With the release of the new iPhone 11 the camera is all the rage! I know, I just got one for that very reason (and there was a killer deal I couldn’t resist). But it’s true, the iPhone 11 camera is crazy cool!
So, the questions begin…
Will my doula take photos during my labor?
Do I need to hire a birth photographer during my labor as well?
It makes total sense.
A picture can say 1,000 words.
And when it comes to those special times in the life of a family such as birth, photos can mean everything!
In my experience as a Bellingham and Skagit Valley birth doula, the answer is… kinda.
I do my very best. But I say that with a huge caveat. I am your doula first. That means in a labor I am most focused on supporting you and your birth team. I want to see you well supported and your partner or other support people sustained. I am going to make sure you are coping with contractions well, that your partner is fed, that your mental game is strong and that your partner is not passing out from feeling overwhelmed by the birth process.
Then, if all that leaves space for a couple simple photos I am all about that. Although you will need to specify that you’d like photos and what you do want and do not want them to be involved.
How modest are you and what are your most important photos you would like? Sometimes I’ll leave clients with 50+ photos on their iphone and other times I don’t get more than 1 or two photos.
If you desire high quality birth photos, we highly recommend hiring a local birth photographer. There are several in our area that will be able to provide you with intentional pictures, much better than the exciting capabilities of the iPhone 11 can do.
In the end, our goal is to serve Bellingham and Skagit families through pregnancy, birth and the postpartum experience.
So if birth photography is not your top priority and you're okay with a few iPhone photos of your labor and delivery as time allows, hire your North Cascade doula team and we will do our very best to capture some photos for you.
Contact us today to learn more!
Introducing the idea of a new sibling to a child is a delicate task. Often times parents worry about when to do this and what to say. Here are a few things to consider when thinking through how to prepare your child for this transition.
1. Consider your child's age
The older the child is, the more information they can handle and the more time they may need to process the information. The opposite is also true.
Younger children need more simple language, less details and less time waiting in anticipation. If you’ve ever been on a road trip with young children, you’ve probably heard “Are we there yet?!”
Think of pregnancy in a similar way.
2. Give your child a concrete way to help them understand waiting
Something like, “Your little brother or sister will be here when we start seeing pumpkins at the grocery store” or “When we start wearing our warm clothes.”
Making something like a paper chain that they can remove a link on may also be a good option. The trick is that sometimes we can’t anticipate when the baby will make their arrival so adding in the caveat that the baby gets to surprise us is essential.
3. Books and shows are great resources
If you have a young child, there are several books that talk about pregnancy and the changes they can expect to experience with a newborn in the house.
Daniel Tiger Season 2 Episodes 1-4 address his little sister’s impact on his life and how that makes him feel. This provides a great conversation starter for young children (think toddlers up to around age 4 or so).
There are several books that debunk pregnancy, birth and having a new sibling in child-specific language.
My personal favorite book suggestions are: “I’m a Big Sister” or “I’m a big brother” by Joanna Cole, and “My New Baby” or “Waiting for Baby” by Rachel Fuller.
4. Provide an open invitation for conversation
Children often process information in waves. You may think that they comprehend something and then they surprise you in the grocery store with all their burning questions.
Try to engage in conversation and answer their questions as they come up as simply as possible. Think of it as sort of grazing rather than one big long lecture conversation.
Allowing them to take the lead and initiate conversation can be helpful for their processing.
5. Get out the baby gear well before the baby arrives
This may trigger more questions from your child and most likely prompt them to process further the changes that are going to take place.
If you’re going to use a crib, have your child “help” in an age appropriate way. For a very young child, you could have them bring you a measuring tape or box (regardless of if that actually gets anything relevant done).
For an older child, they may be able to turn a screw for you or hold a piece while you secure it. Not only is this time aiding the child in processing, it is also providing you both with quality time together.
6. Prep special activities to use when the baby requires all of you
Small bins that are only for pre-determined times can make a normally challenging time something to look forward to.
Some examples of activities to use for these times are legos, a special art project, I-Spy books, Polly Pocket toys or basically anything you wouldn’t want a baby to get into.
Make sure these activities are something the child can do without much help. Times when this may come in handy are during feedings, while you’re calming a crying baby or putting the baby down for a nap.
7. Plan for special 1 on 1 time with your older child
It is normal for your older child to feel jealous. Their world likely has been turned upside down from the arrival of a new baby. They now have one more person to split their parent(s) attention with and that is a tough reality.
Carve out time specifically for your older child. You may be surprised at how much that will do for both you and your child.
8. Prepare a small (or not so small) gift for your older child.
I am not sure I have ever met a child who does not like a gift.
When your older child meets your baby, you can tell them that the baby wanted them to have this gift. That distraction can be a welcomed ice breaker when the moment comes as it can be a shock for your older child.
We hope these tips are helpful!
Let us know how you prepared your older child to meet their new sibling! We'd love to hear your thoughts!
Simply put, no.
Even if he is a trained doula, it really blurs the lines. He is your husband. Maybe he is a trained doula. He can’t effectively be both your husband and your doula simultaneously for you.
One of the mainstays of the doula role is to offer unbiased, non-judgmental support.
I 100% agree that a husband or partner is able to offer non-judgmental support, but what about unbiased support?
After all, they are your partner! They have huge bias! And don’t get me wrong, that is NOT a bad thing, it just makes them your partner and NOT your doula.
Ok cool, so my partner can’t be my doula but I’m good. He is super supportive and knows what I need.
So why should I hire a doula?
Author, Kristina McMurtrey, is a passionate doula who aims to see families supported regardless of their unique way of navigating pregnancy, birth and parenting.
North Cascade Doulas provide care for families looking for Labor Doulas, Placenta Encapsulation and Childbirth Education Classes. We support all parenting philosophies and birth plans.
We specialize in :
(natural) unmedicated birth / (surgical) cesarean birth / epidural birth / induction / planned induction / planned cesarean / VBAC / TOLAC / waterbirth / multiples / breastfeeding / bottle feeding / formula feeding / NICU / PPD / PPMD / bed rest / high risk / low risk / advanced maternal age / miscarriage / IVF / and more.
Areas we Serve:
We serve Whatcom and Skagit Counties and the neighborhoods of Alger / Anacortes / Bellingham / Big Lake / Birch Bay / Blaine / Bow / Burlington / Clear Lake / Custer / Everson / Ferndale / Glen Haven / La Conner / Laurel / Lynden / Mount Vernon / Sedro Woolley / Sudden Valley