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The Bumpdate

The Weekly Newsletter for Heart of Houston Birth and Wellness Families and Friends

Happy Tuesday

Hello, again dear friends. I hope you all are well! We are waiting patiently for the newest community member to make her way into the world. After a flood of sweet babies in January, we are looking forward to some downtime until our next wave of babies in March.

In the meantime, we are excited to welcome students from the Association of Texas Midwives (ATM) into our space this coming weekend for their quarterly instruction time. Midwife Kate is an instructor for ATM and will be teaching on antepartum care. Since the community room will be occupied there's no Mindful Movement class this weekend. We will also be updating our website and giving The Whole Heart Collective a page of its very own! If you are a subscriber or member you should receive an email with further instructions on how to register for all future events later this week. We'll give you a tour of the new site in next week's Bumpdate.

And then there were three...

There is something so incredibly humbling about working with freshly postpartum families. Having just given their all to bring their baby earthside they emerge battered, shaky, and slightly wild-eyed. IT'S OVER! I DID IT! I SURVIVED! WTF JUST HAPPENED?! Yeah, dude. THAT was crazy and YOU did it! And we got to see you do it!! Your baby is here now and your focus will shift from the indescribable wilderness you just walked through to get that baby of yours, to keeping them alive and well. And after what we just witnessed we know that you're already a good parent and that there is no challenge you can't overcome. The truth is though that you might not feel as confident about that as we do and there's nothing wrong with that. There will be so many firsts happening all at once that feeling overwhelmed is perfectly normal. This is exactly why we encourage folks to spend as much time planning for the fourth trimester/postpartum period as you've spent planning for the birth. The birth is over in a flash and you immediately step into the lifelong role of a parent. We want your transition into parenthood to be as easy as possible because, unlike your birth, we can't physically be at your side while you figure it out. So the best we can do is prepare you for some of the more challenging parts of your new role and sit back and watch you be amazing...again. I've invited two incredible postpartum doulas to join us at next week's evening prenatal circle to discuss the simple and practical ways to prepare for the postpartum period of your journey. Alex Tran and Kate Vosta will join us Wednesday, February 15th from 6-8 pm for our newest Core Class Fourth Trimester Preparation.

The need for sleep

In my former life, I did postpartum doula work and absolutely loved it. Mothering the new mother, gently coaching the babies into good sleep habits, and then walking away like a proud mother hen when I was no longer needed. As a postpartum doula it feels good to no longer be needed; it means you've done your job in supporting a newborn family find their way into a space of confidence. Record scratch to my own newborn experience and I was in for some hard lessons. The first thing I really failed at was asking for help. That takes practice if it's not something you're good at. The second thing that flew out the window was any healthy sleep habits. We got so comfortable in survival sleep mode that healthy habits seem like fairy tales some days but I'm starting to see the light again. At the suggestion of some of our members, I reached out to Nicola Moy, Certified Sleep Consultant. Nicola has helped more than a few HOH families sleep through the night and we're excited to collaborate with her. We are working on programming for the Spring and will keep you all posted when dates are confirmed. Member's Postpartum Circle will host Nicola for a brief Q&A next Thursday.

Meet Nicola Moy, Certified Sleep Consultant

Who are you?

Hi! I'm Nicola Moy; owner of Drift and Dream Sleep Consultancy. I live in West Houston with my husband David and our 2 wonderful children Sophie (7) and Dylan (5), helping families not only in Houston and the surrounding area, but all over the world, get much more sleep. I moved here with my family from Scotland 4 years ago and I have been a baby and child sleep consultant for the past 3 years.

How do you serve/help the pregnant and postpartum communities?

I help moms and their partners (pre and post pregnancy) understand what is to be expected with their new baby's sleep and how they can start to implement sustainable sleep habits if they feel like they are struggling with their current situation. I trained and became a Certified Sleep Consultant with Dana Obleman of the 'Sleep Sense Program' and love helping families understand how to help their babies and older children (and in turn, themselves) to sleep better. A well rested baby is a happy baby :)

How did you get into this line of work?

I was lucky in that my first baby was an absolute dream. Sophie fed, slept and never complained or even had me ever wondering 'will I sleep again?' She was the ultimate unicorn baby and found her groove with sleep very early on. Even still, at 7 years old, she is an amazing sleeper.

