What is a postpartum doula?
In short, whatever you need her to be!
At the beginning of each shift, the postpartum doula assesses what needs are most important to Mom on that specific day. Is she desperate for a nap? A shower? A warm meal? Clean laundry? Mom’s priorities are the doula’s priorities. Every mother is different and Welcome Baby Care support is tailor-made.
Our doulas are also extensively trained for and experienced in managing the specific needs of families welcoming twins and triplets.
Everything mom and baby…
Each family receives a client binder, stocked with valuable resources, baby charting and Mom’s personal information (such as food allergies) for the postpartum doula’s quick reference.
The doula keeps track of the goals set and completed on the included Daily Assignment Sheets. She also records the details and events of the shift—anything discussed, decisions made, medication times and education provided, as well as feeding times, diaper changes and infant sleep. This is especially helpful to the exhausted new mother who can hardly remember her own name, and ensures continuity of care over shift changes.
Building on the mother’s existing knowledge and plans for parenting, a postpartum doula will look for opportunities to share her own tricks of the trade. Pointing out Baby’s feeding and sleep cues, for example, is a way in which the doula can offer simple information that empowers the new parent and makes life easier. Through role modeling—such as swiftly changing diapers or burping Baby with ease — the doula effortlessly shares all that she has learned over years of training and work in the field.
Q&A sessions happen naturally throughout the day as parents ask everything from “Is this rash normal?” to “Can you show me how to use my baby carrier?” The postpartum doula is also happy to provide or help create a “newborn checklist” of items needed to make life with Baby easier.
Successful feeding of the baby is always supported with hands-on assistance, at the mother’s comfort level. Breast, bottle or somewhere in between, our doulas offer options and solutions to common roadblocks. For those needing extra assistance, specialized Lactation Services are available.
Happy mama, healthy baby!
A postpartum doula can help the mother process the birth experience. This allows Mom to express feelings of both frustration and wonder, to mourn the loss of life pre-baby, to embrace her new identity, to navigate shifts in the romantic relationship and to deal with the overwhelming worry and guilt that often plague new parents.
The emotional and mental support that the doula guarantees goes beyond advocacy and providing a shoulder to cry on—she meets the mother where she is. Anticipating the mother’s needs — food, water, rest, sunshine — makes the difference in the overall mental health of the entire family. Meal preparation and providing mom the opportunity to rest are a part of almost every daytime shift — two basic needs that keep a mom grounded, calm, strong and happy.
Chores and more!
Added to the unparalleled education and emotional well being that a postpartum doula provides each and every time she visits a family, she also does light housework! It is expected that a doula will do the dishes in the sink and handle a load or two of laundry while teaching and caring for the new mother. Other helpful tasks may include grocery shopping, emptying the trash, sterilizing the breast pump, removing clutter from the living space and even addressing that stack of neglected baby shower thank you notes.
Parents of multiples find this “extra set of hands” particularly helpful.
With this foundation of support the postpartum doula fosters a strong, nourished and confident parent. When the parents are ready to do it alone, the doula has done her job well!
Have a postpartum doula visit you!
Want to learn more? Welcome Baby Care was honored to appear as part of “Baby Baby Baby Week” on Twin Cities Live, along with four other fabulous local companies. Check it out…