Top 5 Reasons to Have a Plan for After Birth

Top 5 Reasons to Have a Plan for After Birth | Jax FL Birth

Top 5 Reasons to Have a Plan for After Birth

There is a ton of value in preparing for life with a new baby. Elizabeth Luke, perinatal and postnatal support professional, childbirth educator, and owner of First Coast Doulas talks about the top 5 reasons to have a plan for after birth in place before you give birth to your baby!

Unlike birth, your postpartum time period is typically a little more predictable. Elizabeth suggests creating a plan now before you give birth so systems are in place and implementation is seamless. It brings our team great joy to support families as they make these life transitions. We absolutely hope you contact us to help you create and implement a plan, but you don’t have to hire support to make the most of early parenting!

Without further ado, we give you the top 5 reasons to have a plan for after birth in place now!

1.  Healing & Recovery

Physically your body needs a minimum of a full six weeks to recover and heal from the birth process.  Whether you had an uncomplicated vaginal birth, a planned cesarean, or an emergency cesarean your cervix and uterus most definitely need this time to heal and return to pre-pregnancy size.  You may feel like you’ve fully recovered and that is great! Sometimes emotionally we may need this time to grieve and heal as well. Give yourself time and permission to grieve, but also to take steps towards healing during this time.

Having a system in place allows you to eat healthy meals and snacks, stay hydrated, get as much sleep as possible (it is possible with support), put your feet up, relax, and get horizontal with your baby.  These things are super duper beneficial to the healing process, which brings me to #2 on our list.

2. Bonding

The day has finally come. Your baby is finally here. This is what you’ve been waiting approximately 40 weeks for! Bonding is important, not just bonding with your baby, but bonding with your partner, other children, and even extended family if you want those people in your lives at this point in time.

Learning all about the tiniest member of your family, helping each other, and discovering amazing things about your baby and each other along the way is the ultimate joy!

These moments only happen once! Take this time to bond, have a support system in place! Don’t let it pass you by, escape you, or overwhelm you which brings me to #3 on our list of the top 5 reasons to have a plan for after birth in place before the big day!

3. BIG Feelings

Without a doubt, you will have BIG feelings after you bring your baby home. It may be feelings of relief, bliss, happiness,  and joy! It may also be feelings of sadness, nervousness, inadequacy, or undeserving. These feelings can and do happen!

Having space and support system in place allows you time to process your feelings. Surprisingly, even if you’re a private, more reserved person, having a support person you feel comfortable with to discuss those feelings is invaluable. Truth is you probably don’t need another Suzy Sunshine trying to fix every damn thing, but rather a person who will validate your feelings, commiserate with you, and is prepared to offer you an objective perspective without judgment, W-H-E-N you’re ready! Our postnatal support professionals, also known as postpartum doulas or newborn care specialist are, in a sense like life coaches for the postpartum period.

4. For Your Partner/Support System

Yep, support for your support system! It’s totally a thing! If you have a partner they know you intimately. They love you and are likely feeling all the feelings too. Not only are they feeling all the feelings their also protector(s) and provider(s) and trying to find time to bond and engage with your newest family member!

 Your partner is trying to make sure that you are:

1. healing

2. bonding

3. feeling okay

4. focused on baby and not them

And finally, that brings us to:

5. Practicality

While your healing, bonding, and caring for your sweetpea life moves on around you like the speed of toddlers. LOL Dishes dirty, meals must be prepared, appointments must be made, and tiny human clothes pile up quicker than you could ever imagine!

Having someone to run the vacuum, tidy up the playroom, and take the trash out is necessary to healing and recovery! Your practical support person(s) should help where they see help is needed. Grocery shopping, running errands, and getting the clothes folded and put into the drawers are all things that need to be done, your support system should be doing those things!

After you have a baby it is more than 100% okay to ask for help!

