What Does a Doula Do?

Well there are so many talents, past, and education behind every Doula that their passions and knowledge are so diverse.  So I am going to tell you what THIS Doula Does.

I work for you.  You are my boss.  You may know what you want me to do for you, or maybe I could surprise you with what tricks I have up my sleeve (or really in my Doula bag) I am committed to the possibilities you set for yourself,   so let me give you a bit of insight to what I can bring to your pregnancy and birthing time.

I start as soon as I am hired I can help you explore and discuss many ideas.

Before Birth
I will...

before and after birth

~discuss what care provider is best for the pregnancy and birth you want.
~Discuss the benefits of a planned home birth, along with risks, misconceptions and outcomes
~be a resource to help keep you comfortable for your pregnancy and birth by finding (alternative) care providers that believe in a healthy body, mind and spirit.
~contribute my knowledge about birth and challenge your ideas too
~tell you to trust your intuition
~encourage you to ask questions, to me, to your care provider, to your friends, to your partner, to yourself
~promote nutritional foods and help you find a way to eat well
~facilitate conversations of keeping sons intact
~research for/with you to help you to make the most informed decision to clarify conflicting information you may receive
~facilitate difficult conversations, be it fear, your desires, and concerns.
~encourage partners to participate in decision making and share ideas of their ideal birth
~promote great communication between you and your care provider(s) so that you know your desires and concerns are heard

During Your Birthing Time
I will...

~translate suggestions and terms from your care provider into language that can be clearly understood by you.
~include and empower your partner to be the best support person for you
~use breathing techniques, visualizations, massage, as comfort to you
~make suggestions on poses and positions for well-being and make suggestions for sleep and rest( yes, you can sleep during your birthing time!)
~assist with older sibling at the birth
~Promote that your partner is the best support person for you
~believe in you and your body to birth your baby
~be hands on and put myself into positions so that you are most comfortable.
~encourage you to stay at home as long as you are comfortable (if planning a hospital birth)
~reassure you and express normality in a homebirth or hospital birth setting
~ask questions to your care provider(s) so that you can gain insight to recommendations

After Birth
I will...

~help to ensure your views and wishes are respected
~explain in real time procedures that are being carried out on baby while they are happening
~believe in breastfeeding
~promote rest
~teach you skills that will allow the rest to happen be it your 1st or 4th child.
~help to instill confidence in your intuition (this starts way before birth)
~offer to clean, cook, entertain your children, talk, nurture and share my knowledge of early days at home
~support you in asking and receiving help from friends, family and neighbours.

What does a Doula Do? Michelle Tyliakos

These are many of the most important things I do as a Doula… but I know there are just so many to list.  I truly believe that it’s my job to promote great communication and connection with you, your baby and all those that support you.  I believe that communicating in depth during the prenatal visits we can remove any feelings or fear surrounding birth, allowing for a smoother ride into parenthood. If after birth something didn't go the way you expected, we will work though the challenges, feelings and fear and set you up for the best possible success.    Please take a look at my packages, or contact me to ask me questions.  I would love to share my work with you.  If you know anyone who could benefit from a Doula, Please share this post. 

With Love..
Michelle Tyliakos

Nutritious Beginings

Fresh or frozen food is a great way to prepare for baby.  Keeping mother nourished easily so she can concentrate on loving her baby is one of the best gifts that she can receive.  I guarantee it'll touch her in ways that other gifts cannot.   I recently spent  5 days ill in bed and when a neighbour lovingly offered to cook a meal for my family, I accepted.  I knew that it would fill my belly, my home with love, and my heart with warmth.  And that it did. So consider making a  meal for anyone expecting a baby,  someone who is ill,  a friend going through a loss  or just to make someone's day.  

I often get asked what are the best meals to make.  I have collected some of my favourite family meals and put them all in one spot.  I'll make these meals in larger quantities so that I have left over in my own to freeze to use on a busy night.   I am a huge fan of my crockpot and use it multiple times a week too!  I hope you find some inspiration for yourself and for someone who could use a good nutritious meal! 

 

food for a new mother

Food To Freeze

Greek Lentils Fakes is a great meal and it's a favourite in our house!  

