Why Doulas Love The CUB

As doulas we are told to have our tips and tricks with us in a birth bag. But the reality is I only have a change of clothes, some snacks for myself, a phone charger, a water bottle and the CUB.

 

We stumbled upon the CUB about three years ago in a Pinterest board and haven’t looked back.  Here is our the top reasons why the doulas of Green Bay Doulas love the CUB.

Starts Conversations

When we bring a CUB to a clients house, the older siblings love to play on it, which helps to get everyone comfortable with it and us. Who doesn’t love a new toy?  Nurses and Doctors stop, look and ask lots of questions, all conversations end with “well that’s wonderful, we need some of those!” Wausau Aspirus Hospital currently has one for their labor and delivery unit after we supported a client while using a CUB.

Stability

Unlike a birthing ball which can put pressure on the sacrum, and requires some balancing, our clients like that it is more stable than a birthing ball, but still offers movement if needed.  When we would use birthing balls on the bed for gravity based positions, it would be hard to find the right size, where if our clients are using the CUB we can use both or just one chamber and the belly fits right in there to let them just layout and rest while feeling supported.

Versatility

From end of pregnancy to in the laboring room on the floor (sitting), in the bed (hands and knees) or even in the shower on its side on top of a chair so they have a perfect height to learn against, we can set the CUB up to support our clients when needed.

Ease of Use

It takes seconds to inflate, seconds to deflate, folds up small and it’s lightweight. Also, it’s easy to sanitize or dry off.

Affordable

For the benefit it brings it’s a great tool for all families. I was so excited when I heard the CUB was coming to the USA. No more international shipping! It can be also used well beyond pregnancy and labor, as I said the kids love it, and provides a great alternative to a couch or chair while providing support.

 

If you are ready to join the Green Bay Doulas and experience the CUB you can at https://www.the-cub-usa.com/

 

I Don’t Want A Doula

Things I hear on a daily basis: “I don’t want someone else in the room with my partner and I” “I just can’t afford a doula, maybe next baby we can plan better” “I really wish I would have hired you, even just to have that support before I had the baby.” and  “I don’t want a doula, I’m getting an epidural” 

 

This got me thinking about how our role as doulas is to offer our clients options. Options in hospitals, doctors, laboring techniques, and inductions. Options in pain management from hydrotherapy to epidurals, options in navigating vaginal birth after surgical birth and even surgical birth itself. Options in community resources from photographers to chiropractic care, massage to hair dressers, and even dog trainers!

 

SO WHY NOT OFFER AN OPTION IN THE LEVEL OF SUPPORT MANY WISH TO RECEIVE?

 

One of the cornerstones that Green Bay Doulas was built on is to listen to the birthing community, and be and bring the change that they long to see.

 

We listened to the desires of our community, and we are excited to announce Everything But the Birth: Your personal concierge through pregnancy. You are matched with your perfect doula who will become your best friend and confidant for your pregnancy. She will help you navigate questions, comments, she will celebrate with you, and lift you up when needed. She will help you navigate your options with her insider knowledge. She will provide a prenatal planning session where you discuss what to expect, help you build your birth plan, and teach your partner or friend/family member some hands on approaches to help support you during labor. She will also provide a postpartum visit once you are home and settled with the new baby.

 

So how is this different from a labor doula?

 

We don’t attend your birth.

 

This option will bring the support you desire throughout pregnancy, without the larger investment. But what happens if along the way you decide you’d like birth doula support during your birth? You’d just need to make that decision by 34 weeks, and your initial payment is applied to your remaining balance. We work in teams of two when supporting laboring clients so we want to make sure your entire team is at your prenatal.

 

Photo: Timeless Touch Photography

Our goal is to make doula support accessible to every laboring family, surrogate, and individual. We want you to have access to the knowledge we have and feel supported, secure, and empowered to make the best choices for your family. This is the very heart of Green Bay Doulas, to give our clients options to decide what support option works best for their family.

 

Contact us today to get started!

Essential Oils and Labor

Let’s Chat about Essential Oils & Labor!

Welcome to part two of this three-part blog series about essential oil use during pregnancy, labor, and the postpartum period. In case you missed Part One about essential oil use during pregnancy you can read it here.

The female body is absolutely amazing, especially when we consider the fact that we can conceive and give life to another precious human being. From the moment you find out you’re pregnant your view of the world suddenly changes. You start considering all of the things you can do for self-care to ensure your pregnancy is as smooth as possible. You start thinking of how to find the perfect doula, boy and girl names, and what the perfect color will be for the nursery.

