Flower Essences for New Mothers

Being a new mother (and father, but it’s less physical) presents all kinds of highs and lows ;).

Whether this is the 1st child or the 4th child, each pregnancy, birth and 4th trimester is unique.  As a human and a mother you change and grow, so each experience is unique.  Each child comes in with their own personality and own unique challenges and gifts.

This dance provides a lot of opportunities for spiritual, mental, emotional and physical growth.    It is a joyous and sometimes daunting experience.

Flower essences are here to help you, your baby and the rest of the family.

The first essence I recommend is Crisis, Desert Emergency Formula (by Desert Alchemy).  This can be used topically on the baby’s anterior fontanel when nothing you do to soothe them seems to do the trick.  It can be used in the bath (I use 3-5 drops of stock or dosage level) and recommend parent and baby get in the tub together…soothe everyone.  You can put 1 drop of stock or 3 drops of dosage in your water and sip it, if you are the one falling apart.  If your pet is freaking out about the new addition, put 1 drop of stock essence in their water.

Another excellent essence is the New Mother Formula (by Desert Alchemy).  It soothes the physical stress of growing someone for 9 months and then birthing them in a relatively short period of time, as well as getting used to them feeding from you in a different way and more public way.

It supports you while you ask all the questions,

*How do I know the difference between a wet diaper cry and a hungry cry?  Do I believe in pacifiers, cloth diapers, etc?

*How do I negotiate for sleep, privacy, quiet time, bonding time (with baby, partner, older child, pet, etc), …so many things to shift and learn how to do in a new way.

*What does it mean that I can see all my ancestors faces parading before me in this new little face?

*How do I hold this new identity of being a mom to this beautiful little one and not lose myself?  *How do I negotiate breastfeeding and menstrual cramps or healing from perineal tears, etc ?

*How do I integrate the deeply intense spiritual experiences that I can’t explain?

* How do I feel confident doing this activity that is so new for me?

So many physical, mental, emotional and spiritual insights and shifts.

If you find worry fills your days, Red Chestnut (by Healing Herbs) is for overworry about others (after this first night of my first having strange breathing patterns, I found myself waking to check his breathing…very common for first time parents).  If thoughts about how to balance this new life with the old life, how to pay the bills, and other endless mental chatter is how you are processing, White Chestnut (by Healing Herbs) will be a boon for you.

If you are interested in exploring what your own optimal combination would be, I happily do remote sessions by phone or video, so you can attend to baby if needed during a session.  To schedule email penni@healingflowerenergies.com or call 650-218-5163.

Parenting and old trauma resurfacing

One curious bit about parenting is that when your child become the age that you were when you first experienced a trauma, your unresolved trauma surfaces.  It doesn’t feel like a gift, but it is.  When trauma resurfaces we can more easily work with it and move it out of our physical tissues ( we carry these traumas in our cells until they can be healed).

Because we are so connected both physically and energetically with our children, their joys are our joys and their sorrows are our sorrows.  The more sensitive and empathic you are you might even physically take this on.

What is surprising is when our old traumas resurface.  We are energetically tuned in to the age of our child and our inner child.  I have had so many clients (female and male) have old trauma resurface when their child becomes the age they first experienced the trauma.  This seems most impactful when the trauma was sexual abuse.   Not only are all your emotions coming to the surface…and sometimes you have suppressed that this trauma ever happened…but you are busy trying to protect your child from having a similar trauma.

There are essences here to support you.  If the trauma has been suppressed and you guess that something happened, but you are not sure, Bisbee Beehive Cactus from Desert Alchemy is so helpful.  This essence helps you to know what happened while healing the trauma quickly so it can be released.  Post Traumatic Stabilizer from FES and Star of Bethlehem from Bloesem Remedies are at the top of the list for healing.  Each person is unique so combinations are tailored for your highest possible good.

First time Breastfeeding? 3-6 Weeks Postpartum.

Cluster feeding begins to happen at this time.  Hang in there.  Use the rescue remedy cream to help with sore nipples and airdry your nipples as much as possible.  Also letting breastmilk dry on nipples is very healing (breastmilk is also great for pink eye and baby eczema…in some countries they store extra breastmilk to keep senior citizens healthy…you are creating great stuff!).

