A doula and RN gives expectant moms tips for an easy labor and delivery. Most of our clients deliver and Prentice Women’s Hospital in Chicago
Being a new parent is hard! Babies are amazing and magical, but also SUPER demanding (think dictator vs democracy). As a new parent taking time for you can really help you recharge you and make the demands of new parenthood easier.
Outside of our normal recommendations for self care (eat real food, shower and put on new yoga pants daily, nap when baby does at least once a day and get outside every day). We recommend that once healed all of our clients engage in some "me time". Living in Chicago we're so lucky to have so many different ways to accomplish this
Our top 5 "treat yourself" recommendations
1. Get a makeover! Postpartum hair loss is real (we promise you won't go bald) get a new hair cut and style. You'll feel better about you. On a budget? The Aveda school at Clark and Diversey does $16 blow outs (crazy right???)
3. Go out alone! Go get a hot meal by yourself, a coffee, a cupcake or even just a stroll. Being alone can be magic! Our postpartum team is happy to stay with babe while you do this!
4. New clothes. I hear so many moms say "this isn't my forever size" when they're in between maternity and pre baby wear. Get yourself a few outfits that fit and make you feel good about your current body!
5. Be active. Walks with baby, at home work outs, mom and baby exercise classes, get those endorphins going. It's not about losing the baby weight, but about getting your body moving! Tip: the drop in Yoga at Monica and Andy in Lincoln Park is supposed to be pretty rigorous!
PRO TIP FOR NURSING MOMS:
Get a hand pump, this makes adventures alone much easier without worrying about where and how you'll pump. That said dressing rooms are great! Also Prentice has multiple lactation rooms if your treating yourself downtown!
1. Restaurant gift cards(to places that deliver): when you have a new baby, a partner back at work and a little person (or 3) to feed, dinner can feel overwhelming to say the least. While there's nothing wrong with the plopping a bunch of random things on your toddlers tray, a hot meal can feel oh so amazing!! Giving the ability to just call and have something yummy, hot and worry free delivered to your home in 30 min is magic on those hard days.
2. Postpartum massage: while 2nd+ deliveries tends to be a little easier on the body, you still just had a baby come out of your body. A massage to help relax and recovery is such an amazing act of self care! If you gift an in home massage make sure the little people can be taken care of!
3. Date night: being a new parent is hard (even the 2nd time around) and couples need a chance to reconnect. Get them a gift card to a close by, but yummy restaurant and pay for their sitter (hint postpartum doulas can do this) once they're ready to get out of the house.
4. Cleaning: after coming home with a new baby the last thing they want to do (and last thing they should be doing) is cleaning. Take that burden away by hiring someone to come do the big stuff! A clean house can take so much anxiety away from a new parent!
5. Postpartum help: you probably saw this coming! Gifting a family a postpartum doula or night nurse can mean sanity! Having someone come in cook you a hot meal, clean up the kitchen, do laundry, sit with you while you feed baby and validate all your emotions, let you sleep/shower/pee in peace, let you have some one on one with your big kid! It's a gift that keeps giving!
At Windy City Doulas, one of the things we hear all the time when interviewing with clients is, “I think the idea of a doula is great and we’re interested, but….”
-I am having my baby at the hospital
-I am delivering with an OB
-I want an epidural
-I’ll need to be induced early
-I’m planning a csection
These statements are followed by, “Do you work with families who are planning this type of birth?.” Our answer? Of course, we do!!!!!!
Client and I text back and forth with her new sleep and pumping concerns as she and the baby snooze off and on in the other room.
While the meal cooks, I restock the baby’s room and strip and remake the beds. About 30 minutes before the end of my shift, the baby is up and we read stories and play while mom gets 30 minutes to shower in peace. As I leave we schedule two more weeks of service.