TDC 71: Birth & Postpartum (ft. Mari Smith of Arrow Birth)

welcome back to the dad Chronicle I'm your host Alex I'll be sued this is episode 71 now before we get started I want to remind you that you can visit the dad Chronicle comm to subscribe to this podcast for free make sure that you don't miss a single episode now on today's episode I speak with Mary Smith Mary is a doula and she started her own online birth education business called arrow birth we start out the conversation talking about what to expect during the birthing process and how to be present in the moment during this often stressful event the freedom to let yourself be in that moment I think comes your you're able to do that with the right support in place we talked about how to be ready with the stress that postpartum life can bring after a baby comes into your life everything's crazy so laughing crying screaming happy sad in like 30 seconds it's normal yeah we also talked about the importance of listening to your gut and trusting your instincts when it comes to parenting your gut instinct is almost always right and we don't know that when we just first become parents we don't know that like we're not in touch with that innate feeling of like hey I know what's best for my child we have to kind of learn to be open to that voice inside that says something's not right also towards the end of this episode don't miss it you're gonna hear a really awesome offer that Mary's providing listeners of the Dada Chronicle to take advantage of the resources that arrow birth has here's my conversation with doula entrepreneur birthing expert and mother Mary Smith of arrow birth Mary Smith welcome to the Dada Chronicle how are you I'm pretty good thanks for having me and thank you super excited to be here very excited to have you on now Mary why don't we take a moment to introduce you yeah let people know who you are about your profession and about your family yeah absolutely so my name is Mary Stutzman Smith and as a profession I'm a doula and which provides so someone who provides child birth support for families that are going through the birth process and I've been a doula for over a decade now so it's been a long time and have helped over 300 families have their baby Wow yeah I've been on a journey seen lots of babies be born and be a part of the process through you know pregnancy through postpartum and and recently I have launched a new online childbirth education and consulting company called arrow birth that's awesome and we're gonna definitely talk about that a little bit later and we have a great offer for our listeners here to take advantage of some of the stuff that she has going on so we'll talk about that towards the end of the show so not only are you a doula but you're a mother I am yes absolutely so I have three children I have a ten-year-old boy named Max and I have an eight-year-old boy named Liam and a six year old daughter named Audrey so you know full house and passed the you know the stage of sleepless nights and onto the stage of you know swim meets and basketball games oh so different different stage in life and that the new newbie stage but you know it I think I yeah and just enjoying where we are right now love it and how is that uh you know you've started your own business which we'll talk about but how is how is it managing that work-life balance at this yeah well I bet you if you asked me I can say one thing and I bet you a fast my husband another thing so you know being a doula is awesome in a lot of ways you get to be home more than maybe let's say like a nine-to-five but when you gotta go you gotta go and that can be a little bit more challenging when we've had babies in the house because as I you know would tell my husband like I would reach over you know I have the breastfed baby that's like you know I rock on my husband and say hey I'm going to a birth and here's the baby and I don't know how many bottles you will need and here they are and good luck you know and I have no clue when I'm coming home it was just you know it's a challenge when you have small babies but as you have gotten you know that's if they have gotten older and it's been a lot easier that wonderful yeah now you what drew you to being a doula was there some inspir in there yeah so just in my prenatal education with my first so as I was getting educated the first time I was pregnant I learned about a doula and that back then was kind of not a thing like you know you had to go on some like really old website that had you know a few phone numbers and half the numbers you called like didn't exist and you know we were just trying to find I know this thing exists called a doula and I really want one for my birth and so I hired a doula so I found one that I loved and she still practices doula work in this area and I hired her and I kind of learned about the process and just in pregnancy was like hey I'm gonna do this when my baby's born and I think you know I've really found a love for this stage of life and just uber research person like I am definitely the person that just spends a lot of time you know looking at PubMed and all these like articles and you know go down rabbit holes on Google and so just in the process of educating myself realized that this is what I wanted to do and how I wanted to help other people what a beautiful calling yeah it's so it is truly a calling like you can't do this for very long unless you feel really called because you know it's it's it's kind of a crazy job in the sense that when you go to work you don't know well first of you don't know when you're gonna go to work and you don't know when you're gonna get off so you just kind of have to make it work well you're bringing to the conversation today a lot of really great subject matter expertise around the birthing process some of the postpartum stuff so why don't we dive right into some of that yeah now first you know we talked a little bit about what it's like you know prior to the show starting you know we were gonna talk about the pre birth yet situation and then to post birth situation postpartum so starting with before the baby's born what would you suggest to partners to perhaps get ready for this significant event yeah so the first thing I would like to say is I think you have an opportunity to really educate yourself and so learning about the process about we know what's coming up will help you as you go through it so some sort of a childbirth education class and where you can kind of a course or somewhere where you can get the information and that can you know obviously