I talk to a lot of moms, both pregnant and not. That makes sense, right? I’m a doula. Pregnancy, birth, and babies are my business. I love it all and I love talking about it! However, one of my favorites is talking to first time pregnant moms. There is something about that first time. It’s all new and exciting. And scary! I’ve heard lots of moms say they don’t even know what questions to ask. They don’t even know where to begin. And often their husbands feel the same. They don’t know what they don’t know.
It’s never too early in your pregnancy to start thinking about what is best for you and your baby. There are lots of ways to approach your pregnancy and birth. And lots of information about all of them. It can be very overwhelming. There are some great resources out there. Here are some of my favorites:
- Birth Boot Camp (they have an excellent online childbirth class!)
- Spinning Babies
- Dr. Sears
- Evidence Based Birth
When you start to educate yourself, then you will start to know what you want. Not what your mom wants, or your care provider, but what you want. Everyone loves to tell moms what they should do and how they should do it, but this is your choice and your family. When you know your options and what is best for you, then your voice will start to come out.
Another thing that is important is to build your support system. These are the people that you turn to with your questions, concerns, and fears. It doesn’t need to be more than just a few people. Your partner, your doula, your provider, or other moms. They just need to be people you trust.
My job as a doula is not to tell you what you don’t know (although, I do have a lot of knowledge to share), but to help you find the answers you are looking for. I will come beside you and your partner and walk this journey with you. I trust the decisions you will make. I trust you to know what is best for your family. I believe in you! We will talk about your fears and concerns. I will listen when you are having a hard day or are sick of being pregnant. I will encourage you to listen to your body. I will support you in any way you need. Why? Because I love moms, dads, babies, families. And I know that every birth story matters.
It’s getting close. You have spent 9 long months growing your baby and waiting to meet him or her. Lots of decisions have been made. You’ve thought about the when and the where. Family and friends are sharing in your excitement and can’t wait to meet your little one. You’re grateful for all the support and love, but when the big day gets here, the question remains…who do you want to be with you during the birth of your baby?
This is a conversation that I have a lot with lots of clients. They generally have a good idea of who they would like there. The thing is, they don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. They question whether or not to set their feelings aside and choose someone they may not feel comfortable having at the birth. This can leave a mom feeling confused and anxious. So, how do you decide?
In middle Georgia, you are generally allowed to have up to 3 people in the delivery room with you. One of those people is almost always your partner. So that leaves you with 2 people. If you have a doula (which I highly recommend), you are now left with one. It’s one of the most important decisions you will make. It can be the difference between a wonderful experience and one that leaves you feeling traumatized.
Here are some things to consider when you and your partner are deciding who to have at your birth:
*Will this person be supportive of any decisions that you make? So often, people bring in their own views of birth and can want moms to deliver “their” way. It’s essential that everyone in the room is there in support of mom, her partner, and the baby.
*Does this person get along with your partner? The last thing a mom needs when she is delivering a baby is for there to be tension in the room. The support team should be unified. The environment should feel safe and peaceful.
*Does the mom feel safe with this person? Birth is hard work. Mom needs to focus on herself and her baby. When she feels safe and secure, she can do the work she needs to do to bring her little one into the world.
Every situation is different, and there are lots of variables. The important thing to remember is that this is your birth. You get to choose who is there. Feelings might get hurt, people might not always understand. But, this is the only time you will get to give birth to this baby. Make it what you want it to be. Because this birth story matters.
Yesterday I had the pleasure of going to the Mommy’s Milk Breastfeeding Circle. It is held in The Woman’s Nest in Macon. I had never been there and I was so happy with what I saw. The middle Georgia area has needed a place like this for so long and I am thrilled that we now have one.
The Woman’ Nest is owned and run by Lindsey Kyte, CNM. When I got there, I was immediately amazed at how warm and inviting it is. They have converted a little white house into a place that women can go and find support of any kind. I was there for the breastfeeding support group, so there were little ones and babies everywhere. It was a safe place for the moms, as well as their children. The room was beautifully decorated. It was designed to make everyone feel comfortable. The meeting felt like a group of friends just getting together for a play date. It was an honor to be surrounded by such amazing women.
Lindsey is warm and caring. You can tell how passionate she is about reaching out to her community within moments of meeting her. When asked about it, this is what she said,
“I strongly have a passion for women being supported by women at all stages in their life but especially during motherhood…. we need to feel loved, appreciated, lifted, worthy, and not judged because we are so critical and judgmental of ourselves and abilities as women….We are all fabulous and have a lot to share with the world and I want women to feel that and have a sisterhood that brings it out in them!”
This place is wonderful. You will feel welcome the moment you step in the door. Their goal is to provide support for women in all stages of motherhood. Because of Lindsey’s love and passion, women in middle Georgia now have place to go to. They have classes, retreats, and circles. All there to help improve the lives of families in GA. Because when you improve the lives of moms, you are improving the lives of those around them. That has a ripple effect. It can only make our community stronger.
As a doula, I love families and am grateful for anything that helps them in their journey. The Woman’s Nest does just that. We all need a bit of help now and then and a safe place to find it. Because our stories matter. They matter to us and those around us. They matter to Lindsey too.
Thank you, Lindsey, for giving the moms in our area the support they need.