Your pregnancy is typically a joyful time filled with preparation and planning as you get ready to welcome your baby. Perhaps you signed up for a tour of where you plan to deliver, registered for childbirth classes, and hired a doula. You've envisioned your perfect labor and delivery experience. Of course we all know and recognize we can't plan birth, only prepare ourselves for all possibilities, and hope for the best outcomes.
So what happens when something like Covid-19 comes along? What do we do? What about our plans? Who will be allowed in the room with you for support? Are my baby or I at risk? These are all valid questions and concerns when something new and unknown comes along. Here is a comprehensive resource about what you should know during the COVID-19 pandemic if you are expecting.
Yes, things are now different. How long will it last? No one knows for sure, but eventually this too shall pass. In the meantime what does this mean for your pregnancy plans?
Hospital and Birth Center Tours: If you've scheduled to take a hospital tour, many of them are now offering on-line tours to walk you through labor and delivery. If this isn't available for your birthing facility, perhaps ask your doctor or midwife if anyone could take a quick video tour and post for their patients.
Childbirth Education Classes: You picked your class dates months ago but now all the hospital classes are canceling. Fortunately many of us are fortunate to have computer and internet access. With platforms like Zoom and Google Hangouts, Childbirth Education and Advanced Comfort Measures classes can still be held. Looking for a remote class option? Well Born Baby has you covered with Childbirth Education and Advanced Comfort Classes planned. With over 13 years experience as childbirth educator and doula, you can put your mind at ease knowing you'll be prepared with the tools and methods you need to have your best birth experience. To find out more or register, please visit here.
Doula Support: During these uncertain times many hospitals have limited entry to the laboring woman and her partner. Some states have started to even limit the partner from attending. No woman should have to birth alone. Your partner should absolutely be allowed to support you during this emotional and physical time. But what if you've hired a doula? Your doula CAN still be with you! While we may physically not be in the room with you, as a doula with over 13 years experience, I can absolutely guarantee you that we can provide a very high level of support remotely. The healthcare system may be burdened at this time. Nurses may be stretched thinner then they normally would be. Why wouldn't you still want that extra set of eyes, ears, and voice to be with you continuously? Your doula can be there with you remotely over Zoom or Google Hangouts. But it won't be the same you say? No, of course it's not the same. We can't rub your back, get you ice, or squeeze your hips. That's such a small part of what we actually do. We CAN guide your partner through any counter pressure or massage techniques allowing them to be a more active participant. We CAN help you breathe through your contractions reminding you to allow your belly to do all of the work and soften your body. We CAN demonstrate positions and make suggestions of what to try. We CAN help talk through what the medical team is suggesting, what the pros and cons are of an intervention, and reassurance that this is what labor looks like. A HUGE part of what a doula does is to reassure the mother and partner that they're doing a great job, that they're supported and not alone, and that they have options and choices. I can still be there with you and offer the same support. I can still be your advocate. Everything has a silver lining. It's my hope that this remote support option allows partners to be even more involved and for the laboring team to come out realizing just how strong they are together. At the end of many a birth I've said to my new moms "remember, once you've done this, you can do anything". Covid-19 takes that statement to a whole new level. But trust me, once you've been through your labor, worked with your team, and realized that you and your love ones are still okay, you'll really see just how strong you are.
Yes, these are scary times. Things might get scarier before they get better. You deserve support. You deserve planning and education. Through support, planning, preparation, and taking the time to talk things through we hope that some of the fear and anxiety can be relieved. Well Born Baby is here for you for pregnancy, birth, and beyond. You've got this mamas and we've got your back!
Much love to all the nurses, midwives, and doctors out there doing their best to keep everyone safe and healthy during these times.