Such an odd, yet charming, part of our job: intimate inclusion in the private homes of new parents.
A good postpartum doula can busy herself without making a peep, can blend into the natural rhythm of a particular family, and can both be there and back off alternately as need be. Inclusion without intrusion, if you will.
We make our presence subtle and let the intimate details of your postpartum experience roll off our back. We have seen it all and we have learned how not to judge.
Of course, we do have ears and eyes and hearts and can’t help but notice—as we fold your laundry—what sweet lullaby you sing to baby at bedtime. We admire your fuzzy slipper color choice. We twitch with happiness when your partner brings you cocoa, rubs your feet, or calls you “Angel.”
As we walk your baby through your home, bouncing and shushing and burping and rocking, we delight in the small details that make you you; that make us feel fortunate to know and care for your growing family. The token teddy bear, the funny fridge magnet, the foodie magazines, the funky leopard lamp shade.
I myself often find myself momentarily fixating on the wedding picture, patting your baby’s back as you get some much needed sleep. After knowing you as parents—a new role which is also all-consuming—it’s sweet to see you as you once were: a newly married couple. It’s fun to see the dress! The hair! The flowers! The staged kiss. You and yours in formal wear rather than PJs. You clean up well!
The love and hope I see in your wedding picture serves as a proven premonition of the little one I hold in my arms—your child, who like all children, is love and hope personified.
I invite you to pause before your wedding photo too, cradling the babe that your love created. In your milky, tired, weepy, bleeding, sore, and worried state, you may feel disconnected from your mate. But in one way, through your child, you are more connected than ever. So stop, for a moment, and remember how this began.
With love (and fluffy white taffeta) From Your Doula,