Today's article comes to us from Valerie Trumbower, a DONA Certified Postpartum Doula, a Certified Lactation Counselor and the mother for three, including a set of twins.
Life with a newborn is not easy. Yes, it’s full of super sweet baby faces and lots of cuddles, but it’s definitely not easy. I state this without reservation because I’m a Postpartum Doula, and for years I’ve lived the newborn stage over and over (and over) in the homes of new families. I LOVE what I do, and I truly feel honored to walk alongside families as they get acquainted and find their rhythm.
I say the same thing over and over when I meet with people before their baby’s arrival:
It’s just like anything else...if you know what to expect and how to handle situations you might encounter, things will go more smoothly.
But then...I worked with my first adoptive family. As I met with them before the baby arrived and went through my whole spiel and talked about my recommendation of preparing for life with a newborn, they confirmed that they had, in fact, gone to a newborn class at the local hospital. Turns out, though, that the class was geared towards pregnant couples and that they were the only ones in that room who were adopting. They also said it had been awhile; they took the class almost a year prior since they weren’t sure when they’d be matched. If I can be honest, it made me sad for them for how it must have felt to feel so different in that room. And soon after that conversation, I realized it didn’t need to be that way for adopting families and I could help!
That’s when I created Expecting 101...You’re Adopting. No need to sift through information geared toward families who are pregnant; this course is created specifically for adopting families! I talk through strategies to bond with the baby, what baby gear you need to have when you go to meet the baby and what to buy if you just want to get what’s needed for the first month or so until you’re sure everything is official.
This course is completely online which means that families can watch it when it’s convenient for them. If people are adopting with a partner, I think it’s important that both parents take in this information. By having the course online, that means that couples can watch at home when it works for their schedules!
From the basics like how to burp and swaddle to the questions I’m most often asked like when to call the pediatrician and how to know if the baby is getting enough to eat. And to combat the issue that that first family had - course members get access for two years! This means that people can watch now before they’ve been matched so that they know what to expect when it comes to life with a newborn. And then, they can re-watch sections when the baby arrives, and they have questions or need a bit of a refresher!
Expecting 101...You’re Adopting is broken down into short videos that are between 5-10 minutes long because the information is all so important, but I don’t want it to feel overwhelming. And what if they have questions? That’s why we have members-only monthly group chats! It gives us a time to get together online (similar to FaceTime) and have questions answered and concerns addressed!
I’m excited about this course because for years, I have seen the difference it makes when new parents feel confident and prepared as they embark on life with a newborn! With Expecting 101...You’re Adopting families have access to information created specifically for them! To find out more about the course, click here.