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Steph interviews Dr. Elana about her brand new program, Med School for Moms! Dr. Elana is passionate about teaching moms how to safely be a Doctor Mom. Dr. Elana shares about working with many anxious mothers over her years as a doctor. We all want the very best for our kids but may not always know what to do when our child gets sick. Dr. Elana shares insights to help transform worry into confidence along with tips any mom can benefit from. All kids will inevitably get sick, so you want to be prepared with safe tools and tips for staying calm. Listen and take your first step to being a Doctor Mom! For Whole Mamas Podcast listeners who would like to join Med School for Moms, take 15% off of any guidebook or course using code WHOLEMAMASPODCAST through 8/30/19.
Elana Roumell 0:04
At Med School for Moms, I teach you the signs, the symptoms, to look out for with safety scales- and I mean I have all this stuff organized, and graphics so you can you can download and print out and such but the biggest takeaway is I think I want all moms to know that not all sickness warrants a doctor’s visit and that you can be a doctor mom, as long as you have that education, that confidence.
Stephanie Greunke 0:29
Welcome back to the Whole Mamas podcast. We’re here to give you tools, resources and evidence based information so you can make the best decisions for yourself and your family. Whether you’re trying to conceive or are navigating life with a toddler or a teenager, we’ve got you covered. I’m Stephanie Greunke, Registered Dietician and Program Director for Whole 30’s Whole Mamas Club. I’m also the Co-creator of Whole 30’s pregnancy program and upcoming postpartum program.
Elana Roumell 0:55
And I’m Dr. Elana Roumell, Pediatric Naturopathic Doctor and creator of Med School for Moms, an online resource where I teach moms how to safely be a doctor mom.
Stephanie Greunke 1:04
Today we have a really fun episode for you – I get to interview Dr. Elana and chat with her about her new online program, Med School for Moms. Med School for Moms is a course that she poured her heart and soul into where she teaches moms how to safely be a doctor Mom. I’m so excited to share this resource with you, and I can’t wait to dig in and have her share what is included and how you can be a doctor mom yourself. All right, now let’s get into our nourish yourself segment and then we’ll get into the interview about Med School for Moms. So Elana, How did you nourish yourself today?
Elana Roumell 1:38
Okay, so Steph, I am so excited about this episode, I can’t even tell you. I’ve been looking forward to recording this. So when this episode airs, it’s actually the launch day of Med School for Moms. And I know- I’m so excited! I’ve waited so many months for this. But the big thing that I wanted to mention with my “nourish yourself” segment is that I have already planned ahead and I’ve taken a full day off from patients and from work on that launch day. And so it’s interesting Tuesday’s usually my busiest day, I see patients all the way until seven, I’m not home till 7:30. And I love it that I created that, so that was my choice. But I will say that it takes sometimes a lot of planning ahead of time to have to block off your schedules so that we can accommodate everyone’s needs. But it’s so important to me that I take that time and really sit in the like the excitement of all of this like I’ve worked nine months on this project stuff and I just know when I generate a lot I also need a break. And so I’m just really excited to nourish myself already blocking it off and seeing it blocked off on my calendar gives me peace of mind because I know I could just be present that day, I can you know figure out any like last minute hiccups, I can just like be with moms and hear reviews or you know, just like answer questions and just be there, just to soak up and all of the hard work that I’ve done. And I just think that’s nourishing to me the fact that I’m even just planning so ahead to do that. So that that was really exciting for me.
Stephanie Greunke 3:01
Oh, so are you gonna go get a massage or something to celebrate? Or what are you gonna do to celebrate?
Elana Roumell 3:05
It’s so interesting. I don’t really know. But I did invite my doula to be with me that day isn’t that so funny?! So interestingly enough, doulas, as you know, are huge supports during your birth, but I actually brought my doula on the same day that I filmed all my video courses- which is really interesting. I haven’t shared this yet. Maybe I will one day on social media, but I like needed that support. Like, my day of filming literally started at 9:30am. And Stephanie, I did not get home till 1:30am. Okay, no joke. It was a full day of education. And I just was like, on fire. I was like, I want to teach them this. I want to teach them this and, and I had so much content, and my team was amazing. And I knew I needed the support. So my I brought my doula and she was such an amazing support. She warmed me up when I was cold, she reminded me to rest my eyes, because you know, the camera and all the lights and stuff. She was incredible. And so to honor that I actually asked my doula, which is one of my very good friends, Meredith, to be with me that day, and just to be in the day of just like enjoying a relaxing day of just, you know, honoring all the work that has been accomplished. And just to kind of put it out in the world. So that’s what I’ve got going that day.
Stephanie Greunke 4:19
Oh, that is so special! Yeah. And it’s true that doulas can do a wide variety of things, I decided to just be there for the birth. And even like midwives, I think about midwives will often do like pap smears or just different medical things that an OB GYN you would typically go to. So I love that you’re using her in that sense, it’s so great, and I cannot wait to share more about this program. And what I have to do, what I am doing today to nourish myself is very similar to you is like realizing that you have this big project you have this huge thing that you’re working on that you’re so excited about that fires you up at the same time can easily deplete you if you don’t give yourself some rest. And what I have done is actually signed up for hot yoga membership. There’s a yoga studio that I love that is opening up about five minutes from my house. And there aren’t any hot yoga studios around here that are really good. And so I’m super excited that this hot yoga studio is coming to my area. So I can start doing that. And just really slowing down giving myself that hour, multiple times a week to slow down and be with myself and not take care of other people for a second, like really take care of me. And it’s really important that yes, we’re up to big things when we’re parenting little kids or working really hard or whatever it is. But we also need to slow it down. And it could just be one day where you schedule you time, you know, mental health day, every now and then to do that
Elana Roumell 5:45
Steph, I’m so impressed. This is now the second episode where your “Nurse Yourself” segment was all about slowing down doing more yoga, taking quiet time, I’m like, I mean, I love you. So you know, you’re one of my best friends. So just hearing this is just music to my ears. Because I think naturally you’re very type A so like your “Go, GO!” and you love being productive and you love accomplishing things, which is, I think one of your greatest gifts. And I know it doesn’t actually come natural for you to just slow down and also enjoy it. And I think you’ve really come to learn how to enjoy it and to not be kind of sometimes fearful. I remember when I really had to learn to slow down, it was uncomfortable. Yeah, it was not easy. So I’m so impressed. I feel like you’re really embracing it so much.
