Last Precious Weeks….

Those last weeks of your pregnancy are very important for your babies development.

Those last weeks are also very trying on your body and mind.

You could have trouble sleeping or trouble staying off the toilet from having a baby who is lower than it has been your entire pregnancy. Braxton hicks contractions could be making you wonder is this the real deal or not? Those pesky Braxton Hicks contractions are preparing you for labor and delivery. Take them as a chance to practice your breathing. Take a big deep breath when it starts and breath normally throughout the contraction then a deep breath at the end.

Those last weeks help your babies brain, lungs and liver get the time they need to develop.

March of Dimes says “Babies left to gain more weight have an easier time regulating their temperature”.

Some things to help occupy your mind are:
  • Pamper yourself
  • rest
  • catch up on your favorite show
  • prepare a basket of necessities for when you are feeding your little one
  • prepare your hospital bag
  • have one on one time with your significant other

Of course there are times when waiting it out, is not an option.

Sometimes health issues arise in Mother or baby. If those times arise remember to breath and look to your birth team for support. You got this!

Remember these last weeks may be rough but your baby and body know when it’s time. Remember to breath through those contractions. You can handle anything! You are strong! And it’s never too late to hire your birth doula.

– The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Katy Schmidt


♥Nurturing families through pregnancy, birth and parenthood♥

March of Dimes-


The Value of a Doula

You and your significant other heard one of your friends mention a doula

You wonder what’s a birth doula?

You wonder why they charge so much?

A birth doula is a professionally trained birth worker, who supports you mentally and physically before, during and after delivery. Your doula supports ALL births where ever and however it happens. She can be your sole support or your 2+ support person. She helps you and your significant other help navigate labor and delivery and its many obstacles. A doula can provide comfort measures for pain relief or teach your significant other comfort measures. There are times when moms need multiple comfort measures at once. There are also times when moms need to be observed and not touched. Sometimes significant others do not realize when this happens. A doula is there to help your significant other navigate these moments. As your doula I focus on your face and take note of your expressions. I am a firm believer in letting birth happen and not resisting. I will frequently remind you to breath and relax your body and face.

The Nurturing Doula’s prices behind the scenes. From the time you sign her contract to about a month after deliver, your doula is ready to answer questions, hold your hand, listen to you, teach you, and care for you. That’s missing family functions at the drop of a hat. Missing dance recitals, martial arts testing and scouts rank advances. Leaving your significant other on their anniversary, to be with you on your wonderful day.

And I wouldn’t change it for the world.

She’s sending you links and articles. Answering texts, emails and phone calls from you at all hours. Attending your appointments as needed. When it comes to in person time. Prenatal appointments last a couple hours. Birth lasts anywhere from 6-40 hrs, she stays with you the entire time.

So heres the break down:

  • 35 hours : average 30 min per day spent researching, emailing, texting or phone calls thats
  • 0-15 hours for prenatal and postpartum meetings
  • 6-40 hours for the birth


You see being your doula means I’m there for you 100% leaving all of my baggage at the door. You have my full attention. I love my doula work, I put all of my heart and soul into it! This is a special moment I do not take lightly. I do not take over anyone else’s position in your life, I simply place myself where I am needed.

All my best!

~The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Katy Schmidt


The guilt of formula feeding.

You hear it all the time “breast is best” but what about when your milk supply never keeps up with your baby. What about moms who just don’t want to breast feed. What if you are a mom who tried breastfeeding but it just isn’t working for you or baby and because of that you need to formula feed. Or if you are someone who choose formula over breast feeding from the get go. Whatever your reason, you made a fantastic choice on how to feed YOUR baby. Don’t let other peoples opinions about how you feed your baby affect your feelings. You made an educated decision on what was best for you and your child. FED is BEST! 

I personally know the feeling of failure while breastfeeding, Im not going to tell you, a mom who desperately wants to breastfeed, not to feel guilty. I also will not tell a mom who chose to formula feed from the get go to feel guilty either. Try not to be so hard on yourself. If you are a mom feeling this mom guilt, remind yourself you are doing your very best and what you feel is best for your child. Us moms need to stop making other moms feel guilty for their choices, we need to pick each other up! Being a parent is hard enough without people judging us for our choices. 

So and so said that “formula feeding ruins my bonding with my baby”. Formula feeding does not equal less bonding. Bonding with your baby happens when you do anything with them. Bonding with your baby comes in all different forms. The best bonding happens when you are focused solely on your child no distractions. Talk to them even as babies, cuddle them, read to them, sing to them, most of all love on them. 

