At $300 or Less Why Not Use a Doula?
Women have unique needs before, during & following childbirth. A doula’s support is in addition to their medical care and the love & companionship of their partners.
Numerouse clinical studies (http://www.dona.org/mothers/why_use_a_doula.php) have found that a doula’s presence at birth tends to result in:
- Shorter labors with fewer complications & greater confidence
- Reduced request for pain medication
- Reduced need for medical interventions
- Greater success with nursing and adjusting to new family
- Decreased postpartum depression
- Prenatal visits (discuss birth preferences, explore questions, practice what you’re learning)
- Information and education
- Non-medical physical comfort (massage, positioning, breathing, aromatherapy, hydration, and more)
- Presence & support tools for birthing mother & birth partner
- Consistent, continuous reassurance, emotional support & encouragement
- Respect for all types of families, birthing experiences preferences & circumstances (single, multiples, natural, medication, epidural, vaginal, VBAC, Cesarean)
- Documentation of your birth (depending on what you decide: birth story, timeline, photographs)
- Support during early bonding after your birth (including breastfeeding & infant care)
- Post-Natal visits (nursing, infant care, self-care, processing the birth story, resources, tips)
You Deserve and CAN Afford a Doula!
Instead of paying the ‘going rate’ for a doula in Boulder ($500-$1500), you can interview and hire a trained, certifying area doula at a discounted rate (free-$300). Trained doulas are required to complete 3-6 births before their certification is complete. These woman are educated and independent birth professionals, trained by nationally recognized doula training organizations (DONA, CAPPA, ToLabor).
Interested? Questions? Email your name and due date to AffordableDoulas@gmail.com.
Sponsored by BoulderBirthCollective.org
“When my mom was pregnant with me we did some outrageous things! We loved to kayak. I would awaken to my mom skillfully navigating through the rapids. We would surf, bobsled, mountain bike, ski, climb, even participate in the local rodeo.
These outrageous activities were of course all in my mom’s imagination but we will do all of these things together when I grow up.
On the day I was born, my mom called her nurse midwife who told her how strong she was as she gave birth to me. She said mom deserved a gold medal for her labor marathon.”
Outrageous baby is a unique story for moms and their unborn children.
Pregnant women will love to read this story to their children because it is about pregnancy, women’s changing bodies and changing activity levels during this amazing time of growing a baby.
One goal of this book is to help women through this beautiful and challenging time of body transformation and to realize that giving birth is perhaps the most spectacular physical activity in a woman’s life.
Pregnancy is a precious and temporary state. You may be bobsledding again soon.
Written by Merrilynn Artman, a Certified Nurse Midwife in Boulder Colorado and Illustrated by Laura Ziebarth, a Neonatal Clinical Nurse Specialist in Madison Wisconsin.
Both remember what is like to share a body with an outrageous baby.
What can you do about low milk supply?
1) Have your prolactin and thyroid levels checked
2) Use Fenugreek (Available at Pharmaca, Rebecca’s Apothecary, Vitamin Cottage or Whole Foods)
3) Use Goats Rue (Available-same as above)
4) Acupuncture (Acupuncture Clinic BBCC Mondays 11:30-2:00p.m.)
- Cost: $40
- Contact: Kate Blalack, L.Ac. 303-545-5792 x 107 kblalack@ChineseMedicineDoc.com to make an appointment or with questions.
5) Visit www.lowmilksupply.org and www.mobimotherhood.org
6) Get more information from these books
Mother Food by Hilary Jacobson and
The Breastfeeding Mothers Guide To Making More Milk by Lisa Marasco
7) Visit www.mobimotherhood.org and learn about the “power pumping” technique described below:
Power pumping is a technique that can be helpful in building a milk supply. For more information on basic pumping techniques, see the pumping section below. Here is a brief explanation of power pumping.
