My days of attending baby showers every weekend are now far and few between. Unfortunately, I was not a mom and not specializing in women’s health during the spring of 2010 (when I had NINE baby showers). If I knew then what I know now, my baby shower gifts would be a whole lot more practical. So I thought it’d be fun to list my must-haves and most recommended things for the mom-to-be:
Yup, I’m starting with a stool you use to have a better poop. The Squatty Potty (or a similar-height stool) replicates the squat position and relaxes your pelvic floor to help have a pain-free, complete bowel movement. If you had a vaginal birth, you know that the anticipation of that first BM after birth is worse than labor. If you had an epidural, pain meds and/or a cesarean, your system has been slowed down. Constipation is a real issue (as are hemorrhoids) and straining is not a good thing for your poor pelvic floor. If you flip the stool upside down, it makes a great gift basket…just saying.
Sitz Bath with Herbs
This is a must for post-vaginal birth. Essentially, the sitz bath is a little bath tub for your perineum. Fill it with warm water and some herbs and let the healing begin! I recommend Wishgarden Herbs SitzBath. The herbs are lovely and it allows mom a few minutes to herself. If a perineum bathtub seems a little intimate for your shower gift, may I suggest the Earth Mama SitzBath pads. They come in a box that resembles a box of tea. Perineal ice packs are also wonderful. I have a link on how to make those here.
The big one, 36 inches, so your entire spine, head to tailbone, can fit on it lengthwise. This is a must to open up the chest. The neck and chest become so tight and stiff from holding and feeding a baby, plus those larger breasts and awkward sleeping positions lead to aches and pains in the neck and upper back. The foam roller helps to stretch the front body while mobilizing the stiff mid-back. Look for a medium-firmness, as an extra firm roller can be too intense.
Food to Support Mom’s Healing
Regardless of the method of birth, a woman’s body experiences trauma and tissues need to heal. Starting a meal-train (there’s an app for that now) or just bringing over a prepared meal and food for mom (and family) is the ultimate gift! Even better; making sure that food is high in protein and healthy fats. Protein is the body’s building block for tissue healing. Lean meats, almonds, walnuts, chia and flax seeds are a great place to start.
So there you have it, what else would you add to this list? I encourage you to think outside of the box and give the gifts to support health and healing for the mom-to-be in your life, (even if they’re not on her registry)!