There are many different routes in which you can feed your baby. Knowing your options is half the battle. I can be here for you on this journey. Please don’t hesitate to ask for help. All my best on this new journey! 

IMG_1259.JPG~The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Katy Schmidt


Moms need a break

Time and time again moms stay at home or working, loose their mind. A lot of men don’t realize we need a break. They see us as the strong ones who hold the family together, and we do. We moms need to remember we DESERVE a break more often. I know I know “but its so hard to stop and take a break cause such and such is going on”. Life is hard enough on us! Taking a break, even if its only 5 minutes, helps. Just some time to stop and clear our mind from the stresses of life. As a mom you take on many tasks and hold your self accountable. I myself find it hard to keep every plate balanced. Sometimes we need to not take on so many things, so we aren’t as stressed.

Husbands take note when your wife/partner seems a little more moody than normal, or short with you and the kids, let her know she’s doing a great job. Then tell her you’d like to give her a break. Take over for her, whether she’s cooking dinner, helping with homework what ever is going on. Tell her you love her and you want to give her a break. You realize she may feel stretched thin. I know myself as a mom I feel like because I’m the “stay at home” parent I feel like i have to do it all. This isn’t the case, no matter who you live with everyone can help out.

Moms when your husband/partner helps out and they aren’t doing it the way you would step back, they’re handling it. Unless its a child, who could get seriously injured, then by all means step in. But if your husband/partner who NEVER fills the dishwasher starts to, walk away and let him/her. Go take a much needed break.



Don’t forget about your friends. A girls lunch, girls night or just coffee helps a lot! Meet up with your person. They know you. They are there for you when life gets crazy. If you are a mom who doesn’t have that person. Go out of your comfort zone and find one! You need a person who will stand beside you, accept you for you, and tell you when your loosing your mind that you are a great mom! Because YOU are a GREAT mom!!


~ The Nurturing Doula                                                                                                         ♥Nurturing families through pregnancy, birth and parenthood♥

P.S. Sometimes self care is you showering while your family is eating dinner without you, because you know you’ll be too tired to shower after you eat dinner.


Your marriage after baby

Having a baby can be draining. Draining on your body, on your mind, on your partners mind and body, but also on your marriage. I may not be a marriage expert, However I do have 11 years under my belt and its still going strong. These are some things to hep your marriage after having a baby, even if you have kids now or help your marriage period.

Help each other with the house hold duties every day. If one of you works away from home and the other doesn’t, that doesn’t exclude them from helping. Helping out could mean something as little as taking out the trash or starting a load of laundry. Something little goes a long way.

Take time out each day for each other to regroup. Even if its just 5 minutes. Keep each other in the loop about what happened while one was away. Tell each other about your accomplishments that day and your struggles. When one of you struggles the other should be there to lift you up and remind you to keep trying.

marriage after baby

Have a date night or a date day once a month at least. When those important marriage milestones come up, 1 years, 5 years, 10 years, 15 years and so on, make sure to make your date nights a little more meaningful. Dates do not have to be extravagant, away from home or kid free. Dates have to be about the two of you, talking and enjoying each others company.

marriage after babymarriage after baby









Try to take care of each others needs every day, no I don’t mean in the bedroom. I mean, do something for them, something they already have planned to do. Ie: make their lunch, prep the coffee.

Hug each other, at least 20 seconds long. It has been proven hugs can increase your serotonin levels. Serotonin helps decrease stress, reduce anxiety, reduce tension and much much more. The benefit of hugs: why we need hugs.marriage after baby

Kiss each other good night, Every night. Try your hardest not to go to bed angry at each other. Yes, even the happiest marriages have fights. Whats important is you need to talk about it. A resolution doesn’talways happen

Remember, when life starts getting crazy remember how you were together before kids. Remind your spouse of that funny memory. It helps life slow down a little.marriage after baby

Take a break from each other. Sometimes you need a break to regroup your self and thats ok. I don’t mean a break where you don’t come home, I mean take a couple hours to your self or go out with a friend.

Friends have friends that are both of yours and friends that are just yours. Have friends who respect you enough to “lie” to you when your butt really does look fat in that outfit, and to tell you the truth when you need it. Friends who you count on to just let you vent so you aren’t so angryat your spouse.

Sex as often as you both agree on. It is important. Sex makes the two of you open up and communicate on a deeper level than you do with anyone else. When you open up and communicate in the bedroom, its easier to open up and communicate outside of the bedroom.

Remember to talk, hug, laugh, cry, have sex, and care for each other!

