- honors this time with a new born as precious and sacred
- addresses your needs for nourishment, rest, baby bonding, and community
- supports you in personal reflection
- affirms your inner wisdom and parenting styles
- helps you uncover resources you may not realized were there
- invites dialogue between you and your partner, supporting alignment
With the Build Your Nest workbook I offer you a planning process that gives you plenty of guide posts, and yet supports you in finding your own way. You come through the process with a completely personalized postpartum plan, specific to your parenting style, your family structure, and your community.
The Workbook gives you lists of self care ideas and holistic recovery tips; suggestions on creating your own rest time frames; ways of helping your older children adjust and get their needs met; and your own list of resources.
What is so powerful and useful about this is that it involves YOU writing down your choices, once you have considered the options. It is not just another book or pinterest post giving you more information than you struggle to put into action. It is like a workshop or a coaching session, but instead you get to do it at your own pace and you can share the process with your partner, doula, or your mother.
The Workbook draws on traditional postpartum practices that honor new mothers with care with a focus on recovery and long term health. Specifically, I look to Chinese Medicine and traditional Asian practices that are about rest and warmth. The Workbook guides you in setting up contingency plans for unexpected birth outcomes and challenges specific to the postpartum time such as difficulty with breastfeeding and mental health struggles. It covers placenta encapsulation, belly wrapping, and the importance of a meal tree (or meal train). It also explores other aspects of your life that are affected like your finances and your family relationships. I take a holistic approach that is both gentle and informative, empowering you to pick and choose what is right for you and your family.
What unfolds as you complete the Workbook process is your own plan for slowing down and savoring your newborn, feeling rested and taken care of, and knowing that you have a community there to help you when you need it.
The Workbook includes:
- holistic tips for healing
- practical solutions to common challenges
- journal exercises
- planning calendars and worksheets
- a pregnancy-to-do list
- complete template for your postpartum plan
Even if you have the most attentive work-at-home partner or your mother is coming for 2 weeks or you’ve hired a postpartum doula, The Workbook will be enormously helpful. You will see how their support fits into your larger plan and ease the transition when you no longer have their support. Creating a broader base of support will help you feel more connected to your community.
You may have older children and you have been through all this before. While in some ways experienced mothers can welcome a new baby with more confidence and ease, it is important to remember that each birth and each baby is a whole new experience. Usually families with older children receive less support even though their parenting load is growing. Careful planning and calling in support is beneficial to the whole family, helping older siblings adjust to life with a newborn.
Postpartum practices from around the world:
- In Spain, all parents get 6 months paid leave the first year of their baby’s life.
- In Vietnam, mothers traditionally went back to live with their own mothers to be taken care of for 3 months.
- Somali mothers have a “afantanbah” or 40 days of staying in and being cared for.
- In Sweden new parents get 480 days of paid leave, and 60 of them must be used by dads or else they’re forfeited.
- In Mexico, mothers are traditionally given the “Cuarentena” or 40 days of being cared for.
- Canadian mothers get 50 weeks of maternity leave.
- In China, the mothers have the ” zuo yue zhi” or the “sitting month” of staying in and being cared for.
- In Bali, new mothers do not enter the kitchen until their baby’s cord stump has fallen off.
- These practices show honor, care, and love for mothers.
This is not too much to ask for. Mothers benefit from being well taken care of. Babies benefit from having mothers that are well taken care of. Siblings, husbands, partners benefit from having mothers that are well taken care of. There is always more love to go around, when there is less stress. And this is something that we can plan for!