Pregnancy and being a brand new parent inherently carries a fair amount of anxiety and uncertainty. Add in an unprecedented pandemic, and that anxiety is likely to increase. One of the best ways to combat these feelings are solid and supportive answers to best prepare for what lies ahead. In this very special and timely episode of Yoga | Birth | Babies, I speak with NYC veteran doula and childbirth educator, Terry Richmond.
Terry openly and honestly talks about how she has been supporting her clients during this intense pandemic. She gives usable tactics and tools for how to best keep birth as normal as possible and lays out plans for how the birth partner can best support the laboring person. Terry also discusses the importance of creating a space where one can feel safe, comfortable, and deeply cared for. This episode is invaluable for pregnant people, support partners, and birth workers during this challenging time.
In this episode:
- Learn a bit about Terry and her extensive experience as a doula.
- What’s going on in terms of the care pregnant people can expect during the pandemic?
- What’s happening in the hospitals?
- The importance of “setting the stage” in your hospital room to feel safe and secure.
- Why a peanut ball can be an extremely useful tool for labor.
- The current restrictions of support people in Labor and Delivery.
- How doulas are now offering support in the time of the COVID-19.
- Virtual support – prenatally and postnatally.
- Suggestions Terry has to help prepare for these new protocols?
- It is OK to ask extraneous people to leave your labor room?
- Suggestions for someone who is told to labor at home for as long as possible without a doula to feel confident, calm, and prepared as they head to the hospital.
- The importance of communication with your care provider- asking them what protocols may be changing daily.
- Postpartum- how long to stay at the hospital and how to get home?
- Setting yourself up for postpartum support, even if it is virtual.
Terry is a labor support doula and a certified childbirth educator. For the last 18 years, she has been attending births and teaching childbirth preparation classes with passion and joy. Hundreds of births and countless classes later, she feels strongly that new parents deserve unconditional support and encouragement no matter what their birth choices.
Terry was the cofounder of Birth Day Presence, helped to create a volunteer doula program at Bellevue Hospital Birth Center, served as co-director of the Metropolitan Doula Group and served on the board of Choices in Childbirth. Terry, along with her doula partner Catherine Stewart-Lindley, runs Labor of Love Doula Services: www.laborlove.org
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Youtube: Prenatal Yoga Center
*photo courtesy of doula Stephanie Tang @_stephtang_