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You are a great mom!

You are NOT a terrible mother. 

Motherhood takes out every last spec of patience. Motherhood gives you these moments where you can loose your mind or go with the flow. Motherhood is when they are so terrible that day like little demons and then they go to bed only to look like sweet angels. You aren’t failing them, when you loose your patience. 

You aren’t failing them when you just need a break, or to go to the restroom by yourself.

You are NOT failing them when you leave them for hours with a sitter to go pamper yourself. You are showing your child, self love is important. You are giving your mind and soul a reboot. A good mom looses her patience and returns with a hug or your own type of affection. A good mom, finds that little doubt in her body that maybe she lost her mind a little to much on a kid. A good mom feeds her kids, clothes her kids, and loves her kids.

See the moments…. be in them…….don’t fight the fun moments.

 I remember looking back on my childhood, remembering my mom teaching me how to cook, bake and sew. I remember my mom letting the messes happen in the moment. Im sure she was stressed about the mess, but I sure don’t remember it. She lived in the moments with us kids. Her smile was and still is infectious. Our moms are our world! 

Don’t beat yourself up

When you know you need a break take it, even just a minute or two. Don’t let guilt sink in, remind yourself its ok to take care of you. If you don’t take care of your needs you will run out of steam to take care of your family. When you need someone to remind you, you are on the right track, get ahold of me. Im a great hype “man”. I believe in you! You are a great mom!!!

Look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself, you ARE a wonderful mom! 

Be kind to yourself! If you are expecting and want a hype “man” on your birth team contact me.

– Katy Schmidt

The Nurturing Doula, LLC

805-791-8325

http://www.thenurturingdoula.com

thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

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Motherhood is overwhelming…

Motherhood is wonderful, beautiful and overwhelming.

 Hear me out, I love being a mom. My kids are my world, but they take a toll on my brain and body sometimes. You bring home your tiny baby and they are your whole world! They make you feel like the Grinch who’s heart grew three sizes bigger. The first few nights home you know they are getting used to being outside the womb, so they need time to adjust. Then one night they can’t be consoled by anything.

Your thinking:

  • where did this demon come from?
  • What did i do wrong?
  • The answer is?…. Nothing. You did nothing wrong, babies cry for all different reasons. This faze of unconsolable crying doesn’t last forever. As your little one gets older, they start walking, talking and testing their limits. They learn by trial and error. At times it may seem like they enjoy pushing every button. Children need boundaries to keep them safe but not to limit their learning. 

When your children are at your wits end, take a few minutes to yourself. Its ok to take time for yourself and your sanity. The overwhelming feeling in motherhood will get better, eventually you won’t feel like you need a break as often. Its important to remember that every single mother feels this.

It is NORMAL.

Take time for you, spend time with a friend often.

Take time for you! Take care of yourself! Call on your “village” when you need them! If you would like to discuss preparing for motherhood before your little one is born please contact The Nurturing Doula, LLC for more information.

~ Katy Schmidt                                                                                                                                  The Nurturing Doula, LLC                                                                                                              805-791-8325                                                                                                         www.thenurturingdoula.com

 

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Aunts are Important

Whether your child has a related aunt or a close friend who acts like an aunt to your child, they are important to your child’s growth. You see, our children need more than just their parents love and care. Aunts provide the love and support of a parent with the confidentiality of a friend.

Moms, when an aunt says they would like to take your kids for a play date or something, let them. They enjoy taking your child to the park and watching them smile and laugh. They get to be in a position to take them to do something fun and bring them back. You may be getting a break which is fantastic! You are also enriching your child’s and your child’s aunts life. Your child is with someone you trust, so they feel safe. Safe enough to break free and not be afraid to fall, but if they fall they know their aunt is their safety net to help them out. Their aunts get to be in the unique position to see the child grow and push boundaries that may not be pushed as far with a parent present.

She sees your children as innocent humans who want to have fun and play. She sees you overwhelmed and overworked and wants to help. Whether she’s a mother herself or not, the despair in your eyes of “I just need a minute” is seen by her.  Aunts see the mom as the person she felt she was, before kids. In the moment of crazy, when Aunts come in and handle the kids. Moms have this brief moment of,  “Wait! No don’t take over I can handle this.” Then it leaves her, she knows you aren’t judging her parenting, you are simply there to help. When the moment is over and done, she thanks you profusely. You tell her its no biggie! To you the kids are easy to handle, but to the mom you just made her day. You stopped the mad house from getting further out of control. If you are an aunt who doesn’t have children, you may not understand the whole reason she is so thankful. If you are a mom yourself you get it cause you’ve been in her position before. 