we offer that at error birth but you can get that you know you can go online you can take an in-person class you can go to the hospitals it's just education it's going to help you know what to expect but our little tip with arrow we have a really fun one that we talked about with with partners is what we call the 3m s so we call the 3m s match mom's mood so this is specific to you know when you're in the birth process so once labor has started and once things are kind of gearing up usually there's like oh my gosh what do I do what you know as a partner you're like uh how can I help my my you know loved one go through this experience and using her cues as as the guide to how you should respond so a lot of times you know labor takes a long time a lot of times so what you the way you are in the beginning of the labor is not how you'll be later on obviously when you're you know having the baby um you may it might feel exciting it might fit you might be really chatty that mom might be really chatty at the beginning and that's times to like be excited and go for a walk and do all your things and then as the labor progresses things are gonna change and you might notice that she's you know more quiet between contractions or she's you know moaning through them are needing to manage in a different way and so you use those cues to help to guide you to know you know a proper response if that makes sense and kind of if she's quiet you can also sure be quiet so match mom's mood for sure yeah and what sort of ways like are there other indicators so yeah you talked about like maybe like the sounds that she's making through the process yeah what are some really key indicators that might be helpful for folks yeah so it really depends on the stage of labor so kind of going back to that like education piece where you will learn about kind of what early labor looks like what more active labor looks like you'll have a guide for you know just knowing where you are in the process so early on you know you might have contractions that are you know who knows 30 seconds long you know every 20 minutes and you know they're they're you know not as intense and it but you're it's exciting because you're like I think it's a day all the things and packing the bag and doing all that and then as things progress I think you'll know by the length of the contraction and you'll know by the strength of the contraction and how often they come as a good guide for kind of where you are in the process so what we know about labour is that you know things get longer stronger and closer together and so that's the kind of guide you're gonna use as you are contracting and as your partner's contracting to know you know where we are in the process I'll tell you what not to do people I've shared this on this show so this might be the first time so and Deanna was like we were getting real close like I was in the room with Deanna Deanna's mom was in the room yeah and we were helping Deanna by kind of holding her legs up and you know I looked down and everybody's always like oh stay north of the border guys at home dad's partners whoever check that out it is amazing it really was and I was so fascinated by it that you know I was on Deanna's right leg and kind of pulling it back and I'm like oh my god there's there's her head yeah there's her head and I didn't I didn't hear anything other than the voice in my head saying there's her head there's her head and then all of a sudden I feel Deanna sink her fingers into me saying let go of my leg and she had already done pushy I just kept her leg up and she's about to murder me I'm like oh I'm so sorry I her head was I don't wanna hear it up in the moment yeah and it's a beautiful time it is so wonder we call north end and south end edge that's how I always refer to it and you know we talk about that usually with doula clients or you know they're on like good consultant call about what is what do you think prenatally are you gonna want to be here you're gonna want to be in there and catching the baby and I mean a full-on view are you wanting to be shoulder up kind of north end dad and I usually recommend to kind of make the call in the moment because a lot of times what you think you want is not exactly how it plays out and you end up you know seeing something really cool just seeing your child be born which is you know a remarkable thing and then sometimes you're in there and you're like you know what this isn't for me and you can you just have to be or kind of trying to get closer to the shoulder and try to be you you really I always say you really have to be deliberate if you do not want to see because it is a very all-encompassing views everywhere kind of experience and so if you don't you know you got to be proactive about not trying to see but go with your mood I think in the moment you'll you'll have a very clear idea and clearly you wanted to like check it out because it's a really awesome thing to see it really was yeah it was beautiful I mean was gross it was beautiful everyone full of fluid you know bodily fluids yep now talk to us about the benefits of a doula because this is something that I I never really thought about for for you know when Deanna was pregnant yeah and we had aria but there's obviously a lot of benefit to a doula so I want you to tell us about that yeah so typically you know a dualist someone you would hire in pregnancy and you would have times in pregnancy for different visits so they might come to your home and do like a prenatal visit where they'll go over really options like what what do I want out of my experience and do I you know want to be unmedicated do I want to you know have an epidural and or do am I having a c-section how can I best prepare for the type of birth that you want or that you need to have depending on sometimes medical reasons why you need certain things and so you really gameplan it helps you kind of go through the process in pregnancy and then when you get you know towards the end there's a lot of like oh my gosh I don't know about this and you know it's the first time I've experienced this and so you can run a lot of those questions and experiences by your doula so it's someone you can reach out to in pregnancy and in the early labor process but ultimately they are there for you when you go into labor so you will reach out you'll connect and and they are like you're you know I always say it's sort of like the you know that the manager of the birth if that makes sense so someone you can reach out and say hey I'm having these symptoms or you know is this early labor