I had a really beautiful moment this week during a virtual consultation that I really want to share.
The client was two days postpartum after a grueling 38 hour labor. She was left exhausted and with a baby who wasn't latching well. I joined the visit and was pleasantly surprised to see two other women in the room. The women were her mother and her younger sister, who also is a newer mom herself. The three women came together as one to support this new mom who was at her breaking point. As we worked on latch, positioning, pumping and education, her mother helped her get into a comfortable position, grabbed anything extra that was needed and took care of the baby when she wasn't breastfeeding. Her younger sister, on the other hand, was right next to the new mom holding the camera for our visit and helping her with the skill of hand expression.
As I watched as all three women work together to help this new mom during a rough postpartum period, I understood the true meaning of "it takes a village."
Somewhere along the way our society lost this idea "village", and parenthood became isolating and lonely. Throw a pandemic on top of that, and a lot of us are working alone just trying to make it through another day.
Each of us can work to rebuild these villages. When welcoming a new baby into the world, ask for help! Lean into those around you and take them up on offers to help. If you don't have family around, check out a new mom's group that offers connections with other postpartum moms.
Working together to raise our babies is such a beautiful thing and is so much better than trying to raise our babies alone.
A very special shoutout to this family for inviting me into their circle of women and reminding me what the postpartum period can look like with extra love and support.
Kelsey RN, BSN, IBCLC