Allison Xanthopoulos: Fredericksburg's Newest Postpartum Doula

Allison Xanthopoulos- Postpartum Doula and After Birth Care for the Whole Family

At Doulas of Fredericksburg, we've had the plans to include Postpartum Support Services for a while.  We found that a woman who is supported after her birth is capable of recovering more quickly and forming a stronger bond with her new family.   We waited though, to officially open our Postpartum Support Division until the right doula came along.  We were looking for more than a baby nurse or housekeeper; we were waiting for a doula who truly understands what it means to serve a new family, and someone who has a passion for working with a new mom, her new baby and the whole family.  Someone who can help our clients focus on their transition to a new normal.  Allison Xanthopoulos is that doula.

We thrilled that she is the inaugural member of our Postpartum Support Division, and we know you will see why!

baby nurse fredericksburg

Tell us a bit about yourself...
My name is Allison Xanthopoulos, and I'm working with Doulas of Fredericksburg to provide Postpartum Doula services to our local moms. I moved here from Northern Virginia after getting married to my handsome computer-nerd of a husband in 2006, and have been working as a stay-at-home mom since my son was born in 2010. I'm currently the coordinator for a local Moms of Preschoolers group (MOPS at FUMC), and planning on opening a Kindermusik program here locally, to help bring rhythm and music to moms and their toddlers starting in 2016.

Who lives in your house?
I live with a wild preschool-aged son and loud but adorable toddler daughter, as well as my ever-patient husband and our two cats!

What is the best part of living here?
I love that even though I've lived here for almost 10 years (wow!) there are still places I haven't explored, yet it's still small enough that when I'm out and about, I run into people I know. It's definitely HOME for me now!

What brought you to postpartum work?
After struggling with getting back into the swing of things after my first, with breastfeeding and other "new mom" things, I really see the value and worth in having someone on-hand who is solely there to get you and your family adjusted to life with a new baby. Family and friends come and go (and most just want to hold the baby!). But a postpartum doula can be your breath of fresh air with no other goal but to make you feel like you are the mom you were called to be! (Plus who doesn't love a freshly prepared meal and a nicely folded stack of clean clothes?!) 

What is the best part of being a mother?
I love being silly with my kids, their laughs are contagious and wonderful. My son has a very vivid and hilarious imagination and says some pretty funny things. It is neat to see the world again through the eyes of a kid. 

If someone were to ask you for the best tips for a mom who just had a baby, what would you say?

  1. The old adage IS true; "sleep when baby sleeps!" I know that is hard to do when you already have other awake children, but have them do a quiet time and just take 20 minutes to lay down. Everything feels more manageable with just a little extra rest. 
  2. This too shall pass!  Does your baby just want to be held (and I mean constantly) and you have another kid needing to be attended to (again, like constantly), oh and you're drowning in laundry? Strap on and snuggle the baby while folding clothes, give the big kid a hug, take a deep breath and know that in a few short years no one will be crying around the clock for something and you can't understand! You will get to sleep through the night again and you WILL wear clothes without snot stains (although I'm still waiting on that one!) 
  3. Budget for outside help!  Even Wonder Woman needed help every now and then. Your life changed (for the better!) the day you became a mom and it's ok to redefine your standards and ideals to fit what is manageable here and now.  As Postpartum Doulas we are here to help you realize those goals and encourage you to be the best mom you can be! 

Are you an indoor relaxation or outdoor adventure kind of girl?  Where do you go to have fun? Definitely more of an indoor relaxation type gal. Coffee shops, movies, bowling, museums... I definitely like temperature controlled environments! I do however, enjoy taking my kids to parks (shady ones are preferable!) 

What is your favorite restaurant in The ‘Burg, and what do you order when you go?
I love Kybecca! The ambiance... the location... the wine selection! My must-haves off the menu are the "Kybecca Frites" (fancy french fries) and "Chocolate Nemesis" (a gluten free chocolate cake with slivered hot peppers!  Definitely eat the chocolate with the peppers, it takes a great cake to a KILLER decadent dessert!)

Marathon or walk around the block? Whats your favorite way to work out?
Definitely a walking kind of gal, however I have been attending and LOVING the variety of classes offered at Dance Trance Fredericksburg! It's a studio that offers dance based fitness classes (think music video style choreography!) to awesome radio play music! 

What kind of education and training do you have?
I have a bachelors degree in Business Management from Shenandoah University, and most recently completed the ProDoula Postpartum Doula training.

Cake or ice cream?
Chocolate cake with salted caramel ice cream, duh! 

What is one thing we are unlikely to know about you already?
I love to sing and I have about a decade of experience playing percussion. My favorite instrument in high school was the marimba! 

Best resource for a pregnant/new mom?
US!  Your birth and postpartum doulas are here to answer all questions or concerns you might have. If we don't know the answer from experience, available science or a trusted resource, we will direct you on the right path to find the information.

If you would like Allison to come to come by, make a meal, fold some laundry, support you and your new family and make you feel like an all-around SuperMom, give us a call!  We know you will be pleased with her support!

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.