Postpartum support and planning is our specialty. If you or someone you know is expecting a baby, one of the very best gifts you can give a new family (yours included) is the gift of support! Whether you step up and help them, contact a support professional who can help them, or do both, know that your gift is the ultimate gift! Giving your time and energy to a new family so that they can heal, bond, and feel all the feels is priceless!

I want to give a very special shout-out to Heather Horrell who works with us here at First Coast Doulas and is also the owner of Grow Family. We originally made this video and it malfunctioned in the process of upload. Thank you, Heather, for caring so much and being a huge asset to families in our community!

Happy Birth & Parenting!

~Elizabeth Luke

The BIGGEST Challenges and Solutions After You Give Birth to Your Baby

The BIGGEST Challenges and Solutions After You Give Birth to Your Baby | Jax FL Doulas

The BIGGEST Challenges and Solutions After You Give Birth to Your Baby

The biggest challenges and solutions after you give birth to your baby are basic but impactful. Some of us become parents after years of anticipation and preparation. While others find ourselves with a happy little accidents running around! Either way, we love our little balls of energy and parenting is hard, but rewarding work.

One of our jobs as postpartum doulas is to help lighten the load even if only for a little while. From the time your baby is born, through those sleepless nights, and well into the first year and even beyond, we’re there to cheer you on! We help by offering an extra set of hands, an objective perspective, an ear, and at times solidarity.

Some of the absolute biggest challenges new parents face are:

Mom Guilt

It’s that feeling you get for eating over your newborn and dropping bits of food on him. It’s that feeling in your heart when you hear that pitiful little cry as you sneak away for a quiet cup of coffee on the patio. MOM GUILT! It starts with little things and grows to great heights if we don’t put it right in check!

Real Solution #1

Plan to take care of yourself in some way each and every single day from day #1 because it really is healthiest! Learn to say no to other things and to people and say yes to yourself more! You are worth it and deserve to be the best version of you that you can be!

P.S. It strikes harder when you’re expecting baby #2.

Postpartum Sadness

In your arms is the most adorable peanut you’ve ever laid eyes on. She is finally here and you can’t help but feel a little sad that your bump is now an empty space that once grew your sweet babe. It comes again as they outgrow those newborn sized diapers and begin to hit even the tiniest of milestones.  UGH! Little bouts of sadness and a tear or two now and again sure make a parent feel silly. Turn that silly sadness into something memorable!

Real Solution #2

Baby book those precious moments. Capture them using talk to text in an online journal or notepad on your phone. Be sure to get some photo documentation of those poop-splosions and tiny outgrown socks! Those moments are special and important and while they can strike a cord on our heartstrings from time to time they deserve to be cherished.

Shower

There you are half in the shower and the rest of you dripping all over the floor to reach the pacifier in the bouncer seat and shush your newborn. Everyone is back to work and their lives and you just want to get like Shania and “feel like a woman” again. Not a shaven woman, just a woman who smells like a woman!  We hear you and we love your dedication, but dry shampoo only gets a girl so far!

Real Solution #3

Have everything you need ready to go before you jump in the shower. Create a sleep space that is as safe as possible for your baby. Then feed, change, and burp the baby. Gently put him down in his crib and walk away slowly grabbing the baby monitor on the way out the door! Get into the shower and do the damn thang! Enjoy the water, let it wash over you like the rain on a summer day! Your baby may cry, but he will be okay. Your body’s biological response is to go to him. That’s normal but remember Real Solution #1.

Sleep

It’s that forbidden 5 letter word. The one you would trade your favorite Jimmy Choo heels and maybe even your car for! S-L-E-E-P. The nights are long and the days are all blending together. Noone told you it was this tough…okay maybe they did and you were just oblivious because, well duh…you were still kidless with all the answers!

Real Solution #4

The short of it: get sleep! The long of it: Tag team and employ help! Let’s start with the closest player on your team. That might be your partner, your spouse, your mom, or your sister. What other adult is living in your home with you and is co-parenting your kids with you? Tag team! When one person tags in the other tags out! I know you want to team your way through this together, but the team can’t run on EMPTY! Refuel, rest, restart!

