I've been wanting to write this post for a long time now. We have many clients at different stages and of different levels of needs. It gets continuously more difficult to manage it all without feeling like someone is falling through the cracks.
I would say we rely on social media a lot to feel connected with our clients, and we are blessed we have that option!
We lay awake in bed thinking about you. That may sound creepy but its 100% true. As we lay our head down to sleep, the thoughts rush in.
Who am I on call for?
Is my ringer on loud enough?
Did I miss anything?
Will I get a full night of sleep tonight?
Where will my kids go in the morning if I have to leave?
Is ______ ok? I haven't heard from them in a while.
I hope they call me if they need me!
It means the world to us to have you message us when you have questions, concerns, or especially emotions you need to work through. There are many times we speak to someone after the fact and thing 'ugh, why didn't they text me about that!'
Here are some reasons to text us, we LOVE hearing from you.
1: I was an an appointment and ___*this*________ came up. - we like you to check in after all of your appointments with your doctor, or midwife. This was you don't forget what felt relevant in the moment, and we can work through any questions you may have while they are fresh.
2: I am having ___*symptom*_____ and I'm not sure if I need to be worried - we are not medical providers, BUT we can help point you in the right direction for your concern, or help you manage a symptom that doesn't need medical attention.
3: What books/podcasts/blogs should I be consuming? - we love to share this stuff with you and spend a lot of time staying up to date on what's current!
4: ANY question about pregnancy, birth, post partum, we WANT to hear from you! We are experts with a TON Of experience. Your personal google!
5: I'm feeling: sad, anxious, overwhelmed, scared, annoyed, etc - you are not alone. We are here to help you feel connected, seen, validated, and comforted. Always reach out if you are having big feelings and you think we can help. The more intimate you feel with your doula the better.
6: I would like to know more about __________ (placenta encapsulation, home birth, etc) - we love helping people find information in the best places. Non biased, evidence based, and not just opinions from a Facebook mom to mom group! lol
7: I'm having some Braxton hicks/cramping/nausea/diarhhea, or you lost your mucus plug or have bloody show - any symptom is a symptom we want to know about. It may be nothing, but it may be something
8: I'm struggling with a hard conversation with a partner/grandparent/ etc (obvious in relation to the birth) - we have been around the block on this one. Is your family putting pressure on you to accept visitors, or attendees to your birth? Is your partner not understanding norms of pregnancy or birth? We can help you structure a conversation, or give you tips on how to start one. We can also just listen which often is exactly what you need because the answer is already inside of you.
9: I think I am maybe in labour, but not sure... super super DUPER common!!! It's hard to know when its the real deal, and what to do. That's why you've hired us! We are a tool box of labour tips and tricks at your disposal. Don't hold back. Have a concern, or question, text! The worst that could happen would be.... wait... there is no worst case scenario. There are no dumb questions, and we are ALWAYS happy to communicate with you.
10: I am definitely in labour: this one actually may warrant a phone call, especially if you are a second time birthing person, OR if its in sleeping hours!
This one is sometimes a confusing one. If its during the day and you think you're in labour, sure you can text us and likely we will respond within minutes. If you don't get a respond within minutes ALWAYS call. Our phones are set up in a way that they only ring when you call, our texts should do the same but are typically a shorter tone, and we can't guarantee they will wake us out of a deep sleep! When in doubt, call us. Usually in this situation we have been texting leading up to this moment, it rarely happens out of the blue.
11: Post partum questions including and not limited to:
Am I bleeding too much?
How do we manage visitors?
Is that clot concerning?
We aren't sleeping?
Is this normal?
We can address all of these and more, and are trained in when to refer out to additional medical help. We have experienced many post partum issues and situations and bring a vast amount of experience and knowledge to this time.
12: Infant feeding support questions: Whether its breastfeeding or formula feeding, bottle feeding, pumping or a combination of all of these, we are here to help. Texting us about all of this can help you work through trouble shooting. You can send us videos of what's going on if a visit isn't in the cards. We can normalize things, and offer incredibly helpful tips on healing, positioning, and latch.
13: I think I am depressed (or "I think my partner is depressed") - post partum depression is very real, and the sooner you recognize it the better. We can help you find help ASAP in the right places, and listen to you talk about your feelings and thoughts to work out what's going on. You do not have to be alone through this.
14: What have we done? We are so overwhelmed and exhausted!! - you hired us to build a community, a strong foundation for your family and we are here for that. If you're ever struggling it is amazing what a good listening ear can ease for your heart. We have been there, we can talk about it, or we can book some post partum visits to get you more support.
15: If there are ANY changes to your birth plan ie: induction, cesarean, birth location, provider change, birth tub, etc. Don't forget to keep us in the loop!!
and the bonus 16: Just to shoot the shit (or to say Hi!): Thats right. You invited us into your life and family and we love staying in touch, receiving photos, and being along for the whole ride!