What’s a typical day for an overnight postpartum doula?
It usually starts at 7pm when I leave the house for a quick gym trip and shower then an hour-ish drive to work. Start at 10pm and get set up for the night. Check the baby log for last feedings and medication then check in with the parents about their day and how they’d like the night to go (Nursing? Pumping? Bottles?). I get my area set up by drawing curtains, turning all lights off and getting the sound machine set up. Then I move the babies to my area, gather dirty bottles and pump parts, and check all other supplies for the night like diapers, wipes, milk, etc. I wash all the dirty bottles from the day, pump parts, set up for the mom’s next pump session and set outside her door to grab when she wakes to pump. If it’s been a while since the babies last ate, I usually feed the babies right away to encourage a longer sleep and stay on a schedule in order to make sure they are feed and happy when I leave in the morning. I typically cover all the baby care so parents can get the rest they need and log everything in an app parents can check anytime. When mom gets up to pump she leaves the milk outside her bedroom door and I take over from there. Repeat the washing, pump setup and bottle setup for 1-2 more feeds. In between feedings, diapers and washing everything, I keep myself busy with loads of laundry in the machines, folding and putting away and dishes from the day. Then it’s time to transition babies back to the parents care! I move everything back to parents room, including babies, washing station supplies and all bottle and pump parts. I try my best to leave babies fed, sleeping and settled then sneak out ninja style out of the house! I drive home for about an hour and sneak into bed for a good 3-5 hour nap and right back to mommy duties for the day!
Whew! So when someone asks what I do as an overnight doula, I usually say “what don’t I do?!” 😂