Stephanie Greunke 6:30
Yeah, I am thank you for noticing that. Yeah, there was a time where I hated yoga and didn’t want anything to do with it because it was too slow and too boring. And I have come to really love it. And I think also what helps me and may help some of the listeners is I got that Dutch test result back and I saw that I was on the low normal. And what I know is that if I continue acting, the way that I’m acting and not slow down, I am going to hit adrenal fatigue and completely crash. And in that line, I’m not going to have the regular curve where it’s high in the morning, and it lowers throughout the day, it’s going to be flat. And when I’m flat, I am no use to anybody else. And so I think seeing those results, and actually objectively learning that my body does not like what’s happening right now is a good fire under my butt to take care of myself.
Elana Roumell 7:18
It’s great. This is why labs are helpful, because we can assume but then our brains can kind of talk us out of it. But once you see it on paper, there’s no denying. So I can see how that could be a motivation for you and also for many other moms listening. So if that, you know, helps inspire somebody else, that’s excellent. I just I really give you a lot of acknowledgement for that. Because you’ve really made big shifts in your workout regimen, and you know, even your diet and all of these things just simply based on your Dutch lab. So I think that’s great stuff. I’m huge proponent of that.
Stephanie Greunke 7:49
Well, thank you. And now I want to acknowledge you during this episode of the nine months, I had to laugh when you said “nine months” to create this. So I’m actually curious, would you consider this like your second baby or your third baby, with Baby Boy on the way.
Elana Roumell 8:04
That’s a really good question. And how crazy nine months that was not part of my plan. When I just like counted back. I was like, “Oh my god, this is literally a pregnancy!” So I would say Nourish Medical Center was my first baby,honestly the amount of work and time I put into her. That’s my first baby. And then I think my second baby is my dog, Murray. Oh my god, I like love Murray, and I nurtured him so much. And then I think my third baby is Aviva. And so I would say this my fourth. And then my fifth baby’s coming in October. Can you believe it? I guess I was destined to have a lot of kids.
Stephanie Greunke 8:40
Yeah, yeah and they’re, they’re just going to keep coming from what I hear from you, you went more than two. So we’ll see how many you end up with.
Elana Roumell 8:47
Unless I like create more businesses, because they really they take so much of my energy and time. But they also nourish me in so many ways, just like a baby does. Right? They, they take so much from you, but they also nourish you. So it’s a great balance in that.
Stephanie Greunke 9:01
Yeah, it’s a given take if you set the boundaries for it right? In here early, many times for self care. So let’s talk about Med School for Moms. And what is it and what made you decide to create this program?
Elana Roumell 9:12
Awesome. So before I even start, I just want to say this episode is totally focused on helping moms and educating you guys. So yes, of course, I’m going to give you guys discounts. And we’re going to talk about how you guys can access it and everything. But like my main focus, and I know Steph and I- we’rethe same, we love educating moms. Like, it fires up, we love empowering you guys with information. So I’m hoping to give you guys as many cool little tips in this episode, and little tease, you know, things that I teach in med school for moms, obviously, I can’t teach every little thing but I’m going to go into some of those because I just want every mom to know this material. So much so. But just to share what Med School for Moms is and how it even came alive is it was really very inspired by my patient. So I see so many moms, I really I now only see kids and either pregnant moms or postpartum moms. And they would say things like, “Gosh, I wish I went to medical school so I knew what you know,” or, like, “I don’t want to be scared if my child has a fever. And I just want to know what to do.” Or they would say like, “I never know what questions to ask my doctor. And I feel like I leave helpless or even sometimes bullied.” You know, I mean, not all doctors, but some moms come in with that experience. And I just really thought about it. And I realized I felt so privileged being a doctor myself and going to medical school and learning all the dangerous diagnoses and what to do. And then when I became a mom, I just realized, “Gosh, I’m so lucky.” Like, I feel so calm when Aviva gets sick, like I know my medicines, I know when to worry, I know when to really be concerned. And I really wanted every mom to have that same feeling because it really provided me a lot of peace of mind. We all want what’s best for our kids. And we don’t all have that same kind of knowledge or confidence. And so I realized when moms and my patients kept on asking me these kind of things, and I even remember one patient was like, gosh, maybe I should just go become a Naturopathic Doctor. And I was like, “Whoa!”
