Advocating for Moms, Dads, Babies, and Postpartum Mental Health
The Month of May in Indy is many things, from checkered flags to the onset of warmer temps (…finally!), but in our field, it’s notable how packed the month is with baby and motherhood related holidays. For many families with school age children, it marks the end of another school year that flew by too fast and the taking of last day of school pics, staring in disbelief at how much they grew since August. For those with infants, it marks Baby Day and World Maternal Mental Health Day. Here are a few of the days of note this month:
For everyone who has a baby, knows a baby, is expecting their little bundle (or bundles), dreams of one day having one to snuggle, or is on the journey to conceive, May 2nd is National Baby Day. According to Days of the Year, celebrating Baby Day is as fun and easy as you want to make it. Or some approach the day as an opportunity to seek out guidance and research on favorite products, parenting techniques, and child development experts. We pulled together some of our favorite go-to items and resources to help.
To be noted by all dads, partners, children of talking age, friends, family, and colleagues: May 8th is Mother’s Day. A mother’s work is never finished and often done with love and without recognition, so take this chance to spoil those moms, moms-to-be, and mom figures in your life.
National Foster Care Month
We recognize parenting can take many forms, and the entire month of May is National Foster Care Month, created to “acknowledge the 463,000 American children and youth in foster care and the family members, foster parents, volunteers, mentors, child welfare professionals, and policymakers who help them find permanent homes and connections.” – youth.gov.
National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day
May 7th was established as National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, which the American Psychological Association explains as seeking “to raise awareness about the importance of children’s mental health and show that positive mental health is essential to a child’s healthy development..”
One impact on mental health can be sleep. At Indy Night Nanny, our services are designed to help babies establish healthy sleep patterns and routines and get them on a path to quality sleep and restful nights. With 10 years of experience doing this for hundreds of families, we’ve seen the impact healthy sleep patterns have on children’s well-being and academic performance when they reach elementary school age.
We agree mental health is critical to overall health for everyone, especially moms, parents, and caregivers. The postpartum period for moms begins as soon as the infant is delivered and continues for an inexact period of time in phase typically described as 6-8 weeks after delivery and extending to six months after delivery. So many physiological changes happen during this time period, not to mention the major life adjustments that take place when bringing a newborn home. It can be a time of incredible sleep deprivation, feelings of unease about how to best care for baby, and overcoming challenges of learning to work with your partner in new ways.
Indy Night Nanny was formed to help parents through this challenging time. Our services are designed to start the day a family comes home from the hospital and continue through 3-6 months of age. We’re dedicated to offering resources and relief to parents navigating those precious but uncertain weeks with a newborn.
The first World Maternal Mental Health Day took place in 2016, and it has continued every year since on the first Wednesday in May, while also adding a Dads for World Maternal Mental Health to the lineup.
In our work, we see our clients experience postpartum hormones, emotions, anxiety, and even depression. While we don’t take the place of a doctor, and encourage parents to talk to their healthcare providers if they suspect postpartum depression in themselves or their partner, we do cater our services to help relieve some of the barriers to mental health in the postpartum phase.
Our team of loving, caring night nannies can handle everything from soothing baby to nighttime feedings and diapering, to bottle washing and more, to allow mom and dad to get a good night’s sleep. We believe adequate sleep sets the whole family up for success to take on the day ahead and thrive in the long run.
Which days will you be celebrating this month?
The calendar can feel full of national days of this and that, but they do provide a great opportunity for reflection, connection, advocacy, and conversation about important topics.
Follow along with us @indynightnanny.