Smoky Tomato Lentil Soup with Spinach and Olives.   YUMM Delish!  Plus, lentils are so great for a mother as they are higher in iron and great for any blood loss. 

Do you think I am a fan of lentils?   Here is another one!  With squash and beets.  I haven't actually tried this one yet,  but it is high on my list to make the Spiced Lentil Soup !

Italian Orzo Spinach Soup is so delicious!  

Another family favourite,  we've always used sausage instead of chicken.  Kale Chickpea and chicken Soup with Rosemary Croutons

This one is so easy, all you have to do is cook the Quinoa,  put it in a oven dish and Mom can do the rest!  Quinoa Enchilada Casserole 

Salads

Mozzarella, Tomato Avocado Salad This is so delicious and simple!

Roasted Chickpeas and Cucumber Salad.  Just the thought of this one brings me to sweet summer with the refreshing taste 

Avocado and White Bean Salad  As you can figure out,  I love beans.  I love tomato.  I love avocado.  A perfect combination!

The Best Lentil Salad Ever  I haven't tried this one yet, because it took me a long time to find Du Puy lentils. Add this to a base of Arugula and I can't wait!

Fresh to Serve

Summer Vegetarian Tacos with Avocado Cream  Veggies and Feta!  This is seriously YUM!

 

 

YES!

There is not much that I am hard and set on in world of motherhood,  but there is one thing I make all my new mothers do.  Ok, are you ready?  Hold up your right hand.  (or wait, is it your left?)  place you other hand on your belly and say….

“I_____INSERT NAME HERE_____  Vow not to say NO for the first weeks of motherhood.”

Now of course I don’t want you to take this literally, but I do want you to be aware of what you are really saying when someone asks if you need anything.  We tend to not want to burden others so we instinctively say no.  I want you to get in the habit of saying yes.  Do you need anything? YES Do you want me to pick something up? YES Do you need help? YES Can I clean something YES, YES YES!   (ok lets not get too excited there) 

Seriously though, I feel as a new mom, may it be baby #1 or Baby #5 you need to  be able to sit on your tush, lay in bed or rest as much as possible so that you and your baby get to know each other.  So that you don’t feel the need to be supermom from day 1. So that you realize you are human, and you do need help, and its OKAY to accept it.   So that you build up your community of support from day one. 

It actually feels good for others to help.  We all want to contribute to the wellness of our friends and family.  If we are clear on what we need, then it’s so easy to participate.  I have a list here for easy ideas on how you can ask for help.  They are so simple, but can make such a huge impact on your day.  This list is here for quick ideas, something that your brain may not be able to think of with lack of sleep, or other issues you may be concerned about.  This list just helps to lighten the load.   

Tasks that are completed may not be up to your standards, or maybe they aren’t the way you would do it,  but that is ok.  You have a lifetime ahead of you to do it the way you want.  Sit back and relax, put your feet up, drink that warm cup of coffee and enjoy friendship and those simple gestures that you will remember. 

Check out my Postpartum Services

Greek Lentils Fakes

 

Meals= nurtured mother and happy family.

When you ask a new mom "Can I bring you anything when I come over?"  and she replies with a 'No, I am fine'    I don't have many rules for new mothers, but one I do make them hold up their hand and swear by is to never refuse help.  She is not allow to say 'no, nothing, I am good'  ...so with this, I say bring her food.

So here is a fantastic recipe that my whole family loves and it is great for new mothers.   Make a double batch and freeze them for her. Pick up a loaf of fresh bread and you are good to go!  Want to get more bonus points? Bring it over, clean her kitchen quietly, then leave. Lentils are rich in Iron which will help Momma recover from any blood loss. Add fresh tomatoes and the vitamin C will help absorb the iron even more.

Fakes (pronounced Fah-key)
2 cups of dry lentils
5 cups of water (add more or less for desired consistency)
1 small red onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped (or more to taste)
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp red wine vinegar (I like more)
salt and pepper to taste
sprinkle in some love
you can also add things like celery, carrot or spinach too.  Add all ingredients to the crockpot, cook until lentils are soft and you are done.