Plane Ticket For One Please!

I took a vacation this summer and I didn’t take my family. Having young children is hard and you start to lose your identity between all the drop offs, pick ups, activities, kids birthday parties, doctors appointments, household chores and juggling a career. Not to mention growing with your partner through all of these changes as well. I needed a break. I needed some respite. I needed to reconnect with me. Who am I? Who have I grown into as I settle into my 30’s?  I heard everything from: “How will your husband survive?”, to “You must not breastfeed if you aren’t taking your baby!”, and “You’re leaving your children?!”

Yes, I took a 4 day trip out the country to have some me time. This is the hardest (and most rewarding) time in our lives with young children, being an entrepreneur, a wife, maybe in that 

order sometimes… In 10 years when I look back, it will just be a skid mark in my life’s story… but how many of us feel like we are drowning at times? How many of us take the time for self-care? In the last 5 years of my life, I’ve gotten married, moved back into my childhood home,  I’ve carried two humans over 40 weeks each time, I’ve had a cesarean, a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean), I’ve breastfed a total of 3 years and counting. My body has new curves, my clothes fit differently, my taste in food has only gotten spicier, my circle of friends has shifted and evolved, and who have I become in all of this?

I took a trip to Canada, to the land of nice people. True story, my friend literally got into a “you go first, no you go first” match with a pedestrian who was in the middle of the street, while trying we were waiting to make a right turn! Her husband took their children up to their cabin for the time I was there. Two mothers, with a total of 4 kids under the age of 6, without children or husbands for 4 days…. what do you do?! You go to the movies!  You get your nails done! You spend over 2 hours eating at an all you can eat brunch buffet with live jazz music and chat with other adults! You stand in line for almost 2 hours just to get on the elevations at the CN Tower, in Toronto.  You go to Niagra falls and eat a fancy dinner, 77 floors above the falls in a revolving dining room, where your waiter is French and you can order escargot, and drink wine. You sleep in. You sleep without having anyone waking you up. You take long showers, and sit on the patio for hours talking, without worry, without judgment, and reconnect with yourself.

One thing doula work has taught me is the art of unbiased support. Imagine if we all lived our lives with non-judgmental mindsets. There would be no more ‘mommy wars”. Instead, when I got on that plane I would have heard: “Good for you taking some time for yourself.”, “Enjoy your vacation!”, and “Send lots of pictures!”

As mothers with young children I want to give you permission to enjoy life, don’t get caught up in the judgment. Take time for you and forget the double standards. Taking a break from all the responsibility is healthy, it’s normal, and we need to do it more often!

When I touched back down in Green Bay I was refreshed. I was reconnected, but who am I kidding– my checked luggage was filled with souvenirs for my kids, 100 oz of pumped breastmilk, and Kinder Eggs. Take time for you, get to know yourself again, and enjoy the chaos that is having young children.

 

Emily Jacobson is a certified doula and owner of Green Bay Doulas. Her certifications include; Labor Doula, Postpartum & Infant Care Doula, Certified Newborn Care Solutions, and Certified Postpartum Placenta Specialist.

 

 

Understanding Postpartum Doulas VS Night Nurse

If you are a Shameless fan like we are, you saw in the season 7 premiere that Debbie hired a night nurse so she can get some sleep. Typically a night nurse or night nanny is someone who takes care of the baby in the evening so the parents can get some sleep. But, what if I told you there was such a profession where a trained professional came into your house who

1- Was an expert in newborn care,

2- Knew how to support a mother in recovery from childbirth,

AND

3- Took care of the family as a WHOLE!

 

Enter the Postpartum Doula!

 

A normal daytime shift (averaging 4-8 hours) can look like a number of things, but is not limited to:

An unbiased ear to listen to concerns

Meal prep

Sibling support

Nap for mother

Self care for mother

Breast/bottle feeding, formula feeding, basic lactation support

Light housework

Extra hands for errands or doctors appointments

Cesarean support

Newborn and baby care

Just to name a few!

 

And the support of overnights (10 hour shift) while parents rest:

Breastfeeding support

Bottle feeding support

Meal prep

Light housework

Baby care

And sleep for both parents!

 

What you can expect with a Postpartum Doula? Personalized care! Families often seek support for high needs babies such as colic or silent reflux, special needs, support during teething, transitioning back to work, sleep regressions and sickness, and adjusting to adoption and multiples! The goal of a Postpartum Doula is to support the parenting approach that fits your lifestyle best. Every family’s needs are different which is why we have a postpartum planning session with each family to learn about the family dynamics, feeding style, parenting style and how best to support your family during the first year of a new addition.The beauty of a Postpartum Doula is that they help the family as a whole offering their expertise by lending a hand and helping a family transition into their new roles as parents, siblings and even furbabies!

While postpartum care is typically seen as a luxury item for many families, it’s simply about having a plan and making a budget. You may consider sitting down and discussing a postpartum plan even before your beautiful bundle arrives so that you can be as prepared as possible entering into this new chapter! Everyone plans for the arrival, but what about the weeks and months after your little one is here, Postpartum Doulas are happy to help!

Why make the investment? One of our clients explains it best so we’ll share his quote with you, “My wife is home all day with the baby and when she’s well rested she’s a better mother and wife and that’s what is important to me!” Utilizing a postpartum doula can be different for each family.  Whether it’s full time, part time or as needed; we want you to thrive during this time, not just survive.

