From the first trimester through to the third trimester your body goes through many physical and emotional changes. Receiving a massage during your pregnancy may support you and your growing baby during each of those stages.
During the last trimester the massage is tailored more towards preparing you for labour. I also teach partners (whomever you wish to have as your birth support) some simple massage techniques that they can use to further support you during labour.
Aside from being nurturing and relaxing, the massage can also provide the space for you to connect with your baby.
“Closing the Bones Ceremony”:
This transitional time is an important rites of passage – you have left maidenhood and entered motherhood. In many cultures the family and community support the new mother, by providing her with nourishing warming foods, belly binding and regular massage. Unfortunately in most western cultures the mother doesn’t receive enough postnatal support, more focus needs to be brought into this important “fourth trimester”.
In honour of this, I offer “Closing the Bones” – a traditional Ecuadorian post-birth ceremony. During pregnancy the hips become wider and continue to widen in preparation for birth. Therefore this ceremony on a physical level works on bringing the pelvis back into alignment (to avoid pelvic instability issues). Energetically it is about bringing the energy that is expansive and outwards during pregnancy and labour, back inwards – into the mother. This nurturing ritual may involve the use of a Rebozo to gently rock the pelvis, and massage with specific strokes to stimulate the tissues and bones back to it’s former state, ending the session with some craniosacral work.
CST & Arvigo Techniques of Maya Abdominal Therapy
Craniosacral Therapy (CST) is especially recommended if there has been a traumatic birth (for both the newborn and mother). CST is commonly used to help support the newborn for conditions such as reflux, colic, and with difficulties feeding and sleeping. For the mother CST may be very resourceful for her as she experiences new physical demands on her body and emotional challenges that may arise in this new phase of her life.
In general I like to treat both mother and baby together for the first session and regardless of whether there has been a traumatic birth or not, as CST is a wonderful way to support the health and development of a newborn.
Maya Abdominal Therapy is used to support the abdomen, uterus and other organs align back into optimal position after giving birth. The treatment is also used to help break down adhesions from the cesarean birth scar (once you have fully recovered from the surgery which is approximately takes 8 weeks).