Yeah, exactly. And a couple of them did, but I was like, but this one was like really serious about it. And she, like had three kids already. And I was like, “Look, it’s hundreds of thousands of dollars to become a Naturopathic Doctor.” Okay. I mean, it is just a crazy commitment. It is years of schooling, I said, “Gosh, wouldn’t it be cool if there was like a crash course in pediatrics like for kids, where someone would taught you like just the natural medicines, and then the conventional medicines and like, when to really worry what to do.” And she goes, “You should create a program,” and I was like, “Oh, my God! I have zero time to do that,” You know, we both kind of laughed about it. But it actually got me thinking and I was like, “Oh my god, there’s nothing like this.” And if I want moms to feel empowered, and to feel educated about taking care of their kids, I was like this has to exist. So I really did a lot of research, and I look to see what courses exist. And there are some I think, Dr. Alyssa Song, she’s a medical doctor, I think she does a great job. She really helps empower moms, Dr. Aviva ROM, who’s also a medical doctor, both very holistic doctors, also has this like University for I think it’s called University for Healthy Kids or something of that nature. And, you know, I took both of their courses I like delved into it, I really wanted to learn and I was like, “Gosh, there’s great information here.” And I actually talk about it in Med School for Moms, I think the more you can learn the better. And but I still had this like different spin on it, there was something about how I wanted to approach it that was different. I really wanted to help moms with their mindset, like how to get them feeling less anxious and less fearful. And, you know, I had all these different ideas, and just my creative juices just went crazy. And I honestly just couldn’t not do it. At that point. There was just no way I couldn’t not and it was I think I talked to you, Stephanie, like nine months ago, and I was like, “Man, I wish I wasn’t so driven sometimes,” like, I’m a mom, I’m you know, I see like 80 patients a month, like I’m busy. You know, like I do these podcasts, which I love. I’m now active on social media. I’m like, “How am I going to bring something else on my plate without sacrificing either my health or my relationship?” And so I was really mindful about taking this on. But I couldn’t stop myself and my husband was totally supportive, and we got extra childcare. And we just made it happen. And I’m so proud of what I’ve created. And it’s not just me, I’ve gathered now 10 other integrative practitioners across the country, and Stephanie, you’re one of them, I’m so happy to have you as part of my team, I couldn’t do anything, I swear without you. Now, by my side, I love you so much. And so we’re all collaborating, and we’re all contributing, because I think, you know, multiple brains are better than one. And so we’ve all can now have contributed content to really help moms feel like they can safely be a doctor mom. And I’m really excited to launch so today is our launch. And if you don’t mind Steph, I kind of also wanted to throw just a quick personal story and why I was also called to it is I’ve shared this on the podcast, I’ve shared this now, you know, vocal I mean with with a lot of people, but my brother died when I was young. And losing someone so close to me at such a young age was a huge factor in just who I’ve become in life. So I’ve been called to being a doctor and help kids because of his death. And I witnessed my parents really go from being very, I would say happy and joyful day to day to being very fearful and anxious around health and wellness. Because clearly, they just went through the hardest experience of their life. Now being a mom and you being a mom and all the listeners being moms, you can only assume what kind of trauma that is to a family. And so I just gravitate towards these parents who are just more anxious and fearful around disease and health. And I just love being able to just give them that comfort and provide them as much education and feeling like they can do this and not feel so worried because it truly does impact our kids. So those are the big, huge reasons I would say why I’ve done what I’ve done with Med School for Moms, and I’m really proud of what what we’ve created.
Stephanie Greunke 15:13
Yes, I’m so proud of you too. And I think what is beautiful about you is that you are a teacher at heart, you love teaching, you’re so good at teaching, and you have this empathy about you, but also this organization and structure. So you come from a place of, “Yes, I get your anxiety, Mom, but let me give you the tools to help you get over that anxiety and know exactly what you need to do and empower you in this situation.” So you know, it’s like you are a teacher, but you’re also a friend at the same time kind of holding their hand through this process and making them feel confident in what they’re doing. And that is something that not many people can do. And you do that really well.
Elana Roumell 15:50
Oh, I really appreciate that. Thank you, Anthony actually tells me the exact same thing. And I was like, “Thanks.” I didn’t think that that was like such a quality. And then I’ve come to realize that I think organizing information is actually some of my favorite parts of teaching, because I love keeping people engaged. Obviously, like I mean, I’ve been a student my whole life. So I’ve been doing this for over 30 years. And I know what a boring teacher is. And I know what a really good teacher is. And so I always kind of taken notes about that. And I think I think I value one, the authenticity of teachers and keeping people engaged, but also just keeping things organized. Like, if things are just like all over the place, I’m now even more confused and overwhelmed. And that’s who I’m talking to, I’m talking to my program is for anxious and overwhelmed moms- like that’s who I really speak to. And we all can get like that at times. But specifically for those who really have that. It’s like they need the most organization because things are already kind of jumbled in their brain. So I appreciate that. I think that it has become one of my gifts, and I just had so much fun organizing this. I know it’s like fine, I’m such a dork.
Stephanie Greunke 16:56
So how like, how is it organized? What does it look like? So if you purchase it, you open it up? What is it? What do we get?
