Nurturing Your Motherhood Identity
Becoming a parent is a joyous occasion. However, it can also be an event followed by feeling confused, overwhelmed, and fatigued. Developing a sense of who one is as a parent can be influenced by our culture, inter-generational attachment issues, parental well-being, and a host of other factors. As a mother of two, I am intimately aware of the intricacies and pressures that can accompany the early years of parenthood. As a doctor in psychology, I am keenly aware of the volumes of opposing research, the fundamental necessity to find one’s own way through it, and the importance of developing one’s own style that can spontaneously and creatively respond to the multitude of situations we find ourselves in.
I provide support and guidance to help parents develop trust in their unique abilities to nurture their baby/child. Whether you are dealing with sleep issues, managing temperament idiosyncrasies, or struggling to find your footing as a parent, I develop a collaborative plan with you that considers your family values, baby's temperament, and family's well-being. I believe that when a family is confident, well rested, and informed then the transformation into familyhood is more creative, supported, peaceful, and joyous.
I work with clients nationally via Skype and phone. I also teach classes in Greensboro, Charlotte, and Asheville.
"When I initially contacted Meggan, I felt like I was never going to get a good night's sleep ever again. My four month old daughter had never been a good sleeper, and it seemed to be getting worse. I'd often be up with her eight times a night, my husband was sleeping in a different room, and I had no idea what I should do.
I was hesitant about doing any kind of sleep training, but Meggan was extremely reassuring and knowledgeable. During our initial consultation I could tell that she knew what she was talking about, would never recommend anything that my baby wasn't ready for, and was willing to work within the parameters of my husband's and my comfort level.
After discussing what options would be best for our family and working with us to pick an appropriate time to begin working on our daughter's sleep, we dove in, and I never, ever could have gotten through it without Meggan's support. She even answered desperate emails from me first thing on a Sunday morning -- it was so nice to get that immediate response!
At seven months old our daughter now generally goes to bed without a fight and often sleeps through the night, and the whole family is much, much happier!"
- Jen Picicci
"This morning, my son said, 'I was happy.' I asked, 'When were you happy?' He said, 'When you left the room last night I was feeling happy, not sad.' It's a huge marker of how far we've come and how much has changed from the many tear-filled (both mine and his) nights. I can't thank you enough for helping me find the confidence and trust to follow-through, when I almost didn't."
- Jill, mother of a 3 year old
"Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all your help. The changes and progress we have made together have been major and we feel so much more confident in the instance I have to leave or we both need to leave for a bit. Jim has grown leaps and bounds as a father and is so happy and proud that he is able to get Twyla to sleep and spend that time bonding with her! Our next major goal is having a third party put Twyla to sleep. :)"
- Jill, mother of 14 month old
"Our daughter, Kaitlyn, has never been a great sleeper. Around seven months of age, my husband, Chris, and I were just about at our breaking point. Since her birth, we had not gotten a night of consistent sleep longer than 6 hours. Kaitlynʼs daytime naps were only 30-45 minutes long and her bedtime ritual was becoming longer and longer, taking up to 2 hours or more to get her down to sleep at night without nursing and/or holding her. In addition, she was waking up about three or four times during the night. Everyone in the family, including Kaitlyn, was exhausted from lack of sleep, and the health of our family was dwindling. Our lack of sleep was hurting the dynamics of our relationship and our ability to be productive throughout the day. In talking with friends, we learned of Meggan Hartman. She had information sessions on sleep and sleep training methods throughout the Asheville, NC area. In May 2012, out of desperation, we attended one of her sessions. It was a starting block for us. She provided us with an overview of sleep, infant development, and different sleep training methods ranging in varying degrees of parental involvement.
From this introduction we decided to hire her. In a very professional and respectful manner, she took the time to thoroughly learn about our current sleeping situation. Meggan met with us in person at our home to better understand our situation. She assessed the psycho-social aspects of our family including conception, postpartum, infant feeding methods, partner relationship, and family sleep history. She took time to interact with Kaitlyn to better understand her personality and character. She assessed Kaitlynʼs bedroom and offered ways to improve her sleeping environment. We completed an activity log and sleep diary over the course of a week to provide a trend, from which Meggan examined and then provided us with guidelines to follow for the middle of the night awakenings. We maintained a sleep diary and provided Meggan with frequent, clear explanations about our progress. She helped us identify areas of inconsistency as parents and helped us identify goals to sleep better the entire night. She was always accessible by email and by telephone, available to answer questions, provide support, insight, guidance, and offer strategies to be successful. The high level of ﬂexibility and respect to work with our family has been priceless.