Power pumping involves using regular pumping techniques and setup, but in a unique way. The idea is to mimic a baby who is nursing frequently to increase a mother’s supply, as is common in the nursing relationship during a growth spurt. To power pump, hook-up as you would for a normal pumping session, pump for 10-20 minutes, rest 10 minutes, then pump another 10 minutes, then rest for 10 minutes, then pump again for 10 minutes. The mother does this for about an hour, once per day, to increase supply. At other pumping times during the day, routine pumping is used. It can take about a week to see an increase, so don’t get discouraged.
Some mothers prefer to concentrate their efforts and have a power pumping weekend, called “Power Pumping Boot Camp” by some lactation consultants. They power pump at each pumping for a couple of days before returning to routine pumping.
Stephanie Moore – Becoming Mothers. 303-546-MAMA
Chandra Ruiz, CLEC – firstname.lastname@example.org. 520.225.7626 ($120/2 hours home visit)
Nichole Didelot, CLC – joyfulmidwife.com. 303.669.9605 ($75/ home visit)
Darcy Kamin, RN – email@example.com. 303.447.2609
9) Friday Afternoon Breastfeeding Club at BCH 720-254-7834 www.bch.org
Tuesday Afternoon Breastfeeding Club at BBCC (Boulder Birth Community Classroom) Drop-in 1:00-2:00
Save the date! Boulder’s own Brigitte Mars is coming to the BBCC (Boulder Birth Community Classroom) for a book signing and herbal talk.
Herbs for Pregnancy, Birthing, Nursing and Infants
Learn the properties of a few great plants that can be used safely and effectively for conditions such as morning sickness, anemia, threatened miscarriage, labor, expelling the placenta, recovery from childbirth, colic, teething and increasing milk supply. Learn how they work and the best methods for their administration.
When: March 19th, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Cost: 10.00/ per person
Register: please email: firstname.lastname@example.org for registration or call 720-352-5316
Where? 4800 Riverbend Road Suite 100, Boulder CO 80301
Reminder: go to boulderbirth.com for classroom schedule
Brigitte Mars is an herbalist from Boulder, Colorado, with over 35 years’ experience in natural medicine. She lived for two and a half years on solely wild edible plants while living in a teepee in the Ozarks in the early seventies. She is the author of Addiction Free Naturally, Sex, Love and Health, The HempNut Cookbook, Rawsome!, and Healing Herbal Teas.
Brigitte teaches at Naropa University, Esalen Institute,Kripalu, and many other locations. She has a nutritional and herbal private practice, works as a practitoner for Pharmaca and has a local weekly radio show called Naturally. She is the mother of Sunflower Sparkle Mars, with whom she leads Herb Camp for Kids, as well as Sunflower’s sister, Rainbeau Harmony Mars. Rainbeau is an actress, model and yogini, living in Santa Monica (www.rainbeaumars.com).
Brigitte has been happily married for thirty years to human design analyst, Tom Pfeiffer with whom she teaches raw food workshops.
Share With Women is a series of health care articles from the Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health, written for consumers.
The Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health (JMWH) is a bimonthly, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to the publication of original research and review articles that focus on midwifery and women’s health. JMWH provides a forum for interdisciplinary exchange across a broad range of women’s health issues. Manuscripts that address midwifery, women’s health, education, evidence-based practice, public health, policy, and research are welcomed.
We have republished links to the articles on our Reading Resource Page HERE
Ashley Crutchfield, L Ac.
Acupuncture is a great option for those of you who may experience nausea during pregnancy. It is quite normal for women to feel nauseous first thing in the morning during their first trimester of pregnancy, commonly called ‘morning sickness’. Eastern philosophy explains that the mother’s energy ‘qi’ and blood go to nourish the fetus which can take away from the mother’s own stomach qi. Normally the stomach ‘qi’ descends downwards, but if it is too much or too little it can start ascending, counter flowing upwards causing symptoms of nausea and vomiting.
