Since we dove into the postpartum world, I have been astounded by the number of people trying to improve the postpartum experience for women in America. And I was delighted when I noticed a doula friend of mine was one of those people. Lynsey Haynes became a friend through the birth of our second son. We hired her as our birth doula because we weren’t sure if my husband would be back from deployment in time for his birth. Well, husband arrived home on time but Lynsey proved to be critical during my labor anyway!
It’s apparent from the start: Lynsey is passionate about caring for women before, during, and after childbirth. I can’t even tell you how many births she’s attended; she started young, learning through the births of her siblings. Her passion has grown and she’s now caring for postpartum women directly through her business: Ansei Postpartum Center.
Located in San Diego right across the street from Scripps Mercy Hospital, Ansei is a center you can stay overnight or long-term. While you’re there, you get everything a postpartum mother needs. Ansei (安静) is Japanese and literally means “peace and quiet with pampering.” This is unfortunately not what most American mothers get during their postpartum phase, but it’s the goal of Ansei to bring back a lying in for mothers.
This is how it works: call for a free tour and get a personalized pampering and recovery plan. Then you can make a reservation, just like a hotel. You can stay with your immediate family (dad and other children included) and enjoy the meals, support, and amenities that are catered toward postpartum healing.
The Ansei experience:
As soon as you check in at Ansei, there are people there to help you. You are assigned a postpartum doula for 12 hours (though more is available); they assess your needs and bring professionals to you. If a mother needs help with her latch, they bring in a lactation consultant. If mom or baby could use an adjustment, they call a chiropractor. If mom is concerned about her physical healing, they commission a midwife.
This is astounding. Usually, if a mother has – say – a latch problem due to tongue tie, she has to wait for referrals and scheduling. She may have to meet with irrelevant professionals in order to get a single referral for the professional she does need. In the end, this time delay can cause excessive weight loss in baby and cracked nipples and mastitis in the mother. These problems can be fatal for a breastfeeding relationship and stressful for a mother during her recovery.
At Ansei, the goal is to have specialized service within 48 hours. Whether the issue is breastfeeding or mom’s own healing, she has her needs met as soon as it’s possible.
Ansei also has on-site amenities to promote healing and pamper mom. They offer:
- Vaginal steaming, which quickens recovery by reducing lochia and cramping
- Belly binding
- Facials, and
- An aesthetician who can do make up and hair for mom’s departure. This makes the family’s departure a celebration of their birth and healing.
Lynsey and the staff at Ansei want to make sure their newborn mothers are well, in all ways.
Warmth + Nourishment
Ansei embraces an ambience of warmth and healing. The pampering and care each woman receives, the temperature and style of each room and the meals that are exclusively served warm are all tailored to promote postpartum healing. The meals and snacks are soft and comfortable to eat for a woman whose insides are still shifting back into place; and they’re nutritious to promote re-building and healing.
No amount of intervention can compare to the power of resting the body and mind. Sleep is a major component of healing, yet something new mothers don’t get a lot of. At Ansei, every mother is welcome to room in with her baby if that’s how they sleep best, and bed-side bassinets are provided. If mom needs to rest on her own, there’s a nursery fully staffed and connected with monitors so mom can check in on her baby with a smart device.
Unfortunately, all stays come to an end. At Ansei, they aim to leave each mother with an information so they can bring that peace and warmth with them to their homes. They teach mothers how to eat, how to care for themselves physically and emotionally and how to embrace the new chapter of their life: motherhood. With this education, the transition from hospital or birth center through Ansei and back home again is peaceful and confidence-boosting.
Ansei is also a doula training center. They give doulas an opportunity to hone their ability to care for newborn families, and also offer talks on cultural competency in the birth realm. They also offer classes and workshops for birth workers (obstetricians, midwives, and doulas) and families.
So, if you’re pregnant and in the San Diego area, consider Ansei for your postpartum phase. This is truly something mothers need after birth and a wonderful way for us to replace the village we’ve lost. Call 619-348-9374 with questions or booking information, or visit their website.