~ The Nurturing Doula

Katy Schmidt



Fear and Birth

The arrival of your baby is an exciting time in your life. You’ve had your first ultrasound and you’ve prepared the nursery. Now you are taking child birth classes. A mother of two previous children chimes into the conversation, she says how her previous births went. Your excitement quickly dissipates and becomes fear. What ifs rush into your head. What if I don’t make it to the hospital? Am I going to have my baby in the car?! My husband works an hour and a half away… what am I going to do if my water breaks and he isn’t home? I don’t feel comfortable showing everyone my lady parts. Labor and pushing is going to hurt so much. Can I handle labor? My mother-in-law says I should get an epidural, but I do not want pain medicine. I don’t want the doctor to tell me what is going to happen, as if I don’t have a choice. I don’t want to tear like that woman in class did. Cesarean section sounds so scary. If my baby and I have life threatening complications, what will happen to us? What if the baby isn’t healthy? My baby is going to need so much, how am I going to take care of her? What If I can’t handle being a mom?! Stop, take a breath, its all going to be ok.

Your mind is powerful! When a negative thought comes into your mind before labor it places a negative impact on your birth. When your mind and body are fearful of labor and birth, it will cause tension, which in turn causes pain and then more fear. This is a vicious cycle. Am I saying you wont feel any pain at all? No, I am saying there are ways to help ease the pain so fear doesn’t over come your brain. Tension and fear can stall or stop labor. This may introduce an intervention you do not want. Fighting the pain causes more fear. Negative thoughts make fear more powerful. Which makes your pain feel worse. All you’ll want to do is run away from the pain. Running away won’t help. Let positive images flood your mind and the pain will lessen. ““We need to always remember that mothers who are afraid tend to secrete the hormones that delay or inhibit birth””

Oxytocin is a hormone our body produces, it is often called the love hormone. The love hormone is released during sex. This love hormone is what gives women contractions. When your body is in labor, having contractions brought on by oxytocin, contractions can be stalled and or more painful because of fear. Adrenaline rises from fear and stress. This stops the release of oxytocin. A reduction in oxytocin slows and/or disrupts labor progress in early and active labor. In transition, adrenaline rises to help the laboring mother push through to the end.

Do not let fear take over your mind before labor. Try preparing yourself and your body for birth. Know all your options. Gather the person or people you would like on your birth team.  Talk to them about what you would like to happen and what you would do if and when unforeseen circumstances come to light. This is YOUR birth. Take charge of your contractions. This pain is not forever. You can get through this, you will get through this!fear and birth

Remember all pregnancies and all labors are different. Birth can be wonderful, just remember to take the contractions one at a time and just breath. Its going to be ok, you’re going to be ok! I hope you have a wonderful birth. If you would like more information on creating a great birth team please contact The Nurturing Doula, LLC.

~Best Birthing Wishes

The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Katy Schmidt




The I word ?! Inductions…


They can be intense, if you don’t know how to navigate them. Im here to tell you the process, the options, the side effects and when they are necessary or not.

“Inducing labor is the artificial start of the birth process through medical interventions or other methods.”(1) Inductions can start many different ways and end many different ways. The one thing that is the same at every labor and induction is, you have options. Know your options, ask questions and remember to use your BRAIN: Benefits, Risks, Alternatives, Intuition, and No or Nothing. Some times decisions need to be made quickly though. So knowing your options before anything happens is key. As a doula and child birth educator I know there are times inductions are necessary and other times they are not.


  • High blood pressure
  • Hypertension
  • Bleeding in pregnancy
  • Preeclampsia
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Water broken longer than 24 hours
  • A pregnancy past 42 weeks
  • A uterine infection known as chorioamnionitis


  • “Big baby”
  • Timing for Drs benefit

Labor Brain InductionsThe process:                                                                                                                                          Most hospitals have you arrive in the morning, depending on the circumstances with your induction they may start by inserting a prostaglandin into your vagina. A prostaglandin is a suppository, it’s  inserted into the vagina. It can help the cervix soften and efface. Your prostaglandin may kick start your labor starting regular contractions, if this happens it is possible you may not need pitocin. Pitocin is a synthetic form of oxytocin which the body produces naturally during labor. Depending on how you labor is going thus far and how you and baby are tolerating the medication, you may be able to wait and see  if your labor pattern picks up before starting pitocin. If pitocin is needed you will be hooked up to an iv if you don’t already have one, your pitocin will drip with your iv fluids.  Pitocin helps your contractions become more frequent and regular. It can make your contractions become so intense that they are too much for you to handle without pain relief. Most of the time, after pitocin is started, your dosage increases every 30 min.

