BirthTouch® Fourth Trimester Plan

Babymoon/Postpartum MindBody Healing – Prevention by Preparation!

Did you know the first three months after childbirth are critical months for the emergent family on physical, emotional, psychological and spiritual levels? This time period is also referred to as the babymoon or fourth trimester.

A little planning can help you thrive, rather than just barely survive, your fourth trimester. Thinking about your mindbody postpartum plan, where you get to choose what you believe will help you integrate the physical and emotional aspects of giving birth into your identity on a body, mind and spiritual levels. The best postpartum treatment is planning ahead, prevention!

Give yourself permission to know that the fourth trimester is a time when it’s ok to unplug from the hustle and bustle of the world. Take pause and recognize childbirth as a personal rite of passage. Ask yourself, “What will help me allow the unfolding of the unconscious process of my psychological and emotional space, including a new baby and also save space for my own psyche and identity as well?”

Traditional cultures mark the postpartum phase as a special time for moms to recuperate on body, mind and spiritual levels. For your personal postpartum plan, what will you include? Will you practice good nutrition and treat yourself to postpartum help? Will a gift to yourself of a postpartum bodywork home visit can help integrate the emotional and physical experience of giving birth?

You are important. Self-care and self-love are not just pleasant concepts and words. They are real.

Practice self- care. Take a look at the list below and build yourself a mindbody postpartum plan.

Questions to ask yourself/journal about:

What will help you allow the unfolding of your unconscious process of your psychological and emotional space to include your baby & also help preserve your individuality?

Will you practice good nutrition?

Will you treat yourself to practical postpartum help?

Will you gift yourself postpartum bodywork or healings to help integrate the emotional and physical experiences of giving birth?

If necessary, will you gift yourself the safety of professional help?

Design Your Own Postpartum Plan

 1. Your Professional List

Professional Phone and Email List

  • Ob/gyn number
  • Pediatrician number
  • Primary Care Physician number
  • Psychiatrist number
  • Therapist number
  • (Contact the insurance company beforehand as there can be a referral process needed. Some therapists will make limited home visits and many now are available via Skype. Get a referral from friends & family or couch shop via Postpartum Treatment or Psychology Today. )
  • Postpartum doula
  • La Leche League leader and meetings nearby
  • Lactation consultant
  • Mindbody healers, such as Reiki practitioners, massage therapists, etc
  • Spiritual resources

 

2. Your Practical Support

Your Meals:

Preparation for the first month:

 

Food chain organized by

*Some moms are asking for frozen meals received as gifts at baby shower

*In many towns, a local deli or restaurant has a special menu for people who are experiencing an

illness, and you can order from this menu, or organize a meal preparation chain.

 

 

Medical Decision-Making:

 

This is for the mom and her partner to discuss. Who do you want to be your designated person to help make medical decisions? Whom do you NOT want making these decisions?

 

Your Medication:

 

This is for you to fill out only. If you are currently taking any medications, make sure you catch up on your doctor visits and order what you need from the pharmacy in the weeks before childbirth.

 

Your Baby Feeding Method:

 

Exclusive Breastfeeding

Formula Feeding (which brand, buy some for the house)

Mixed Breastfeeding and Formula Feeding

 

You might have had some expectations about you wish to feed your baby, and circumstances may be such that you’ve had to modify your ideas. Be kind to yourself and sensitive to your own individual situation. 

 

Your Family Sleep Plan (affects the whole family):

 

Co-sleeping

Baby bed attached to bed

Baby bassinet in room

Baby in crib in separate room

 

*Moms who are at risk for depression need a prescription for sleep. Family help and hired help can assist with this, respecting the baby feeding method and schedule.

 

* It’s great to get some education about infant sleep methods, including information about the infant fourth trimester and the true nature of human biological attachment. Knowledge and experience help you get comfortable in your parenting skills.

 

There are many good compromises to co-sleeping and feeding on demand.

The BirthTouch® blog has reviews categorized under Infant Sleep Methods, of the current infant sleep methods, so you don’t have to read all those books.

Dr. Karp, Mrs. Pantley, Ms. Kurcinka and yes, even Dr. Weissbluth has some positive messages. You don’t have to agree with everything the author says, just take away the points you wish and integrate them into your parenting style.  And read up on Infant Sleep Safety here. 

 

Visitor Plan:

 

*Create a family & friend support chain to protect the mental health of mom and family.

 

LotsAHelpingHands can help coordinate this on line. There are many online websites where a community support project can be privately posted and then people can sign up for tasks.

Such tasks might be: going over the house and holding the baby while Mom takes a shower, cooking a meal, driving the Mom to a psychiatrist appointment, etc.

3. Your Social Support

Family & friends offer the first line of support, and sometimes it’s not enough.

Local Support – Groups & Individuals

Friends from work, friends from the area, friends from your life

Will vary by location

La Leche League

Play groups

YMCA

Churches

Yoga studios

Gyms

Meet-ups

 

 

Online Support Groups:

 

Appendix A:

Online Perinatal Mental Health Resources:

Postpartum Support International

#PPDCHAT

BirthTouch, LLC

Organization of Teratogen Information Specialists

Befrienders Worldwide

Lotsa Helping Hands

Create Your Own Meet-Up for Social Support

Postpartum Treatment

Appendix B: Supportive and Beautiful Mom to Mom Blogs

My Postpartum Voice by Lauren Hale

Ivy’s PPD Blog by Ivy Shih Leung

Beyond Postpartum by Amber Koter-Puline

Tranquil Mama by Jennifer Pody Gaskell

Little Mama Jama by Kristin Novotny

PPD to Joy by Yael Saar

Air My Dirty Laundry by The Laundress (Janet)

James and Jax by Jamie Harker

Postpartum Progress by Katharine Stone

 

 

If you’d like some further information, take a look at my book:

 

Perinatal Mental Illness for Childbirth Professionals  birthtouch perinatal mental illness guide book front1

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Kathy Morelli

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