The Weekly Newsletter for Heart of Houston Birth and Wellness Friends and Families.
Happy Holidays Friends
Happy Tuesday friends! If you haven't finished your holiday shopping by now I wish you godspeed and good luck. Keep refreshing that Amazon tracking page while you indulge in some homemade cookies and an adult beverage or two. It's been so fun seeing all your holiday preparations online; keep sending us your holiday cards and pictures with Santa!
Looks like we have some severe winter weather headed our way at the end of the week and since our power grid hasn't been upgraded since our last big freeze, be prepared for some possible power outages. I've added a few tips below on preserving your precious breastmilk stash and things to consider if you'll need to pump during a power outage. We hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday. No Bumpdate next week so I'll see you again in 2023.
Our office will be closed Christmas Day, unless of course you're in labor! Please remember to call our main line (832-899-4971) and select the on-call midwife option if you need to speak to someone. Non urgent messages can be sent through the client portal.
For so many of us the mental and physical labor of pumping can be exhausting. The "wiiiit-woo, wiiit-woooo" chorus of 3 am pumping sessions can drive a person mad. At one point in my postpartum haze I swear the pump was talking to me. For some folks it's a necessary evil while adjusting to your baby's needs (i.e. the dreaded triple feeds) and for others it is the main way they get milk to feed their baby. No matter how much or how little you pump, storing your milk correctly is vital. Life here on the Gulf Coast means threats of hurricanes, floods and most recently (thanks global warming...and Greg Abbott), deep freezes that can knock out our power grid. The old expression, "don't cry over spilled milk" was obviously made up by some dude who never had to extract milk from his engorged breasts. Every drop of milk is GOLD and the thought of losing your hard earned freezer stash can send some folks over the edge. So let's break it down.
Put your milk in a deep freezer if you have access to one. Deep freezers tend to stay cooler longer as long as you do not open them once the power goes out.
If a deep freezer is unavailable, start freezing gallon bags of water to fill your freezer. This will help keep your milk colder for a longer period of time.
Send your milk to a secure location. Did you lose power in the 2021 freeze? Know someone who did not? Send it there to be stored if you can. Obviously there is no guarantee that you won't lose power at both places but this year's freeze is not predicted to be as bad as the last one so chances are if power outages do happen, they won't last as long.
Split up your stash. Don't keep it all in one location if you can help it. Especially if you're the person with months worth of milk.
Don't panic. I know it sucks to think about losing even an ounce of that liquid gold but trust me when I say it will work out. Thankfully if you're reading this you have time to prepare.
Bottom line, don't open your freezer until the power comes back on! Don't peek! I promise it's okay in there.
One Moment at a Time
One thing I think we do a really good job at here is HOH is managing expectations (I'm sure this isn't the first time you've heard me say this). A lot of the struggles we see for first time parents are heavy with unmet expectations. Labor is not easy, a tiny human exiting your body is a big deal and then we hand you that helpless newborn and tell you keep it alive with your bodily fluids! Oh and no sleeping, please. Gotta feed that little one every couple of hours! But, we don't tell you these things to scare you or discourage you, we do it so that you can begin preparations right now. Simple tasks that a part of your normal routine will get harder to prioritize when you just want some sleep. So let folks around you take care of you or outsource as much as you can and let go of the background noise so you can focus on getting to know your new baby. You get one chance at this first go round. There are no do-overs. Let go of what it should look like and let the story unfold. HOH mama Chloe said it perfectly this morning, "I didn’t know the part where your kid is a baby would last for 5 minutes, I wouldn’t have stressed about anything if I knew it would suddenly be over like that!!" Hang in there, friend. You're doing amazing!
Y'all this week was full of firsts for us. We welcomed baby 100 into the world! This little guy also happens to be part of our very first repeat family. Big sister was the second baby born to HOH back in 2021. He's also pretty special to me personally because he's the first baby I've caught...on purpose. I've had a few births as a doula where the midwife didn't make it in time but this little guy will forever be the my first delivery as a student midwife. Happy birthday Ryker and thank you Marcon-Bown family for allowing us to be a part of your story.
No events this week. Enjoy the Holidays with your family and we will see you next week.
January Upcoming events
Postpartum Support Circle Babywearing 101 : Thursday 1/19 This postpartum circle will be lead by Angelique Geehan, a baby wearing expert! Bring your favorite baby carrying device so we help get you going. Partners and other caregivers are welcome to attend! This event is for current HOH clients and Whole Heart Collective members. To join the collective visit our membership page.
Babywearing meet-up: Saturday January 21st and Every 3rd Saturday: from 4-5pm. Free to HOH clients and Whole Heart Collective members. $25 for non members
Evening Core Class: Mapping Out Your Pregnancy Wednesday January 4th 6-8pm in person.
Core Class: Newborn Care: Sunday January 15th 2-4pm Our friend Dr. Shirley Ramirez-Chan of Blossom Pediatrics and Lactation will be join us for a Q&A about all things newborn. Free to HOH clients and Whole Heart Collective members. $25 for non members.
Infant CPR and BLS: Saturday January 28th 10-12 $45 per person. Email instructor Gail Gould to register and pay.
New address 6550 Mapleridge Ste 100
Monthly Ongoing Events
Wednesday Virtual Postpartum Support Circle: Second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 10-12 on Zoom. HOH clients and Whole Heart Collective members. Email Jessica if you need more information.
Thursday In Person Postpartum Support Circle: 10-12 in the community room. Open to current HOH & WHC members. Feeding clinic first and third Thursdays of each month.
Queer Parent Circle: Second Sunday of every month 2-4pm Open to the public.
Babywearing Meetup: Third Saturday of each month 4-5pm
Birth workers Circle: Second Sunday of every month 11am-1:30pm midwives, student midwives, doulas, birth assistants, Obs and L&D nurses are all welcome to attend.
Mindful Movements: First and second Saturday of each month 10:30-12