Pitocin side effects (2)

  • redness or irritation at the injection site
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • cramping
  • stomach pain
  • more intense or more frequent contractions (this is an expected effect of oxytocin)
  • runny nose
  • sinus pain or irritation
  • memory problems

Tell your doctor if you experience serious side effects of Pitocin including:

  • fast, slow, or uneven heart rate;
  • excessive bleeding long after childbirth;
  • headache
  • confusion
  • slurred speech
  • hallucinations
  • severe vomiting
  • severe weakness
  • muscle cramps
  • loss of coordination
  • feeling unsteady
  • seizure (convulsions)
  • fainting
  • shallow breathing or breathing that stops
  • dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats, seizure).

Another option for your induction is a foley/cooks catheter. Foley/Cooks catheter(3): a catheter with a ballon at one end and a bag of saline at the other end. The balloon is placed just inside of your cervix to help dilate your cervix. The balloon is slowly filled with saline. Sometimes your nurse will place a string around the catheter with an additional bag of saline attached to it for added traction to help more with dilation and effacement.

Catheter Side effects(3)

  • acute transient febrile reaction
  • non-reassuring FHR tracing
  • vaginal bleeding
  •  pain necessitating removal of catheter
  •  altered fetal presentation from vertex to breech

Inductions can be quick or they can be long. It’s a coin toss.

During your induction to help your labor further along with the least interventions make sure you stay hydrated, and you move around as much as possible. If you cannot be up and moving stay as upright as possible. When prostaglandins are administered you may have to stay reclined for a period of time. The birth ball and peanut ball can be your best friend in labor, Both can help your hips stay wide so baby has a chance to move lower to further along your labor. Your birth team can help you relax and remember to breathe. I often see my clients during a contraction holding their breath. I promise you the easiest way to try to avoid the annoying oxygen mask is to remember to breathe. Talk with your birth team well before your induction, about what pain relief you would like. What ever your choice is remember its your choice, not theirs, not the nurses, not the Dr’s, and not your families, Its YOUR choice. What ever happens during your labor and delivery, remember to breath and use your BRAIN. I hope you have a wonderful labor and delivery. If you would like more information on preparing for your labor, delivery and bringing your newest addition home contact The Nurturing Doula:

The Nurturing Doula, LLC                                                                                                            Katy Schmidt

* The Nurturing Doula is not a Doctor, please consult your Dr for further information on benefits and risks.


(1)                                         (2)                                                (3)


Epidural vs No Pain Medication

As a doula I get the feeling most women believe just because I help women cope with the pain I think they should avoid pain medication. This is an incorrect fact! As a doula I believe and know all births are different and all birthing women are different. Some feel they can cope with the pain without pain medication, some don’t, and some want to try to cope without it but are open to it. I do not care which you choose, as long as it is YOUR decision not someone else’s that they forced upon you.

Did you know that more then 50% of laboring mothers use an epidural?

Some Pros and cons of epidurals vs no pain medication:

Epidural Pros

  • allows you to rest from the pain, sometimes you may even be able to sleep
  • with the pain relief some women have a more positive birth experience
  • may give you the extra strength needed to move forward with delivery
  • with the epidural in place you may stay awake if a cesarean is necessary
  • can help you deal with exhaustion and fatigue

Epidural Cons

  • can cause your blood pressure to suddenly drop
  • may get a severe headache
  • slowed or stopped labor
  • the following are side effects from the epidural: shivering, ringing in ears, backache, soreness where needle was placed, nausea, or difficulty urinating.
  • some women find the epidural makes pushing more difficult
  • in rare cases permanent nerve damage may happen where the catheter was inserted
  • baby may have trouble latching on
  • baby might experience respiratory depression, fetal malpositioning, and an increase in fetal heart rate variability, thus increasing the need for forceps, vacuum, cesarean deliveries and episiotomies. *1

For a few hours after the birth, the lower half of your body may feel numb. Numbness will require you to walk with assistance.

“Natural” Pros

  •  freedom to move around during labor
  • allows you to work with your contractions which can speed up labor and delivery
  • during pushing you can choose which position to birth in
  • faster recovery
  • no pain medication can make the birthing woman feel more empowered

“Natural” Cons

  • more fatigue during labor
  • possible increase in blood loss
  • breathing and position changes only provide some pain relief

When deciding pain relief for your labor a delivery remember its YOUR birth, make an informed decision. Do your research, check out for more information.

If you would like help creating a birth wish list, please contact The Nurturing Doula, LLC

~ Katy Schmidt

The Nurturing Doula, LLC


thenurturingdoula@hotmail.comEpidural vs No Pain medication


-Please note I am not a medical provider, talk to your Dr regarding your decisions.-


*1 reference-


Why should you consider hiring a doula? 