All of a sudden you start thinking about how everything is going to go once you’re in labor and what you want for a birth plan. Having a birth plan is key, it will ensure that your loved ones and providers know exactly how you want your birthing experience to be. Now, not everything may go according to plan. However, the birth plan can ensure nothing gets lost in translation once the magic of labor begins. Your doula will also be your best advocate in the labor and delivery room and will ensure that your birth plan is followed, so you can focus on laboring and delivering with ease.

Speaking of laboring with ease, have you ever wondered what essential oils would be best to have in your arsenal once you’re in labor? Well, friends, you’re in luck! This blog post is going to discuss some essential oils to pack and have on hand when the magic begins.

First things first, what do I need to know about bringing essential oils into the delivery room?

Sure, essential oils are natural and can assist with a variety of ailments. However, our sense of smell is uniquely individual. While one person may find an aroma comforting and pleasing, it may not be as pleasing or comforting to someone else. Prior to utilizing essential oils in your delivery room, I would recommend checking with the nursing staff to see if anyone that will be assisting you through the magical process of giving birth has any sensitivities or allergies to any of the essential oils you have brought along. One example I like to use is Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), we know lavender as being calming and soothing. However, for some, it has the complete opposite effect and can make some feel hyperactive, or on edge. We also have to remember that these precious essential oils are distilled from plant material, so if someone has an allergy to a particular plant chances are they may have an allergy to the essential oil as well.

Other considerations when preparing your essential oil labor kit-

I would recommend preparing a small kit for yourself with a couple different blends of essential oils. This way your blends will be easily accessible to you and you won’t have to worry about fumbling with multiple bottles of essential oils while you’re laboring. Not to mention, while in labor, an aroma you find pleasing one minute can be extremely displeasing the next. This is part of the reason I do not recommend bringing your home diffuser with, but rather placing a few drops of a single essential oil or an essential oil blend onto a cotton round and then place the cotton round in a plastic Ziploc bag. This way you can inhale an aroma at your leisure and if all of a sudden you are turned off by the smell, it’s easy enough to seal it up and get rid of it.

You can make multiple bags like this so you have a variety to choose from while in labor, just be sure to label the bags with each different aroma. You could also create a variety of personal inhalers to use in the same manner as the Ziploc bags while you’re laboring. Remember, stress can slow the laboring process so I would be sure to create a blend or pick essential oils that are soothing and relaxing to you.

A 10ml glass roller with diluted essential oils may also be another thing you want to consider for your kit. In the roller, you may want to use essential oils that can help with pain while laboring. This would also be a convenient application method for your partner to apply to your back and give you a massage while laboring.

Hydrosols would also be another thing I would recommend adding to your kit. Often times hydrosols have therapeutic properties similar to essential oils but their aromas are a lot softer. A hydrosol may be beneficial especially if your sense of smell is on overdrive while in labor and the aroma of an essential oil seems too intense.

What are some essential oils and Hydrosols I should consider for my labor kit?

Some essential oils I would recommend are:

  • Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) – Distilled from flowers, lavender is known to calm, sooth and reduce anxiety. Lavender also carries pain relieving properties.
  • Jasmine Absolute (Jasminum grandiflorum) – Solvent extracted from flowers, Jasmine Absolute is known to help regulate mood and may help to relieve back pain in the early stages of labor.
  • Neroli (Citrus aurantium var. amara) – Distilled from flowers, Neroli is prized for its uplifting, calming and relaxing effects.
  • Geranium (Pelargonium x asperum) – Distilled from leaves, Geranium offers wonderful emotional support.
  • Roman Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) – Distilled from flowers, Roman Chamomile can help to reduce anxiety and calm the mind.
  • Ginger (Zingiber officinale) – Distilled from rhizomes (roots), Ginger may help to relieve nausea and help combat burnout.

Some hydrosols I would recommend are:

 

  • German Chamomile (Matricaria recutita) – German Chamomile hydrosol is extremely skin nourishing and calming for the mind.
  • Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) – Lavender can help to enhance your mood and can also be very calming and soothing.

 

What dilution of essential oils should I use when formulating my labor kit?

If you are utilizing standard size cotton rounds in a plastic bag, I would recommend 4-6 drops of essential oil per cotton round. If you are formulating a massage blend to take with you I would recommend a 1% dilution (5-6 drops) of essential oils per 1 ounce of carrier. When it comes to utilizing Aromatherapy during labor the key is to not overdo it and remember we are simply assisting our bodies with the natural process of labor.

