“The simple message of "It Takes a Village" is as relevant as ever: We are all in this together.” ― Hillary Rodham Clinton
When I was expecting, I thought I could do everything on my own. I could do this because "I am woman, hear me roar." What I have learned over the years is the statement should be "I am woman, hear me roar for help because I need support, food, and sleep as much as this child does."
It's not that you cannot raise a child alone and in a silo, you can! Women prove it all the time. But the fact is, you are a human and humans need water, food, and sleep to survive.
This is why it is so important to have help throughout all the stages of motherhood. From just thinking about becoming a mother to becoming a grandmother, we all need support, hugs, food delivered, texts to check-in, and someone to ask your million questions.
While we would love for FIT4BABY (starting March 4th) at FIT4MOM Asheville to be part of your village. We would also like to introduce you to the Doulas of Asheville for additional help, support, and resources. Have you considered a doula? Here are 5 ways a Doula can help you.
1. Extra Set of Hands
What parent couldn't use an extra set of hands?! Especially when those skilled, nurturing hands have helped care for dozens of other growing families. Not only will Doulas help you with each step, but they also teach you all the tricks and tips they have learned along the way. Your new parent learning curve will be exponentially shorter, and you'll have our nurturing, compassionate, judgment-free guidance along the way.
2. Stay On Top of Life
Laundry will pile up, meals will need to be made, and if you have other children - well, you know how important it is to try and keep life as normal as possible for them as well. A doula can conquer your "to-do" lists while you get to spend time on the couch with your baby, or taking a nap, or getting a nice, long, hot shower in peace (or all of the above!)
It's true what they say, every baby really is unique. What worked with your friend/sister/stranger's baby isn't necessarily going to work for yours. Yes, babies follow predictable patterns of development and there are things that can be (almost) universally applied. But trying to feel comfortable and confident with diapering, feeding, swaddling, soothing YOUR OWN REAL LIVE BABY is just different than the imaginary baby in the baby books or from your newborn care class. A doula will encourage you by showing you tips and making suggestions based on what they observe.
4. Your New Family
Between support groups, wellness programs like FIT4BABY, and online resources, there's a lot of help out there for new parents. A doula in your home can also be a huge support as you figure out your new normal with your newly expanded family.
5. Sleep, Mama, Sleep
Research shows that sleep deprivation can lead to postpartum depression and can worsen depression symptoms. This may come as a surprise, but most new parents say that the one thing they really need is more sleep. Did you know Doulas can stay with you overnight so you and your partner can get some quality, restorative sleep? They can completely take over baby care and feedings or we can bring your baby to you at set times or on-demand based on your feeding goals and preferences. And even for parents that are "just" tired, it's amazing what a few nights of really good, restful, uninterrupted sleep can do.
Mama, don't do this alone. Reach out & ask for help. Build your support team now for your motherhood journey & let FIT4MOM Asheville and Doulas of Asheville help you every step of the way.