Updated: Feb 8, 2022
Jayme Jenkins | Holistic doula and birth photographer
As I was listening to the Crunchy Mama podcast yesterday, the host of the show quoted a segment from the book 'The First Forty Days' by Heng Ou. It really touched me the way it was worded so I wanted to share it with you. I got the book ordered and I absolutely cannot wait to read it and share more nuggets of advice with you!
I am typing this without the book in front of me so it isn't word for word but hopefully the message will be the same!
"You're home alone with the baby because your partner has returned back to work and your friend hears of this. She texts you to let you know she wants to spend time with you and meet the new baby and bring you some food, so she asks if she can come by today or tomorrow. She stops by and she knows there may be a note on the door letting her know you're napping so she would leave the food at the door without knocking. However, when she arrives, you're awake so she asks if you're up for visitors. She doesn't take it personally if you're not feeling up to visitors at the moment but you let her in and she immediately puts the food she has prepared on a plate for you to eat. She puts the remaining food in the fridge so that you have food later. She then asks how YOU are doing. While you're answering, she walks to the sink to wash her hands so she can hold the baby. She notices the dishes in the sink need washing so she gets those washed up and then asks if she can hold the baby to give you a break. She won't take the baby from you because she doesn't want to break up your bonding time. You let her hold the baby because you truly need to give your arms a break. While she is rocking baby she asks how your days and weeks have been going for you. She listens but doesn't try to instruct or convince you of doing anything differently. She has confidence in your ability to mother. She doesn't stay too long, 45 minutes to an hour. The fantasy visitor does not expect to be hosted while she is visiting. She came for a visit because she is excited to take care of you and meet the new addition to the family." - The First Forty Days by Heng Ou.
I hope this little segment of the book was as touching for you as it was for me. This sets, nearly, the perfect example of our someone should be when they visit a postpartum mama! Visitors should always do more than expected! Don't just show up, love on the baby, and leave. Love on the new mama, too. Allow her to take a nap, a shower, eat a hot meal without having her baby attached to her.