Parents TV talk to Claudia Fraser about her work as a baby nurse and how much she enjoys her work.
Anne Ebeling: Bringing your new baby home is one of the most exciting times in a parent's life. But it's also one of the scariest. That's why many new moms turn to baby nurses to help them care for their newborns. Sonia Battista: You are very emotional, you are nervous, you are excited; you are in quiet some pain still and very uncomfortable. So having just this person to help you and ease your transition to being a full time mom or being a mom with twins is invaluable. Anne Ebeling: Before she had her twin boys, Sonia Battista knew she needed an extra hand. Sonia Battista: Because we were having twins. I felt like it would be a huge support to have a baby nurse help us, just basically first of all by being a first time mom and it's stress within itself and then to have two, it just felt a little bit overwhelming, the idea of having being alone with two little babies and needing to feed them and change them. Anne Ebeling: Baby nurses help new moms care for their babies from anywhere from 6 to 24 hours a day, starting as soon as the baby comes home, up to eight weeks. They help with everything pertaining to the care of the newborns, like changing diapers, feeding the babies, putting them to bed and doing their laundry. Some even prepare healthy meals for the new moms. Sonia Battista: The most important thing about the baby nurse is initially her helping you with the night feeds, because there are so many feeds in the beginning and the mom and the dad are already so exhausted from just to having given birth, plus having two little babies that you want to be around all the time, it's just nice to have someone else to help you and that will go through the night shift with you. Anne Ebeling: Twenty four hour baby nurses come stay in the family's home. Usually right in the baby's room. Claudia Fraser: Usually I choose to be in the baby's room for the first couple of weeks, just to be close by, in case they are spitting up or anything. Anne Ebeling: Some baby nurses are certified nurses first, while others take a baby nurse course offered by their respective state. Claudia Fraser: was a trained nurse in England before becoming a twenty four hour baby nurse here in the U.S. Claudia Fraser: I have always loved babies. I am an only child and I always wanted one hundred babies. Yeah. So I really enjoy them, I think babies are very affectionate and very loving and I really get good jobs satisfaction out of them. Anne Ebeling: She says her main job as a baby nurse is to put new moms at ease. Claudia Fraser: I ease the mother' chores with little questions. The mothers worry if the baby's are breathing too fast. The mother's worry if the babies sneeze. The mothers worry if the babies have hiccups and so I try to reassure them that it's okay. You know, I am here, I will watch baby and it's perfectly fine, and all those things are very normal. Anne Ebeling: And Sonia says having Claudia around has really helped her through the first few weeks with her boys. Sonia Battista: It's basically like having a living encyclopedia, because every little thing being a new mom freaks you out, everything. If they make a noise, if they don't make a noise, if they have a scratch, if they don't have a scratch, if they are eating too much or they are eating too little, and you feel like you are losing your mind, because you feel so, you know, is everything alright? And your baby nurse is there with all her knowledge and experience, just to ease your mind and say it's absolutely okay. Anne Ebeling: Good baby nurses book up quickly. So start looking for one about three months before you are due. You can find one by word of mouth or by going through a local baby nurse agency. Sonia Battista: Taking references is very important. Interviewing as many people as you know are available at the time, definitely doing it in advance. Also, really compatibility, it wouldn't take it for granted if you are having someone stay in your house for twenty four hours a day that they are not compatible with you. If you don't feel comfortable with the baby nurse on your first interview or your second interview or on the phone, I wouldn't even consider taking them into your home. Anne Ebeling: Prices for baby nurses range from about $225 to $450 a day for twins or from about $170 to $200 a day for a single baby. But Sonia says it's worth it. Sonia Battista: Especially for moms of twins. That I think is, if you can, a must, but also moms of singletons, I think, from friends and people I know saying that it's so very hard and they are so stressful and they are so exhausted and they just - the first three months is just a blow or the first six weeks is a complete blow. Having someone there that is knowledgeable and helpful can help you just to really enjoy the process. Your babies are not going to be that tiny ever again, so if you are not as tired or as stressed or as everything that's going on, you really can enjoy it.