Elana Roumell 17:02
Okay, great. So no one’s actually asked me that on podcast. So let me explain. So when the website launches, which would be today, you essentially have four different parts that I guess you can kind of learn from. One is I give a whole free mini course this is like four videos that I just want to teach moms. When I found those videos, I’m like those are not for sale those every mom is going to have because I want every mom to know this information. So that’s just a free thing for you guys. Then I have a whole section on my favorite medicines. So if you’re not even ready to delve into like the courses just at least you know what my favorite products are that I use with every patient day in and day out. I get dozens of messages on on Instagram all the time. What’s my favorite fish oil? What’s my favorite probiotic, what do you recommend is a multivitamin. So now you can just look at that you don’t have to buy anything you if you want to you can, but just look, educate yourself on really good high quality products. And then there’s free guides for those too, how to use herbal medicines and homeopathy and health food supplements. And that’s the one you help me with Steph, was the health food supplements, which was fun to teach together. And then the second part of the three part kind of series are guidebooks. So I wrote an E book about two years ago called the “Nourish Kids e-book.” And I did not ever think that it would become so popular. But it was the way I organized kind of my algorithms for the different conditions that kids have. So fevers and coughs, and ear aches and all these very common things that not it’s not a matter of if your kid gets it, it’s like literally a matter of when your child gets that, that you just know exactly what to do- the dosing, the products, everything. And so I’ve now created more guidebooks. And so I’ve enhanced that one, the “Nourish Kids ebook,” is now going to be called the “Doctor Moms Master Guide Book.” And I’ve also now created a doctor mom’s medicine guidebook to teach moms like what are the top conventional medicines that you can pretty much be ready for if your doctor is going to prescribe. The pros, the cons, the benefits, the side effects, and solutions to the side effects because there are things we could do to support our kids when conventional medicine is needed. And then I teach on all the integrative medicines, and I teach about food as medicine. So you’ve got now guidebooks if you just want a little bit of a guide, step by step approach if you’d like visual stuff, and then if you really want more, then you can enroll in my online courses. And these are video courses. The video courses also come with guidebooks, so you can do it all. You can just do one course or you could do bundles of courses. And so I really made as many things affordable from as low as $37. So that it could be cost effective. And then of course, I always have sales. So that’s always fun. I like discounts and stuff. But in all honesty, I really designed the course for every type of learner. So if your visual, you’ve got your guidebooks, if your auditory, you’ve got your videos, if you know, you just want to kind of like get a little taste, and you’re just not quite sure, great, just do the free course. Like there’s something for every mom, and I really just want to help as many as I can can.
Stephanie Greunke 20:00
Awesome, perfect. Thank you for breaking it down. I know sometimes like with these programs, it’s like, “Well, what is actually in it?” And I know, that’s the question that we get with our pregnancy program too. And we do that as well with the different types of learning with video and handouts and interaction within like Facebook groups and stuff. So yeah, everybody learns differently, but we love how you organized it. So I’m curious, what are some of the things that moms come to you for like, you know, moms are nervous about taking care of their kids for multiple reasons. So what are some of the things that you teach and you feel moms need to know when it comes to taking care of their child?
Elana Roumell 20:34
Okay, so, so many, so I’ll try to like narrow it down. But I think I would say maybe let’s start with just like my top three things. I think the first things that I feel like moms really need to know is that not all sickness always warrants a doctor’s visit. Now, many times a sickness can warrant a doctor’s visit, and I’m not opposed to doctors, right? I’m a doctor myself, I value us tremendously. But I think it’s very important that moms also know that they can safely treat their child at home. And I think that we oftentimes get in our way, we don’t trust ourselves with it. We don’t know what to do. So we question ourselves, and then we kind of use our doctors like a clutch. Now again, if you have a gut feeling that you need to take your child to the doctor, you absolutely go to the doctor. In Med School for Moms, I teach you the signs, the symptoms to look out for with safety scales, and I mean, I have all this stuff organized and graphics. So you can you can download and print out and such. But the biggest takeaway is, I think I want all moms to know that not all sickness warrants a doctor’s visit, and that you can be a doctor mom, as long as you have that education, that confidence. So that I think is one thing. The other thing is I really want to stress how moms and parents in general, you get a say in your child’s health care and treatment plan. You know, doctors were not Gods it’s not like we rule everything. And we know everything. Yes, we are here rule out the most dangerous diseases, we’re here to give you expert advice. But what I want all moms to know is that you want to work with your doctor, you don’t want to be just be told what to do. And just take it for face value. You want to be a proactive participant in your child’s health. And so during your office visit, I teach moms what questions to ask, what they’re looking for. I teach you our roadmap as doctors is like how we actually think to get to then the diagnosis and the treatment plan. So you can actively participate in those doctor’s visits. So every Mom, I just want them to know, I want you to be a part of the treatment plan, not just like, a passive participant. And then the last thing I want to mention is I just want all moms to know that there is a time and a place for conventional medicines. And there’s a time and a place for natural medicines are great. And I think an integrative approach is the way to go. They’re not either good, or bad or right or wrong. It’s truly about what’s best for your individual child at that time. And so that’s why Med School for Moms, we only teach integrative medicine, it’s something that I really feel strongly about. And so I just want all moms to know that they have options, and they have tools. And there’s no right or wrong way about it. That’s it.
Stephanie Greunke 23:15
Yeah, what you’re saying here really gets to that mindset piece, right? Like really understanding, “Okay, how do I work through this situation? My kid is presenting with x symptom. How do I know if it does warrant a doctor’s visit? How do I know if I can ask my doctor about maybe a natural remedy? Or how can we work together as a team?” , like that mindset piece is so important. I feel like many moms, including myself struggle with that. And I’m so excited about this program for that very reason. It’s just like having that mindset of how do we calm ourselves down? And then what do we do with that information? How do we work with our providers? So you use the term “Dr. Mom” a lot. And I love to know, where did that come from? And what does that mean to you?
