Moms bring their babies to Chat Time at Valley View Hospital in Glenwood Springs | PostIndependent.com

Moms bring their babies to Chat Time at Valley View Hospital in Glenwood Springs

Kay Vasilakis
kay@postindependent.com
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Kelley Cox Post Independent
ALL |

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Babies, babies, babies everywhere. Moms holding babies, babies on blankets on the floor, moms nursing babies, moms giving babies bottles, wobbly babies trying out their newly found coordination.

At one point, it looked like a quilt of babies on the floor. It’s a perfect getaway for a new mom, and it’s called Chat Time, offered in the family room at the Family Birthplace in Valley View Hospital.

Kim Martin, registered nurse and certified lactation consultant, offered a similar program at Breastfeeding Essentials for almost five years.

When that business folded, Kim approached Laurale Cross, the director of the Family Birthplace, who agreed to host Chat Time every Wednesday.

“When we first started in September of ’08, we had about six moms and babies,” she said. “The program has blossomed, and some of the first moms are still attending.”

Just eight months later, 12-16 moms cart their babies with all the much-needed baby paraphernalia to Chat Time from 10 a.m. to noon every Wednesday.

Besides Glenwood Springs, moms come from Silt, Basalt, Gypsum and Eagle. It’s a terrific support group where new moms learn from other moms who have lived through sleepless nights and the terrors of colic. They give each other ideas and sympathize with moms who might just break down and cry. They have all been there.

“Kayla (another mom in attendance) was in my birthing class,” said Kristin Algren, mom of 2-week-old Allison Algren. “She called to tell me to check this out. It’s the first real outing I’ve had other than the doctor’s office. I came for the interaction with other moms and gathering knowledge.”

It was Kristin and Allison’s first Chat Time, and she and her baby seemed right at home. No crying by either one.

Moms share everything from birth stories, tips on fingernail clipping, teething, preferred types of baby bottles and baby food. Any mom and baby can come ” you don’t have to have a newborn.

Talking with one of the moms, Martin said, “You need to figure out what works for you. Don’t give up Breast-feeding, and don’t be afraid to supplement.”

Martin usually brings a scale to Chat Time because the moms love to weigh their babies, and see how much each baby has grown since the week before.

“It’s cool to see other age groups at each stage in growth and development,” said Suzanne Hazelton, three-and-a-half-month-old Sophie Hazelton’s mom. “I totally look forward to Wednesdays. Wednesdays are Sophie and my days to come and see our friends.”

Suzanne’s mother-in-law, Rita Hazelton, was busy taking pictures like all grandmothers, and thoroughly enjoying herself.

“I came to see what it’s all about,” she said. “Suzanne gets a lot of questions answered. I wish I had something like this when my kids were babies.”

Moms can come when they’re overwhelmed. They do not have to have an appointment or tell anyone they will be there.

The moms keep coming because they know when they’re at Chat Time, they’re not alone, and they will have fun. Sometimes the moms go to lunch afterward, sometimes the Chat Time involves a potluck.

Martin stated Chat Time is fun for the pediatric nurses, too. Some of the nurses were there when the babies were delivered, and they get a kick out of seeing how the babies are growing. And the moms love to show off their babies.

“Our goal is to keep the moms nursing for a longer period, six months if they can; one year is recommended. But they can still come if they are no longer breast-feeding.”

If you would like more information about Chat Time, call Kim Martin at 384-7233 or e-mail kmartin@vvh.org.


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