concerned about too many interventions being imposed on you after encountering that very experience in your previous birth(s) 

Were you deprived of choice, was nothing explained to you and you simply “had to comply” with hospital protocol?

Do you wish you had more support in your preferences? Perhaps you had trouble asking for your needs, delegating them and sticking to them…

Did you experience some disappointment in your previous birth(s), maybe even trauma or obstetric violence? But because you and the baby are “healthy” you feel guilty to tell anyone your feelings of disappointment

Do you feel that your Dr or healthcare practitioner rushed you during your labour and birth?

and that you may have suffered less, had you been able to have bodily autonomy?

…maybe your birth would have been faster and less painful and you may have avoided heaps of medical bills

natural pain relief and comfort measures for labour

You desired an empowered blissful birth

Before you gave birth you had such trust in Allah’s Divine process of birth, you were so  confident in your body’s abilities,

Deep down you knew that your body can birth your baby without too much intervention (except when there is a legitimate medical emergency) from man, medicine and instruments,

deep down you were confident that Allah created you to give birth with ease…

But you ALSO needed everyone else around you to trust you, affirm your confidence in yourself and be patient with you

You needed reassurance

You needed support in your choices

You had a romantic idea of what your first birth was going to be like,

something gentle, traditional, perhaps even a homebirth,

easy, and in a loving and supportive environment


Imagine if:

You could be educated and informed about all your options, – and alternatives in case things don’t go as expected -, well before the time so that you could plan your ideal birth.

What if you had an in-depth understanding of the physiology of birth and a simple fact and evidence -based approach to birth options so that you can stand your ground and have confidence

Imagine you and your husband knew all your rights as a birthing family so that you are not bullied, and  your husband can support and advocate for your choices 

Imagine you had knowledge that gave you the confidence to articulate your choices to your providers, so you could have the birth you want, and to communicate your needs to your family, so that you can receive the support you deserve.

What if your husband could learn with you and also be informed around all aspects of birth so that he could be more understanding, supportive and involved, and you didn’t have to spell everything out to him (cough cough lol) thus taking some worry and responsibility off your shoulders

What if you could escape exorbitant hospital fees by confidently being able to avoid extra interventions, drugs and anaesthetists or even a caesarian, (except in a time of legitimate medical emergency of course)

Are you ready to reclaim your birth experience?

Introducing the Expectant Muslim Parents’ guides to Birth & Beyond…

Comprehensive online guides to experiencing an informed and empowered birthing experience…

  • It is based on the latest evidence-based practices, and the midwifery or social model of care
  • Which focuses on empowering and respecting choice
  • Recognises that alternative medicine therapies can benefit greatly in a low-risk pregnancy
  • Realise that a relaxing and calm environment for a birthing woman is so important
  • That sees birth as a normal family event that may need technology and interventions if needed in emergencies and if approved and chosen by the birthing family

Her teaching gives families the kind of healthy beginning that has a positive influence on the rest of their lives

To be effective in this field, it is necessary to have both accurate information and compassion. Zaahida excels in both. Her teaching gives families the kind of healthy beginning that has a positive influence on the rest of their lives.

Bonita Katz, BA, RN, ICCE, ICBD, IAT, Former President, ICEA (International Childbirth Education Association)

Why choose this course?

There are many antenatal courses out there

Some are even provided for free, but they are not always comprehensive and they are often based on the medical model of care, 

which is usually taking control of your birth according to a hospital protocol

overlooks alternative medicine

doesn’t take the environment into consideration

sees birth as something that needs hospitalisation 

and uses technology and intervention more often than may be needed

With The Expectant Muslim Parents’ guides to birth…

  • Watch online at your own convenience! You may be a busy mom  and not have time to attend classes, or classes are not offered in your area or they may be far out 
  • Suitable for you and your husband. Some classes are not culturally sensitive, and your husband won’t feel comfortable attending a class along with other moms. Feel at ease with our slide show with voice-over which takes your privacy and modesty into consideration.
  • Islamically – based. Some classes are taught by teachers whose beliefs are not in accordance with our beliefs as Muslims or require you to listen to musical affirmation tracks during labour. Rest assured that all our content is underpinned with teachings from the Quran and Sunnah

I’m pleased and proud that with all the information, support and help Zaahida offered, I had my healing birth

Working with Zaahida has given me ease of mind before labour and plenty of reassurance to trust myself and my body’s capabilities to birth my baby. Before, I was unsure and nervous about the unknown and birthing alone previously was nerve-wracking“

“…now I’m pleased and proud that with all the information, support and help Zaahida offered, I had my healing birth

Anke van Wyk

I can totally relate

I was just like you…

Baby’s head kept on repeatedly retreating after crowning a little each time,  I was exhausted after a long labour, I was told I wasn’t pushing properly? 