Wondering what a labor cotton round blend might look like? Here is a sample recipe to calm, soothe and promote a euphoric state. 

 

I can smell the lovely aroma as a type and hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Becoming a mother is such a magical time and I am so grateful to be able to share some aromatherapy love with all of you! If the thought of putting together your own labor kit seems a little daunting, I would be more than happy to formulate and put a labor kit together for you. Feel free to email me with any questions at Sara@Pneuma.online.

 

 

Sara is a level 2 AIA & NAHA Certified Aromatherapist, a Certified Aromatherapy Teacher Level 1 and owner of Pneuma, LLC. She resides in Green Bay with her husband Rick, and daughter Viola. Sara began her journey to natural living 8 years ago when she realized that the “food” she was eating, wasn’t really food at all. After cleaning up her diet and cleaning out her cupboards, Sara began to look at other ways to cut chemicals from her life and began making her own cleaning products; lotions, body butters, toothpaste, laundry detergent and more. Aromatherapy always piqued Sara’s interest and with so much misinformation out there, she knew she had to gain her Certification so she could help others utilize essential oils safely in their day to day lives. Sara believes in the bodies innate ability to heal itself, when given the proper tools, and has a passion for helping others live a more naturally minded lifestyle. Sara is also an abstract artist and cosmetologist. In her free time, Sara enjoys swimming with her daughter and husband, writing, reading, going for bike rides and soaking up as much sun as possible.

Q & A – The Belly to Baby Expo

Twice a year Green Bay Doulas brings 50-70 of their best resources under one roof for an amazing event called the Belly To Baby Expo.  I sat down with Emily Jacobson the creator of the expo for some Q & A.

 

Q: What is the Belly to Baby Expo?

A: It’s a grassroots effort to bring local businesses and community resources to expecting mothers and their growing families in the Green Bay Area. It’s run by volunteers and the host, Green Bay Doulas.

 

Q: When was it started?

A: In September of 2012 in the Streu’s Pharmacy  parking lot, we had 17 vendors and about 25 people attended. Now we see upwards of 400-500 families pass through the doors each expo. Former locations included The Art Garage, Rasmussen College, St Mary’s Roller Rink, The Marq- Lineville Rd and the fall expo will be at The Meadows Conference Center. 

Q: Why was it started?

A: I lived in Madison for 10 years and did my initial doula training there. When I moved back to Green Bay in the summer of 2012, I realized unlike Madison, no one knew what a doula was or let alone the resources that are available to them outside of the hospitals. If newly engaged couples had wedding expos, why didn’t they have baby expos? I’m not one to sit back and hope someone would create such a thing, I went ahead and did it.

 

Q: Who should attend?

A: Everyone should attend. Those thinking about growing families find they learn ahead of the curve about local resources including those looking into adoption or medical professionals. Those who are currently expecting find cute crafts, baby gear, and an array of  professionals who can support them during their pregnancy. Those with children already find great resources from breastfeeding support to crafters and perinatal health professionals and a chance to meet other mothers, exchange stories perhaps even make a new friend or two.

 

Q: What should we expect?

A: Expect to have fun, and meet new people, all while supporting local businesses! We have amazing raffle prizes from local and national companies. New this year we will be hosting a free prenatal Yoga class before the expo. We also have added a lactation and quiet lounge for those mothers who need a break or to feed their child with less distraction. 

Q: What is so special about the Belly to Baby Expo?

A: Money raised by the vendor fees provides fee assistance to families in the Green Bay Area for bereavement and other support services through Green Bay Doulas, Green Bay’s premier doula agency. It’s another way beyond our annual diaper drive – No Child Wet Behind we can give back to our community.

 

We hope you will join us for the 11th Belly to Baby Expo and if you can’t make this one, you are in luck, the next one will be March 2018.  We hope to see you there!

Do Nurses Like Doulas?

 

A Letter From A Labor & Delivery Nurse

“My name is Holli and I have been a labor and delivery RN at Bellin for the past 12 years.  I have always thought we gave excellent nursing care, then one day, I realized how much better it could be.  I had worked with doulas in the past and honestly wasn’t all that impressed.  Then I met Emily, who I learned is not only a doula, but owner of the local doula agency, Green Bay Doulas.  When I walked into my patient’s room for the day, there was an extra smiling face in the room.  She introduced herself and we started our day together, caring for “our” patient.  Emily supported the patient beautifully throughout the labor process, and also respected my role as the RN.  