My second baby however definitely didn't come into this world with the same ability to sleep. Despite breastfeeding both of my babies to sleep, my little boy was so much more dependent on it than Sophie and could never sleep without it. Dylan was actually born with a hole in his heart, and struggled to gain weight, so I acknowledged that was likely why he was being a much harder newborn and needed to feed constantly. However, after he had heart surgery at 4 months old, 2 months later he was still not napping out of my arms, or sleeping more than 60-90 minutes overnight without needing me to feed him back to sleep. I was beyond exhausted and had no idea what to do or what was causing it. From a medical stand point he was perfectly healthy and gaining weight well, but he still wouldn't stay asleep for more than 90 minutes at a time. All I knew is that I couldn't continue what I was doing and needed help; especially since I also had a 2 year old at the time and my husband was unable to settle Dylan at all despite his efforts.

After chatting with one of my friends about how much I was struggling she told me about a sleep consultant that she had used for her son and gave me her details. With a bit of hesitation I reached out to her (not even knowing that sleep consultants even existed) and it was, to this day, the best thing I have ever done for my family. With her support and guidance we figured out how to get Dylan sleeping much better he became the most amazing cheerful little boy. I was also finally able to become the best parent to both my children as I was finally sleeping again. A year later we moved to the US and it didn't take long before I started researching how to become a certified sleep consultant; knowing just how much I could help others in a similar situation to me.

What do you wish everyone knew about your area of expertise?

Most sleep consultants have all been through a tough situation themselves and all feel soo passionately about helping others. We care so much about what we do and love helping families reach their sleep goals.

I genuinely wish parents had access to much more sleep education before their baby arrives so they feel much more prepared about what is to be expected. It's also never too late to turn a 'bad' sleeper into a 'great' sleeper :)

What is most rewarding about your work?

Seeing parents smile and laugh at the end of our journey together knowing how much the changes have already impacted their lives. I love knowing that my support has helped families get back to a place they never dreamed of, and overall I just love knowing everyone is getting the sleep they need and deserve. Sleep is SO important and we should all be able to thrive, not just survive.

Tell us about something (or someone) you love.

Anyone who knows me well, knows I am a big fan of chocolate, oh and sleep! I also love to travel and explore new places with my family and I love watching my children grow into the most amazing human beings.

You can find Nicola online at :

This Week's Events

February Upcoming events

  • Friday night Yoga with Bee! February 3rd and 17th 6:45pm Our friend Bee and her team of doulas are hosting another Friday evening yoga and sound bath session. Non members $20 at the door, $10 to join us virtually. Members donation based

  • Anxiety Support Group: Every other Monday starting February 6th 12-1pm This six week circle will be led by interning Family Therapist Mary Alice Carpenter (Under supervision of Kim Jones LMFT-S). Each week will work on mindfulness and tools to help manage the unavoidable anxieties of pregnancy and postpartum. Registration is open!

  • Music for Pregnancy: Register Here! Join the folks of Prelude Music in a demo Music for Pregnancy class. This class is open to anyone who'd like to join. You must RSVP on this event page.

  • Evening Core Class: Preparing for the Postpartum Wednesday 2/15 6pm Join Jessica and postpartum doula Alex Tran to discuss all the practical ways to prepare for the postpartum period.

  • 2023 Baby Gear Swap!!: Bring your gently used clothing, maternity clothing, baby and kid gear to swap with fellow HOH and Whole Heart Collective members. Drop your items off on Saturday the 18th from 10am to 2pm and come shopping on Sunday 2/19 from 12-4pm. **Please do not bring items any sooner than 10am on 2/18-we do not have storage space.** All items not claimed by 5pm on Sunday will be taken to local organizations for donation.

  • QTPOC+ Family Life Circle: Saturday 2/18 2-4pm QTPOC+ family circle (social hangout and TJ practice space centering QTPOC folks.) This is a gathering for you and members of your family — bio, chosen, or built — or if you are looking for others to build with. If you are... queer including LGBTQiA+ (in any way), transgender, nonbinary, agender and / or a person of color, we welcome you to come with your whole self — elders, infants, and anyone in between.

  • Baby Wearing Class: New topics each month! Class Saturday 2/18 4-5pm and meetup 5-6pm Free to HOH and WHC members and $25 for all others.

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 New Topic each month

  • 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

  • Various Childbirth Education Curriculums starting soon: Rebel Birth weekend intensive or Bradley Method with Anne Zwicky

That's all for now! Have a great week everyone.

Know someone who should join our collective? Forward this to a friend!

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