The majority of people don't know professional postpartum care exists outside of a night nurse, and those who do usually think it's for families with brand new babies.
The fact is postpartum care is for anyone who needs it! One hour or 1 year, we're here to help meet your self-care needs.
Let me walk you through the day I just spent with an extended care family. It's January and just 4 degrees above zero here in Chicago. I arrive for a 4-hour shift at their Lincoln Park walk up. I buzz myself in and enter to a crying 3-1/2 month old baby. Mom tells me he's over tired, she needs to nurse and we'll talk after.
She settles on to the couch in the dimly lit living room with baby and I get to work.
-Dishwasher unloaded and loaded? Check!
-Wipe down counters and sink? Check!
-Toss out old food in the fridge? Check!
-Take out the trash? Check!
-And the recycling? Check!
I text my client and ask if she wants a snack while I start prepping a meal. She texts back that she didn't have time to go to the store since it’s been so cold, and they'll have to order in.
Let me tell you, one thing doulas are great at is preparing meals on the spot, with no planning. I found some veggies, chick peas and whole wheat pasta and got a roasted vegetable sauce with chickpeas going on the stove!
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.
I barely saw her or touched the baby, but I left behind 4 cooked meals, a clean fridge, clean laundry, a freshly-made bed, pumped milk organized, trash taken out and a clean kitchen. All while my client got to soak in these last few weeks with her babe before her maternity leave ends.
Self care is worth it, and peace of mind is an amazing gift to give to yourself. You deserve it!
Samantha Trebilcock BSN RN