5 Tips to have an empowered postpartum
1. Make a healing kit for yourself
2. Gather resources
3. Gather support
4. Lower your expectations
5. Find Community
The 4th Trimester/Postpartum period is an important time that our culture does not prepare us for. In our society of go, go, go we are not usually patient enough to do it right. Most childbirth classes only touch on the postpartum period, but really, there needs to be a whole class on it. Postpartum is an important time of healing and transition, of slowing down and accepting. The ultimate goal is that during postpartum the mother gets to rest as much as possible, bonds with her baby and doesn’t have to worry about dishes and laundry. Our hope is that mothers to come out of the postpartum transition healthy and healed ready to take on this whole motherhood thing.
1. Make a Healing Kit for Yourself
Most of us get preoccupied with all the baby stuff and forget about ourselves. Don’t forget that mama needs some stuff too. We have a whole separate post on what to put in a postpartum healing kit, and it will vary for c-section or vaginal birth but here are few must haves.
-Pads (heavy, medium, light)
-Whitch hazel to make padcicles
2. Gather Resources
I always suggest that this is done BEFORE baby arrives, so in case you need these referrals, you don’t have to look for them at 2am, when you should be resting. Ask your care provider, chiropractor, parental yoga teacher, doula, mama friends, they will have referrals for you. Here are a few things to put on that list:
-Postpartum Doulas in your area
-Local breastfeeding support groups (ex. La Leche Leauge, hospital run groups ect)
-Local Lactation Consultants (they come to your home, and are amazing resources for breastfeeding support)
-Mom’s Groups, postnatal yoga or workout groups
-Local therapists that specialize in postpartum
-Pelvic Floor Therapists
3. Gather Support
Who are all the people, friends and family, that can help you out during this time? Make a list, talk to them, put together a schedule. Do not be afraid to ask for help. Mothers are not martyrs. The saying that it take a village, exists for a reason. You can also start a meal train (https://www.mealtrain.com/) and your friends and family can arrange to bring you food in a super organized way.
4. Lower Your Expectations
I always say each time you have a child your standards lower slightly and during postpartum, the laundry, dishes and dusting can wait. The new born phase is short, allow yourself to be there and truly see your baby, don’t get stressed by mess. It won’t be like this forever, I promise.
5. Find Community
Find a local moms group or postnatal fitness class, something where you can be with other moms and babies. It will be a sanity saver! So many of our students come to baby + me yoga and it the first time they have been out alone with their baby. And the babies cry, feed and need to be changed, and all the moms are going through it too. They are all sleep deprived and having similar issues, it is refreshing and empowering to be with other moms who are in the same stage as you. Make this a priority.
Looking for more? The Book The 4th Trimester is a great resource.
Unfold also has a whole class dedicated to postpartum, it is called Empowered Postpartum and happens every other month, April also offers this class via Skype and it will be available as a digital download soon as well!
Empower yourself in pregnancy, birth and motherhood.