Holly Phelan is a labor and postpartum doula in Jupiter, Florida. She is delighted to have integrated HUG Your Baby into her work with young families and shares her experiences with us today!
As a labor and postpartum doula teaching and using the HUG techniques has been such a benefit to my practice. Watching a new Mom's face go from confusion to understanding after learning new information is so rewarding. I often do my postpartum visits with new moms around the 2 week mark and this provides me the great opportunity to go over normal newborn crying patterns. Most recently I met with Anna and her baby boy. Because of what I learned in the HUG I start my visit by simply observing mother and baby and letting her talk. Baby boy began to fuss and cry and immediately Mom sprung into action, she spoke loudly trying to get his attention, she bounced him around, tried everything to get him to look at her and became tense and distressed as he only began to cry louder. This gave me the perfect opportunity to talk to Anna about normal crying, newborn zones, and SOS's. I saw a lightbulb go on over her head as she realized this was exactly the behaviors her baby was showing and I saw her confidence build as I showed her how to swaddle, speak softly and sway baby boy until he calmed down! She had a few breastfeeding questions that we went over and I gave her the "Roadmap to Breastfeeding success." I directed her to the HUG blog so she would know what to expect over the coming months! When she hugged me and thanked me over and over as I was leaving it reaffirmed why I do what I do!
My favorite part of learning the HUG has been teaching classes in my community. During the first class I taught one mother exclaimed, "I think this is the best information anyone has given me about my baby yet!" I love empowering women in birth as a doula and now new families as a HUG teacher! My husband and I recently found out we are expecting our first child and couldn't be more excited. I can't tell you how happy we are to have discovered the HUG before we embark on our parenting journey. It has given us a confidence that we would not of had otherwise and the comfort that we will be able to meet our babies needs.