A Note From the Midwife:
Pregnancy has three trimesters; babies have four. The fourth trimester is the first 12 weeks of a baby’s life. It’s called the fourth trimester because, developmentally, the baby is still a fetus—but they’re a fetus on the outside, continuing their development in the arms of their family, rather than in the arms of the womb.
Humans are different from many mammals in this regard. Think about horses and cows and giraffes and elephants. Those babies are born ready to get up and run on their first day. Our babies don’t even crawl for 6 months to a year, let alone walk or run. Other mammal babies are fully gestated when they are born. Our babies really aren’t. Our babies have to be born when they’re, by all accounts, still fetuses, because 1) the human brain is so much bigger than other mammals, and 2) as bipeds our pelvises are so much smaller, that babies have to be born as fetuses so they can still fit through the pelvis at birth.
A worthy compromise, we’d all agree! But a compromise that presents a unique mammalian challenge to us as human parents. It means that our babies are entirely dependent on us to even lift their heads, not to mention every single other aspect of their survival and well-being. And while this is good, but hard, medicine for the soul to have to transform into parents and become so selfless and giving for the benefit of another human life, it can also be, at times, demanding to the extreme.
But hope and answers are out there! As is the support we need as parents to survive *and* thrive during this time. For both of my babies, seeing them as a fetus that is developing now on the outside, has helped me so much to know and to learn how to soothe them and care for them with a relatively minimal amount of crying. Re-creating the environment of the womb for them when they need to be soothed has worked wonders for us. Swaddling, white noise, and swaying movements like they remember from their time when they were growing inside, each of these things typically works like a flipped light switch to soothe them into calm and sleep. These were all things I learned at group at The Birth Center from The Happiest Baby on the Block, a DVD and method produced by Dr. Harvey Karp. It literally saved me and my son’s lives when he was a very tough tiny sleeper (or non-sleeper, I should say).
There are so many more resources, supports, and methods for moms, babies, dads, older siblings: all things to help the whole family thrive through the many challenges and changes of the fourth trimester. We hope this newsletter is helpful in connecting your family on your journey through the fourth trimester. And remember that your midwives are only ever a text or a phone call away to be part of your support. We are always here for you! So be quick to reach out.
All our love, as always,
We've been having such a blast meeting new families & seeing past clients at the Sugarhouse Farmer's Market! Come visit us any Wednesday 5-8 until September- We would love to have you say hello, take a picture & feature it here!
Postpartum moms, your village is here. Please join in a gathering of other newborn mothers at The Birth Center. This free group is for ALL mothers that have given birth within the last 12 months. It doesn't matter how or where your baby was born. You are welcome here. If you're struggling, you are welcome here. If you're thriving, you are welcome here. Let's gather in uplifting one another. We'll have important discussions & maybe even enjoy a laugh or two. This group begins September 6 & continues to run the first & third Thursday of the month. 10-12pm.
Ten Commandments for the Postpartum Mother By Dr Williams Sears
Thou shalt not cook, clean house, do laundry or entertain.
Thous shalt be given a Doula.
Thou shalt remain clothed in thy nightgown and sit in thy rocking chair as long as thou pleaseth.
Thou shalt honor thy partner with an appropriate share of household chores.
Thou shalt not give up thy baby to unfamiliar caregivers.
Thou shalt take long walks in green pastures, eat good food, and drink enough water.
Thou shalt not have strangers and unhelpful visitors in thy home.
Thou shalt groom thy hair and adorn thy body with attractive robes.
Thou shalt not have prophets of bad baby advice in thy company.
Thou shalt sleep when the baby sleeps.
The Birth Center Seminar Series:
Sierra Abrams Brooks, CPD (CAPPA), CAPPA PP Doula Trainer, CLC, Gentle Sleep Consultant
August 11th, 10-12pm
Sierra has been serving women through pregnancy, birth and postpartum since 2000. Starting out as a birth and postpartum doula until she began her own family and became a mother to her first son in 2009. She knew her main focus was now on her own babies, so she shifted from being a birth doula (and on call) to education, breastfeeding and postpartum support. In her last month of pregnancy with her second and last son in 2011, she was hired to be a childbirth educator for Methodist Women's Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska. She soon gained her Lamaze Teaching certification and enjoyed working with a team of amazing educators who provided Omaha with gentle, evidence based education. They also created Omaha's first hospital based class geared toward couples who were consider unmedicated labor and deliveries. Sierra had the honor of being on the team of educators who wrote curriculum for and presented this class.
In 2014 Sierra's family moved to Salt Lake City, Utah to be close to the mountains as they love the outdoors. She launched Bud to Blossom, a business dedicated to educating families from pregnancy through postpartum, classes such as childbirth prep, both traditional, postpartum and sibling preparation, provides postpartum doula support, early breastfeeding support and gentle sleep consulting (she calls it--Mother Baby Sleep Support).