Japanese acupuncture is very gentle, safe and effective for nausea during pregnancy. Using a highly refined palpation system for diagnosis and treatment, we use thin silver needles to balance your body’s energy, including strongly descending the stomach qi to relieve nausea and vomiting. Most women will feel relief after their first treatment. We recommend a series of four treatments depending on the severity of the nausea as each one adds to the cumulative effect of balancing the mother’s body. The earlier you are able to come in for treatment the more quickly we are able to adjust your qi and relieve your symptoms.
We also see and treat severe cases of nausea in the clinic. This includes persistent nausea that lasts all day every day for months well past first trimester. Anti-emetic medications can be helpful and most women respond to them, however they can have side effects such as headaches and constipation. Sometimes women prefer not to use medication. Some women have already tried anti-nausea medication such as Zofran three times per day since the onset of their nausea with little effect and have lost significant weight and body fluids due to not being able to keep anything down. They end up having to go to the hospital for intravenous hydration and nutrients. Acupuncture is very helpful for these difficult cases. In addition to the acupuncture treatment we might send you home with tiny inter-dermals on the anti-nausea acupressure points for home therapy. As the nausea dissipates, these women are able to eat and drink again, they gain weight back, become hydrated and as a result the fetus also receives better nutrition and can grow and develop.
If you have never tried acupuncture before, it is normal to feel nervous. I can assure you we are very gentle and explain everything to you. Most women say that it is so relaxing they fall asleep during the treatment. Let us know how we can support you through your healthy pregnancy. We are conveniently located right across the hall from the Boulder Nurse Midwives, so please come and ask us questions!
Pregnancy is amazing- it is true. In preparation for baby the body twists and turns in an endless series of surprise and wonder. Cue the curves, larger breasts, stretched skin, and expanding belly. These changes are essential- a gift even- and yet most women have moments where they wonder when the pounds will subside. For some there is a number that is a threshold; for others it is a game of “catch up” where they attempt to adjust their body image to match the new self.
This adjustment process is not linear, nor simple. As the body changes, many mothers-to-be begin to feel disconnected from their growing bellies and develop negative feelings related to their new bodies. Some women describe cyclical thoughts of the likes of: “As long as I lose the weight by…” or “My friend is 8 weeks ahead of me and looks 8 weeks smaller…” or even… “If Heidi Klum can…I should…”
Normal, but not helpful.
Exploring the emotional/cognitive changes that accompany the physical changes of the body can help women let go and even shed some of the unhelpful thoughts that get in the way of connecting with baby and preparing for a life/body that may look different than expected. Again, not linear or simple, but still important. This process looks different for every woman. For some it is a matter of focusing on the new life brewing within- visualizing and celebrating the expanding space for growing baby. For others it is a more arduous process of changing unhelpful body thoughts- or more profoundly- changing your relationship to said thoughts. There is no manual, but some steps might include:
- Labeling thoughts to defuse them from the self (e.g., “I am too fat” becomes “I’m having the thought that I am too fat”). Thoughts are thoughts. They can be pesky. They can be painful. But they are thoughts. Just thoughts. Labeling thoughts can create the needed distance to shift your self-image.
- Practicing mindfulness activities can also help to connect to the growing body instead of engaging in an unspoken war to meet a standard that is both slippery and silly. Mindfulness, whether breathing or yoga, can help to erase the “rules” and create internal cues for a more balanced body image.
- Giving the self permission to grow/fall/zig-zag is essential in becoming a mother. Pregnancy and parenting can be messy. There is little room for perfection, so the sooner mothers/mothers-to-be learn to give themselves permission to make mistakes, the more effective (and fun) their journey can be.
- Keeping good company is also a way to help build a positive body image during pregnancy. Throw out the magazines. Nobody needs to know how much weight Penelope Cruz gained and/or lost. This is not your story, your body, or your baby. Find compassionate women who do not engage in “fat talk” and who make room for your growing belly and brewing thoughts.
- And if these steps do not make sense or are not helpful, consider talking to a therapist. Going to therapy can provide a safe, confidential place to examine and “catch up” to the changing self and to learn more about how to build a positive self-image for pregnancy and beyond.
