Check out all these awesome upcoming classes for expectant parents as well as free events where you can meet and chat with Doulas of Iowa City member businesses. We hope to see you soon!
October 5 - Dream on: the Art and Science of Infant Sleep
Nested Mama Prenatal & Postpartum Doula Support
A prenatal course designed to set up healthy expectations and habits surrounding infant sleep.
Taught by Johanna Tomlinson, PhD, MCPCD, MBE, MCE
November 3 - Meet the Doulas
Doulas of Iowa City
A free, open-house style event where you can chat with the member business of Doulas of Iowa City.
November 4 - Planning for Postpartum Workshop
Nested Mama Prenatal & Postpartum Doula Support
A prenatal workshop designed to strengthen your partnership and prepare for a better postpartum.
Taught by Johanna Tomlinson, PhD, MCPCD, MBE, MCE
**Save a combined $30 when you register for this and ICBS's November 10 childbirth education class**
November 10 - Birth: The Process, the Pain, and the Positions
Iowa City Birth Services
A one-day comprehensive childbirth education class - evidence-based and judgement free.
Taught by Hannah Sandler, CLD (CBI) and Emily Piette, CLD (CBI)
**Save a combined $30 when you register for this and Nested Mama’s November 4 postpartum planning course.**
Fall TBD - Breastfeeding from the Beginning
Beloved Bonds Birth & Bodywork
Breastfeeding your newborn from birth through the early months.
Taught by Kimberly Hendricks, LMT, CLC, CD
As always, don't hesitate to reach out to our member businesses directly with any questions. Private classes and consultations available. You'll find a full listing of our members and services here.
When to hire a birth doula - you can hire a birth doula at any time during your pregnancy!
Some people hire their doula as soon as they take a positive pregnancy test, and others don't decide they want a doula until they are in labor, so there is a wide spectrum of possibility.
If you know you want a doula, you will have a better selection of doulas available for your estimated due date if you interview earlier rather than later. The closer you get to your due date, the more doulas will be booked for your due month.
It also makes sense to hire a doula earlier in your pregnancy, if possible, so you can have the support of the doula throughout your pregnancy in addition to your labor and birth. Doulas can help with research and informational support during pregnancy, as well as helping you create a birth plan that you can share with your care providers. Doulas also provide emotional support during pregnancy, which can be just as valuable during the early months of pregnancy as it is in the later months and during birth.
Most doulas offer free consultations with the birthing person/couple. You can set up as many or as few of these as you like and then make your selection based on who you feel has the best fit/connection. Additionally, Doulas of Iowa City offers quarterly "Meet the Doulas" events in the Corridor where pregnant folks can meet a number of doulas from different businesses and agencies at one location in a single afternoon.
We asked local parents, "When did you hire your birth doula?"
After having a doula with my first baby, I called her immediately after receiving a positive test with babies #2 and #3. I wanted to be sure to get on her schedule! - Tina H.
I hired a doula around the midpoint of my pregnancy. I wanted the time to interview several doulas and find the perfect fit - but it just so happened that we loved the first doula we interviewed and didn't need to do any more interviews. Having her in place made me feel so much more confident as the weeks of pregnancy ticked by and we anticipated baby's birth. - Johanna T.
I knew I wanted a doula even before I became pregnant. I love my husband, and I trust him, but I wanted a woman there and someone who was there just for me. - Corey H.
Want to find your perfect doula fit? Check out all the fabulous member doulas of Doulas of Iowa City or join us at our next Meet the Doula event!
When I became pregnant, I thought I had a leg up when it came to birth. I had been studying midwifery for 4 years and knew quite a bit about the physiology of birth and what to expect. A good chunk of my time then was devoted to scouring evidence-based research, plus I was a nanny, so I figured I had the know-how and experience to deal with whatever came my way the next few years. I knew what I wanted out of my birth and how to achieve it (hooray for being informed!) I was so ready.
