“The most difficult part of birth is the first year afterwards. It is the year of travail – when the soul of a woman must birth the mother inside her. The emotional labour pains of becoming a mother are far greater than the physical pangs of birth; these are the growing surges of your heart as it pushes out selfishness and fear and makes room for sacrifice and love. It is a private and silent birth of the soul, but is no less holy than the event of childbirth. Perhaps it is even more sacred”Joy
What is a Post-partum Doula
A postpartum doula is someone who provides physical, emotional and informational support to a woman and her family during the postpartum period.
While most people are familiar with what a Birth Doula is, postpartum or post-natal Doulas are a bit more of a mystery. The reason is because the support offered and provided is really different mum to mum, and Doula to Doula. It depends on the needs of the new mother and the mutually agreed list of services that the Doula can offer.
Most of the focus, preparation and excitement is directed at pregnancy and birth. But what about the birth (or re-birth) of you, as a new mother?
What so many women and families forget about is having a really good post-partum care plan in place. Something that allows you to settle into being a new mum (or a new mum again), allows you to recover from the pregnancy and birth, and bond with your baby.
In traditional cultures, new mothers would have a support network of trusted and experienced women to nurture and care for them in the first month after birthing their babies. This was a time for quiet healing, peace and nourishment.
Despite the need for new mothers to receive this nourishment and care, our society pressures new mothers to recover quickly and move back out into the world of the everyday after a day or two. (Especially if they have other children and a household to support/run.)
Imagine feeling more nurtured and supported during your weeks as new mother! Imagine having a system of support that would accommodate this special period of rest and recuperation!
Enter the Post-Natal Doula.
As a Post-partum Doula it is my goal to help you adjust to the many changes and new challenges you may encounter with your new baby. It is my hope that when you have support, those challenges can feel less overwhelming, your confidence is higher and your new family can bond and flourish.
It is not my role to make any type of medical diagnosis. I don’t administer any type of prescription or over the counter medication for you or your baby. I do not do any major household duties, take over complete care of the baby, discipline older children or transport members of the family.
As your Post-partum Doula I can support in the following ways:
- Help you or your partner prepare food for future use
- Light housework such as laundry, vacuuming, tidying up, so you can spend time healing rather than doing chores
- Mind your baby while you have a nap or a bath
- Play with or read stories to other children while you rest
- Pick up groceries
- Accompany you on errands
- Bathing your baby
- Provide advice on babywearing
- Teach you simple baby massage techniques to help with bonding with your new baby
- Debrief your birth / hold space for you
- Support and guide you through some meditations/relaxation techniques
- Give you breastfeeding support (note: I am not a lactation consultant, so I will refer you if required)
- Prepare a ritual bath for you
- Connect you with new mother/baby service providers, as needed
- Connect you with parenting groups
- Suggest homeopathic & herbal remedies for postpartum healing
- Other services based on your personal needs, as discussed and mutually agreed
- I can also perform the Closing of the Bones ceremony for you (additional cost/session)
- ‘Recover’ Package: $650
This package offers 12 hours of support, spread over 2 weeks in your post partum period (usually starting week 2). This would be broken up across 2 x 3hr sessions each week. Assistance can include any of the above elements listed.
- ‘Nurture’ Package: $880
This package includes 18 hours, spread over 3 weeks of the post-partum period. This would be broken up across 2 x 3hr sessions each week. Assistance can include any of the above elements listed.
- ‘Nourish’ Package: $1100
This package includes 24 hours, spread over 4 weeks of the post-partum period. This would be broken up across 2 x 3hr sessions each week. Assistance can include any of the above elements listed.
- ‘Sustain’ bolt-on: $150 (in conjunction with one of the above packages)
If you feel you may need further support later on in this important first year, I can also provide information, support and guidance on weaning.
Or you might just want to debrief and check in. Someone to hold space for you, once you come out of the ‘4th trimester’. This package would be a bolt on to any of the first three packages.
Or, if you would like to create your own individual Postpartum Package designed specifically for you or your loved one, including specific customary/cultural needs, contact me for a more information.
NB: discounts apply if I am also your Birth Doula.
IMPORTANT: Given the challenges with C-19, we may need to discuss an alternative to the packages that would involve virtual support. These could be daily calls (30-60mins each) or ‘drop and go’ services if required. This will need to be further discussed and agreed between us, and depending on the rules and regulations set by the government.