If you are interested in more information about Postpartum Support please contact us today at information@greenbaydoulas.com or (920)246-0200

Top 10 Questions to Ask When Looking to Encapsulate Your Placenta

Top 10 Questions to Ask When Looking to Encapsulate Your Placenta

 

IMG_2034Placentas! It’s becoming more mainstream to encapsulate your placenta. The word has gotten out about the benefits and how women are loving their postpartum recovery these days. So you want to jump on the encapsulation train -where do you start and who even does it?

 

Here are some questions you should be asking your encapsulator. This blog isn’t about convincing you to encapsulate, it’s about finding the right person to do it. I’m here to equip you with the questions you need to ask and the cheat sheet to make sure you are getting the best professional service you can.

Top 10 Questions to Ask When Looking to Encapsulate Your Placenta

Top Ten Questions to Ask Any Placenta Specialist:

  • Who are you trained through?
  • Can I see your current Blood Borne Pathogens Certificate?
  • What is your process?
  • Where do you encapsulate?
  • What do you add to the placenta powder?
  • What type of capsules do you use?
  • How long does the process take?
  • What is your safety/sanitizing protocol?
  • How many capsules should I expect?
  • What are my other options beyond pills?

 

Answers:

 

  • Who are you trained through?

 

      • Make sure it’s reputable organization with an IN PERSON training, meaning a real placenta was used and it was hands on 2 day training, vs just online. Ask to see their certificate, or if they are stillIMG_0666 certifying, ask to see their manual as proof! (The photo is from our Green Bay In-Person training held Aug 2015)
      • Green Bay Doulas are certified Postpartum Placenta Specialists trained through ProDoula

 

  • Can I see your current Blood Borne Pathogens Certificate?

 

      • Anyone who touches your placenta needs to have this, if they don’t ….RUN! This means they will follow OSHA standards of properly handling your placenta, and know how to properly sanitize and discard soiled items.  

 

  • What is your process?

 

      • Day 1: Clean placenta, steam with lemon and ginger root, cut and put on dehydrator, leave for 18-24 hours.
      • Day 2: Take placenta and turn into powder and fill pills

 

  • Where do you encapsulate?

 

      • Placentas should only be prepared in the home of the person who birthed it. This way you are in control of the placenta, you know in fact without a doubt it is your placenta you are consuming.
      • If this is not possible, or is not offered in your area, ask to personally see their area where they encapsulate. Where will your placenta be stored? Next to their family veggies? Is their house clean? Is the area easily cleared of pets, children? Since they are preparing something for consumption in their own kitchen then delivering it to you, each state has laws on if they also need a food handler’s license or caterer’s license? Do you feel confident, this person will properly handle your placenta, return your placenta to you and that it indeed is not someone else’s? If you can’t, then keep looking.

 

  • What do you add to the placenta powder?

 

      • Placentas should be steamed with lemon and ginger root in the water, but nothing should be added IMG_2034to the pills, no essential oils, no fenugreek, NOTHING! Just your placenta.

 

  • What type of capsules do you use?

 

      • Non-colored veggie size 00 should be the response, if they don’t know… walk away. Some capsules can contain gelatin which is a meat byproduct, and so not good for those who are vegetarian or vegan or don’t eat red meat. They should not be colored or flavored as it is just adding more chemicals/dyes to the pills, we want to keep them as authentic as your placenta!
  • How long does the process take?
    • Once the placenta is in view, about 24 hours, 2 hours for 2 consecutive days as dehydrating takes up most of that 24 hour time period. Again another perk of in home encapsulation you know when it will be finished.
    • If it takes more than 24-36 hours for you to get your placenta completed…start asking questions.

 

  • What is your safety/sanitizing protocol?

 

      • OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens Standard, 29 CFR 1910.1030. including but not limited to proper protection for encapsulator such as shoe covers, apron, gloves, hairnet, eye wear, mask. All
        equipment gets washed in a hot soapy mixture then sanitized with a proper 1:10 bleach ratio then air dried.

 

  • How many capsules should I expect?

 

      • Each placenta is very different but you can expect 80-200 pills and are usually consumed in the first 6-10 weeks postpartum, don’t hoard your pills, USE them!

 

  • What are my other options beyond pills?

 

    • We don’t recommend raw smoothies because surface bacteria is a good possibility when choosing this route, but you can put the powder into a smoothy once
      processed.
    • Salves can also be made from the powder, and are used on everything from bumps, bites and scrapes and scars, especially cesarean scars, but not intended for nipples or perineum area.
    • Tinctures, are a way to extend the life of your placenta pills, as 1-3 drops equal a pill. Think of a placenta extract ….this can last for a few years even! So if you love how your pills make you feel, or have a past history of postpartum depression- get a tincture as well.

I’m hopeful that this information will lead you to the right placenta specialist for your needs. At Green Bay Doulas we have three Postpartum Placenta Specialist’s ready to assist you and answer any other questions that might come up. If you’d like to know more about our process and procedures please feel free to contact us at information@greenbaydoulas.com or (920) 246-0200 anytime!

 

Authored by: Emily Jacobson