Becoming a family, or bringing an additional baby into a family, is a monumental transtion! It is also one of the most important jobs possible! We are bringing another human here, and will give them all the tools we can for them to go out into the world and create their own lives. The early days of the new babies life are the start of our new family, and our lives together. Every family needs to be protected and nurtured during this time, and given the space to get to know each other, heal, rejoice and adjust to their new roles, with only those around that will offer help without judgment.
In our current culture, so much is expected of new familes, right after the baby is born! The mom is often expected to be up and about within a few days, entertaining people and organizing the house, or going back to work within a few weeks or months. The father or partner is also expected to get right back into the business of life, heading right back to work, or keeping up with the house.
There are so many aspects to the postpartum period. Both parents are amazed and in wonder at their new baby. They are also, however, on a huge learning curve! They are having to learn all about this new person, and how to wash, hold, change, soothe and nurture them. They are learning all about breastfeeding, and how this particular baby feeds. They are also sleep deprived, which makes everything just a bit harder. Combined with all this is the fact that they have just gone from a single person or couple, to a Mother or Father and Parents, which is a monumental identity shift, as well as a huge shift in how they relate to each other.
While all of this is quite doable, and we all have these coping abilities, so much of this could be so much easier with just a little bit of help. Just having someone there to say, “You are doing just fine!”, can make all the difference! Then have that person knowledgeable about breastfeeding, newborn care, baby soothing, baby wearing, changes to expect in a newborn, changes the mother may expect in her body and emotional states, how the birth and new baby may be affecting the father and how siblings may be being affected, and you have someone who can really help! Also add in help to set up your group of support people, how to meet other new families, where to go if you need additional help, and some answers to some of your questions, or being sent to somone that can answer you! With a bit of help around the house with basic cleaning, meal preparation, errand running or sibling care, and you get the time you need to rest, regroup and adjust! This is what a Postpartum Doula does!
Every family deserves the help and support they need at this wonderful but very intense time of our lives! When we do have the encouragement and assistance that we need, it is so much eaiser to make this new start more rewarding for the whole family!