Let me be clear right from the start. Mother’s massage is not a luxury, it is a necessity. Please take a moment to let that sink in. The birth and postpartum is not only about the baby, it is just as much about you. Of course, you want to do whatever it takes to care for your little angel. I very much want that for you too (that’s why I’m here ). Let’s step back for a moment and look at the bigger picture.
Have you considered how your own recovery and health will effect your ability to mother? You see, if you just give, give, give, with no consideration for your own well-being, it will not only be you who suffers the consequences.
Not receiving the support you need will surely have consequences on your family as a whole. Why am I saying this? Because I cannot stress this point enough. It’s not that you should have mother’s massage or even that you deserve it (which you definitely do). Simply put, it’s because your body needs it. Without a healthy mother, the whole family suffers.
Why is Mother’s Massage SO Important?
Birth and postpartum are a unique time in a woman’s life. It is a crossroads where the veil between life and death, health and sickness becomes very thin. All possibilities of vitality, fatigue, happiness and sadness are held in a delicate balance during this window of time.
Secretly held within this crossroads, is an incredible opportunity to rebuild your vitality from square one. Just as your heart will be reborn in the love of your new child, your body will be rebirthed into your new mother’s body. One of the most important ways to rejuvenate your body’s tissues, is with daily warm oil massage.
Think of it like this: Your pregnant and pre-pregnancy body is like a plump juicy grape (lol!). After birth, your postpartum body becomes like a shriveled, dried up raisin. Yes, adding water to rehydrate the raisin is a good start, but once a raisin, it will never be a plump juicy grape again, right? In order for your (grape) body to not turn into this postpartum raisin after birth, you need to maintain it with a lot of oils. That is where daily postpartum oil massage comes in
Listed below are some of the many benefits of mother’s oil massage:
- supports hormonal function and balance
- supports healthy lactation
- balances cortisol – the stress hormone
- reduces probability of postpartum mood disorders
- reduces adrenal fatigue
- nourishes the nervous system
- promotes circulation and relieves stagnation
- reduces swelling
- replacement for exercise during postpartum
- promotes deep sleep
- supports digestion
- gently releases impurities
- nourishes and lubricates tissues, joints and muscles
- eases aches and pains
- stimulates healthy function of the immune system
- increases vitality
- anti-aging (especially effective during postpartum)
- nourishes emotions and connection to the inner-self
- provides structured self-care and healing time
Mother’s Massage Options
There are a few options to achieving the goal of receiving daily mother’s massage.
- Hiring a professional – This is the best option of you can afford it. An Ayurdoula, or Ayurvedic massage practitioner would be ideal. Any massage therapist that specializes in postpartum massage is great as well. Ask them to use heated unrefined sesame oil (very important!), gentle pressure and a hot water bottle for your tummy and lower back. Also, if you can’t afford all 6 weeks, I recommend receiving as many massages in a row as possible. It is more beneficial to receive 6 massages in a row, than one massage a week for 6 weeks.
- Massage from your family and friends – This is a viable option as well. If your partner or other loved ones would like to offer you a simple oil massage, go for it! Make sure the use warm unrefined sesame oil, and place an old sheet on the bed to avoid getting oil on your bedding.
- Self Massage – Sometimes if you want to get something done, you just have to do it yourself! I know it is difficult to find more than 2 minutes for yourself after baby arrives, but I recommend getting creative to make sure you get this done everyday. If you would like to learn self-massage, I teach this along with other healing practices in my postpartum recovery program, Fully Healed Mama.
I highly recommend taking a hot bath after your massage and not before. Hot water dilates the pores of your skin and the channels of your body, allowing the healing properties of the oil to penetrate your tissues more deeply.
As we all know, baths are very soothing and relaxing, which you need more than ever. Adding a little lavender essential oil and a candle is a nice touch. Sitz bath herbs filtered in a cloth bag, would also be quite beneficial. You can choose to have bath time as a personal time to reflect and meditate, or have bath bonding time with your baby (hopefully after she/he had baby massage!).
Daily oil massage is essential in order to fully heal from birth. Whether it comes from a massage therapist, Ayurdoula, partner, friend, or yourself, prioritizing your own well-being will not only benefit you, but your family as well.