and they can kind of guide you and help you figure out you know when to go to the hospital and you know what your symptoms are like and give you really give you options and alternatives and and then eventually they've come to you in the birth and they will be there doing you know hip squeezes and massage what's a hip squeeze a hip squeeze man this is something everybody needs to know it's actually just simply putting like the palm of your hand on the hips of the laboring person and just kind of you kind of squeeze in and up and it is like magic I always say really you have to know when to do it because you will be doing it for the rest of the labor yeah it's usually and I usually will often show partners how to do it to their partner like in a prenatal visit and usually even in pregnancy moms are like oh my gosh this this feels amazing just it takes pressure right off of your hips and it helps your hips kind of slightly open more which is really good for a baby comes down though it's a little trick man it's awesome and you can actually Google if you're just typing double hips squeeze there select probably a million videos on YouTube so yeah you can you can get that info and I figure out how to do it now okay the obviously being a doula that's a very like it's a very personal thing yeah what should people look for when they're looking for a doula yeah that's a great question I think you know in my experience I get you know a lot of people asking me about you know my backup situation should you know should I be sick or out of town or you know have a situation so you want to find someone that has backup or has like a partnership there are different kinds of you know a lot nowadays there tends to be more doula practices where multiple do Lois get together and they kind of manage the on-call time and other times you can just hire somebody that has a solo practice so knowing about like what type of practice you want solo practice you would get your specific doula which that's what kind of what I've been been doing for the last ten years I really value that relationship but other people might you know want to be able to go with the practice and have that option yeah and it's really like a vibe it's just sort of you know usually we'll do a consultation beforehand and get a feel for like hey is this the match for me and you really need to feel connected because for sure it's it's super personal and you know you need to be you know on the same page have the support yes and not have agendas you know that's a big thing just knowing kind of asking the duel about what their philosophy is sometimes you get people that are really into just like unmedicated natural birth and if you're having an epidural it's like man it's probably not the doula for you right now you want someone that matches kind of weird what you know the outcome that you want or so that's it that would be what I'd say so back up and yeah just personality yeah that's see that's so important and I could see how like especially the philosophy piece and especially around some of the the stigma is about certain things about you know you have your baby a certain way like that could really make our one of the most important moments of your life absolutely and actually you hit on specifically why we created arrow birth was for that reason because we've you know through so at so I created air with my best friend and also she's also a doula Tara Lucia and we a lot of times with clients we figured out that the education piece that they had let's say they prepared for this natural birth and then for some reason they needed a medical induction and it was a really long labor and then after you know 24 hours 48 hours something went up and they had a c-section and they came out going like oh I didn't I didn't get my thing I wanted out of it and I'm now walking into becoming a parent feeling shame or feeling like you know I didn't go my way and and while it's it is you know there is there are times where you have to allow for that space for that disappointment because I think that's a real emotion but I think prenatally preparing for you know being flexible and learning about you know the positivity around all the different types of births I think it could really help you instead of preparing specifically for one path and you may end up with another and that can be a hard transition and let's let's dive into that a little bit more there's another role that you had mentioned about a logistics yes why don't you talk about that role yeah birth partners are for sure the logistics manager they said they are you know you have to kind of get in that game space of alright if it's time be responsible for the bags and I'm gonna be responsible for I always say Manning the phone you know knowing when to reach out and let people know that you're in labor a lot of times people don't know that the very first labor can be you know 48 hours through 24 to 48 hours long can be a really long time yeah and you know you wouldn't necessarily want to reach out and let everybody know on that you know first couple contractions I mean you can but you'll you'll be getting texts every every couple hours and eating the update and then you didn't update them in a couple hours so worse it's worse yes yes it's really a challenge I usually recommend clients to not let their family members know until they're very well into the birth process far along into the birth process because I think it helps lets them be a little bit more present in the moment or even having conversations prenatally with people about when you're gonna reach out to them but that that is all a birth partners job and you know the laboring mom should just be have the freedom to just be in that space doing the contractions the hard work of labor and not have to think about you know the bags are here and you probably still will have the mom do all those things because naturally I feel like women that are birthing are like okay we got to make sure we all the ducts that are you know lined up and everyone's everything's a go but but it's nice if they can if you can take that pressure off of them and have some some of that stuff kind of handled right could be a good thing yeah that's so this is obviously as we've been talking we've been really emphasizing how like really magical this moment is you and I have both been through this from different opposite ends of the spectrum but I can say that for me I think back to it it's it's such a blur yeah and I remember very specific moments where it ended up just time slowed down and it was when I first