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Showing posts from 2018

The Yes to Birth Experience

What does the doula do on her day off?  She becomes a student!  My quest or mission to be the best doula I can be for my clients, calls me to ever looking for ways to increase my understanding of birth and how to support the mother and family. I wanted to share with you my latest discovery because it is to important to keep to myself.  The Yes to Birth Experience is a collection of interviews with leaders in the birth world about a variety of topics for the expectant mother, partner, care provider, doula, or anyone who is wanting to learn more about birth.  You can sign up to receive these daily interviews in your email mailbox.  Click on this link to get signed up!  Yes to Birth Experience . Discover how to have a healthier, less painful, empowering, satisfying pregnancy & birth! I am only three days in, but am already inspired to share this great information with my current and future clients.  Past clients too, for that matter! Topics covered so far include the importance of

Feeding the hungry mother-Macaroni & Cheese

As a new mother... or even a veteran mother you sometimes find yourselves feeling hungry at random times of the day.  For myself 10 o'clock in the morning is the time when I realize that while I did drink my coffee that morning, the toddler stole my breakfast and I never got anything else during the hustle and bustle of the morning.  Post Toddler Theft Count Chocula Cereal   This in between time where breakfast no longer sounds appealing but lunch seems too far away, I find myself glancing through the pantry for a suitable snack to tide me over. While I am reading some great books about healthy food options for pregnancy and postpartum, today I was looking for something purely comfort food based that would take little effort and time. As a result, I present to you Microwave Macaroni N Cheese ! The ingredients are pretty simple.  Macaroni noodles, water, milk, cheese, salt, and pepper Find your largest mug that is microwave safe. Inside add 1/2 cup noodles and 1

1 in 8- A message for those who wait

1 in 8 One in eight couples have made plans for a family. One in eight couples hope during a year of trying to start their family.   And yet, they still wait.   1 in 8 Infertility is a real and common occurrence affecting 1 in 8 couples.  An yet we don't here about it, because those experiencing these struggles often feel isolated in their experiences. The film One More Shot: A Film about Making Modern Families explores many of the different challenges, emotions, and approaches that are taken on the journey through infertility.    For those whom are going through this journey, this film offers a source of solidarity for those experiencing similar yet unique challenges.   Even for those who aren’t the 1 in 8, the film grants a perspective that will hopefully make you more compassionate to those struggling. 1 in 4 For those who do experience pregnancy, studies reveal that anywhere from 10-25% of all clinically recognized pregnancies will end in misc
Happy August Everyone! It has been an action packed summer in our household.   I took a break from doula services to spend time with my family.   This year I had Momma Camp for my older two kids, resulting in various adventures every week.  One even included seeing a different type of birth at Fair Oaks Farms.  School is starting again next week, and Gracious Hands Doula Services is now taking clients for fall and winter. Here are a few upcoming events you should know! Understanding Birth Class August 18, 2018 This class is a great starting point for expectant parents learning about all the various aspects and options of birth.   The birthing process and methods used to encourage the natural progress of labor will be discussed.   Birth interventions, comfort measures, and labor support are also discussed. Class enrollment is open until August 15th.   Register here . Natural Comfort Measures Class September 15, 2018 Interactive lessons and hands

I have a dream...

On a social media page with fellow doulas, the question was asked "What would be one thing that you wish you could change about birth or postpartum in your area of the world". Just one thing?  My immediate thought went to providing wireless monitors for all birthing facilities.  Restriction of movement during labor prevents baby's normal progression towards birth and limits comfort measures for the mother as well. But the question got me thinking about what I really would like to see happen here in Indiana, in Tippecanoe County, Lafayette, and my neighborhood. The Big picture? I wish that pregnancy, birth and postpartum was something that was celebrated and supported.  I wish it wasn't treated as an illness that needs to be treated and recovered from as soon as possible.  I wish the family dynamic was respected and supported.  Paid leave allowing for time for bonding, establishment of secure breastfeeding, recovery of birth, adjustment to parenthood; all wi

Three reasons why I won’t ask to hold your baby; and two reasons why I will

Support is more than just holding the baby Babies are cute.   There is no getting around the fact that their softness, new baby smell, soft fuzzy heads, sleepy coziness calls out to everyone around them.   It creates a desire to protect, hold, and cuddle that is definitely hard to ignore.   Just introduce a new baby to a group of adults or children and soon the requests to hold and touch the baby come forth.   Even when the baby is fussy, people are quick to offer to take baby out of mom’s arms in their offer to provide relief for mom. But, you will notice that I am not one of those people.   I won’t ask to hold your baby. When I am explaining my role as a doula, I often get one of two comments.   The first usually comes from the older generations exclaiming how they wished there were doulas available for them when they had their babies.   The other comment I get is how nice it would be to hold babies all the time.   They are often surprised to hear that I actuall

An Insider’s Guide to Birth at…  IU Arnett Hospital

An Insider’s Guide to Birth at… IU Arnett Hospital          In my doula career I have supported birth in a variety of facilities.   That said, I most often find myself at IU Arnett Hospital in my role of doula.   My personal experience also includes the three deliveries of my own children.   I also volunteer as a leader for the breastfeeding support group. IU Arnett is located at 5165 McCarty Lane, Lafayette, IN 47905.   The hospital is known for their birthing tubs, midwives, specialists in obstetrics, and their Riley NICU.   Checking In          When it is time to head to the hospital for delivery, especially after regular office hours, moms are directed to check in at the Emergency Department Desk.   Once checked in and paperwork signed, a nurse from the Labor and Delivery will come down and meet you and escort you upstairs.   A wheelchair will be offered, but many moms prefer to walk instead of sitting while in labor.   A quick trip upstairs to the third floor w

The “Perfect Perfect Birth”

The “Perfect Perfect Birth”               Last week our home invited a couple kids over for the evening, so their parents could get a much needed break.   My daughter was enthralled with the process of planning the perfect playdate.   She said that she wanted to plan the “perfect perfect party”.   She composed a song to sing to them upon their arrival. She arranged the toys in the basement so we could have a dance party. She was telling her brothers exactly what they were supposed to do when the friends arrived.   Every detail was attended to.               It would have been the “perfect perfect party” if it had been for another 6 year old girl who loved music and dancing.   Unfortunately, our guests were a 3 year old boy and a 1 year old girl.   Both who had interests and abilities different from my daughter.   I tried to let her know that her plans probably wouldn’t work, because it wasn’t the best fit for our guests.   There was some disappointment and frustration, but onc