Pregnancy is amazing, but in order to capture (and hopefully celebrate) the fleeting moments of this journey, brooding over bellies needs to shift to nurturing the brilliant bond with baby.
Please feel free to contact me with any questions, comments, or concerns you may have.
Samantha Strife, Ph.D.
Bio: Samantha Strife has a 10-month old daughter and is a psychologist, practicing in Boulder. She works primarily with women’s health issues (e.g., pregnancy/postpartum concerns and eating disorders). Dr. Strife is also part-time faculty in the Psychology Department at University of Colorado, Boulder.
by Heather Lyn, A Mellow Mood Mama Spa
I would arrive for my massage appointment hurried and out of breath. On the verge of tears. As soon as I would settle in on the massage table, I would feel the anxiety melting away. It felt good to spend time with my belly and feel my baby move. I felt safe and taken care of. In the 3rd trimester, I was surrounded by advice, stories and comments about my body and upcoming birth. The stress settled in my body and filled my mind with questions. Massage enveloped me, like a hug from my mother would make me feel. Before being pregnant myself, I only imagined the benefits of prenatal massage. I used my training and education as a prenatal massage therapist and my instincts to care for the pregnant bodies on my massage table. I now realize massage not only calmed my body and baby, but also my fears and anxiety about birth and what the heck was happening to my body.
Benefits for Mamas – for their own experience in Prenatal Massage
- Reduces stress
- Promotes relaxation
- Offers emotional and physical nurturing
- Reduces swelling and muscle strain and pain
- Fosters nurturing and confident touch to baby
Massage can be a way to pause while pregnant. A time to be still for mom and baby.
Stress activates the sympathetic branch of the nervous system also known as our fight and flight response. Chronic sympathetic arousal provoked by worries and anxieties can negatively affect childbearing and development. Moms can experience increased maternal heart rate, reduced blood supply to the uterus and prolonged labors. Moms postpartum can experience increased infant irritability and digestive disturbances. Support can counteract the negative effects of stress. (Carol Osborne-Sheets, Pre-and Perinatal Massage Therapy, Nurturing the Births of Mothers and Their Babies)
Massage is support for the growing prenatal body. Moms in all stages of pregnancy can benefit from stress reduction and the power of touch therapy.
~A peaceful pregnancy for you and your baby is our mission at a Mellow Mood
Find us across the hall from the Boulder Nurse Midwives ~ 303-444-0919
Postpartum Depression and Anxiety are usually the last things you are thinking about
when you both muddle and dance through the 9 or so months of your pregnancy. You’ve
heard about PPD before in the news or perhaps your midwife or OB has mentioned it to
you, but my guess is that, for the most part, the idea of these very unfortunate happenings
kind of go in one ear and out the other. There are myths about PPD that we all know and
quiver at anyway: If you have PPD it means that you want to hurt yourself or your baby;
If you say you have PPD someone will take your baby away; If you are not happy in
early motherhood you must be a terrible mother; If you are depressed or anxious during
pregnancy or early motherhood you should just plow through and get over it. And with
these myths (and yes, they are all myths but more on that later) who, on earth, would
want to consider being affiliated with anything like postpartum depression?
But here is the thing, Perinatal Mood Disorders (occurring during pregnancy and/
or postpartum and including PPD) are pretty darn common- In fact, about 1 in 5 new
mothers will struggle with some form of depression and/or anxiety sometime during
pregnancy or the first 12 months after having a baby. And, guess what, these moms are
really no different than you and me. . These women are professors. They are artists.
They are lawyers. They are athletes. They are students. They are cooks. They are
writers. They are labor and delivery nurses. They are pediatricians, obstetricians, and
midwives. They are accountants. They are mothers. They are wives. They are partners.
They are friends. They are human. They are creative. They are witty. They are wise.
These women are thinkers. They are dreamers. They love to laugh. They often cry.