My neck was sore, my back was sore. Can’t this just be over? I thought

I couldn’t do this anymore. They said the baby is lazy, laughed and said it must be a boy 😏

And then, without any question, warning or information, … they cut me…

They performed an episiotomy, without asking my permission, without explaining the benefits, risks or alternatives..

I experienced a terrible burning sensation, and finally my baby was born on the first eve of Ramadhaan, weighing 3.54 kilos

I trembled and I was ice cold, so I asked for socks and a blanket. My husband told me we have a beautiful baby girl, and brought her to me

She was placed on my chest for a few minutes and I distinctly remembered not having the mental capacity to feel any emotion or to appreciate that moment for what it was

But of course, the baby was beautiful and healthy, and I was alive and healthy right?


This wasn’t how I wanted my birth to be

I felt disempowered…

My freedom of choice was taken away from me…

my wishes and my birth plan were disregarded…

And I would eventually be left with a scar…

This. is trauma. 

Let’s backtrack a bit…

12 years ago when I was expecting my first baby, I read all the resources I could lay my hands on, I knew exactly what type of birth I wanted. I knew all the tricks on natural pain relief and comfort measures.

I really wanted a homebirth.

I mentioned this to a few people and everyone was against it!

What if something happens and you don’t have oxygen or an incubator?? Rather not for your first time!! They said, “you need to be in a hospital in case something happens!” 

Being the people-pleaser that I was, I ended up giving birth at a hospital

I had a birth plan written out and I had really wanted to be upright when giving birth.

Little did I know my birth plan would be disregarded 

I wasn’t “allowed” to squat. I was told I need to lie on my back for pushing

Alhamdulillaah I was able to achieve some of my birth preferences; I was upright and moved around during most of my labour … I had my husband by my side supporting me and reciting the Quran Throughout, and shukr to my mother-in-law, I had laboured longer at home,

But I didn’t research my provider options beforehand as well as I could have

And I didn’t have someone like a doula to guide me to make better decisions or how to advocate for my birth wishes.

Nobody told me my recovery from the stitches would be so grueling, much longer than anyone cares to mention.

Some stitches came loose, I got an infection, and I was terrified of every . single . toilet trip.

I had to take things to prevent constipation, and tried different remedies to heal faster and reduce pain

To be honest, years later, that scar is still sensitive at times. Such a special and intimate part of our womanhood , and we aren’t given a choice about what happens to it??

This can’t be right!

For my second hospital birth, although extremely easy, I had been shouted at to change the position I chose to push in, while baby’s head was already out, and to top it all, I was ordered to put on a hospital gown while doing all this. 

During the Postpartum period, along with grieving the loss of my mother who passed away just before I fell pregnant, I struggled with outdated information I had received about breastfeeding and newborn care.

This resulted in a restless, constantly crying baby, and in turn, a sleep-deprived and severely depressed mother, 

My 3rd time around, I had enough of listening to everyone else and ignoring my own wishes. so I made sure that I birthed at home with a midwife this time. I was able to labour as I wished in the comfortable environment of my own home, with my husband. I could squat and thus avoid another episiotomy or tearing. I was able to avoid unnecessary cervical checks. 

and I didn’t have to be strapped to a bed with continuous monitoring. 

My midwife slipped off the cord which was wrapped around my son’s neck. We delayed cord clamping, enjoyed peaceful skin-to-skin time and I could fall asleep with my husband and baby for as long as we liked…without anyone being chased away

natural pain relief and comfort measures for labour

Some valuable lessons I learnt

I needed to trust my intuition;

I had known deep down to begin with, that a homebirth with midwifery care was better for me personally And I knew my body was divinely created to eject my baby easiest when I squat…

Had I been a little bit more educated on the after-effects and disadvantages of different options and procedures,

Had I been more educated on my choices and rights as a birthing woman 

Had I been more confident in responding to fear-mongering, with the evidence as to why my choices are better for me

And had my husband and I been able to articulate, and advocate for my birth wishes,, 

Things may have been much different..

Simply giving the information and separating the pros and cons allows someone like me to make an informed decision

Since this is my first pregnancy and I had little to no knowledge of what to expect during childbirth, I definitely feel more equipped to make better decisions and preparation for my 1st childbirth. 

…I like the fact that Appa Zaahida can give information about medical procedures/interventions without being pushy about which ones to take or which ones not to. Simply giving the information and separating the pros and cons allows someone like me to make an informed decision…

…Appa has a very warm and welcoming presence. This makes it easy to speak freely and create a relationship fast. Definitely felt most comfortable.
…Her passion shows immediately through the way she speaks as well as how to speak about providing change and help to avoid traumatic experiences for mums and families…


live attendee of the birth choices class

But there is a reason why I underwent these traumatic experiences  

After birthing 3 times in different settings and having my own experiences with postpartum depression, I can truly say that I know the far-reaching effects of the unavailability of evidence-based birth information in our community, even more so, a huge gap for something that caters specifically to the needs of Muslims. Alhamdulillaah I came out on the other side stronger and wiser

It doesn’t have to be this way for you. You don’t have to first go through these traumatic experiences.

