prana4

A few weeks ago I had one hell of a chat about all things sensuality in pregnancy, childbirth & motherhood with the super delicious Shalome Stone from Rockstar Birth Magazine. Besides so much fun, super juicy and packed with really valuable information & insight; it also fueled the ever waging war going on behind the scenes with each one of my chakras. Specifically the sacral & root chakras. Shiz is batshit crazy and out of whack down there.

Since the birth of my second born, it has been absolutely no secret to me that I have felt off. Unaligned and far less sexy than the leaning tower of Pisa. Even though I am super stoked on how I birthed my baby, I totally did not rock my post partum party. I did too much, didn’t eat enough, didn’t take care of myself properly, didn’t ask for help and didn’t get enough help being so far away from family. I distinctly remember feeling like my pelvic floor was cracked open and the energy was seeping through each vulnerable part of my body. It was terrifying. Confronting. I retreaded and ignored the obvious – I needed healing.

Months later in the throes of (denial) post partum depression, I finally got to see my Doula at a photo session I was doing in the middle of the wood, in the outskirts of town. I rented a little cabin with no electricity and decided to spend the night after taking some images. I knew I had been pining for her crone like energy for so long, but just didn’t want to bother you or inconvenience her (I have self-worth issues, too.)

Well, the universe clearly wasn’t having any of my bullshit because almost 5 minutes after the shoot ended, I got ill. Really, super flu like symptoms in the matter of one hour. I felt crippled with negative thoughts like, ‘Really?! One night in a remote cabin in the woods with no babies or husband and you give me the flu?! Really, universe?!’. And just like that, Julie my Doula calls.

‘Are you ok, honey? You sound terrible.’

‘I’m fine, I swear I’m fine. All good!’

‘No seriously, you sound like shit. Let me come over and take care of you. Please? This is something I wanted to do for you since the birth and this is just the right timing.’

She was right. I knew it. I wanted her to come over so bad. Her and her gorgeous healing vibrations, great feminist conversation and birth revolution super powers. I wanted it all. So I stubbornly obliged as stubborn women with problems accepting kindness do. And she swooped in like an eagle with huge wings made of home made elderberry cordial and the most freaking amazing mushroom pizza I have ever had in my life.

We talked and talked and talked. She used touch and oil to draw attention to each tense part of my body and we spoke through major emotional blockages. And as we brought my baggage to air, each knot released under the tips of her fingers. I cried. She took out her rebozo and suggested a ‘closing the bones ceremony‘. For those who don’t know, Closing the Bones is a tradition from Ecuador, where the postpartum mother is blessed, anointed, massaged and wrapped. This is the part where I realised how fucking broken I actually felt (and how badly I needed this evening with Julie!).

Since then I have been on one epic quest to heal myself but more importantly reconnect with that woman who I was before having babies & being someone’s wife.

So where did I start?

Jade eggs.

prana9

Precious Yoni stones, as one would affectionately call them. My friend Sally turned me onto them and they have definately caused a few major ripples in my sacral chakra. The first thing I realised is how much emotional baggage, trauma and resentment I was keeping there bound under lock & key. Just a huge bundle of who the fuck knows what that I have been so afraid to come close to, so I instead shut up shop. My libido dwindled and I lost sight of the sexually charged minx used to be. Using the jade eggs has given me no choice but to acknowledge my issues and becoming very self-aware. Because each time I have an egg inside me, I can’t deny it is there. So my focus is automatically brought there and that is where I begin my processing.

Besides being a fantastic channel for WILD amounts of spiritual and emotional growth (that I have barely scratched the surface with!), it also drastically improves tone and strength in your vaginal and pelvic floor muscles. Even after a few days, I could feel much more focused power there.

prana3

This led me to wanting to further explore the damage in my pelvic floor caused by birth, hormones and general aging. Things like pain in sex, crap pelvic health, discomfort with my perineal scar and separation in my abdomen were of big concern to me. And obviously big contributors in why my sexual health was suffering.

I didn’t really feel like any of the care providers I saw after my birth, actually gave a shit or acknowledged my issues. All I would get told was one big resounding, ‘It’s normal. Give it time.’ And that isn’t what I wanted. I wanted understanding, a plan to make it better and some sort of resolve. So I opted to scour the internet for tools or classes that might help and I came upon B-Wom.

B-Wom is a one of a kind app that guides women through different stages of their lives in order to improve their intimate health. It evaluates your personal set of circumstances with in depth questions, assesses your answers and then tailor creates several different plans in order to help you get the results you want.

We’re talking youth or adults with or without kids, people suffering with incontinence and even those with libido problems coming straight issues like heavy pressure in the vagina. It goes deep and that is what I appreciate about it. It gave me a specific plan to get my pelvic floor back in shape, strengthen my belly, help with pain in sex and even caring for the scar that remained excruciatingly sensitive only because I neglected to give it the love it needed.

But most of all it gave me a place to get help, without awkward or invasive questions from someone I didn’t know (or worse from someone who didn’t care!).

prana8

Each night I spent about 10-15 minutes through guided excercises. Kegels, hypopressives, the works. I use a specialty mat from Pranamat which I added into the routine because it uses the same principles of reflexology, adding pressure with points on these small but effective lotus flowers on a padded bed. The help me ALOT by promoting circulation and targetting areas of my back and sacrum I feel don’t get enough attention. (I even take it to yoga!!) My biggest shock was how little I actually knew about my own pelvic floor & vagina. Embarrassed, too. Because if I knew all it required was a little more TLC and direction…I would’ve started it ages ago. Within 2 weeks I had 90% control of my pelvic floor muscles; I know where they are I try and engage them when walking or anytime I am keeping busy. It helps me to feel at one with my body- and that is one thing I have so desperately needed.

prana2

prana5

By no means am I anywhere near perfect but it is a work in progress and one I won’t give up on.

I am important. This body is the only one I have got, and it is the only one you’ve got, too. It has served me so well and if I want to live a long & happy life inside it, I have got to grab life by the fallopian tubes and make it happen.

Did you or do you do anything to help with recovery after birth? Share your tips and tricks with me!

Oh by the way, I reached out to B-Wom and they were kind enough to give my readers a a little gift in order to access free premium content on their app. Use code BWOMWW for goodies!!

All my love and all the powers of my super duper yoni,

Angela Gallo
Melbourne Doula & Birth Photographer