held aria and saw her and like heard her cry for the first time like those were moments that I really like I captured but because you're so caught up in all the craziness going on between you know your wife's giving birth to this human you're trying to make sure she's okay then you're trying to make sure that the that the baby's okay and then you're trying to make sure that all the in-laws and outlaws know about all the the things that are going on and hey the baby's fine mom is doing great you actually lose yourself in the moment so how what's the best way for people to kind of stay present in that moment why is it so like why is it so important from your perspective yeah um I think that you know you have these times in your life and they're you know they're not that many when you really look back and I obviously haven't lived that long but I you know you there it's just such a pivotal moment in your life becoming a parent also you know if you get married but I would say that becoming a parent in my experience was almost you know more intense and more impactful than my marriage oh yeah it's totally different totally different and so the freedom to let yourself be in that moment I think comes you're you're able to do that with the right support in place so that's where the doula comes in to be able to kind of help you manage the labor that's where you know having sometimes it's even having a designated one person that you're going to text and then they text everybody else so it's just it's managing all of that prenatally knowing what the plan is so that it really does free you up to kind of be in that moment and to you know be present the number one thing that birth partners can do is be present you know they just need to be present for their loved one as they go through this process and for some you know partnerships that looks like you know really intense I connection and really massage and really like in you know in the face kind of connection and other times it is you know just like a you know just being present being like a hand done on the shoulder and just having that partnership you know knowing that that you're there yeah I think those are you know just being present is going to make a big difference in not only your experience and and to recognize that this is not only you know where you're you know your partner becomes a mom it's also where you become a dad and so it's like you know a lot of times we spend time on moms experience and we don't necessarily acknowledge that hey this is the pivotal moment in a dad's world as well partners world as well as they become you know add to their child yeah it's super exciting it was one of the best days of my life and I can tell you it's tough you know folks at home but this is tough and I know that there are a lot of folks that listen to the show who are expecting fathers or parents in general it's hard to say this and to say it you know and and act on it but just take this and keep this in mind reflect if you're in the moment if you're if you're in there with your partner as they're giving birth and you have an opportunity to pause and just kind of reflect on your own personal mind space I think that that will help you realize you know I really need to stay present not necessarily it will help you focus on helping your partner on staying in the moment and remembering everything because you know just like your wedding day it flies by and the next thing you know you got your left hands a lot heavier yeah so this is the same sort of thing just try your best to remember to just pause and look at yourself you know introspectively yeah and I want to put a plug in here for if you are that type of person that is reflective and really you know there's all different kinds of people right so some people I feel like just talking to you and getting to know you a little bit like this is super impactful for you and I would encourage people like yourself to look into birth photography I know it sounds like a little bit like wah wah what you know at birth photographer but because you can get the whole story in photo form or in video form and you will have that forever so it's something to consider it's actually like a thing like you can Google birth photography and you know your city and and find people that do this thing it's similar to the dual in the sense that they're on call for your birth but you know you will I feel like anybody that does that looks back and really you know is thankful that they have these moments captured and any photo you see I feel like on Instagram or on Google if you're typing in viewing you know births all of these were captured by birth photographers and you can see the emotion and and just really hold on to that and sometimes you need it to process to like maybe things didn't go the same way or the way that you had planned and you can look back and look at the photos and just kind of see the process a little bit and and just relive it at another time so yeah it doesn't have to be hired someone even if it's not hired you do look and kind of take some photos or you can have a designated person if you've got like a mom or you know another partner in the room yeah you know they could do that so now that's so cool now let's talk about the other end of this so babies born what should people focus on immediately in that postpartum you know next but at three to five days or so so again and kind of like we had to mentioned the education piece prior the best way that you can be supported and or be ready for this postpartum time is to be to have a conversation prenatally and say hey what's our game plan like view it as like we have got to come up with a plan you know this is we've got a brand new family member that's coming to at home in a little bit and we have got to have a game plan and and usually what I recommend for people to do is to you know think about you know how we're gonna feed the baby what's our thoughts on how and feeding the baby what's our plan for like how you know what what's our room structure are we doing like a bassinet by the bed are we you know what's the plan for the baby sleeping what's our food plan you know do we have or have we spent time creating frozen meals that we can pull out in a second or crock-pot meals that we can throw on at the beginning of the day and have it available all the time I actually recommend people to grab a bunch of takeout menus and both go through with the different highlighters and highlight like what dad likes and what mom likes and so when you know when your partner and your wife is like I'm