These women are bold. They are brave. And they are beautiful.
As my colleague William Meyers at Duke University so eloquently notes:
These are mothers in strained relationships with the baby’s fathers, or those dealing with
the added stress of an unconventional life style. These are the mothers with careers who
always wanted to be mothers but now, at home, miss the challenges and adult stimulation
of their former employments. They are the working mothers who out of necessity had
to return too soon to work and had to leave their babies in less-than-optimal child-care.
They are the relocated mothers who just moved to the area due to their partners’ job
transfers and find themselves alone in an unfamiliar city. They are the anxious mothers
of hard-to-soothe babies. They are the perfectionist mothers who have always held
themselves to impossibly high standards and now as new mothers feel they are failures.
They are the mothers who were used to having a fair amount of control over their lives
until they had early deliveries, unexpected c-sections, or babies with special needs.
They are the giving mothers whose babies have colic, won’t sleep, won’t take the breast
and won’t be consoled. They are hard on themselves, sleep-deprived, and even food-
These are women who are highly competent and well loved. They just also happen to be
struggling at a time when they least expected or wanted to.
We now know that PPD is the most common complication of childbirth and it’s the one
that most of us don’t expect. Perinatal Mood Disorders are primarily a physiological
issue- meaning that they are caused by biochemical changes that occur in a woman
after she gives birth. Because of the major hormone shifts that take place immediately
following delivery, sleep deprivation that manages to come right along with having
a newborn, and common nutrient depletion that results from pregnancy, childbirth,
and breast feeding, many women (again, about 20%) are more vulnerable to other
psychological and social stressors that might occur with the addition of a new baby. And
so, Moms at risk may become depressed and/or anxious because they are simply less
resilient to stress than they might otherwise be. Psychological and social stressors that
might team up with the physical stressors mentioned above include but are not limited
to: a personal or family history of mental illness including depression/anxiety, negative
thinking patterns including perfectionist thinking and high expectations of self, a history
of abuse, trauma, or family conflict, major life changes during pregnancy or postpartum,
lacking social support, a sick or colicky newborn, and a traumatic birth experience. The
biggest take away from this? PPD is not a woman’s fault and has absolutely nothing to
do with the kind of mother that she is or wants to be.
But it is important that these Moms get the support that they need and deserve. Because
while PPD does not mean that you are a terrible mother, it does make it difficult to enjoy
the early weeks and months of parenting and may interfere with your ability to bond and
attach with your baby.
So, lets get back to those myths:
1. If you have PPD it means that you want to hurt yourself or your baby.
Most women who are struggling with depression and/or anxiety are not at risk for hurting
themselves or their children.
1.Feeling badly is a normal part of being a new mother.
Although becoming a parent is overwhelming and exhausting for most, it is not normal to
feel down for a long time or continuously after a baby is born.
2. If I tell anyone how I am feeling, they will take my baby away.
Having PPD is not a reason for anyone to take your baby away. In fact, women who seek
help are doing so not just for themselves but also for their families.
3.I should just pull myself together.
Depression and anxiety are real illnesses and you are really suffering. It does not mean
that you are weak and lazy and usually this is not something that mom can conquer on
4. If I feel this badly, I am not meant to be a mother and I am a bad mother.
PPD is not a reflection of a mom’s love for her baby or desire to take care of her baby,
but it does interfere with her ability to enjoy pregnancy or the first weeks and months
5. There are no safe treatments, so why bother getting help?
There are many excellent, safe, and effective treatments for PPD. Each and every
Perinatal Mood Disorder is treatable, and women who seek out and follow through with
appropriate support and treatment DO GET BETTER.
The raw truth about it is that having a new baby is not easy for anyone, no matter what
kind of “perfect” they appear to be from the outside. We all struggle, each and every one
of us. But those of us who’s struggle out weighs the happiness and hopefulness need not
feel this way. There is help. Asking for it is usually that hardest part.
Kate Kripke, LCSW