Welcome to the Birth Matters NYC blog!

Welcome!  Thanks for visiting the Birth Matters NYC blog.  Herein, I plan to post on the topic of labor, childbirth, newborn care, breastfeeding, and quite possibly other early parenting topics.  I do hope to include (as much as possible) local information on these topics for the benefit of my clients as well as any pregnant women/couples & new parents in New York City.

I’d like to get things started with a great tribute to all the new moms or moms-to-be out there (advance warning that #66 is rendered virtually inapplicable to NYC locals):

100 Ways To Encourage a New Mom

My favorites among these great 100 things are:

1. Fold her laundry – especially all the socks
12. Watch Up All Night with her
14. Tell her a day will come when she will sleep again
15. Make her a 2am nursing station on Pandora
92. Tell her motherhood should come with a super hero cape, a really cute one with sparkles
94. Tell her not to sweat everything Pinterest tells her she should be doing, baking, making and crafting for the baby
95. Encourage her to embrace PJ days – even if they last for weeks

Here’s one that’s important to me as a childbirth educator:
30. Don’t imply that breast feeding should be a breezy walk in the park; let her know it’s normal to struggle sometimes getting the hang of it.

Just like being honest about pain in labor, it’s critical to be truthful and let new moms know that, yes, many women (and, yes, babies) do have some level of struggle as they get started breastfeeding.  It’s okay and you just push through.  It will get better with time and practice, and sometimes with the help of a really good lactation consultant or some advice from a helpful La Leche League leader.

And also:
78. Tell her it’s normal to be be smitten with newborn love one minute and weeping with tired the next

I have two thoughts along these lines:

  1. Normalizing is something I want to make a habit of doing in my teaching.  When a mom or dad have their first baby, EVERYTHING is new.  This can be fear-inducing, so I want to be a guide along the way who can normalize and re-frame the scary into perfectly peaceful, natural, and healthy processes.
  2. On postpartum day 3 or so, your milk will come in and there is a bunch of hormonal-make-you-crazy stuff going on in your body.  This is likely to make you feel like the least adequate and most weepy mom on earth.  You are not alone in this, and remember it should pass (if it doesn’t, see these resources).  Do your best to get some fresh air, and have support around you — especially friends or family with whom you feel entirely comfortable and at ease.

I’m interested to hear what you would add to this list?