hungry now you don't even have to ask her like what she wants you just like pick something that I've highlighted and like give me food immediately you know and and there may come a time where that's like you know that's the thing or have some you know food that's super readily available you know get your Amazon delivery to come and prepared for the time afterwards works yeah and so just being having having a game plan and then the big one I think is also having a list of numbers of resources at that that you can quickly reference in a post partum time so typically if you're breastfeeding that's looking like a lactation consultant that you can call that you've you know either checked with your insurance so you know they've got the hospital one that you can reach out to or another one that you've you know searched on the internet and found somebody having their numbers like listed out like hey this is who I'm calling for postpartum for breastfeeding questions this is who I'm calling if I've got new baby care questions and I need you know your doula can also provide support and you can reach out to them during that postpartum time I don't think we mentioned we kind of got a little off at the birth but the the doula usually offer offers postpartum support as well they come in like after the baby's born yeah so that's another resource that you can have during that time that's yeah and so and just having that resource list available so you when you come up when something comes up you know where to turn so prenatally that's all that's done prenatally with a good conversation and it's a little bit of legwork but I really want to recommend partners and dads to know that day three to five is like that oh my gosh it's usually when you know your wife's milks coming in or your partner's milks coming in and you know it's just a hormonal shift usually the 24 hours before you know lactation kind of kicks into full gear and you everything's crazy so laughing crying screaming happy sad in like 30 seconds if normal yeah and so when you see your partner go through it it feels like oh my gosh what's going on but that's normal and it's part of the process that's typically expected what we call the baby blues and that's just a hormone hormonal shift to giving birth and so expecting that it's going to be a little bit crazy and that you will it won't be like that forever and I know that you've you know talked a little bit about postpartum depression and these things before and you know a couple episodes ago with when you've done four we talked what about that do you have a perspective on that yeah well you know in our in our course with Arab Earth we have we've actually interviewed a reproductive psychiatrist and so she talks a lot about like when to look out for you know things as they come up so I'm just remembering back to our conversation with her she talks about you know the typical onset for like postpartum depression and anxiety is really like two to four months post baby so it's not you know we're expecting this baby blues time and that like you know to two to three week period it's up being a really normal time to be up and down and kind of all over the place but if things kind of persist or they start a little you know couple months in that's when you know you've got to kind of have your eyes out open and your ears perked for things that come up but again that's that resource list where you have you know talked about you know definitely if you've if if your mom or your partner has struggled with your mom but your if your partner's struggled with with depression or anxiety in pregnancy you have a higher likelihood of having it in postpartum so a part of experience so just knowing that if that's on your radar prior to have those resources available to you know reach out to if you get in that spot postpartum but but yeah so just kind of knowing what your resources are and and just being prepared for this crazy time period when your milk comes in and everyone's crying yeah you know I so crazy like just intense craziness a lot of it was intense craziness and and in and it's not okay so a lot of it was kind of due to some of the frustrations that we had around breastfeeding yeah which is kind of what I wanted to talk about next and you know what yeah Anna she aria wasn't latching as well as she could Deanna was trying to produce milk as best she could and then she wasn't producing enough milk she ended up what milk she did produce Aria crushed yeah and then and she just got used to the bottle and so Deanna was sitting there pumping and she said she just felt like a cow and she just had this like mental breakdown where she was like I I just don't mental breakdown as a strong yeah like that but you know she she just finally broke down and she was like Alex I don't know if I want if I can do this anymore I feel so guilty and I was like she was like do you care if I stop breastfeeding I was like it's your body yeah what do you want to do it sounds like you're miserable like do you want to see just a formula and that's what we did yeah I mean that says so that that's where it got a little crazy I think what you brought up is a real good point that we need to talk about with people is that we you know what we know is that you know every drop of breast milk helps a baby right so there is benefits to breastfeeding and and I think we all know that in some ways we've all now that you know I don't know 20 years ago we didn't really you know that was kind of the new thing right everyone's like okay educate on breastfeeding because we've come from all this formula fed babies and now now everyone has all this education and we know hey it's it's good breast milk is awesome for babies and and drops or you know little even one day of breastfeeding is better than no days right but we also have to support moms and the choices that they make and so I think number one you know having resources that you can reach out to like a lactation consultant sometimes can help you with things like latch issues or you know some of that you can tackle prenatally and then also just like giving moms the benefit of the doubt I feel like that is like we don't talk about that enough like hey so true they're gonna freaking make the best choice for their baby yeah they're not they're not gonna do something that they don't think is like you know the right choice and so it may be bottle feeding is the best thing you can do or pumping and doing some sort of combination feeding or you're doing formula and then doing breastfeeding at some and then it may make more sense to just