The Golden Months: Life with a Postpartum Doula

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Right after your baby is born, there is a time called The Golden Hour.  The baby is often awake and alert.  Its usually when he comes to the breast to nurse, and you are still hopped up on all of that beautiful hormone cocktail that comes after birth, and life can seem, well, golden.

But after that Golden Hour, there is still a lot of processing, working, transitioning, and learning how to become a new parent, all while you're being sleep deprived by the most adorable, 24-hour feeding machine you've ever laid your eyes on.  At those times, the the Golden Hour can seem so very, very far away.

How do I get my baby to sleep?  Is breastfeeding going ok?  How do I know if my baby is eating enough? How can I get her to stop crying?  For Pete's sake, *I'm* crying all the time, is this normal?  Will I ever sleep again? What am I having for dinner?

Having a great support team is key!  Fortunately, you and your partner don't have to go it alone.  Postpartum Doulas are skilled and experienced professionals, trained in the art of assisting families as they transition to life with a new addition, and they know the answers to each of these questions!

What might life with a Postpartum Doula look like?  There are many options, but let's say you chose to have her come over for four hours a day a few days after you arrive home from the hospital.  In the morning, she'll arrive in time to help you with your next feeding.  She can tend to the baby while you *gasp* sleep for another hour and take a shower.  While you're resting and cleaning up, she'll tidy up your pump parts, change the baby's diaper, re-swaddle and snuggle him so he'll be ready to eat when you're ready to feed.

While you are feeding the baby, she'll be available to answer questions, fold a load of laundry, bring you a nice cup of whatever you drink in the morning, and help make your grocery list to send with your partner to the store when (s)he gets up too.  Your doula will get your dinner started in the crock-pot and lay out a meal plan for the rest of the week, so you know exactly what to pull out of the freezer when.

She'll burp and change the baby when you are done feeding, and put him down for a nap.  Just before the she heads out the door (can you believe its been four hours already?) she'll get you all snuggled in for your first nap of the day.

Without a postpartum doula, you might be just fine, but as of June 1st, 2015 Doulas of Fredericksburg can help turn that Golden Hour into Golden Months.  Call us today for more information on how we can help ease your transition!

 

Victoria McCollum

Victoria McCollum is a birth and postpartum doula and owner of Doulas of Fredericksburg, in Fredericksburg, Virgina. She resides there with her husband and three precocious sons.