Elana Roumell 23:56
Yeah, so in fact, Dr. Mom has the part of it right is she’s calm and making these decisions. So it’s interesting how I came up with Dr. Mom. It just like came to me, I sadly Steph, I’m like, most creative in the middle of the night. This is a bad habit. Like, I cannot wait for this to be done. So I can like sleep more. But I just I get these like creative bursts of ideas literally in the middle of the night that wake me up and I like have to write it down or like I have to do something with it. And so Dr. Mom came to me in the middle of the night. And at first I was a little hesitant. I’m like, “I don’t want moms to think that they’re the doctor and they can’t go see a doctor. Like that’s not the message I want.” But I really started playing with it more and more. And I’m like “No!” that, you know, it’s a “doctor mom,” like it’s not like a medical doctor or naturopathic doctor, it’s a “doctor mom.” And so there’s so much to that, like, gosh, I just want every mom to believe that they have it in them to do that. And so who I see as a “doctor mom” is a mom who’s calm, who’s competent, and who’s confident. So those are like the the play on words that I came up with, but it has like, it’s interspersed in everything that I do with my curriculum. So I mentioned I have guidebooks and I have courses. So I essentially have three modules to being a Doctor Mom. And for me, my word is very important to me. So when I say I’m going to teach you how to be a calm, competent and confident, Dr. Mom, it really means that if you’re really invested and committed to this, you take all of the courses, and you can be those. And that’s why I had those beta moms because I was like, “You guys, did I do it like do you feel more calm, competent and confident?” And they were like “No, I really do!” And I was like, “Oh my God, thank God, because I really want this for moms!” So what this means is I have a whole mindset course, on really getting moms to feel, how they can transform their fear into clear is what I call it is how can they make good decisions? And so they feel calm about it. Competent is how do you actually feel competent with your tools so it’s all about medicine in this module. What do you do with your tools? How do you know which ones to use? What are the safety concerns? What are the dosing, you know, all of that takes competence. And then finally, the mastery module is the confidence part of it. So now that I have the mindset, and I feel calm, and I have like the medicine part, and I feel competent with my tools, well, how do I put that together? How do I actually apply it? So that’s when I bring on all those cool doctors from all around the country to really share how we master them how we actually take a fever, and go from the mindset to the medicine to the mastery and apply it safely. And when it’s important to go to the doctor and when to keep them at home. And if you keep them at home, what tools do you have? And if you do take them to the doctor, again, what questions to ask, you know what conventional medicine options do we have. So that was really important to me. And so a Doctor Mom is a mom who is just calm, and competent and confident when her child is sick. And she knows exactly what to do. So I just came to me, and I’m so excited to use that term. I think it resonates with a lot of moms. And we’ll see how it goes.
Stephanie Greunke 27:04
Yeah, and who wouldn’t want that, like who wouldn’t want to feel calm and competent and confident like those three, those three words describe a Doctor Mom or something that we want for ourselves as Dr. Moms with our kids, but also how we play out with other relationships in our life, like, you know, with our partners or with our employers or with our friends, we want to be able to have these grounding techniques to really center ourselves and move from fear to clear which I loved how you said that. So let’s talk about the moms that show up that are really anxious and worried about their little one being sick and how they’re going to treat their little one what they’re going to do. So what happens when a mom worries about her kid getting sick? How does that impact her mindset and the next steps that she takes?
Elana Roumell 27:51
Okay, great Steph. I love this question, because that’s really who I’ve designed this course for are those worried moms. And so they appear like different flavors, right? Like, we’re all different. We have different tendencies. And so I’ve found that the pattern is these kind of three different people. I either see the mom who’s super indecisive, so her child gets sick. And she honestly she’s like, “Hold on, do I do this? Do I do that,” she calls her friend, she asked her mom, she’s like she’s reaching out to other people, because she just like, just can’t decide on like What to do? Do I go to the doctor? Do I stay home? Do I give this medicine? Or do I give that medicine. And I find that the impact that she has is that she compares herself to others so much. She just lets the doctor make all the decisions. And she ultimately leaves just feeling disempowered, because her brain is like so overwhelmed with so many different decisions. I call this cloudy decision making. And I find that then her fear ends up driving her emotions, and she’s never guided by her true intuition. I talk a lot more about this in my one of my free courses on mindset. But this is a very classic type of mother that I see often. And so it leaves her disempowered. This is not a good state to be. I also find the scared mom. Okay, so this is like the over warrior, she is so panicked that she has let her emotions essentially dictate everything, she can’t even think clearly she can’t tune into her gut because fear is so overwhelming to her. Again, she leaves disempowered, and she makes these choices based on her fear, which is really not actually the emotion that should be at the forefront, she should truly be so clear in her thinking that she can make good educated decisions when it comes to these medical decisions. And then there’s this mom, who’s just simply overwhelmed. She’s so overwhelmed, she shuts down. She honestly can’t trust anyone, she can’t trust herself. She can’t trust the doctor, she can’t trust like her friends who are giving her advice, because she’s just so overwhelmed and essentially paralyzes her. She’s like, “I don’t even know what to do”, you know, and then she can’t make the decisions. And then she she just doesn’t really know what to do at this point. And so I find that these moms- Now, of course they range, right? And it also ranges in different illnesses. I mean, for some, it’s not a big deal, but then that next illness, it is a big deal. And so we all kind of can show up in different flavors at different times. But I think the main thing, and I think the main question you’re asking is like, what happens to a mom when she worries because that’s actually what I’m really interested in as well, it’s, I think there’s two things is that it not only is affecting the moms health to worry like this, because sometimes when we worry unnecessarily it also can be hard on us on our adrenals, and it’s not good for our emotional state and such. But what it also does is there’s a term called sympathetic coupling, and I teach this in Med school for Moms. And it has to do with mirror neurons. And it really a short way of explaining is that our kids pick up on us moms, our emotions. And so when we have these heightened emotions, when our kids are sick, and we’re fearful, we’re just being so overwhelmed with the fear and the indecisiveness or being scared, it can actually worsen our child symptoms, simply because they pick up on the mirror neurons, our neurons mirror their neurons. And so this sympathetic coupling, exacerbates their symptoms. And our worry as moms could actually make our kids symptoms worse. So this is where I’m like, this is not okay. Because, you know, at the end of the day, I just I love helping kids. And I want what’s best for the kids through helping kids, I work with moms. And so if I start seeing when moms worry is starting to impact the kids symptoms. This is where we need to say, “Hey, Mom, we really need to work on you, because you are now having an effect on the child’s health. And this is not something that is healthy for either of you guys.” So we identify where you kind of fall in your scale of worry, we really identify where these are coming from, because there’s really deep down sources of why you are the way you are as a mom. And so I hope you identify that through the courses. And then I share my three step approach essentially is how I move from fear to clear. And so that’s part of the course. But this is where I think moms who worry when their child gets sick, there’s not only an impact on their own health, but there’s an impact on the child’s health. And I just want this to like stop so we can make clear decisions, we can make empowered choices. And really, we’re doing it in the best interest of our child’s overall health.
