Apologies if I haven't posted this in the right area! I'm due to birth baby #2 in March (our second homebirth) and I'm wondering if you can all help me to think about options for ways we can ensure that our 2.5 year old will get the attention and support that she will need while I labor. I need to find a person comfortable with homebirth who can be there for my DD, whether DD wants to experience the birth, or play elsewhere in the house, or go outside to the park or library.
We just moved to a new part of the country a few months ago, and we haven't yet made any close friends with whom I'd feel comfortable calling in the middle of the night to watch DD. We don't have any family in the area, either.
I'm secretly hoping that I just have a quick and easy birth in the middle of the night, and that DD sleeps right through it. But of course I want to plan for other conceivable scenarios
I'd love it if I could pick your brains for ideas and experiences. How did you tend to your young kid(s) when you labored, if you don't have access to friends or family (or older siblings) to call on to watch them?? Did you find someone through the doula/midwife/birthing community? Or were you able to find a babysitter willing to be "on call" for you? Or did you just not worry so much about it and trust that it would all work out fine? (I often need to remind myself not to overthink these things...)
FWIW, I'm located just north of Chicago (in case there's some location-specific resource you Chicagoans are able to provide).
You could try www.doulamatch.net
Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds 10yo dd 8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds
A new doula working as a volunteer might be interested in helping you out in exchange for being able to witness a homebirth. You could ask a local doula trainer.
Married to a wonderful woman since 2010. Baby boy C arrived in June 2013!
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That's a good idea. I'll ask around at the next local homebirth meetup.
It's really times like these that I wish we lived near family!
I would also talk to your mama friends. I had several that I had known for under a year on call for Monkey when Bee was born. Everyone things about what they will do with the first for the second and people, at heart, are helpful (as long as they are not toddlers trying to type with mama).
I would also reach out to the midwife/doula/homebirth community. Are you part of the Chicago area Homebirth Meetup Group?
I would always have someone come for the older child. Someone to focus on them and be able to take them out if that is what they needed. Hope for the best without preparing for meltdowns never seems to work for me.
Mama to Monkey (Jan '09), Bee (May '11), and Cat (August, '13)
We have arranged for a volunteer doula to be present with our toddler at our birth. I am a bit unsure though because I know she will want my partner and me. So I am wondering if my partner will end up with my toddler and I'll end up with the doula. That is not how I want things to go though. I am hoping to think of some longer fun activities for them to do together - like baking maybe or cleaning the fish tank. Still my last labour was 25 hours so I am unsure how a doula would occupy my toddler for that long.