Why Hire a Postpartum Doula?
You spend countless hours mentally and physically preparing for labor and birth. You have a vision of the birth of your baby and the care system that surrounds you during that time. But what happens when you go home from the hospital or birth center, or your midwife leaves? This is a huge life transition that can be filled with excitement and discovery but also fear and worry. So who do you call when you’re worried, hungry, exhausted, the house is in shambles, and the babe won’t let you put her down?
Da-da-da-DA! Your oh-so-handy postpartum doula! Postpartum doulas come in to your home- day or night (even the middle of the night!)- to be your support person in whatever ways you and your family need it.
One of the most common remarks I hear from parents is how needed ‘parent care’ is after the birth of a baby. Parents need to be nurtured just as much as newborn babies. Healthy, rested, well-fed parents can focus more energy enjoying time with the new addition to their family.
Postpartum doulas are trained to support parents by:
- Preparing nutritious meals and snacks for the whole family
- Caring for the baby or other children while the parents catch a nap or a shower
- Taking care of light-housekeeping duties in the home (dishes, laundry, etc.)
- Being a judgement-free listening ear
- Offering resources as needed
One postpartum client I work with leaves me a note of what to work on while she sleeps, and she never fails to write ‘Do your magic thing’. To me I am just cleaning and organizing- but to her I am conducting magic. She wakes up to a clean house, dishes done, laundry done, and food prepared. A few hours of postpartum care allows her to focus on caring for her baby and herself!
The questions that can arise regarding newborn care are endless and exhausting. It may feel like everywhere you look there is a different method or suggestion and you aren’t sure which to follow.
Are we breastfeeding right?
How often should I bathe him?
Is her umbilical cord healing well?
Is she eating enough?
Should his poop be yellow?
How long should I let her sleep?
Postpartum doulas are trained to care for newborns and can help parents answer questions as they arise. They offer options and evidence-based care to help create a newborn plan that is unique to their family!
Adjusting to life with a newborn baby takes almost all the time and attention of parents. Other children in the family may need extra help with this adjustment. Postpartum
doulas care for siblings by giving them individualized attention and care such as:
- Talking with them about their new baby brother/sister
- Giving them one-on-one attention (playing a game, playing outside, etc.)
- Offering fun ways for them to help out around the house or with the baby
Having a postpartum doula care for other children in the family can alleviate stress on the whole family!
It’s okay to ask for help.
Evidence shows that parents that have a strong support system built around them during the postpartum period are less likely to be affected by postpartum depression. We are
social animals and we are not meant o be alone during difficult times. Ask a neighbor, friend, or loved one for help. Hire a postpartum doula.
For more information on Lunula’s postpartum doula services and more, visit my website or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit the Lake Superior Birth Collective’s website for a list of pregnancy, birth, and postpartum resources and events in the community.
If you are experiencing postpartum depression, seek help immediately. For more information on postpartum depression and other maternal illnesses visit Postpartum Progress, Postpartum Support, or Pregnancy and Postpartum Support Minnesota.