Real Life Solution: Employ a postpartum and infant care doula! We do all the things!

Naps during the day and more sleep through the night, heck yes, check! Showers, meals, and snacks, check, check, and check! Help understanding your newborn’s cues, normal behaviors, and breast or bottle feeding, you guessed it, check x3! Toss a load in the dryer, done! Sit and listen to your struggles, yep!! Unload the dishwasher while playing with Suzie and her baby doll, absolutely!

Let our team at The Jax Baby Company help you with the BIGGEST challenges and solutions after you give birth to your baby, our professional, down to Earth team have you covered! Real life solutions for real-life challenges!

How Can a Postpartum and Infant Doula Help Me?

postpartum and infant doula jax fl

How Can a Postpartum and Infant Doula Help Me?

You’ve heard the words postpartum and infant doula, but you’re wondering what exactly they mean together, what they do, and how can they help you?! First, you’re not alone! Most people have no idea what a postpartum and infant doula is. So breathe a sigh of relief you aren’t alone in the forest.

The word postpartum tends to get a bad rap.

Most people hear the word postpartum and immediately think of depression after a person gives birth.  Like prenatal and antenatal means during pregnancy, postpartum simply means the period of time after birth. Sure the postpartum time period can entail the baby blues, depression, anxiety, OCD, and psychosis, but it doesn’t always include those things.

A Postpartum and Infant Doula is a non-medical support person who is by your side after you have your baby!

While we can’t speak for all Doulas, First Coast Doulas are knowledgeable, trained, and skilled in compassionate care for families with babies!

While every family is different and their needs are unique there are challenges all new parents face. We add value to your family dynamics no matter what that looks like. Would you consider your family traditional, cool! Single parent home, you rock! Blended family, we love you all too! Polyamorous families, we see you!

So, how can a Postpartum and Infant Doula help?

Sleep

Be it your first baby or your fifth sleep is a key component of good mental and physical health. We help parents get the necessary amount of sleep day in and day out!

Nourishment

Keeping up after baby is no easy task. Keeping the body fueled is another component of good health. We prep snacks and meals and bring it right to your bedside. We’ll even run out for your cravings! Life is busier than ever, we got you!

Emotional Support

Having a baby brings out all of the emotions. Your doula knows! We’re skilled in the art of emotional attunement! From weepy, raging, and numb to everything in between we see it, we recognize it, and we are comfortable talking about it and being there to see you through it!

Companionship

You need to heal, rest, and care for baby. That doesn’t mean you should feel like an outcast or be confined to isolation. Ugh, we hear it all the time, “I feel so alone.” Your doula makes going out, or staying in more enjoyable. Your doula can tend to your baby while we all walk Target or grab lunch! On the flip side we can stay in, bake cookies, and watch your favorite episodes wth you too!

Team Work

A second set of hands, eyes, and a compassionate heart! We can wear your baby while you get a nap. Keeping him, her, or them soothed. We’re skilled in the art of toddler wrangling and bathing too! Calling in help doesn’t mean you can’t do it, it may just mean you are wise to value another compassionate human to give your babies attention too!

Self-Care

All this talk about self-care and no time for it sucks! Keep your hair appointment and book that massage, we’ll come along and keep baby happy and unwanted hands off! You can relax knowing that during a bubble bath or a phone call with your girlfriend on the patio your baby is with the very best and only a room away!

So, in short your postpartum and infant doula is like a magical unicorn! She appears when you need her most, anticipates your needs before you even know you need it, and she makes magic happen!

Laundry and dishes, done!

Laughs and a safe place to cry, she’s your girl!

Pizza and drink, just say wine or whiskey!

Ssshhhhh….it’s not really magic, but it sure feels like it! Contact our “magical unicorns” for a complimentary phone consult!