Her main priority is supporting families as a pp doula and is excited to bring the CAPPA standard to more families in Utah and the surrounding areas as a new pp Doula Trainer for CAPPA.
In her free time, she loves nature camping, music, playing her 12 string guitar, singing, playing with her husband and kids, traveling and enjoying life!
Amy Updike- Fitness Contributor:
That postpartum period can be SOO eye opening! Everyone said the weight would fall right off of you because you are breastfeeding, but its been 2 months and you feel like nothing has changed! This all boils down to one word.
Its important to not have too many expectations in the postpartum period. Each of our bodies are so unique and our situations and experiences are just as different. We cannot predict how we will feel, how our recovery will commence, how much sleep we will be getting, etc. moving into this very special time.
The BEST fitness advice that I can possibly give during the 4th trimester is..... Listen. To. Your. Body. Just like in pregnancy, your body is your guide. What feels right to one won't feel right to another. What felt great after baby number 1 might not feel great after baby number 2. Our circumstances are rarely the same. Having grace is always such a key factor here. My top 3 recommendations for easing back into fitness in the postpartum period are:
1) When you and your midwife have established that you are ready to resume exercise, go for it! Listen to your body to decide how much or how little you feel like you can handle.
2) If you have to choose between sleep and exercise, you might want to choose sleep. And that's OK! Our bodies simply cannot function without adequate rest. And with a newborn, it can be very unpredictable when and how much sleep we will get. There will always be time to be committed to your exercise plan when your baby is not fresh out of the oven.
3) Its OK to start slow. Chances are, you probably lost some muscle and strength during pregnancy. The hard part about this is that we feel SO weak and tired when we start exercising again and that can be very discouraging. The good news is: that strength and muscle WILL come back! Thank you muscle memory!! Ease back into your routine without having a lot of expectations of how much you should be able to do and how long your stamina should last. The important part is that you are doing something! Listen to your body for cues on when it can handle more and slowly increase weights or amount of time exercising as you feel able to. Don't give up. Fitness is SO much more than the way your body looks a few months after giving birth. Your body is strong and just did one of the most miraculous things on Earth!
You can find Amy on:
Instagram: @fitamysuzanne YouTube: Amy Updike
Facebook: fitamysuzanne www.fitamysuzanne.com
Links to ease up your postpartum:
TBC videos for the 4th trimester
Find your perfect postpartum Doula
Kellymom Parenting & Breastfeeding
PSI - Postpartum Support International
As always, please ask us about the many resources we have at TBC
be it Doulas, mood disorders, partner support, pediatricians & much, much more!
Join the Utah Breastfeeding Coalition for a week full of events, workshops & booths at the WIC Fair & Sugarhouse Farmer's Market.
8.1 Sunshine Crew @Liberty Park 11-12pm
8.1 WIC Breastfeeding fair 1-6pm
8.1 Sugarhouse Farmer's Market 5-8pm
8.2 WIC Breastfeeding Fair 10-4pm
8.2 Prenatal Yoga @Centered City 7:30-8:45pm
8.3 WIC Breastfeeding Fair 10-4pm
8.4 Family Art Project 10-12pm Kafeneio Cafe
8.5 Breastfeeding Cafe 9-11am Wheeler Historic Farm
8.7 Bradley Childbirth @TBC 6-8:30pm
8.8 Sunshine Crew @Liberty Park 11-12pm
8.8 Sugarhouse Farmer's Market 5-8pm
8.9 Prenatal Yoga @Centered City 7:30-8:45pm
8.11 Seminar: Postpartum Care, Sierra Abrams Brooks @TBC 10-12pm
8.14 Bradley Childbirth @TBC 6-8:30pm
8.15 Sunshine Crew @Liberty Park 11-12pm
8.15 Sugarhouse Farmer's Market 5-8pm
8.16 Monthly Social @TBC 7pm
8.16 Prenatal Yoga @Centered City 7:30-8:45pm
8.18 Breastfeeding Class @TBC 1-3pm
8.20 Hypnobirthing @TBC 6:30-9pm
8.21 Post Cesarean Support Group @TBC 5:30-7pm
8.21 Bradley Childbirth @TBC 7:30-10pm
8.22 Sunshine Crew @Liberty Park 11-12pm
8.22 Sugarhouse Farmer's Market 5-8pm
8.23 Prenatal Yoga @Centered City 7:30-8:45pm
8.25 Hypnobabies @TBC 4-7pm
8.27 Hypnobirthing @TBC 6:30-9pm
8.28 Bradley Childbirth @TBC 6-8:30pm
8.29 Sunshine Crew @Liberty Park 11-12pm
8.29 Sugarhouse Farmer's Market 5-8pm
8.30 Prenatal Yoga @Centered City 7:30-8:45pm