Frequently students return to class and express how blindsided they felt by the demands of the first few weeks of life with a newborn baby. Much time had been spent preparing for labor and birth but many felt unprepared for the reality of this transition.
In this episode of Yoga|Birth| Babies, we pull back the curtain and dig into the nitty-gritty of what to expect in the first week as a new parent. Long time postpartum doula and Certified Lactation Counselor, Meema Spadola lovingly shares her vast knowledge about this challenging and precious time of transition. She covers everything from birth recovery to how much sleep new parents really get to handling demanding visitors. Whether you are a new parent, expectant person or someone offering support to new families, Meema will give you solid advice.
In this episode:
- Learn about Meema and how she got into this line of work.
- Recovering from a vaginal birth.
- Practical ways to help with perineal tears.
- Understanding the hormonal shift after birth.
- Recovering from a cesarean birth.
- Warning signs and when to call your care provider.
- Sleep! A realistic picture of how much sleep a new parent gets the first week.
- Breast/chest feeding: How much does the baby actually need in the first week?
- How to know that your baby is getting enough.
- The importance of skin to skin contact.
- Managing family and visitors?
- One tip or piece of advice for new and expectant parents
- Where to find Meema and her work!
Meema Spadola is a DONA (Doulas of North America) trained and certified postpartum doula (since 2006), a Certified Lactation Counselor (since 2010) and is also certified in infant CPR. The New York Times described her as “a modern Mary Poppins: a combination friend, teacher and spirit guide…” Meema teaches Birth Day Presence’s Breastfeeding & Newborn Care and Pumping & Back to Work Classes and she enjoys working with nursing parents; demonstrating infant massage and “baby wearing;” and supporting parents who are struggling with postpartum mood disorders, including postpartum depression and anxiety.
Meema has been fortunate to work with a diverse range of families, including single, adoptive, and LGBTQ+ parents. A former documentary maker, Meema’s films about body image and family issues have been broadcast on PBS, HBO and beyond; her short radio pieces can be heard on This American Life; and an autobiographical essay of hers was included in the anthology Out of the Ordinary: Growing Up with Gay, Lesbian and Transgender Parents.
Meema left her documentary career and became a postpartum doula after seeing a close friend go through a severe postpartum depression. That experience convinced her that more support is essential for all parents– whether it’s their first baby or not. Meema is the proud mother of a son born in July 2007 and lives with her family in Kensington/Windsor Terrace, Brooklyn.
- Meema’s Website
- Postpartum Support International
- “POST BIRTH” warning signs handout
- Finding Support After Birth with a Postpartum Doula
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