“Hello! My wife and I have a newborn who is about two weeks old. We are beginning to realize that we could really benefit from some overnight help. We are desperate for sleep! Can you help?!”
This is how many of my voicemail messages from new and first time parents sound like. They had planned for the nursery, the hospital, the daycare and even taken parenting and breastfeeding classes but forgot to plan for what they first few weeks home with a newborn would be like. These first few weeks postpartum are so critical for establishing breast-feeding, recovery for the mom and establishing what your new family dynamic looks like with a newborn/s. The first few months postpartum should be the time that you are surrounded with as many extra hands, educated support and as much extra sleep as you can get….not the time to be searching for it!
My suggestions to new families who know that they will be needing extra support after the baby/s comes would be to start researching overnight postpartum doulas a few months into your pregnancy. This will give you the space and time to meet with a few doulas and find the one that your family meshes with the best. This will also guarantee that your choice doula will have space and time for you on her calendar as many postpartum doulas are scheduled up to 6 months out.
Give your future selves the biggest new parent gift of all of securing overnight services from a postpartum doula! Having a supportive and educated extra set of hands is invaluable as you come out of those first postpartum weeks rested, encouraged and confidant as new parents.