Wrapping is an Act of Love and Kindness
I learned about Bengkung belly binding about 2 years after my 4th child was born. In this training, part of the hands on was to wrap ourselves. Here I was at 2 years postpartum, doubting that I would feel the magic of it, when I wrapped.
But I did feel it.
was 2 years postpartum and feeling strong, but when I wrapped that day, I felt stronger.
If I felt that way 2 years postpartum, how amazing must it feel newly postpartum?
I wasn’t sure if I would ever know because we had thought we were done having babies. So, just like with placentas, I set about my calling to help moms with this beautiful tool for healing.
Then I had Hawthorn.
Hawthorn’s pregnancy and birth was incredibly exciting for me. I had spent the previous 5 years devouring all things natural birth and postpartum while on my path to becoming a midwife (reminder, this was after having 4 babies). This was my chance to put into action all the things I had learned and been advocating for. It did not disappoint.
And then I got to bind.
I set my feet in place and relaxed my pelvic floor and diaphragm. As Oaken started to wrap me, the support was immediate. I believe my exact words were “oh that feels good” in a super sultry voice and he was still on my hips!
By the time he was done, I felt ready to tackle the world.
I burped a long healthy burp. If that sounds odd of me to write, trapped air can cause discomfort in a mother postpartum (just like air in a newborn tummy) and burping was a sign that the bind was doing what it was meant to do. I didn’t even realize I had to burp!
That evening, when it was time to take it off, it was evident how much support it was for me. I felt my back immediately want to hunch over, rather than be strong and tall. I felt like I was open and exposed and vulnerable.
The more I wrapped myself, the better care I took of myself. It was a reminder that I was newly postpartum and needed to rest, needed nourishing foods, and needed to allow myself to receive help and care. To allow myself to feel the emotions as they came.
This better care aided my healing in those early weeks and continues to aid in my healing today. It will continue to aid my health long after I stop wrapping…
In 7 Times a Woman, Dr Lia Andrews mentions that proper postpartum care is one of our golden opportunities to dramatically alter our state of health - either renewal or devastation. By using that golden opportunity for renewal -- we increase our vitality and longevity. Abdominal binding helps with that renewal. She mentions it as well in her postpartum care section as well (albeit a different style of binding, the idea is still the same).
A thought occurred to me one night in the bath after a day of being wrapped -- wrapping a mother is an act of love.
It is an act of kindness.
It is an act of supporting the sisterhood and changing the oft forgotten postpartum period.
It is an act of supporting the next generation of women - in both showing our daughters that they should have that level of care, showing our sons they can provide a new level of care, AND helping the mother feel like she CAN do this mothering thing.
Imagine that world.
As I move back into the world after Hawthorn’s birth, I am opening up for my postpartum services — which includes belly binding. If this is something you are interested in, check out my birth & postpartum services page for description and pricing.