You have passed a milestone. Hooray! Your body has figured out the fluid level, the general timing of when and how much the baby wants to nurse.

You should no longer feel the engorgement/swelling and often this freaks moms out thinking “Maybe I don’t have enough milk”. You have enough milk, it’s just your body has adjusted.

How to check you have “enough” milk: Baby is filling about 10 diapers a day and baby is gaining weight.

If you have not already joined a breastfeeding support group or postpartum class now is the time! Nothing like hanging out with people having a similar experience to know that you are not crazy and all of this very new stuff is normal, maybe weird and wonderful, but normal.

First Time Breastfeeding? Newly Postpartum.

You want to place the baby to the breast within the 1st hour if at all possible. This is when they are most awake and have the energy to learn how to suck. (just think of any energy it takes to learn something new.)

It usually take 3-5 days for your milk to come in. You do have colostrum (the stuff that was leaking out above). This is very high in sugar and babies only need 4-6 drops every 2 hours in order to keep their sugar levels normal. So don’t panic or worry that it isn’t enough. If your baby won’t suck, then squeeze out these drops on your finger and place the finger in their mouth. (If you want you can place the tip of the finger on the roof of their mouth to encourage the suck)

Nurse and nurse and nurse as much as the baby wants. The baby is programming your body to produce milk depending on demand.

When your milk does come in:

Your breasts are adjusting to all this new fluid and working on learning how to do fluid control. This means you can leak a lot, your breasts can become engorged and the let down can be intense for baby. All is normal and will eventually take care of itself…in the meantime:

  • If you leak a lot: There are plastic shields to place in nursing bras that collect the milk. There are also pads, but I have found many women who use these pads end up with yeast (candida/thrush). If you suspect thrush or have a history of candida leave the flap s down on your nursing bra as often as you can so they can airdry. 
  • If your breasts are engorged: This is temporary. Do not pump lots out. If you need to squeeze a few drops out to get nipple accessible to the baby, you can hand express.
  • If this is not enough and you are not allergic to sulfa drugs you can place a raw cabbage leaf (white or green stains less) between your bra and breast and the heat of your breasts will wilt the cabbage and release the chemicals to bring the “swelling” down.

 

Cluster feeding!!! Your babe will go through stages of increasing your milk supply by nursing closer together. This does not mean you do not have enough milk. It means they are about to have a growth spurt. All good. If you find your nipples sensitive then put the rescue remedy cream on right after nursing. It will melt in and nipples will be happy and so will you and baby. No need to wipe it off before feeding again (note on packaging is FDA required because the original preparation has a tad of alcohol in it).

Teas to Support & Nourish Your Pregnancy

Teas to support you throughout the pregnancy:

If you are interested in herbs do get Aviva Romm’s Natural Pregnancy book for some great insights and recipes. Otherwise you can trust Traditional Medicinal or Yogi Tea’s mama tea blends or go for singles. 

1. Red Raspberry leaf tea: (to strengthen the uterus) weak at first and as you get into 3rd trimester make it darker and darker…this herb has been used to prevent miscarriage and to reduce naseau for eons.  Best used from beginning of pregnancy on.

“Red raspberry leaf tea, 2 cups daily, on the other hand, is know to be safe in pregnancy, and several studies have now shown that taking it regularly in the last trimester can make labor easier, reduces the need for medical interventions in labor, and makes baby less likely to need any resuscitation. I’d say that this makes it a great herb to use for getting ready for birth! ”

– Aviva Romm, MD

2. Nettle Tea: provides some iron, increases milk production, decrease hemorrhoids.

3. Chamomile Tea: only if not allergic to ragweed and only 3 cups a day if no history of miscarriage, otherwise limit to 1 cup a day. *For electrolyte balancing: symptoms can be leg cramps, severe vomiting, generally yuk and sense of never enough water or endless urination drink

4. Recharge, Smart Water or your own blend : 1 quart of water, juice of one lemon, 1­2 T of honey, 1/4 t of salt, 1/4 t of baking soda…sip through out the day.

5. For hormone balancing: Rose hydrosol (also known as rosewater…found in gourmet, Indian or Middle Eastern stores) helps with hormonal headaches and feeling that you are overrun by emotions.  Add 1 Tablespoon of rosewater to a large pitcher of water and sip throughout the day (also great for postpartum blues and hot-flashes).