Stephanie Greunke 32:31
You know, one thing I’m thinking of, as you’re talking about sympathetic coupling is like when your child falls down, and they scratch their knee, and if you kind of just your calm and you’re like, “Oh, that’s okay.” Or you’re like, “Oh, no.” and just kind of move on with what was happening before they fell. They might cry for a little bit, but they’ll move on. Whereas if you run up to them, you’re like, “Oh my gosh, are you okay?” And they can tell that you’re worried then they get worried, too. So that’s just like an example of what you’re trying to say. But I can see it. It’s the best example.
Elana Roumell 33:00
Totally, they, their emotions, and their pain almost like heightens exponentially when they see you react. And we’ve all been there to see that.
Stephanie Greunke 33:09
Yeah. So can you give us maybe like a tangible to like how maybe she was one of these types of moms like the indecisive mom, the scared mom or the overwhelmed mom? And what is what’s like a tool you teach in the course to help them with that?
Elana Roumell 33:22
Okay, that’s a really good question. So. So this three step approach that I came up with, again, in the middle of the night, such a bad habits, okay, stuff, like, it’s not good. But it was fun. As I was so creative about it, but I realized that it was mostly I think this tool for the I wouldn’t, I mean, I think all moms can benefit. But I think really probably the scared mom can really tune into this one is this three step approach where I call it, “You turn off, tune in and turn on.” And these three steps is something that I think helps transition you in such a huge way. And so a quick little- I don’t want to go too in depth with it, if you don’t mind. But I love it so much is there’s so much noise in this world, like so much noise bombarding us. I mean, it’s like insane, I’ve all the statistics that I share about it. But all the noise that’s going on is oftentimes what could be causing this type of scared tendency. And so I think it’s very important that we all acknowledge what the loudest noise is for us. So for example, for me, one of my loudest noises is actually my mom. So I know this is this is just the way it is, for me, I love my mom, she’s amazing. And she can have a very fearful and scared type of tendency towards her, especially after my brother died, which is not unusual. This is a normal pattern. But this was very loud when I was young. And so 80% of how we parent is modeled after how we were parented by, right? So I find that when I get scared, the loudest noise is actually my mom in my head, contributing to, “Okay, she’s sick, you’ve got to worry, go to the doctor, do whatever you can.” And I realized that I need to turn off that noise in order to then tune in to my gut instincts and my mom intuitions, because I can’t hear my mama intuitions if my noise is way too loud. So I teach in my course, part of the mind says one of the one of the courses of many is how to turn off that noise, how to really understand where that noise is coming from how to then tune in to mama bear. Okay, that’s a really important part. And then how to turn on who you’re committed to being as a mom. And I think all too often we forget that sometimes it’s very much based in values, it’s very much based in like our needs and who I’m committed to being as a mom can be very different than you, Steph, it can be very different than the mom listening or, and that’s okay, there’s nothing wrong with that. And I think when we get lost in the fear, and the and the overwhelm in our brains, we oftentimes lose sight into what matters most to us as a mom, what our values are, like what is so important who we’re committed to being. And so this three step approach, I feel like really takes a mom from feeling those fear state into a clear state, if you could just remember to turn off the noise, tune into your intuition and turn on who you’re committed to being as a mom, and then step into the the time where you can now make clear decisions for your child when they’re sick. And I have the chills just like talking about that. Like, I don’t even know how I came up with that. But I now I use it, it helps me and I really hope that it helps other moms by the way I can teach that.
Stephanie Greunke 36:35
I think that’s so true. I call it automatic negative thoughts. That’s I think a Dr. Amen thing, like the what happens to us when your kid gets sick, you might think back to the other time that they get sick. So an example for me is like when Otto has a cough. I go to pneumonia because that’s what happens. Yeah, I’m so being able to and this is something that I’ve had to really practices like, “Okay, he’s coughing, that does not equal pneumonia, coughing does not equal pneumonia,” and really shutting down that thought so that I can move forward with a more clear mind and not have a panic about me, because it might be like my energy might run off on him, which which is like, “Oh, he has this cough, Oh, he needs to stay home from school.” And he can see me like rushing around looking for remedies in my house to like take care of this cough, when I could just slow down and observe and tune in to what he’s telling me.