When I worked with doulas in the past, they always tried to “buck the system” and argue everything we have to do according to our policies.  Emily and I seamlessly care for “our” patients to meet all of their needs.  We work together to decide the next best “game plan”. Are we hopping in the shower?  Going for a walk?  Maybe starting a little Pitocin (it IS NOT the devil) lol, or maybe we are going to run some essential oils through the diffuser that the client brought and take a little rest.  Whatever we are doing, we work together.  I had never before had a doula pull me aside to talk outside the room about what I think we should do next. It is about respect and Green Bay Doulas prides themselves on doing what is best for the family, while also working WITH the healthcare team.  I am so proud to see what Emily has done for doulas in our community, and for herself with her local doula agency Green Bay Doulas.  She is truly a sweet soul and an amazing doula.  She has built an amazing team of doulas, all of which are easy to work with and top notch!”

-Holli Lange RN

 

There is often stigma attached to the word doula and sadly many think our role is to replace the L & D nurse or to stand up against medical choices for the client. In fact our role is to partner with the nurses to create a cohesive support team for you and your pattern while in labor. At Green Bay Doulas we respect the nurse’s role and understand that our role as a professional doula is very different. We are so lucky to have amazing nursing staff in our area and even more grateful for the relationships we’ve built.
To learn more about the support Green Bay Doulas provides visit our website at www.greenbaydoulas.com or email information@greenbaydoulas.com

Green Bay’s Fitness Secret

 

Health clubs, fitness centers, machines, dance classes, yoga, where do you start?

How do you stay fit?

What if the workout you’re doing in your first trimester isn’t as doable during your third trimester?
There’s no need to feel defeated if you aren’t able to be as active as you were pre-pregnancy, or even a month ago because we have a secret and we are so excited to share it with you!

 

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Brooke McMillan is the owner of Pure Barre – Green Bay, which is one of over 350 locations in the USA & Canada, the website states thatEach Pure Barre class is 55 minutes and begins with a warm-up in the center of the room, on the floor, and then standing with light weights to work those arm muscles. We’ll then move to the barre to work your thighs and your seat. After the seat work, you’ll do a series of ab exercises, followed by a cool down. While the flow of class is always the same, we are always changing the music and exercises, so you never experience the same class twice!

 

“I took a class a few weeks ago at 18 weeks along, and I was impressed with how fast the class went, how low impact it is but man could I feel it the next day. Yes did I feel like a fish out of water sometimes? Sure, but that’s where it makes you want to come again, learn the technique and keep going. I had to modify a few things but I was able to complete the class, and if I can do it, you can do it. Great music, great atmosphere and it’s ok to look at the gal next to you with this look of ‘How did I get myself into this?’ because we are all in it together, you feel the burn, you push yourself and you keep at it.” – Emily J.

 

They have packages for new clients, teachers, monthly and yearly packages and even a class on just learning the technique. Here are some great blogs from the Pure Barre blog so check them out.


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Now that we got this HUGE secret off our chests, we are excited to invite you to experience it first-hand!

On May 2nd, at 7:00pm we are having a Pure Barre class with the Green Bay Doulas. This is the perfect opportunity for you to come and experience the class, meet your doulas, and ask any questions you have!

This class is open to all mothers, expecting mothers, new mothers, and those who just want to come and join us.
***Space is extremely limited so please email greenbay@purebarre.com to sign up.

JOIN THE FACEBOOK EVENT

Date Nite with the (4)

Check out Emily and Brooke talk about Pure Barre: YouTube Link HERE 

We are excited to let you in on the secret and hope to see you May 2nd. As always we are here to help you find the secrets of Green Bay that support you during your pregnancy and after so please reach out and we hope to hear from you soon!

-The Green Bay Doulas

 

Photo Credit: http://hauteofftherack.com/10-reasons-to-try-pure-barre/

Three Cheers for Pit!


I can hear you now, “Did she just say that?” Yes, Yes I did. I want to open up the conversation, bring it out from the darkness that we at Green Bay Doulas are experts in options and yes, pitocin is one of them. Open your mind and keep reading…..

 

Your next question is probably: “How can a doula be in favor of pitocin!?” Easy! It’s not my job as a doula to make sure you have a 100% all natural medication free birth, if that’s your goal that is up to you and I’ll stand by your side and support you! We don’t advocate at Green Bay Doulas, you are strong and can speak for yourself. We provide you with info so that you can make the decision that is best for you. We are not medical professionals. We will support you through your journey, but we will not tell you how to birth. This is your journey not ours.