We continued to make progress, and, due to our circumstances, we continued with maintain contact with Meggan. She helped us ﬁnd an effective strategy that was within our comfort levels to wean our daughter (12 months old) from night time breastfeeding. As we continued to learn about our daughter, her personality, and how it affects her sleep, we were able to go longer stretches of time without needing contact from Meggan. During this time, Meggan helped us identify the skills we needed to cope with changes and regressions in Kaitlynʼs sleep. However, when we felt we were stuck and in a sleeping rut, we were able to easily connect with Meggan.
Meggan has been working with us for over a year now, and we have a child that is sleeping through the night so much better and is taking good, consistent naps. We still experience sleep regressions with Kaitlyn, but we have the conﬁdence and knowledge to know how to handle the bumps. We know what works for our family to sleep better, night and day."
- The Filipiaks
"We are forever grateful to Meggan Hartman and her knowledge about sleep in infants and children. She is ﬂexible, accessible, and easy to work with.When I reached out to Meggan for help, our 3.5 month old was sleeping great at night but not taking naps during the day. With her gentle hand and constant support, our daughter was taking three naps a day and consistently putting herself to sleep at night. Meggan's knowledge and love helped us to feel empowered and relaxed! I highly recommend her to anyone on a 'sleep journey' with their precious child."
- Claire Bjorkholm
"Hi, Mamas, just wanted to share that I have been working with Meggan Hartman, infant sleep consultant, and she has been fantastic. My son is nine months old, and we have gone from him waking every hour and feeding to waking 1-2 times per night with her help. She also offered very helpful suggestions as far as eating, etc. She is very warm and supportive and made a real effort to be there emotionally too as we went through this. I HIGHLY recommend her if you are struggling with sleep."
- Sandy Newes
"I really enjoyed this group. I got out of it everything I was looking for it to be. A safe, open space to go to each week, informative/helpful/useful information about my baby's development, and an outlet for some very pent up creative expression! I enjoyed hearing and sharing 'check-ins' about the week -- because where we're coming from as mothers is changing so much, it is so great to hear others say exactly what I'm thinking myself, AND to hear others say things that I thought last week, or I feel a certain way later and remember that I heard someone else describe that same feeling ... just so encouraging and reassuring to hear others' experiences. Bells in the beginning set the space a way nothing else can ... just perfect. Taking a minute to quietly 'watch the babies' -- also a wonderful reminder that play *can* be quiet! Thanks for setting topics and also being flexible with them."
- Becca Nestler
"I just wanted to ensure you [Meggan] that we are very happy with the results. Jeff has now been going into Calvin's room with a bottle for the early morning wake up, and Calvin has been sleeping in until 7 am or 7:30 am.
"We could not have reached our sleeping goals without your help. I don't think we would have been able to persevere through that first night and/or the subsequent difficult nights to follow without your assistance. We feel like a new family. A happy, energized and well rested family.
"I am sure that there will be bumps along the way, but things are much better, and Calvin has learned a new skill. I have even noticed that when he is tired he will communicate that by lying his head down on the ground. It is so cute. It is as though he is showing off his new skill. Before, he never would have laid down all by himself.
"So, thanks again. I am sure that we will contact you again in the future when we need help with other tough stages of parenting, and it is nice to know that we have you in our corner."
- Tamsyn Markham, mother of nine month old
"Meggan has been our lifesaver! We decided to work with Meggan when our nine month old wouldn't stay asleep at night. We were a mess. Meggan was extremely knowledgeable about our daughter's developmental stages and sleep needs. She was able to navigate us through these rough waters with a clear, precise plan. She also gave us such great, much needed moral support. Now we are much more confident parents when it comes to sleep. Thank you so much, Meggan!!!"
- Bethany and Damien Hoffman