bottle feed you're heading back to work and you've got other things going on so I feel like getting knowing that you have education where you you know resources you can reach out to and kind of help you if you come up on like a hard time because breastfeeding is hard it's not oh yeah it's not like you know everyone says oh it shouldn't hurt and it's easy it's like no it's really not it's actually you know it can be it a big transition yeah and so and it's not always easy for everybody you could have a tongue die you could have latch issues you could have you know slow growth you know all these things that can come up so it's good to be monitored and it's good if you've got you know some struggles to have the right support person and that truly is a lactation consultant just so you know everybody knows you know a pediatrician even isn't the right person for hey how are we doing breastfeeding or what's the breastfeeding situation looked like a lot of times pediatricians have lactation support in their office yeah well and so just knowing that that's the resource if you're trying to extend breastfeeding or continue it and then also you can hire them for weaning sometimes it's like hey how can i I'm not looking to breastfeed anymore how can I like transition off the breast all right try to get you know a system down where we can still see the baby and you know be find you know ways to bond you can bond with your baby bottle-feeding just like you can bond with your baby breastfeeding so it's like things like that though we know we don't we just need to be supportive of each other I think in a new way and I think that there's a lot of stigma around what type of birth you had what type of breastfeeding thing you had another one is circumcision right all these like yeah like moments of like what did you do what did you know how did you go no you know how was the situation for you and we don't do enough of listening to people's stories and and accepting them so what is your take on circumcision ah that's a good question I am against it okay and white and against it in a lot for a lot of reasons simply that there is no medical evidence to support it okay and also because probably more than that is I don't feel like it is the choice of the parent to choose for the child that the child for a cosmetic surgery which circumcision is that choice should be left to them so I am clear this is the one thing like I have you know I'm like hey I am supportive of this and support of that and not and I can still you know understand people's choices if they you know she was circumcised and you know support them you know that's not a choice that I would make for myself or I didn't it for my children but but I think a lot of times we don't you know again educate on what the process is and what are the benefits or what are the risks and just kind of really dive into that procedure the way that we do other things yeah so my advice is if you're unsure or you're not ready yet to make the decision you don't have to at the time of birth usually you can put it off and you know dive into it a little bit more later or or you can kind of get educated prenatally and kind of you know see what you see where you fall but um yeah again it goes back to that we were just talking about support and in different people's choices that you know that's my choice but I don't think there's yeah there's like you know I don't think that there's necessarily a wrong answer it's what's the best answer for you yeah at the end of the day so certainly certainly you know why don't we talk a little bit about arrow birth yeah and so you mentioned a little bit of a snippet of the of it a little bit earlier yeah can you give us a story of what it is that you're trying to do and why you started this company yeah so we in the process of being with people through pregnancy through their birth through postpartum we just really felt Terra and I both really felt like there was just this disconnect of like education after prenatal education I don't know if did you take a hospital class or I did like okay and I'll tell you mommy about it I'd love to hear about it was it was uh it was great I mean for me I went into it thinking okay I just you know I mean I kind of know how it works yeah but you know just to kind of really focus in on it because it's not like tangentially you're learning about the birthing process during when you're talking about the reproductive stuff it's it's really it was really eye-opening to kind of learn about some of the whys some of the things happen and then some of the best practices I thought all that was was really beneficial um the one thing that I thought was really funny was when she walked in that when I say she you know the nurse walked in and she said alright I hate to break it to everybody here but you know if you're thinking that you need to take this class and know how to give birth you just wasted all your money because your bodies are gonna know exactly what to do you know speaking of course yeah which you know we all kind of gave a chuckle and it's true really you know at the end of the day your party's gonna do what's got to do but I think that what it really did a great job of preparing us for is really some of the context around hey if this is why you know head down is important this is why the baby needs to be facing a certain direction and what would happen if the if they pass about movement and you know like the horn that could cause because that happened to Aria and the NICU had to come in and make sure that she's fine but you know that extra context help me understand okay this is why they're here yeah absolutely I mean it was scary yeah absolutely and that's the that's the whole point of the education process prior yeah and I'm glad to hear that it works like you felt like prepared because that's that's the goal and and I think every you know there are lots of different ways you can get educated and some classes and courses are really cool others are a little bit old and you know from 1970s and we're struggling with you know the context but so with era we really wanted to just modernize that process so what we did is we actually interviewed over 35 different perinatal professionals so from people pretty much any professional that you would meet along the journey we we reached out to them and we interviewed them and so it's 35 different experts talking about what they know best so for example when we're talking about prenatal nutrition we've reached out to a prenatal nutritionist and she's going through what you should eat and what