 

Ok, I still feel you rolling your eyes at me, “But Emily women have been giving birth for thousands of years without medications “ this is true! But, remember 1 in 3 died in childbirth. We have all, but lost the ability to squat, we don’t eat the same foods as they did either, we drive everywhere, and sit for extended periods of time at work. This world is different, which makes women and they way we give birth different and (brace yourself) some women need the assistance to deliver their babies. They shouldn’t be shamed for their choice! It’s not your choice to make, not your baby, and you aren’t a doctor so stop with the natural is the only way to go because for some moms it’s not.

 

The management of Pitocin or synthetic oxytocin has progressively gotten better in the last five years, at least in my personal experience, from when I started as a doula. There are still many factors that come into play so let’s talk about some:

 

Pitocin=Epidural – NOT ALWAYS! Sometimes all you need is a very small amount. There are times it does mean more intensity, but it depends on the women and how she perceives labor pain.

 

Pit isn’t created equal – Let’s talk about provider protocols- some doctors are more laid back and some are more aggressive in their personal pitocin protocol so this is a great subject to bring up during your doctor’s appointment!

  • When do they use pitocin?
  • How much do they start at?
  • How often will they increase the dosage?
  • What is the perfect pattern of contractions look like when using pitocin?
  • How does pitocin work?
  • Do the other doctors in the rotation use the same protocol?

 

When a women has been in labor for an extended period of time they can become tired, well not only them, but it’s also true for their hard working uterus! A tired uterus can lead to failure to progress, stall out the labor, but using pitocin can help assist the uterus which can prevent a cesarean can you believe it?

Pitocin can sometimes prevent a cesarean!

 

Beyond that if a uterus is tired the risk of hemorrhage after the baby is born is a real concern to medical providers.  This is a common reason why women receive pitocin after birth, via IV or a shot in the leg. Again, this is about choices, talk to your medical provider about their protocol for third stage management of the delivery of placenta.

 

I understand this isn’t an easy topic to talk about. We have all heard the horror stories, but unless we open the conversation about medical management of medicines we will always be stuck at the intersection of horror stories and evil pit.

 

I’m proud that Green Bay Doulas are extensively trained through ProDoula to be able to support any type of birth. We don’t have a birth philosophy, because it’s not our birth. We don’t assume a women should give birth a certain way. We provide judgement free, nonbias support, and we aren’t afraid to talk about the real concerns of women as they prepare to birth their babies.

 

If you’d like to hear more about the support we provide at Green Bay Doulas please contact us at (920) 246- 0200 or email us at information@greenbaydoulas.com
By: Emily Jacobson

Birth Is NOT Equal

As a doula, my job is to support my clients, however they choose to birth. Imagine this: some people are offended when YOU have a different birth from what THEY think you should. You’ve all heard it, Oh, honey natural? Are you a crazy hippie? or “Natural is the only way to go, an epidural will mess up your baby for life.” Here is the thing, it’s not their birth.

Imagine this, because we here at Green Bay Doulas support all birth, one might think that means our clients don’t know their options, actually it’s the opposite our clients know EVERY option. This dedication to supporting all births means we don’t support a certain clientele, we are versed in it all, and ready if your first road leads to a road they didn’t intend on (which happens). It’s not that you are a failure, it’s a new normal, and you are supported as you start this new normal, or if the road you started on is the one you finish on!

What about the mother who needed to be induced for cholestasis?

What about the mother who has scoliosis and therefor unable to get an epidural?

What about the mothers who’s a victim of sexual assault and the thought of a baby at her breast causes extreme anxiety that she chooses formula over breastfeeding?

What about the mother with such high blood pressure, an epidural actually saves her from a stroke?

What about the mother with placenta prevea and has a family centered cesarean?

What if your plan was to have an epidural and the birth was so fast you have it in the car and now you feel robbed of your birth experience?

What if your plan was an all natural birth and you near pregnancy to find you have a footling breech baby who just won’t turn?

We encourage you to be educated about every choice. This isn’t about natural child birth vs medicated. It’s about birth and it’s your story to tell, not anyone elses. Don’t let anyone tell you that you didn’t do it right, didn’t take the right class, didn’t read the right books, didn’t pick the right apps to download. When you know better you do better, and hiring a certified doula can help you navigate the right doctor, hospital, childbirth class to take, books to read, and even apps!

A doula’s goal is a happy mom, healthy bond. The Green Bay Doulas are proud to set this standard of non-judgemental, unbiased, all encompassing care in Northeastern Wisconsin for labor and postpartum support. Won’t you call us today for your complimentary 30 min consultation and lets talk how we can support your birth.

-Emily Jacobson