Hello! I'm Ruth and I live in Formby, Merseyside, with my husband and our two children.
'Anamchara' is the Celtic term for 'soul friend' and this is what I aim to be for my clients.
Whether this is your first baby or your fifth, we all need a little extra TLC during the topsy turvy postnatal period.
Before my eldest was born, I had read the books, done the antenatal classes and bought all the stuff. We were PREPARED. Or so we thought... We were the first of our friends to have a baby and she was born in London when our families were in West Yorkshire and Jersey. It turns out that this was not a recipe for success! It didn't occur to me that it might be a good idea to do some planning for when the baby was actually here, so my first postnatal experience was a bit of a disaster. I was isolated, really struggled with breastfeeding and ended up with postnatal depression. If only I had known then that postnatal doulas existed! I would have ditched the expensive travel system and invested in my mental health and a gentler transition to motherhood.
By the time my youngest was born we had moved to West Yorkshire to be closer to my family and my experience was SO. MUCH. BETTER. Even with a toddler in tow! This time, I planned for my postnatal period. I filled the freezer with batch-cooked meals, I already knew where the parent and toddler groups took place and I arranged for my parents to come over and help regularly so that I could rest.
My second postnatal period was still a vulnerable time of transition, but I came out the other side with my mental health intact. I imagine that having a postnatal doula would have made the transition even smoother for the whole family as my husband and parents really picked up the slack for the things I was not doing while I recovered and worked to establish breastfeeding. However, we don't know what we don't know! It is now my mission to spread the word about postnatal doulas.
New parents should not be left to muddle through these life-changing transitions alone! As they say, it takes a village to raise a child and a postnatal doula might be part of yours.