 

Baby Showers and Horror Stories

baby-701653_1280I have a bit of a bone to pick with this ubiquitous celebration.  If you’ve ever been to a baby shower, then you might already know where I am going here.

You see, baby showers have three main issues:

1.) They are usually a source of pressure and stress that emphasizes materialism.

2.)  They lack actually celebrating mother and baby, and oftentimes, subsequent children don’t get any sort of recognition.

and…

3.) They are the place where everybody who has given birth (or not, now thinking about it) decides that what the birthing woman wants to hear is horror stories.

So, to point #1-you don’t need most of the shit that you think you will or that you’ve registered for.  Really. In those first few months, a few essentials and a mother’s helper are the lifesavers.  By all means, DO ask for things from willing gift-givers, but honestly, one of the most beneficial gifts you could ask for is a birth and postpartum doula. She/he will help you find products and solutions that will work best for you!  That said, what if we had baby showers to simply celebrate this baby and this mom, as they are?

Point #2-and we hear this a lot-a mother grows again and wants to celebrate her new baby. Nobody else is excited, nor do they throw a party. Baby #2, 3, 10 is “just” another baby-they don’t need anything.  But if the point of the shower is to celebrate, as addressed above, then coming together to eat and give thoughtfully, should be a given.  It’s a way to support the mother on her continuing journey. It says: “this baby is loved and so are you”.

Point #3-for the love of all things good and great, can we please stop spewing birth horror stories, and conversely, postpartum nightmares? Can we agree that yes, this may be one of the most challenging times in a person’s life, but that it is also rewarding? Can we agree that every birth and postpartum period is completely different? And, can we agree that every single woman is STRONG? She can do this. YOU can do this. Instead, share your favorite moments of your birth; share how your support person uplifted you.

Think before you decide to say something like:  “you’ll need that epidural”, “nobody gets a trophy for going natural”, or “say goodbye to sleep now”. These are NOT supportive. They neither add insight nor plausible solutions, and even more so, they are full of implied judgement on the capabilities of the woman.

Encourage your pregnant friend, cousin, or acquaintance and let her know you are there to share in her joy and happiness, and that you will listen to her fears and concerns, rather than adding your own.

 

Do I need a Doula for Birth?

why do i need a doula in jacksonvile

Do I Need a Doula for Birth?

You feel as ready as you’ll ever be for your upcoming birth.  You’ve selected your doctor or midwife, you have hospital bag ready, and your pregnancy pillow is packed. But then, someone drops a bomb and asks, “Whose your doula?”

So your research begins.

What is a doula? Do I need a doula for birth? Sounds neat, but do I really need a doula. I have my partner and my mom/sister/best friend. What can a doula do that they can’t.  So you wonder again, “do I need a doula for my birth?”

The answer is no!

You don’t need a doula. Nope. You don’t. You have the power to birth and parent that baby all by yourself. But let us ask you-do you need that designer purse? A massage? Or that wonderful hazelnut macchiato (made skinny, half-caf)? No…but, they make life a little better, and in general, much more enjoyable.

We don’t have expectations for your birth and postpartum, except that you feel like you are in control of your experience. We help you get the resources and information that matters to you.  We cheer you on when you make choices that you’re happy with. We comfort you when the sensation of birth becomes intense or when the exhaustion of new motherhood sets in.  We encourage your partner to attune to you and the process as you become a family.  We give him/her tips on how to make birth and parenting a little easier for you all. We strive to keep the atmosphere calm and discourage expectations and judgments of family who are emotionally invested in your choices. We are objective experts in how to help your birth and postpartum be easier, whether that be by massaging your back, reminding you to eat and breathe, or really listening to your fears when things may deviate from your plans. We can’t guarantee outcomes, but we can guarantee unconditional SUPPORT. We are professionals who are passionate about instilling confidence in your family, and making sure you know how powerful and capable you are.

If you’d like to find out more about how First Coast Doulas can support you as you birth and parent, set up a meet and greet with us today!