Elana Roumell 37:26
So perfect. So for you, that’s your noise. So that’s what you need to turn off in order to tune in and then turn on and Exactly. And it’s different for all of us. So for me, my mom tends to be the biggest noise. But for you, it’s your past stories, right? That now have created these automatic negative thoughts. And I think that that’s why it’s important that we all even just take the time to consider what is that noise for us? You know, we’re so busy, there’s so much to do. And what I love about this, this one course that I created on mindset is that you have to take the time just to get clear with that. So that when you’re in the moment, you’ve got your tools, like you’re ready to go. And it just takes practice. I mean, it’s not easy. This is not like, overnight, you’re going to be a Doctor Mom. I’m very clear about that, too. And the expectation
Stephanie Greunke 38:13
Yeah, absolutely. I think Yeah, having that, that silence and really knowing that the tools are available for you, whether that is looking at your course or going to the doctor like you are resourced with things that will help your child get better. You know, it’s not like this is the end, like there are hospitals and providers and educational resources that can help you. So I think like knowing that those tools are there can help ease some of the the fear once you master the mindset piece. So I think this is so great. And I really wish all moms had this type of confidence to really be their own best doctor for their child and to reduce that anxiety on themselves. So, you know, outside of purchasing your program, what are some things that moms can start now to become that Doctor Mom?
Elana Roumell 39:01
Okay, definitely, you can start at any time. And I love saying, start with just like 1 to 3 remedies, like, pick anything, you know, it could be elderberry and echanasia. I mean, it could be any remedies that you think could help your kids. And just learn them, use them and practice with them. You know, it just, it’s so important that we just take the time to practice because every time you child gets sick is another opportunity to practice. And I think just starting that journey to being a Doctor Mom all starts with that kind of practice to gain that kind of confidence. That would be one of my first biggest steps, you can go over the website just to look at some of my top favorite remedies. And the free guides just explain why I even like these remedies. So you can literally choose 1 to 3, I would say and just start using them. And then I think a big part of this, and this is back to mindset, again, Steph, is start getting comfortable feeling discomfort. And I know that doesn’t really make much sense. But it’s actually a very, very important part of being a Doctor Mom is that we all tend to feel this sense of panic and fear when our kid is uncomfortable. And your relationship with discomfort is actually something that I help guide you through. Because if we can’t be okay, in an uncomfortable situation and seeing our kids in this discomfort, we’re not going to be able to make clear decisions because again, our fear and our emotions take over. So just start practicing that like anytime you feel like your child’s in pain or suffering, just start trying on what it feels like to just feel comfortable about it like, “Okay, they’re suffering, it’s not fun, but you know what kids get sick, I get sick, you get sick, we all get sick.” And let’s just try on what it feels like to be like, okay with that, to maybe look at illness and look at a disease as not a bad thing, always, it’s a great thing, actually, for the immune system, it’s a great opportunity for the body to rest and recover. And it’s a great opportunity to actually bond with your kid, you know, keep them home from school, you know, get them on the couch and just have like a pajama day all day long. You know, I mean, shift maybe your context of what illness really looks like. And then the last thing I was just I want to mention is, I think what would be really awesome too is for moms to really just get used to observing their kids disease process. Like, I think it’s so cool for moms, as a Doctor Mom to really get to know what and how your child’s pattern of illness is. Your eldest child may spike very high fevers, whereas your youngest child may not really have a lot of fevers, but she gets a lot of rashes. Every individual is different. And every individual is unique. And so how cool is that? As a Doctor Mom, we are really in tune with our kids. And so your first way just to kind of start is again, just start observing how your kids even express their symptoms, start observing how they react to different medicines, just because one thing may really work well with one child but not with the other. And so I teach you how navigate that. But I think just to start those three things you can absolutely do right now.
Stephanie Greunke 42:05
Oh, that’s so great. And where can we find out more about this program and all of your offerings?
Elana Roumell 42:10
Okay, so in the show notes we’ll put a little link, you can start off with the free mini course or the free guide that I have, I mean, wherever you want to start, if you’re interested in getting more of a taste with like maybe the guidebooks, which is a great place to start or any of the courses if you want to start with that, we’re going to do a 15% coupon code for you listeners, which I’m excited to make, it’s going to be “Wholemamaspodcast”, which is the coupon code, it’s going to expire August 30, of 2019. So you kind of want to get in on it now. So you can get that 15% discount. And again, like I said, they start as low as $37. So they’re very reasonably priced for any mom just to start. And then of course, they kind of go up just based on the fact that you get more and more information. But you can start anywhere, you can start as a little taste, or you can just dive fully in. So you go to www.medschoolformoms.com. And then there you can see all the different offerings. And then you’ll be able to put that coupon codes really for any product that’s on there.
Stephanie Greunke 43:04
Thank you so much for sharing that code that’s so generous of you. And do you have any last words to share to the mamas that are listening?
Elana Roumell 43:12
Yes, I always have something else to add. I could talk forever. So thanks for asking. I think probably the last thing I want to end with is probably how I ended every interview I had with all my Med School for Moms instructors. So like I said, there was 10 Med School for Moms instructors that I collaborated with. And at the end of every interview I did with them as part of the course I would ask them the exact same question. I said, “If you can whisper something in a mom’s ear, the next time her child gets sick, what would it be?” And I you know, I was kind of curious what they were going to say. And it was, I just thought it was so interesting. I mean, across the board, almost everyone had like a similar whisper and a similar takeaway. And they would all say, you know, “Trust your gut. You know your child better than anyone else as a mom.” And I and I just love that I get the chills still saying that again, because you can’t hear that more often. Like you can’t hear that enough. You know, it is really important that you already know you are your child’s number one health advocate, you know, I mean that there’s no question about that. And you get to choose now if you want to equip yourself with more knowledge and more tools and more skills, so that you can be an even greater advocate, but you already are, you know your child better than any doctor. So it’s so important that you continue to observe and you continue to connect with your child, so that you can report their symptoms to the doctor, and you know what to do if you feel comfortable treating them from home safely. And I’m really, I’m excited to be a part of this, if you know, I’m here to help, I’m here to teach. And I truly love this. This content, this concept, this idea of helping empower moms being a Doctor Mom, and it’s honestly an honor for me to be able to be part of this journey. So that I think would be the last thing that I really want have to say is that moms have it in them already. They just need to harness it a little bit more refine their skills if they really want to, but you already have it in you.