My pain now became my passion and I made it my duty to to fill this gap. 

I took my learnings from my own births, my teaching experience, Islamic Studies, birth training and various alternative therapy skills to formulate a unique approach to educate, empower and support Muslim women to make their own informed decisions and to have the beautiful and empowered birthing experience that they choose and deserve

And so I created my online courses

Zaahida has perfected the art of conveying her extensive knowledge

Zaahida has perfected the art of conveying her extensive knowledge & skills as a birth worker in a way that is admirable & inspiring to those who work alongside her. (Her dedication & commitment to empowering families, is the driving force for her passion towards her work and she is often found going the extra mile for her clients. She is reliable & resourceful as a colleague and is always keen to educate & lend an ear to a doula in need of a good debrief session.) I have learned many constructive tools from working with her and I regard her as a mentor of both theory & experience.

Naailah Lawrence, doula



Zaahida obtained a Diploma in Arabic & Islamic Studies from Madrasatus Saalihaat in 2009 and taught the same for over 10 years. Teaching is her passion. She loves taking complicated concepts and simplifying them, as well as using technology to make learning fun and interactive. She has been researching and writing about Islam, wellness, birth and parenting for the past 6 years.

She qualified as a birth and labour doula Doula through WOMBS (Women Offering Mothers Birth Support) South Africa in 2017. She attended training in using Homeopathic remedies in the home through Dr Chiquita Vosloo from Natura, and Pharmacist & owner of Pegasus Homeopathics, Ian Wheeler. In 2020 she and her husband attended training for Perinatal Bereavement facilitation with Mama Nurture and she is certified in Aromatherapy through the Centre of Excellence UK.

Zaahida certified as an ICCE (Internationally Certified Childbirth Educator) with ICEA (International Childbirth Education Association) in 2021. She assists on the ICEA Scholarship committee as well as serving on the Board as Director of International Relations.

She achieved certification as a Breastfeeding Peer Counsellor in 2022. She completed a year long training in an Introduction to Traditional Holistic Midwifery under Ruth Ehrhardt (Author, Certified Professional Midwife), Certified Doula, and student of Michel Odent, French Obstetrician).

Zaahida is one of the core committee members of SADAA, (South African Doula Administration and Association) and has assisted IMA (Islamic Medical Association) Port Elizabeth in marketing and administration and various projects.

As Featured In

I learned so much in these courses with Zaahida which I didn’t  know in my previous pregnancies

Zaahida breaks down everything and she makes it easy to understand and
recognise the stages of labour. This has given me a different perspective of what labour should be like. 

Having a better understanding, support, and guidance has changed my whole experience! I can definitely say this was the quickest and easiest labour, and now I am in a much better space, whereas before I was in complete panic, and drained during and after labour.

Zaahida’s passion in her work, and how she understands what is needed in the moments of labour is incredible.

I would have loved to have done these courses with my first pregnancy, which would’ve made it a lot easier. I would 💯 % recommend all expecting moms: “You need to do these courses!”

Anonymous, Mom of 4, Live class attendee of The Expectant Muslim Parents’ guide to Pregnancy, Labour & Birth

Available Courses



The Expectant Muslim Parents’ Guide to Pregnancy© is one of a series of comprehensive Evidence-Based & Faith-Based Online Courses specifically tailored for Muslim couples teaching you everything you need to know about pregnancy without leaving your home.

We cover:

  • Pregnancy Anatomy
  • Stages and Changes of pregnancy and comfort measures for each stage
  • Pregnancy nutrition, safety and warning signs
  • The Psychology of Pregnancy
  • Body Mechanics and Exercise


Labour & Birth

The Expectant Muslim Parents’ Guide to Labour & Birth 1© is one of a series of comprehensive Evidence-Based & Faith-Based online courses specifically tailored for Muslims, teaching you everything you and your husband need to know about Labour & Birth without leaving your home.

We cover:

  • The signs of labour
  • Stages of labour
  • Labour & Birth Mindset
  • Natural Pain relief
  • What to pack & when to go to the hospital
  • How husbands can support their wives


Birth Choices

The Expectant Muslim Parents’ Guide to Labour & Birth 2© is one of a series of comprehensive Evidence – Based & Faith – Based online courses specifically tailored for Muslims, teaching you everything you need to know about your Birth Choices without leaving your home.

We cover:

  • Your rights as a birthing woman
  • Evidence-based medicine
  • Informed decisions
  • Your birth plan
  • Benefits and risks of common obstetric procedures
  • Caesarian Birth