I have some work to do guys. As much as I have talked and written about self care and even published a self-care guide (sign up for the newsletter to get it) my own self-care is lacking.
On Saturday I attended a childbirth class. I want to start preparing for childbirth because the next 14 weeks are going to fly by and Baby Joy Chaser will be here before I know it. The class was great and I’ll talk more about it in my next YouTube video. However, the class revealed that my self-care is lacking an important aspect and is not on point like I thought.
Basically, the instructor recommended you use relaxation techniques to help you get through the early stages of labor when you are still at home and it is too early for any medication for pain relief. The question she asked was how do you relax when you are in pain or not feeling well. I had no answer. I was clueless. This is mostly due to the blessing of my hardly ever being sick.
The idea expressed in the class is to rely on those relaxation techniques along with the massage techniques they taught us to distract yourself as much as possible from the pain of contractions. The instructor asked questions like what music and scents do you like. My go to answers were things that get me pumped up not relaxed. My normal self-care music is upbeat gospel and hip hop. These styles of music make me feel good, But, they won’t exactly help me relax and breath through contractions. My favorite scents are citrus like lemon and grapefruit which also energize instead of calm. While I do plan to use those scents as aroma therapy during the time to push. That’s not what will be helpful in the beginning hours. If you were about to suggest lavender don’t! I don’t like that smell at all.
So you see I have some self care homework today. Lesson learned even when you think you know exactly what your doing there will always be something that you may have never considered like me with the self-care techniques for when you are in pain or sick.
So what are your go to self-care relaxation techniques for when you are feeling sick or in pain? I’d live to hear from some moms who have given birth. What techniques helped you through those first hours?
Like you, I too need to practice self-care more. You definitely need to get in that mode before the baby comes. Thank you for sharing.
Sanaa Brooks says
Pain? I literally “fight” it. Like if I’m in pain, I’ll make a fist and squeeze really tight as a way to fight back against it. I remember when I was giving birth they kept having to tell me to let go. Lol Even when I’m sick, I find myself trying to fight through it. Also, breathing helps as well! They always say breathe through it and it sounds crazy, but it really does help. Just have to find the pattern that works best for you.
Antoinette cain says
Honestly, my go-to is a good nap. I can recall the nurses telling me to get some sleep because it’s not happening once we get home lol.
Kita q says
My self care is lacking. I hope you get in all the time you need before baby boy gets here. And schedule in selfcare for when he is here. So important.
I do try to take care of myself within reason. But I honestly can’t say that self-care is something I practice on a regular basis.
Elle (CleverlyChanging) says
Get in the habit of starting your self-care routine now. It’s not something that should be set aside. We sometimes wear a badge and give us permission to neglect our own care when me become mothers but that’s not an attitude or behavior that we should give into.
My therapist taught me some breathing techniques for anxiety and my watch also does them so I do them often when I am anxious and even in public and no one knows that I am doing them, it’s discreet enough to do anywhere!
Mimi Green says
My self-care tip is peppermint candy (starlight mints only) and peppermint oil. I use them to relax me when my anxiety is all over the place. I’ve never used it for pain but it calms me so I’m sure it would help just the same.
I carry a bottle in my purse and mints are in all my spaces.
Crystal Nicole says
I definitely lack in the department of self-care. I’ve been working crazy hours lately and haven’t dedicated any time to taking care of me and relaxing. I definitely have to change that.
I’ve seen a lot articles lately on self care and thank Gawd I’ve always been selfish when it came to making sure I was ok. I have a standing appointment for a massage, mani and pedi.. I also use the grocery store as my get away from my family. I will spend hours in the grocery store browsing
Danasia Fantastic says
This is an insightful read and awesome points for reviving self care back into our lives. I definitely have homework to do!
Nanekia Ansari says
I need to do better too. I’ve been slacking in this department lately. Thanks for the reminder and congratulations.
Sheena Steward says
It’s so awesome that you’re preparing yourself for your bundle of joy. With anything preparation is key. I pray the rest of your pregnancy is great and you have an excellent birth. Congrats!
I really enjoyed this post. I had a scheduled c section for some personal medical reasons, so I never went to a child birthing class. It didn’t make sense for me to go to one, but I always wondered what happens in them. I pictured them like the ones on tv where some woman’s water breaks in the middle of the class.
Chamor Thomas says
I will say that was definitely what I realized I needed to learn after attending the birthing class. It was great to learn how to care for my baby and to know how my baby was developing, but what I didn’t know was what would be helpful for me to deliver my baby.
It’s good to have a list of relaxation techniques but you may also find none of those things will work for you in the moment and that’s okay. When I had my son, all of the things I thought would help, either didn’t or I completely forgot. He was my first child and there were so many things going on that I couldn’t focus. I didn’t know what to expect so I became overwhelmed. I let the pain consume me. I can recall music was not helpful and although my husband was being thoughtful and supportive, him repeatedly asking me what I needed or other questions only frustrated me. It was the same with the nurses, they were doing thier job but I just wanted the process to be over as quickly as possible.
When I went into labor with my daughter, 3 weeks early, things were a lot different. I knew what to expect and it felt great knowing I was in more control this time. I didn’t rush to the hospital. I stayed home as long as I could. I found walking around the house, rocking my hips side to side, breathing slowly and packing my son’s bag to keep me occupied very helpful and calming.
Once I was in the hospital my husband was also a lot better, his voice was more soothing and he asked less questions and just held my hand. He allowed me to take the lead and tell him what I needed. It helped me deal with the contractions when he helped me sit up and hold onto his shoulders. Once the contractions increased, it was helpful to be distracted by my cousin telling stories, and having my feet rubbed.
I had also planned to take a yoga labor and delivery class to learn some techniques but was unable to attend due to my early delivery. So I would recommend looking into that as well.
I hope sharing my experience was useful to you as you prepare over these next few weeks. Congratulations and good luck mama!