You may be thinking wait what ? What’s a doula?

A doula, is someone who helps you navigate through pregnancy, labor, delivery, birth and parenthood. She can provide comfort measures to the laboring mom, give suggestions on positioning during pushing,  and provide information on any pregnancy, labor or parenting subject to moms and dads for them to make their own informed decision. Doula’s do not give medical advise or perform any medical tasks.

Ask me how to have your best birth, is my motto. When moms or dads ask I respond with first, a goofy “Hire a doula!” but in reality its not for everyone. I understand that!

So how can you have your best birth?  Research your options, hire a doula if you choose, remember it’s never too late to discuss options, and remember you can and have a right to say no.

Hire a doula

Why consider hiring a doula?

A doula is many things

  • She is your confidant when you doubt yourself
  • She’s your cheerleader
  • She’s your spouses cheerleader
  • I love being able to guide a spouse into where the laboring mom needs him or her, this helps meet both of your needs
  • She’s your google when you don’t want opinions you want facts
  • She’s your shoulder to cry on when your unsure of your parenting or feeding or why won’t baby sleep
  • She can be your sanity when your baby won’t stop crying or won’t sleep
  • She can become a great friend
  • No birth is better than the rest.
  • No mom is better than the rest.
  • We’re all doing what we can, when it comes at us.
  • A doula can help get you on the easier track to Labor, birth and parenthood.
  • She provides non judgmental support, reassurance your heading in the right direction.
  • She can be your sounding board when you need to make a decision
  • She can provide and teach comfort measures while your in labor

Having a doula is know to reduce the following:

  • intenseness of pain
  • time your in labor
  • cesarean rates
  • induction rates
  • postpartum depression
  • stress and anxiety
  • epidural requests

And to increase the following:

  • satisfaction of birth outcome
  • the bond between mother and baby
  • the bond between mother and partner

A Doula is for all moms

  • vaginal birth
  • cesarean
  • no pain medication
  • epidural
  • hospital birth
  • home birth


Hardwork-001As a doula it is my job to help you find your way to labor, birth and parenting. After all they say it takes a village to raise a child! The same goes for pregnancy and birth. Think of a doula like pregnancy and baby navigation. Pregnancy, birth and parenting can be magical, beautiful and easy. It also can be and is, HARD work. It can take a toll on us mentally and physically.

Having a doula can ease those uncertain, doubtful and stressful times.

Sometimes moms and dads need me to provide comfort measures for most of the birth. Sometimes they only need me for suggestions or even just for moral support before the birth. What ever your pregnancy need I’ll be there rooting you on!

I hope you have an amazing pregnancy, labor and birth. Your going to be an amazing parent! You got this!

For further information on hiring a doula or to schedule your complementary consult please contact:

The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Katy Schmidt




Effective Birth Plans

Effective Birth Plans

You’re talking to your best friend who made a birth plan for her first child and she says    “ Don’t make a birth plan, they never work out!” “ Birth never goes as planned”  So you think to yourself, Oh ok I won’t make one.

True, most birth plans don’t “work”. However an effective birth plan is just a guide line of how you hope your birth goes. Writing a birth plan does not mean your birth will be on point to a T with said plan. Remember a birth plan is like a road map. A road map can have detours. Detours, you will be ready for because of your birth plan.  An effective plan provides answers to your wishes if they arise. It helps your partner, nurses, and Dr, remember your wishes so they do not need to interrupt you mid contraction. Along with that having a written plan doesn’t mean the staff wont check with you for a procedure. Your birth plan also does not guarantee a certain birth experience.

So how do you make an effective birth plan? As you read, watch and learn about labor, delivery, and postpartum, write down what you want for your own birth. Research your options for each procedure and policy at your hospital. Also make sure you write down what you don’t want or hope to avoid. A birth plan can look like the one below, (feel free to print and use), you can write your own wishes, or you can schedule a birth plan writing session with me and receive a visual birth plan.

I like to play the “what if” game with my clients, it helps them with writing a plan. If they don’t want to write a plan we still play the game so they understand their options. So many things happen when you give birth. I love helping my clients learn their options for their birth experience. The majority of moms talking to a pregnant mom, mainly talk about the pain from labor and suggest receiving an epidural. Which is fantastic for pain relief but did you know this is not the only option for pain relief? Labor, Delivery and your newborn come with many different options, knowing them and making your choice helps you have a more satisfying birth experience.

For more information on pain relief and birth plans contact The Nurturing Doula.

Click the link for more information on visual birth plans.

Katy Schmidt

Birth PlanBirth plan 2