Me, Scott and Austin, August 13, 1998 in Plantation, FL.
When I had my first son in 1998, I had never heard the world “doula” before. I didn’t know that a doula was an experienced and educated women who assists a mom and her partner during pregnancy, childbirth and days or week afterwards. I didn’t know a doula spends years studying, reading and training to become an expert in all things maternity and pregnancy. I didn’t know all this!
I didn’t know that doulas attend training workshops and continuing education classes throughout their careers. I didn’t know that labor doulas sometimes attend a 24hour birth and don’t leave the side of the laboring mom for more than a few minutes at a time. I didn’t know that doulas are amazing listeners and that they know soothing massage techniques. I didn’t know doulas come prepared to a labor with a doula bag filled with items that help the mom and her partner during a long labor! No, I didn’t know any of this!
I didn’t realize that women could hire someone to be by their side during their labor, the birth of their child and those important hours afterwards. I didn’t know a doula could help a new mom with the first latch when breastfeeding a newborn. If I knew any of this I would have hired a doula for sure! I didn’t know these things then, but I know them now! And so do YOU!!! If you are in the Coral Springs or surrounding areas and are interested in hiring a childbirth and postpartum doula for your upcoming birth, contact me today for a free consultation.
Nursing moms and new moms in general don’t have much time to sit down for a gourmet meal every day, eating on the go is a part of a new mom’s daily routine. When I was pregnant with my first son, my mom told me to set up a little nursing nook in my house. She suggested something simple with a rocking chair or glider and a small table. She told me to put a snack and a drink there and to eat and drink while I was nursing. I took her advice and made myself a comfortable and functional nursing nook! My little nursing nook was in the corner of my bedroom and consisted of the most comfortable glider and ottoman. This was the ONLY thing I could sit on comfortably during the first 6 week because of my episiotomy.
Also in my nursing nook was a small side table with one drawer. Inside the drawer was a breastfeeding book, a few granola bars and other snacks, nipple cream, nursing pads and bottles of water. With my fist son, I would nurse about 20 minutes every 2-3 hours. Breastfeeding my newborn was sometimes the only time I sat down during the day. That was my down time… and the perfect time to concentrate on bonding with my baby. I always used this time to grab a quick bite to eat. I learned early on that my baby always seemed to be hungry when I was hungry, so we had “lunch together” every day for months! Sometimes I had time to prepare a sandwich or heat up left overs, but most times I would snack on my stash of nursing snacks in the drawer. My favorites were granola bars, energy bars, raisins, cut up fruit, cheese sticks or even dry cereal. Keeping your energy up is important during breastfeeding since breastfeeding alone burns 500 calories a day! I tried to replace those calories eating healthy foods.
My nursing nook became one of my favorite places in my house. You don’t need a lot of space to create a comfortable nursing nook for you and your baby to breastfeed and bond, but having everything you need at an arm’s reach makes life with a new baby it so much easier. Don’t forget to have your phone near you as well, for snapping those beautiful breastfeeding photos!