As a parent and caregiver myself, I know what the most valuable gift is for a new family. Spoiler alert: it’s not the tiny little onesies, classic books or soothing stuffies. Don’t get me wrong, I loved those too, but the most valuable gift I received when I was pregnant and postpartum, was the gift of support. Whether it was a home cooked meal or meal delivery service, someone who came over and did the dishes or tidied up, refilling my cleaning and diaper supplies, or quality time where I didn’t have to entertain, this is the stuff that keeps new parents going. Let’s be honest, it’s what keeps them ALIVE. I know it did for me.
I was put on bed rest towards the end of my pregnancy in 2020, due to placenta previa (hello exit blocker!) and 3 large fibroids. There was a lot going on down there! Then, the day of my baby shower, Covid-19 came a calling, and all in-person gatherings and in events were cancelled. My baby and pregnancy celebration was cancelled. It wasn’t the upset of missing out on opening gifts in front of people (so awkward!), or eating tiny sandwiches off a plate on my belly – it was the terrifying realisation that I wasn’t going to be surrounded by my community before or possibly after my birth.
That week, my friends and family did something amazing and gifted me with postpartum doula services. They pooled their money and crowdfunded a postpartum doula, so that I would be supported in a way that they couldn’t. Getting a doula was something that felt like a luxury, an add-on, and a serious investment that I hadn’t been able to make on my own. Little did I know, my doula Emma (of then Bunky Bambino), would be the ONLY person we would see for six weeks.
Yes, your mother-in-law could come over and support you postpartum. Your partner will likely be at your birth and change diapers and rub your feet (I hope!). Your friends can accompany you to appointments, or bring over treats. I hope that ALL of these things happen for you! But those people aren’t trained birth attendants and advocates, working alongside you, your family and your medical care providers, without bias to support you in your journey to parenthood. Not only was my doula able to support me in nursing and feeding my baby, they also cleaned my house, brought me nourishing food, and worked night shifts so we could sleep and I was only woken up when my baby needed to be fed. They checked in on my mental health, and checked in on my partner who was also doing this for the first time (in a pandemic no less).
My wish for all people is to at some point experience the life changing care of a doula. It’s why I co-founded Brood. Whether you’re someone who can afford to pay for a set of doula services, or want to crowdfund for a friend, the gift of Brood is perfect for anyone who needs support during birth or postpartum. Hint hint: it’s everyone!
Two ways to gift Brood doula services:
Your friends or family are already using Brood services? Amazing! Brood services are customised to our families and their specific needs, which makes it easy for friends and family to support them. Brood will work directly with you to give these services, all you need to do is send us an email. Gifting or surprising your friend with doula services? All the family needs to do is book a Meet Brood call, where we discover what they need and when.
Brood currently operates and services Vancouver’s Lower Mainland, Bowen Island, and Victoria, BC. If you’re outside of those service areas, consider gifting one of Brood’s online courses for parents and caregivers.
Gifting Brood’s Online Courses:
Wherever your friends or family members live, and wherever they are in their parenting journey, Brood’s 5 online courses are an easy and inexpensive way to give support. From pregnancy, prenatally, and birth, to postpartum and the 4th trimester, feeding and your baby to early parenthood, our courses offer a flexible, accessible way to learn. Our courses were developed by doulas and educators, and peer-reviewed by a Clinical Advisory Board made up of doctors, therapists, midwives, nurses and parents with lived experience.
Check out all our courses here. Follow the prompts for gifting and an email will be sent to the lucky recipient within the day.
We’re here to answer any questions about our offerings or gifting. Contact us here.
Photos by Asterios Moutsokapas