Hi! My name is Aidee and I am a Board Certified Occupational Therapist licensed in the state of Texas. I have a Bachelors in Psychology, Master of Public Health and Master of Occupational Therapy.
I have worked with people across the lifespan in the last 6 years in a variety of settings: acute care rehabilitation, inpatient rehabilitation, and outpatient. I have primarily worked with children and adults who have neurological disorders and hematology/oncology disorders. So why the shift to maternal/child health?
I saw the gap in care once I became a mother. I had an unplanned c-section and at no point was I asked about my environment and my daily occupations (activities). I never got an evaluation for occupational therapy. I was honestly surprised because if anyone has an abdominal surgery, occupational therapy is often asked to evaluate patients ability to continue to care for themselves, be able to safely enter their home, and continue their daily activities like caring for others, grocery shopping, household management. All I got were handouts. Who has time to read handouts when you are trying to figure out how to breastfeed, survive without sleep and are inundated with feelings of “What am I doing?!” Needless to say, as soon as I got home, I have no idea where those handouts went. Between pain from the incision, pain from breastfeeding, and the lack of sleep I was in a daze. The haze lasted longer than I thought it would. Frankly, I became dysfunctional. Difficulty with short term memory recall, difficulty with emotional regulation, difficulty with problem solving and overall executive function difficulties. Add to that the physical dysfunction after c-section. It was intense to say the least.
It took me a lot of self examination, therapy sessions, and a lot of giving myself grace to get to my new and "functional" mom self. They say 20/20 is hindsight...is that it? Now I can look back and clearly see what I needed in those foggy day. I have a semblance of a “flexible” routine and see all the things that I needed to hear and do during that haze. This is a space to learn how to make modifications in this new normal to continue doing the things YOU love while also caring for and engaging with your child in developmentally appropriate tasks.
As an Occupational Therapist, I have been trained to look at the individual holistically. I am looking at the person in their context, their environment, their roles and how their daily activities are impacted. Did you notice that after baby was born, you had 1 follow up appointment at 6 weeks and baby was seen at 3 days, 1 week, 2 months, 4 months, 6 months, etc.? I mean how is that even possible? How can a visit 6 weeks postpartum address all the issues that can occur after having a baby?
I am a strong believer of the mind-body connection as well as the integral attachment that needs to occur between mother and baby. In order for a child to flourish developmentally, the mother has to be set up for success. She needs to be empowered in her new role as a mother while she manages her existing roles in her life. This is a space to learn how to make modifications in this new normal to continue doing the things YOU love while also caring for and engaging with your child in developmentally appropriate activities.