Stephanie Greunke 45:08
Oh, I love that so much. Yeah, and I know our pediatricians have said that to us before too. It’s like you bring them in, and they can check what’s going on within that seven minute visit. But you’re with your child the other 23 and a half hours of the day. And you really know how they’re how they’re presenting. I mean, how, how different is it, how they’re experiencing right now versus a on a day to day basis? like are they really tired? Are they really run down? Are they more cranky than ever, you know that information. And that’s why your provider is there to work with you. And I love that you can empower moms to really trust their gut and to be their child’s best health advocate. So thank you so much for creating this course. I think it is such a gift to moms everywhere. And I’m glad we could talk about it today.
Elana Roumell 45:58
Well, thanks for the opportunity. You have no idea. I was like I was hoping you would say yes, “I was like Steph, can we do a whole podcast?” And you’re like, “Absolutely!” and I was like, “Oh my god, I’m so excited!” And especially the fact that we can air it on today’s launch, which is just so fun for me. And what I didn’t bring up and maybe just to end with is I actually chose July 30 very mindfully. I know it’s a random Tuesday and of this year, but it happens to be my brother’s birthday. So my brother Joshua, who passed away when I was young, and when he was young at the age of seven. Like I said, in the beginning, he was my greatest inspiration and my absolute like “Muse” I call him you know, I mean, he’s, he’s helped drive me with so much in my life. And so today is his birthday, and Oh my god, like I’m gonna get teary about it because I’m pregnant and probably more emotional. But, you know, as traumatic as it was, and it was like a horrible loss, and my family is just, he’s been such a gift to me, you know, and, sorry, this is the first time I’ve cried on our podcast before but like, I just never, I never want what happened to him, to happen to other kids. And if there’s anything we can do to prevent that, from happening to other families, and you know, to happen to their parents losing their kids, it’s like, I can’t not do something about that. So I just, I love him and I appreciate him so much. And I’m so happy I can honor him on this day is really sharing all of my hard work with everyone. Because I really I truly hope it makes a big difference for these moms out there. So sorry to get so emotional about it’s a thing. I think this is like a life calling for me this kind of project. So… it means a lot to me.
Stephanie Greunke 47:34
Absolutely. Yeah, never apologize about crying. I think that’s what makes you so good at what you do is you truly care and you are in this to really help moms. It’s not just about making money, it’s really about giving them the tools so that they can feel like they can help their family and that we can really save lives with the information that we’re learning. So what a beautiful way to honor him on his birthday. And he would be so proud.
Elana Roumell 48:01
Hmm, thanks. I feel him really strongly with me. So thank you so much, Steph. This was so much fun to do with you. And thanks for all your support and your love. And really you’re one of my biggest encouragements to even create something your Whole Mama’s pregnancy program just help encouraged me to do it. You’ve touched so many people’s lives and I’m up to really helping a lot of people. So thanks again for all the support. I just love you so much.
Stephanie Greunke 48:22
I love you so much too. And thank you all for joining us for today’s podcast and hearing about all the exciting things that Dr. Elana is up to. You can visit our website at www.wholemamasclub.com forward slash podcasts, to review show notes, find past episodes, look at transcripts and leave comments and questions for future shows. And remember that all the views and ideas presented on this podcast are for informational purposes only. All information content and material presented on this podcast is not to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis and or medical treatment of a qualified physician or health care provider. Consult with your provider before starting any diet supplement regimen or to determine the appropriateness of the information shared on on this podcast or if you have any questions regarding pediatrics, pregnancy or your prenatal treatment plan. Now go on, have a great day and nourish and nurture yourself and your family.
- Why Dr. Elana created Med School for Moms
- What moms need to know about taking care of their child when sick
- What a “Doctor Mom” is and why every mom has the potential to be their own best Doctor Mom for their child!
- 3 things happen when mom starts to worry while her child is sick
- How to know when it is time to visit the doctor versus when it is safe to treat your child from home
- Some safe tools you can use on your kiddos
- What Doctor Moms need to do to master their skills
- A discount offer special for Whole Mamas listeners!
- Sign up for Med School for Moms using code WHOLEMAMASPODCAST for 15% off any guidebook or course! *Expires August 30th, 2019
- Doctor Mom’s FREE Mini-Course
- Doctor Mom’s Five Family Favs – Free guide to Dr. Roumell’s favorite family remedies
- The HMHB Weekly Email Series
- Whole Mamas Pregnancy Program
- Dr. Elana’s Med School For Moms
- Dr. Elana’s Medical Center: Nourish Medical Center
- Follow Steph and Elana on Instagram
- Whole Mamas Podcast Archive
This episode's guest
Dr. Elana Roumell is a Naturopathic Doctor with a passion for pediatrics. She founded Nourish Medical Center in San Diego, CA in 2014, providing holistic care in person or virtually to both pediatrics and pregnant moms. She is also the founder of Med School for Moms where she teaches moms how to safely be a Doctor Mom!