Restorative Postpartum Visit
With all of the opening--physical, mental, and emotional--that comes with giving birth, it's no wonder women feel raw and open. As women journey into motherhood, they often discover new parts of themselves. A ceremony to help "close" and honor the mother is beneficial for her healing on all levels. Creating a safe space for this ritual involves care and attentiveness.
A "closing of the bones" ceremony is a Mexican tradition in which the mother receives a massage and herbal bath or vaginal stream, followed by gentle wrapping with a rebozo, a woven piece of fabric that can be used as a shawl, baby carrier, and tool for positioning during childbirth. Belly binding can also be performed at this time. This ritual, wrought with ancient tradition, intends to restore and energize the mother. The hot bath counteracts the symbolic "cold" that results from loss of blood during birth. Warmth may also help to increase milk flow and help with muscle fatigue, edema, appetite loss, and constipation--common discomforts of the postpartum period. The herbs utilized in the closing of the bones ceremony stimulate circulation and energy, help to fight infection, and recover heat and moisture. Essential oils released by these herbs facilitate healing, relaxation, and balance.
The Restorative Postpartum Visit unfolds as follows:
- The visit begins with an herbal tea and a discussion with our postpartum doula and massage therapist, Amy Ortega, about the birth, breastfeeding, newborn care, or any other current concerns.
- 30 minute postpartum massage
- Hot, herbal bath
- Dressing in warm clothes, rebozo wrapping, or belly binding
- Closing of the Bones ceremony, at which time the mother can reflect, meditate, and snuggle with her new family. The mother should try to spend the rest of the day relaxing and recovering.
The restorative postpartum visit is performed by our birth & postpartum doula, placenta encapsulator, and massage therapist Amy Ortega. Read more about her here.