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postnatal courses

May Conversations

Postnatal Conversations: “I always feel better after the Mother Cuppa sessions – less alone, supported and able to deal with the different challenges.” The Mother Cuppa Bump & Baby group runs each week – it is a place for conversation, questions, reassurance and support about all things bump, birth and baby. As an informal space, parents can offload and speak openly without judgement or criticism – there isn’t a right way to birth or parent and it is a unique experience for everyone. I also see parents one-to-one for more in-depth and specific conversations and support. No two months are ever the same and May was busy with birth preparation sessions, as well as older baby/going back to work sessions. The birth prep sessions have ranged from knowledge and focus as a first-time parent to preparing for birth again, with birth debriefs, induction preparation and new baby prep in-between. In addition to practical information and strategies we have talked through fears and concerns, their individual needs and could help them. Postnatal sessions have focused on …

birth wellbeing

12 practical ways to boost your birth wellbeing

What do I mean by birth wellbeing? Well, it’s really easy to focus on contractions and to forget to think about what you might need to be physically and mentally well during labour and birth. Labour and birth has it’s own pace, it can demand a lot from you and that is normal and to be expected. No-one knows what the pace of their labour will be before it starts so realistic preparation so you can look after you is important. The thought of labour and birth can make expectant parents question things that they wouldn’t normally think about – can I eat, will I be allowed to move, what if I need the toilet? what if I don’t understand what’s happening? will I be allowed off the bed? So let’s run through the essentials of birth wellbeing so you feel less detached from your basic needs. Ideas for your birth wellbeing… Everyone’s labour and birth is different and you will have your own needs, which is why focusing on what you need is important …

pregnant woman sitting on bed and reading book

Pregnancy Wellbeing

Pregnancy wellbeing can feel like an indulgence because pregnancy is natural, so what’s the fuss? While I don’t like a lot of fuss, pregnancy is just the time to start to focus on your wellbeing and what you need to feel as physically and mentally well as possible. The simple steps of pregnancy wellbeing can help you to feel well: rest when you need to and when you can swim, walk or do pregnancy yoga to ease aches and boost your energy levels breathe to de-stress, to be calm and to relax eat well and often – this isn’t a time to restrict food so healthy options throughout the day can help to ease any tiredness or nausea drink water throughout the day – it’s easy to become dehydrated de-stress – especially if you are busy with work as well as family life share how you feel if you are feeling low or isolated what do you need? focus on putting you first Finding what works and doing it will make a difference, so planning …

young working mother cuddling baby and using laptop at home

Postnatal Conversations In April

Postnatal Conversations: “Your sessions are like therapy – we get to offload and talk openly.” All of my sessions – groups and consultations – are focused on you as a parent – in pregnancy, with a baby, with a young family, so you can be open. We’ve had so many postnatal conversations this month, so much of it about the different aspects of change and the challenges that come with being a parent, specifically being a mum. It’s important to stress that no-one is particularly unhappy, there can be plenty of chat and laughter during sessions, as well as pride and contentness. But there is also exhaustion, loneliness, moods, lack of confidence, adjusting and resentment. We have talked about friendship changes and challenges within relationships. For some people friends can shift when a baby comes along because your social life takes a hit and you don’t have the energy for going out or listening to other people’s problems. And relationships can change in couples – you are going from a couple to a family or …

the Ockenden Report

After the Ockenden Report

After reading the Ockenden Report and the experiences of the families involved, I have reflected a lot on the births of my own children, on the births I have attended as a doula and on my practice. I have experienced and witnessed amazing care which was compassionate, supportive and kind, which made a difference and I have experienced and seen overstretched student midwives, unsure of their role, along with rude staff who have been dismissive and who have made unnecessary comments. The system will never be perfect, its people will never be perfect but the catastrophic errors that have been highlighted in the Ockenden Report should never have happened and should never happen again. – after the Ockenden Report – If you experienced anything upsetting during your pregnancy, birth or as a new mum, feed it back. It’s not easy and none of us like to complain but nothing changes unless we speak up. It doesn’t have to be formal complaint, just feedback. Talk through the birth of your baby – you can talk to …