If you are a Mom on Long Island, chances are you have heard of Birth and Beyond Resources. Whether you are heading to their website to find a recommendation for something birth, postpartum or parenting related or its 2am and your baby is teething and you head to the Facebook group to ask other Mama’s what has worked for them- Patchogue Mama Jenn Barry has created something truly magical for the parents in our area. Here is our Meet a Mom interview with Jenn:
How many children do you have and what are their age(s)?
4, ages 8, 6, 5, 2
How long have you lived on Long Island? Where else have you lived?
I was born on LI but moved to Colorado for 2 years when I was in middle school… just long enough to become a die hard Bronco Fan
How did BBR come about?
I became involved in the birth world not long after my 3rd baby was born. I had three very different birth experiences… my first was a traumatic labor ending in cesarean, my second was a hospital Vbac and my third (and fourth) were born at home. I wanted to bring education to the community on options. Once I was in the birth world, it became super clear that there needed to be more support for new families traveling this journey. I had this vision of resources offered, free of charge (to both the community and the providers listed), that were recommended by the community… hence our tag line ‘for the village, by the village. It started by building the resources, first on social media and then transferred to a website.
What is your favorite part of your job?
That I can do what I do and continue being a full time mama to my babies
How has social media fueled your organization’s growth?
It started it! We built the Facebook group in 2016 to really house hundreds of resources listed on threads and now, it is an avenue of diverse support for the community, whether it’s 2 pm or 2 am, no one is alone! Someone is always online.
As a mom running a non-profit- how do you handle the toggle between work and family?
The reality is, I’m not sure I handle it at all. Things just flow. Some days, it’s hectic and I definitely have big goals that it takes me longer to complete because I’m tending to my family. There are the days where I’m stretched thinner than my brain can handle and those days are tough. In the end, I know what I do is making an impact and in my heart, it feels good to make a difference.
What’s one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
I’m an open book so there isn’t much the community doesn’t know about me… maybe that I struggled with postpartum depression, anxiety, OCD and PTSD. And I believe it is something that gets better with taking steps to wellness but also something that you consistently need to be aware of and work on.
Anyone special you’d like to thank for helping you through parenthood?