The importance of a village | Toddling Through the Silicon Valley | Cheryl Bac | Palo Alto Online |

Local Blogs

Toddling Through the Silicon Valley

By Cheryl Bac

E-mail Cheryl Bac

About this blog: I'm a wife, stay-at-home mom, home cook, marathon runner, and PhD. I recently moved to the Silicon Valley after completing my PhD in Social Psychology and becoming a mother one month apart. Before that, I ran seven marathons incl...  (More)

View all posts from Cheryl Bac

The importance of a village

Uploaded: Jan 24, 2018
When our son was a baby I spent a lot of time finding "my village." People I could turn to for support while I was adjusting to motherhood. I was amazed by how many women welcomed me with open arms.

When you are pregnant it is very difficult to know what kind of support you will need once baby arrives. You might need help with breastfeeding, cooking, cleaning, sleeping, getting to doctor appointments, etc. Even the second and third time around I wasn't quite sure what type of support I would need until after baby was born. I didn't know how easily our kids would adjust to a new sibling, whether baby would nurse and sleep well. Or if there were going to be any medical issues that required extra trips to the pediatrician or hospital.

Once baby arrives, it's easy to forget about your own needs. After our first child was born, I remember going to one new mothers' group where the leader frequently handed out huge glasses of lemonade. Sometimes I didn't realize just how thirsty I was until I was going back for a refill. Her little gesture was greatly appreciated.

When you are taking care of a new baby, asking for help can become a task in and of itself. You may want to shower and/or clean your home before guests stop by to see baby. Or, when family and friends offer to help, you may not even know what to ask for. Coming up with specific tasks that should get done might just be too overwhelming.

One of my dear friends, Kari, was part of my village when my son was a baby. She is now a doula and recently posted a list of how your village can help you during the fourth trimester. I wish I had found a list like this when I was pregnant the first time around.

Not only does her list give new moms ideas for how their village can help, but also reiterates that it is normal to need to lean on friends, family and doulas during this very emotional and exhausting time.

Something as simple as a relative offering to watch baby while you eat a meal or take a shower, a friend sitting down with you to talk about the birth, your mother washing dishes that are piling up in the sink, a cousin playing with an older brother or sister on the floor, or a doula tending to baby so you can take a 30 minute nap. These small gestures can make a huge difference in a new family's day.
We need your support now more than ever. Can we count on you?


There are no comments yet for this post

Follow this blogger.
Sign up to be notified of new posts by this blogger.



Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Get the most important local news stories sent straight to your inbox daily.

Couples and Premarital: Personal Weather Report (TM)
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 2,233 views

Pie Brings People Together
By Laura Stec | 2 comments | 2,190 views

Feel the burn: The Peninsula gets a new Nashville hot chicken joint
By Elena Kadvany | 0 comments | 1,725 views

Our First Year with an Elf on the Shelf
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 841 views

Time to tighten up the PA city council meetings
By Diana Diamond | 0 comments | 294 views


Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund

For the last 26 years, the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund has given away more than $7 million to local nonprofits serving children and families. When you make a donation, every dollar is automatically doubled, and 100% of the funds go directly to local programs. It’s a great way to ensure your charitable donations are working at home.