~ Katy Schmidt                                                                                                                                 The Nurturing Doula, LLC                                                                                                          Birth Doula, CPST and CBE                                                                                                           805-791-8325                                                                                     http://www.thenurturingdoula.com                                            thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

-This blog post is dedicated to my wonderful sister in law Whitney, She has helped me with my kids on more occasions than I can count.

 

 

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Car Seats

Did you know 3 out of 4 car seats are installed and/or used improperly? That is outrageous! The following is for rear and forward facing children. (Booster seat safety to follow)

When you first get your hands on your child’s carseat look through the manual. Read it all the way through. I know it seems silly, if you do you will know the ins and outs of your car seat. Once you are done look over your car seat. Make sure you know where the model number, manufacture date and expiration dates are.

Tighten and loosen the harness a couple times, so you know the motions.

Before you install your seat into the vehicle you want to fit your child into the seat. Trust me when I say its a whole lot easier to adjust the harness in your home vs outside. If this is not possible fitting your child outside of the home is doable.

Fitting your child:

Rear facing child age: newborn –  at least 2+ 

Fully loosen the harness, separate the chest clip and crotch buckles. once separated place  the left piece on the left and the right on the right.

place the child in the seat, making sure their bottom is all the way back and they are not slouching

now slide the child’s arms into each shoulder strap

Buckle the crotch buckles

Slide the chest clip buckles as far down to the crotch buckles as possible

Tighten the harness until you can not pinch any of the webbing, safekids.org says “Make sure your harness is snug enough by doing the Pinch Test. After you buckle and tighten the harness, pinch the harness at the shoulder. If the harness is snug, your fingers will slide off the webbing. If the harness is loose, you will be able to pinch the webbing between your fingers. A loose harness is a common mistake and is not safe.”

Check the thigh area make sure no extra webbing is there. If there is some pull the slack through the buckles so the slack is near the chest clip. Tighten again and repeat the pinch test

Chest Clip: The chest clip should be placed at armpit height. Tip: If you take your thumb and pointer finger to make L’s. Then place each pointer finger in the child’s armpits with your thumbs pointing towards each other. Your thumbs should hit the child’s chest that’s where the chest clip goes.

Harness height: a rear facing child’s harness should be at or below their shoulders. If your child’s harness is above their shoulders upon testing the fit of your child refer to the car seat manual. If you do not have your manual, most companies have the manual listed online you can look through. You can also contact The Nurturing Doula, LLC.

 

Forward facing child age: 2+ 

Fully loosen the harness, separate the chest clip and crotch buckles. once separated place  the left piece on the left and the right on the right.

place the child in the seat, making sure their bottom is all the way back and they are not slouching

now slide the child’s arms into each shoulder strap

Buckle the crotch buckles

Slide the chest clip buckles as far down to the crotch buckles as possible

Tighten the harness until you can not pinch any of the webbing, safekids.org says “Make sure your harness is snug enough by doing the Pinch Test. After you buckle and tighten the harness, pinch the harness at the shoulder. If the harness is snug, your fingers will slide off the webbing. If the harness is loose, you will be able to pinch the webbing between your fingers. A loose harness is a common mistake and is not safe.”

Check the thigh area make sure no extra webbing is there. If there is some pull the slack through the buckles so the slack is near the chest clip. Tighten again and repeat the pinch test

Chest Clip: The chest clip should be placed at armpit height. Tip: If you take your thumb and pointer finger to make L’s. Then place each pointer finger in the child’s armpits with your thumbs pointing towards each other. Your thumbs should hit the child’s chest that’s where the chest clip goes.

Harness height: a rear facing child’s harness should be at or below their shoulders. If your child’s harness is above their shoulders upon testing the fit of your child refer to the car seat manual. If you do not have your manual, most companies have the manual listed online you can look through. You can also contact The Nurturing Doula, LLC.

Installation 

video Rear Facing

video Forward Facing

If after you watch the video you still need help with your installation, please do not hesitate to contact me!

Screen Shot 2018-01-08 at 12.45.32 PM

https://www.safekids.org/ultimate-car-seat-guide/

~ Katy Schmidt

The Nurturing Doula, LLC

Birth Doula, CPST and CBE

805-791-8325

http://www.thenurturingdoula.com

thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

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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

805-791-8325

thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

♥Nurturing families through pregnancy, birth and parenthood♥

March of Dimes- https://www.marchofdimes.org/pregnancy/why-at-least-39-weeks-is-best-for-your-baby.aspx

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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

http://www.thenurturingdoula.com

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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

http://www.thenurturingdoula.com

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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.

 

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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.

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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 10 years under my belt and its still going strong. These are some things to hep your marriage after having a baby, or even if you have kids now.

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. Try googling hugs and why we need them.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

thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

805-791-8325

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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

thenurturingdoula@hotmail.com

805-791-8325