Baby Steps Blog

Postpartum II – Misery and Moms

Published July 10, 2012

Postpartum II - Misery and Moms One night when I was teaching Lamaze, a grandma-to-be asked, “Are you going to talk about – postpartum?” I must’ve looked confused. From the look on her face and the tone of her voice, it seemed to me she was talking about something besides “the time after childbirth”. That’s because that grandma-to-be had been separated from her own mother as a baby, because of postpartum mental health challenges. Was it a deep depression, or even a psychosis? I don’t know, but I do know that it’s a topic we don’t discuss much. Are we afraid we will make it happen if we acknowledge it?? (It’s not exac...

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Published July 3, 2012

Conventional wisdom says the birth of a baby is a joyous and exciting time in a mother’s life. Certainly there is joy and excitement, but there are many challenges too. And for some women, the emotions of new motherhood are downright scary. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, about 70–80 percent of women experience the “baby blues” after childbirth, and around10% develop postpartum depression (PPD), a serious medical condition that develops during the first months after childbirth. We’ll take a more in-depth look at these numbers in coming posts, and we’ll be looking at some of the ways our Mod...

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New Babies are Amazing, Miraculous – and Pretty Scary

Published June 26, 2012

New babies are amazing, miraculous – and pretty scary Have you ever read that “you will quickly know what your baby’s cries mean?” That statement struck fear into my heart as a new mom – and that was with my first, second and third kid! If you go to a fancy human development textbook, they will tell you that there are six states of consciousness for babies. I don’t remember what they are, because I ran across Janice Tedder’s Give your baby a HUG program. Janice is a nurse practitioner and parent educator down at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. She says our babies have three zones- the Three R’s of baby ...

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Summer Safety Lessons

Published June 12, 2012

Summer Safety Lessons It’s cold here for a lot of the year – I love sweaters and quilts and being cozy. But when it’s nice out, we all love to be out and about! Here’s some Mom-to-Mom info about keeping your baby safe in the summer. I’ve heard there’s more Lyme Disease in this area. Is that true? How do I keep my baby safe? Last year there were 755 cases of confirmed, possible or suspect Lyme Disease in Vermont, and here in southern Vermont we have a higher number of cases than up north. (Figures and Information) Early summer – June and July – is prime tick season. We are so used to having our babies outside and enjoying ...

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Moving Through Pregnancy

Published June 5, 2012

Moving Through Pregnancy We live in such a weird time – what I really want to do today is encourage you to move more, and to play and dance and have fun as a pregnant person. So why am I thinking it’s a weird time? First I think about how much fun it is to dance and play. Then I think about all the ways you can sue me if I tell you to go have fun and then something goes wrong. That’s so bad! So let’s do it in that order, and first I’m going to tell you why you should enjoy your body and moving and dancing and playing while you are pregnant. Then I’ll send you to a good website for all the caveats. Here’s six good reasons...

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Eating Wisely During Pregnancy

Published May 30, 2012

Eating Wisely During Pregnancy My midwife was just talking to me about my weight gain and said that I am obese! Now I know I’m overweight – but obese?! That feels like an insult. On the other hand, I want to have a healthy baby. “Obese” is a term used when your BMI is over a certain amount. We see so many people that are over the normal BMI, we may not realize how much our weight has gotten away from us. Take a look at this fun slider chart – Put in your own height and weight. Then slide the weight up and down. Amazing how “normal” the overweight body looks – because we see a lot of overweight people in our everyday liv...

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Eating for Two?

Published May 23, 2012

Eating for Two? I loved being pregnant. I felt like I had a wonderful and mysterious secret in those first months – I was a sacred vessel. I stopped smoking (32 years and counting!), drinking, and was very careful about what I ate. I read everything I could find about pregnancy. And along with being careful about what I ate – I set myself to gain some weight! Do you see pregnancy as an eating assignment? In the latest analysis by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) 53% of moms who got pregnant were over ideal weight when they got pregnant. (By the way, if you are worrying about your BMI and you are eight months pregnant – don’t. ...

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In response to TIME

Published May 15, 2012

In response to TIME I don’t know about you, but my Facebook account has been going crazy over the Time Magazine front cover of a Little Nursing Person with his mom. Breastfeeding and Attachment Parenting aficionados were not very happy with the article itself, which apparently gave plenty of kudos to Dr. Sears for his Parenting Book, but did not go beyond his ideas. The roots of the Attachment Parenting movement go back to some of the brightest researchers of the twentieth century. After World War II, there were many children without parents in Europe. The United Nations asked John Bowlby to study what was the best thing to do for these...

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Baby Steps – Why Is My Back Killing Me?

Published May 8, 2012

Baby Steps - Why Is My Back Killing Me? Ask ten different women with new babies if their back hurts, and four of them will say yes. But those four may be hurting in four different places! During pregnancy our bodies change to accommodate our growing babies. For years, common wisdom said this was due to increased lordosis – our spines curved more. Recent studies show, thought, that it’s actually the changes in our center of gravity that give us back problems. This makes sense when you realize that a ten pound weight, carried properly, puts ten pounds of weight pressure on us. But a ten pound weight carried incorrectly may place 100 pounds...

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Visiting After Birth 101

Published May 1, 2012

Visiting After Birth 101 My son was born during a very big snowstorm, at the very little hospital in Bellows Falls. Clean-up had barely started the next day when a woman I barely knew popped her head in before breakfast and said, “Hey! I was getting my blood drawn and I heard you had your baby! I thought I would come say hello!” Privacy rules have changed, so that might not happen today. But over the past fifty years or so, there have been lots of changes in hospitals. Here’s a walk back in time, and some thoughts about the up side and down side of open visiting hours. I’d be glad to hear your thoughts and stories! OB Visiting-...

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