I remember the first few weeks of being a mother of twins as a dimly lit haze, equal parts wonder, pain, confusion, and utter fatigue. It was beyond exhausting.
I remember breaking down about 5 or 6 days after the birth. My husband was working, I was alone, and had managed to get them both to sleep (read: miracle). I quietly and gently laid myself down in bed, only to have one of them start crying the minute I dared to relax. I wept. I stared at the sweet little strangers in the bassinet next to my bed and I thought, “I’m not enough for you. What am I doing wrong? Why won’t you sleep? Please won’t someone take them for me just for a few hours?”
Thankfully, I was still in the maternity ward and had nurses who could help me through the first 10 days. They taught me so many things about caring for a newborn that helped us in the following months and years!
If you aren’t in the hospital, you may want to consider hiring a Baby Nurse or Night Nurse the first couple weeks or months to support you and your parenting learning curve.
What is a Baby Nurse?
Baby nurses or night nurses aren’t necessarily nurses. Most of them are women who have extensive experience and training with newborns, and many of them are mothers themselves. They help the mom and newborn(s) learn how to breastfeed, they teach the parents how to care for the umbilical cord, bathe their newborn, swaddle them, make a bottle without clumps, you name it. Additionally, they help with household tasks like tidying up and laundry. Perhaps best of all, a baby nurse who stays the night gives parents the priceless gift of rest by taking care of all of these things while parents sleep.
Having someone there who has experience gives you peace of mind, and gives you room to heal, allowing you to regain the strength you need to tackle your career, take care of your other kids, and figure out your new role in life.
Are you looking for a night nurse? I checked out a few sites, and here’s the overview:
Most have either 12 or 24 hour shifts.
The cost varies between $150-$250 per 12-hour night, and roughly $250+ per 24 hours.
This may not include a booking or finders fee.
There may be a minimum engagement period of a few days or a week.
A baby nurse might be for you if…
- You have a baby
- You will be having a baby in the next week or so
- You’re a single parent
- You have older children that you need to devote some attention to
- You live far away from your families
- You have/want to work
- You and your spouse are first-time parents who need some reassurance
- You or your spouse are suffering from postpartum depression/baby blues
If I know one thing, it’s that a well-rested mom is just a better mom. She heals faster, and she can cope with all the crap (literally) that life, and her kids, can throw at her.
Sites I checked, all serving the NYC area:
- Lullaby Baby Nurses: https://lullabybabynurses.com/
- Caring Baby Nurses: http://caringbabynurses.com/
- More Than A Nanny: http://www.morethanananny.com/baby-nurses
- Gentle Hands Childcare: http://www.gentlehandschildcare.com/night.html
Other useful resources on nighttime baby nurses:
What to Expect Forums: https://www.whattoexpect.com/forums/new-york-city/topic/night-nurse-813.html
Park Slope Parents: http://www.parkslopeparents.com/list/485_Night-Nurses.html
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