Hello there, mamas-to-be, new mamas, and veteran mamas! My name is Melanie, and I’m the newest member of The New Mom School team. You’ll be seeing my articles and blog posts in the upcoming newsletters, so I thought I’d take a moment to introduce myself. First, a photo, since I use any reason to show off my little lady. This is me, and my four-month-old daughter, Avery.

It is my new favorite photo of the she and I for two reasons. 1.) we were brunching at the location my husband and I were married in 2016, and 2.) I was so, unbelievably, tired because we were in the dark cloud that is the four-month sleep regression, with seemingly no end in sight, but I was still just so happy to be sitting in that special place, sharing that moment with my daughter. Also, to be incredibly vain, the lighting was so, perfectly, soft that it veiled my undereye bags, and for that, I am forever thankful to the sunshine gods.

So, how did I end up, here, writing this introduction post for you with baby poop on my pajama pants? Here’s a reader’s digest background on me: I’m a California native and have spent my entire life living in Orange County (because HELLO, sunshine and perfect weather) with a brief stint in Los Angeles while I was attending college at the University of Southern California. I graduated with my business degree and entered the corporate world working in online media and advertising. I’ve spent most of my career in the industry; starting in operations, and eventually moving to human resources to focus on training, development, and recruitment. For the past two and a half years, I’ve been on the business development side at a small online video ad network, which has been a very welcomed change of pace, and has also allowed me to simultaneously pursue something I very much enjoy: writing.

During my pregnancy journey, I decided to hire a doula for my Hypnobabies birth since I was certain I would need that support and coaching through what was surely going to be the most physically and emotionally demanding event I had yet to experience (spoiler alert, it was!). I’ll spare you my lengthy birth story, but let’s just say that my once-skeptical-husband exited that labor & delivery room a true believer in doulas and the value they add, and I feel eternally grateful for, and empowered by, ours. So much so, that I have decided to become a certified doula (going through training this month, yay!), so I can help support women through their own, unique and magical, births.

After Avery was born, I attended The New Mom School Newborn series (thanks to a very insistent friend) and am currently enrolled in the Infant class. It was the absolute best decision I made for my post-partum experience, and I am a true believer in what Alex has created for us in our most vulnerable time as new moms. Going to class every week and interacting with moms who have babies the same age as mine is incredible. A lot of time in the early days of parenthood is spent googling things like, “how many dirty diapers should a three-week-old make,” or “can you survive off 2 hours of sleep?”, and being in class with other moms going through the trenches with you makes you realize you are not crazy for wanting to judo-chop your husband in the throat while he snores when you’re feeding the baby at 1:30am (don’t worry – I didn’t actually do it).

In the weekly newsletters to come, I’ll be covering topics about motherhood, pregnancy, postpartum recovery, and everything in between. I’m looking forward to getting more involved with the incredible village of women who make up The New Mom School, and whether you’ve taken a class series or are pregnant with your first and making the decision to enroll, I hope you enjoy the content we’ll be providing.

Here’s to solidarity and support in motherhood!