Ask The Midwife - Q&A With Lauren
In this series of Ask the Midwife, Lauren (@onemamamidwife) shares her journey to midwifery and some very helpful tips for postpartum - read on!
HOW DID YOU GET INTO YOUR PROFESSION OF MIDWIFERY AND WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST INFLUENCES?
My name is Lauren Brenton and I am a registered Midwife in Sydney as well as a mum of three little kids (soon to be four in April). I have always had an interest in pregnancy and birth, which I was able to enjoy as a child through breeding a few animals. My interest in midwifery grew after meeting an Obstetrician who enabled me to uncover my passion for helping women and families bring their little ones into the world, I knew that there was no other job for me and swapped from studying Veterinary Science to Midwifery. My biggest inspiration is feeling that I am helping to empower and guide women through one of the most important moments in their lives. Knowing that I am able to make a difference to that woman and her family, either big or small, drives me every day to support women in the best way that I can. Hearing women talk about how extensively their lives can change after a traumatic experience in labour and delivery inspires me to ensure that women are educated, informed throughout the whole process and that they are the ones making the decisions.
WHAT'S THE BEST PART ABOUT YOUR JOB?
The absolute best part of my job is watching that little baby be born into the world and take their firsts breaths. But also watching the reaction of pure love and happiness on the parents faces when that little baby is born. Sometimes I even still tear up at some of the births. Nothing will ever beat being privileged enough to be part of that special moment.
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO UTILISE A MIDWIFE AND WHAT ARE SOME THINGS WOMEN MISS OUT ON ASKING FOR HELP WITH?
I think that the best way to utilise a midwife is to ask as many questions as you can and try to connect with the midwife. Midwives have so much knowledge and are very happy to share this knowledge with anyone who is willing to listen to us. Asking questions and staying informed with every part of pregnancy, labour and the postpartum is the best way for you to understand what is happening and have the experience that you want.
CAN YOU SHARE YOUR TOP TIPS FOR POSTPARTUM AND PERINEAL CARE?
My top tips for postpartum care are:
Rest as much as you can. Forget the housework and the dishes - that can all wait. You need to make sure that you are nourishing you first so that you can nourish the baby.
If you have any stitches, try not to sit directly on them as this can be painful and cause more swelling.
It is important to clean your perineal stitches with water every time that you go to the toilet and shower twice a day (especially during that first week).
Using the Noonie can really help with comfort on your perineum as well as help with healing.
ICE ICE ICE
ANY WISE WORDS OF ADVICE FOR OUR EXPECTING MAMAS?
Accept help from friends and family – if friends offer to bring you a coffee or a home cooked meal TAKE IT!!! If you need a break from your toddler, ask one of your friends or family to take them to the park for an hour or two so you can rest.
It is okay to say no to visitors or making plans if you don’t feel up to it.