things you should avoid and how to you know pay attention to your body and and when it comes down to the birth process we're hearing from midwives and doctors and an anesthesiologist talks about an epidural and you know a reproductive psychiatrist is talking about postpartum mood disorders and so it's the right information from the right professional and that's where I think it's a little bit different we it's sort of like I say the you tube of you know you tube of birth course yeah in the sense that we we know that we you know lots of people learn through this style of kind of this docu educational I know like what we're doing right now like people learn stuff from just conversations right and so that's what we did so we interviewed over 35 people we have it's over 15 hours of content that's sorry yeah and from pregnancy all the way to kind of postpartum breastfeeding and through the birth process that's great now how soon or I guess into the pregnancy yeah should you be taking these courses and just be I guess filling your head with this knowledge yeah ideally it's the second trimester but everyone comes to the table a little bit different so you know some people hey at 12 weeks they're you know or they pee on the stick and they're wanting to get educated and then the other people you know it's like a month before like oh crap I haven't I've been working and busy and I haven't you know really paid attention and now I've got a really cram for what it's like to have a baby yeah so it's really different but I think I think the ideal time is in the second trimester because there's some really good content about how to kind of prepare your body in pregnancy for going through the process and you'll want to you know it's not something that you'll probably like binge on you know we've organized it to be very topic oriented so you may not hit on like the postpartum breastfeeding stuff until you're you know closer to the birth or even postpartum breastfeeding at 3:00 in the morning when you're trying to figure out what to do right so you might do you know you might hit the different videos at different times sure but yeah so it's it's available and you know you can actually even we have like once you complete it you can submit to your insurance some insurances even cover childbirth education that's Graham which is really cool you can always check with your plan and see if they do which is great I mean it helps them in terms of their cost as well and you guys are doing a lot of cool work also so so just outside of have like the typical YouTube birthing classes yeah you're talking about you're doing a lot of work with midwives for Haiti yeah do you want to talk about that mission I do I do I do absolutely want to talk about that I want it before I talk about that I want to add in a little bit the extra thing that we do not extra but part of our process is also not only learning it's also consulting so we have our good point yeah we so our little our system is learn consult and give and we're gonna touch on the give in a second the learn part is through kind of the online course the consult part is like on-demand consulting for wherever you are in the process so it's really exciting because within the platform you can schedule consultations with let's say it's a doula or let's say you want to kind of prepare for an induction and you want the you know powwow course of like hey what do I do need to do for for this you know induction I'm about to face it might be a lactation consultant on on demand so you get to the point where you have what we were talking about those resources that list of like hey this is the person I can reach out to if I have some issues breastfeeding it may be a mental health specialist talking about you know processing your birth or am i you know a candidate for do I need to go see somebody for postpartum depression um could be a sleep expert right you know you're going back to work your baby is like yeah I've got some issues enough you're up all night with the baby it's like this is not sustainable I got to figure it out so yeah it's supposed to be like a one-stop shop where you can learn and you can consult with the right expert and then the giving portion so it's learn consult give yeah and we work with midwives for Haiti I don't know if you have you heard of that organization before I just part of the organization but I hadn't really dug into a too much do you want to share a bit about Commission lately yeah so so midwives for Haiti is our partner in this process we have an Alfa partner so the main partner right now we work with and they we donate with every portion every every purchase on our site gets we donate towards men whites for Haiti so sort of like the Tom's do concept of really you know you know giving to make births better and we actually got involved with the organization we have a dear friend who's a midwife and a good friend of ours who is on their board and you know she would travel to Haiti and you know she would write about it on her blog and it we would just like both like you know you just spend the time reading about this experience in Haiti for these birthing mothers and you realize oh my gosh you know how hard it is for them so really our love for this organization and what they do came from you know the years of following our friends as they travel down there and kind of support the organization but what they do is they train birth attendants so they actually go in and you know give the education needed for really the you know ultimately who will be the quote-unquote midwives and they are called skilled birth it's a different word than a midwife but um they're responsible for catching the babies in Hadean and the roads are really not great and you know it's very hard a lot of times you may not even have a skilled birth attendant and they also train something called mut wands which are like the grandmother midwives you know the midwives that are the grandmothers that have been catching babies in little tiny villages forever you know and said they give basic training and when to kind of know when something's going not correct give them like safe birth kit though they give those out to like the real rural areas and then they also have trained skilled birth attendants in kind of the more metropolitan areas but it's Oh Haiti is the most dangerous place in the Western Hemisphere to give birth and it's also subsequently the the you know most dangerous place for infant mortality as well so and what do you say danger as in as in death mortality maternal and infant mortality yeah