I tell you what, that woman made my labor glorious. While my partner rested, she was there to give deep-tissue massage on my legs (with aromatherapy lotion!) She handled all the physical work of comforting me so my mom could focus on doing calming, sweet things like brushing my hair and telling me stories. My doula knew just where to push on my back to take the pressure off, and when I told her to squeeze my hand she knew that I meant “as hard as you possibly can, please.”
It’s hard to say how things would have gone if we hadn’t had a doula there. It would have been fine, of course. We would have made it through. But instead of just making it through, we thrived. We had a beautiful, calm, empowered birth, thanks in part to our doula. My partner got to start his new life as “Daddy” fairly rested instead of exhausted. He didn’t have to feel guilty for leaving me to take care of himself, because I had someone else to provide excellent support while he was resting. And even now, she loves talking about that day with me and re-living the beautiful and hard moments. And that’s pretty wonderful.
This blog was original published on February 3, 2016 on the Kind Roots Blog.
Do you love your incorporating books into your bedtime routine with baby? We know we do. Here's a few recommendations from Doulas of Iowa City members Grace of Iowa City Birth Services and Johanna of Nested Mama to add something new in your bedtime reading routine.
Did we miss one of your favorites? Share in the comments below!
The benefits of babywearing are undeniable. Babywearing brings you closer to your little ones both physically and emotionally. And while you are soaking up all of the cuddly goodness that comes along with babywearing, you also have the ability and freedom to take on other parts of your day. More and more research is being done to support babywearing and recent findings show that babywearing can reduce postpartum depressive symptoms.
And as if I didn’t love babywearing enough already, I was so thrilled to find so much support for babywearing in the Iowa City and Cedar Rapids Corridor. If you are interested in babywearing, here are some awesome communities and resources we are super lucky to have in our area.
AP Babywearing of Iowa City
o The Attachment Parenting International chapter in Iowa City has created a subgroup just for babywearing. I became the member of the Facebook group when I was thinking about investing in my first woven wrap and have since learned a lot from the group. Any questions about wraps or carries or even requests to borrow can be made in the group. There is a monthly meet-up where you can get hands-on help for all things babywearing and the chapter also has a lending library! Once my baby got bigger and stronger I loved knowing how to use my woven wraps to get her more secure and snug! If I hadn’t found these meet-ups, I’m not sure I would have ever been brave enough to use them.
Babywearing Dance Class
o If there is anything better than hiking while babywearing, it’s dancing while babywearing. There is a babywearing dance class every Wednesday morning at Anytime Fitness in Coralville, and it is amazing. Every time I go I am amazed at
what a good workout I get in, and my little one absolutely loves the music and the social time before and after class. I have met some amazing mommas in this class and am so thankful for this momma + baby opportunity to work out and
socialize. For more info on this class, join the Facebook group!
o Between the lending library provided by AP of Iowa City and the Iowa City Babywearers groups, the Iowa City Babywearers B/S/T and Babywearers of CR BST, and local retailers like Baby Time , it is easy to get your hands on carriers to find what is most comfortable for you and your little one. I have scored awesome deals on the Iowa City Babywearers B/S/T page and was able to connect with other babywearing mommas to try out some soft structured carriers before going with my Tula Free to Grow. Finding the carrier that works best for you and your body and baby is so very important, and I all of the support and resources in our area make it easy to do so!
A look at some of my carriers- I found the bottom two on the Iowa City BST page in amazing condition for more than half off original retail.
The benefits of babywearing truly seem endless, and when you pair those benefits with the extra support and community in the Corridor area—I feel like we really have it made around here. Babywearing education and tutorials can be provided by many of the doulas with Doulas of Iowa City. Check with your doula to see how they can help you along your babywearing journey. Whether you’re looking for community or just to enjoy a meal with two hands… babywearing can make it happen.
Looking for the perfect book as you prepare for baby or navigate the first year postpartum? Read on as Doulas of Iowa city members share their favorite reads.
Looking for more support during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum? Come Meet the Doulas of Iowa City at our next free event!
The Doulas of Iowa City blog contains guest posts by Doulas of Iowa City member businesses. We are excited to share with you about pregnancy, birth, and postpartum in Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, and surrounding communities and to help you connect to fabulous local resources.