Doula Confessions: Some Days Will Be Hell
As some of you may know, I got married to the love of my life in September of last year. I had every intention of changing my last name right away, but with pregnancy and well, having a baby, it was postponed. After a few reminders from my new husband and some encouraging words, I decided to pack up the 2 month old and our 2.5 year old daughters and get it done. I’d like to start off by saying that typically my children are well behaved. Charlie-May has her “two year old moments” to say the least but Arlowe is (knock on wood) a really good baby. Well...not today. The moment we got into Service Ontario she started to get fussy. Don’t worry I told myself, you’re a doula. You got this. I pulled out all the stops - the swaying, rocking, shushing, butt tapping. I did everything short of banging the drums & burning incense, but she wasn’t having any of it. She literally cried bloody murder from the moment we entered that building to the moment we crawled out.
My other daughter was just as peachy. It started out with doing laps around the office which, by the way, I was somewhat OK with. She then started pushing every.damn.button on the photocopier, throwing paper all over the floor and yelling “no, mommy YOU stop. I officially gave up all parenting when she pulled off her shoes AND socks so that she could get a "proper rest on the floor." Here’s a visual for you: me standing in front of the camera (which broke in case you were wondering) nursing a screaming baby and begging my toddler to remove her face from the filth that is the floor of Service Ontario.
...And then my angel emerged from the 40+ people waiting in line (of course a good 60 mins too late) and offered to hold my baby while I finished signing my paper work.
So what is the point in this blog?
1. If you’re feeling hesitant about taking your new baby out for whatever reason, that’s okay! Try waiting until someone can come with you to help or postpone it until you’re feeling more confident. (Heck! Maybe even think about hiring your postpartum doula to tag along with you). *wink wink*
2. No matter how much experience you have, shit.can.hit.the.fan. Being a doula is my job. More than that, being a mom has been my job for almost 3 years, and I STILL never saw this day coming. It’s okay to have a bad day. They will come, and you will get through it.
3. Always, always always help a struggling parent if you can. It doesn’t hurt to offer and even if they refuse your help, the thought will mean more than you know. I was literally on the verge of tears before that lady offered to hold Arlowe. She told me that I wasn’t alone and that almost everyone in that room had been through a day similar to mine. I felt so much better knowing that she wasn’t judging me. That she could empathize with my feelings of embarrassment and inadequacy.
4. Be kind to yourself. It’s hard to be a mom, nevermind trying to simultaneously be a wife, a business women and any other hat you need to wear today.
Don’t be ashamed of your mom fails (I certainly am not!), they help you grow and learn and help others. And never be afraid to ask for help.