yep so I mean they got it both and so that's just a really a country that needs our help and yeah you know that's kind of work you know if you want to make an impact and we have our own issues here you know we we have a lot of things we've got to fix within the maternal system here but you know and we're planning on you know arrow is definitely planning on doing that as well and supporting organizations that you know support kind of at home as well but really Midwest for Haiti is kind of near and dear to our heart and you know the money that you know we donate to them it's going to be really impactful and really make a difference that's so wonderful good good on you guys you know god bless it's great what a wonderful cause to support and we do have a special offer you want to talk about some of the pricing that listeners can take advantage of yeah so we we offer our it's called the discover birth education course and that would be what you would take in replace of like a childbirth education class but you have the benefit of it being online and on-demand and it's a you get a full year access also money-back guarantee if you you know it's not your thing after first couple videos you can always we'll give you your money back but so that full course from pregnancy to postpartum is 379 normally and so what we're doing for you guys today with the dead Chronicle code it's the discount code is the dad Chronicle and it's 50% off yes which makes it 189 dollars yes that's so cheap that is very cheap yeah and it gives you a lot of you know you've got your prenatal education you've got your you know birth education you've got you some breastfeeding information you've got you so that's a ton of info in you know hopefully you get through it all and you know can really be informed for the birth process so you know we love for you to kind of check it out so if you go to arrow birth com you can you know kind of check it out there and and on our pricing page we have the discoverer birth education course now that's so cool well thank you for sharing a lot of that you know I'd like to end the conversation with you know a little bit of words of wisdom from somebody who's you know you've been a parent now for what 10 years yeah so what would you say to somebody and maybe a new parent you know you've had a lot of encounters and interactions with new parents yeah what would you say to them to give them hope to give them inspiration about this new journey they're on I would say two things the first thing I would say is your gut instinct is almost always right and we don't know that when we just first become parents we don't know that like we're not in touch with that innate feeling of like hey I know what's best for my child there we have to kind of learn to be open to that voice inside that says something's not right or you know it's okay I got this and you know this is the way I think we should do it or it's just that internal voice and especially I think for both moms and dads just to know that that is you know to pay attention to that little voice and to kind of cultivate it a little bit and and not just kind of shove it down I mean there's been many times where you know that instinct has been proven proven right so trust your instinct and then the other thing is that it's always a phase that comes from maybe having a little bit of older children yeah and of course I'm sure the parent you know the parents with like teenagers are probably laughing at me we're going home I wait until you get yeah but you know I think that there's something having multiple children and having them you know as I grow is that you learn like hey that was just a phase I thought that they were like you know three the devil had entered and hang on and it's like oh that was just a phase that was entered into not leaving oh wait two weeks later yeah two weeks later and that I always joked my neighbor cuz we all had kids around the same age and one day she walked out and said the devil left your child and entered mine her daughter was one when you're younger than like so yeah it's a phase and you know not to not to be hard on yourself too you know parenting is tough and we just have to give each other the benefit of the doubt and support each other in the process and and just be there and be you know listen to people's stories and just be supportive totally well this has been such a fun conversation ton of wisdom thank you some stuff that you've shared I got to thank Tim yeah also shout out to Tim Tim he's one of my co-host on joystick and mouse and go to joystick and mouse icon de listen to our video game podcast yeah he's a dear friend of ours yeah it's a big thank you to him yeah for for really connecting us and good luck with arrow birth this is such an exciting program and again for our listeners at home if you go to arrow birth comm and you sign up for their membership use code the dad Chronicle all one word you get 50% off doesn't matter caps or low cap I hope you know we have a podcast as well called the arrows angle and I hope to have you on absolutely say the word I would love to make it happen sweet all right and what will plug that whenever that happens what will let everybody know here so again our guest has been Mary Smith well sorry it's Mary Smith we talked about it yeah alright Mary Smith Mary Smith for now thank you again thank you thanks again to Mary Smith for being an awesome guest and just having an awesome conversation providing a lot of wisdom I know there there are a lot of of expecting parents listen to this show so hopefully this was helpful to you guys and as a reminder if you want to take advantage of the offer that Mary provided you can head over to arrow birth comm for a free trial and you can use the code the dad Chronicle all one word for 50% off if you subscribe if you enjoyed what you listen to today give us a five star rating on iTunes that definitely helps and consider supporting the show if you head to the dad Chronicle comm there's a link there to become a patron and we have a lot of really awesome rewards that patrons can take advantage of so be sure to check that out if you'd like to chime in on the conversation email the dad chronicle podcast at and if you'd like to follow me you can find me on social media at Alex Albee sue my last name is spelled al B as in boy is is in Sam you and fight all the other shows I do over at in Cass media thanks for listening I'll see you guys next time if you liked this show check out more great content at in cast Media Network calm

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