"So, after the home birth...what do you do with all the..um...other stuff?"
Meaning, I presume, the placenta etc. I know most people have this image of birth as this huge, messy, bloody ordeal. Really there isn't a whole lot of blood and it's nothing a few chux pads can't contain. Clean up is as easy as this - throw old chux pad in trash, put new chux pad under butt. It's simple really. Water birth is even easier, it's all in the water and you just drain it away. We use a pool liner that you can throw away when used and buy a new one for the next time. :)
Then you are left with a clean house, a lovely new baby and a placenta. Last time we stuck the placenta in the freezer, where it still remains, and we hope to one day plant it under a tree or something. We don't own our house yet, we'll probably hold onto it until then.
But this time, I've been reading about all the wonderful benefits of ingesting your placenta. Yes, I said it. I can't even be bothered listing all the benefits here just now, because I have more important things to do, like snuggle with an amazingly adorable 5 (and a half) day old baby boy. But seriously, google it and read all about how it can help protect against postnatal depression and help with milk supply and so much more.
Many women enjoy the benefits of placenta by slicing off a chunk and putting it in a smoothie. This is especially useful as a quick fix shortly after giving birth, especially if you are having a lot of blood loss. There are also tons of recipes out there including placenta pate, placenta stew and even placenta pizza!
I must admit, I'm not quite *that* crunchy yet. I wasn't ready to go there this time. I know, for shame, huh? But luckily for me I came in contact with a woman who will encapsulate your placenta for you! Which basically involves dehydrating it, grinding it into a powder and then sticking it in little capsules.
Before any of your get cheeky about how I'm a vegetarian and placenta is technically meat, remember that no animal had to die to make my placenta, so keep your wisecracks to yourself thank you very much.
You take a few of the capsules a day and they are like little pills of magic happiness. Seriously, I feel awesome. The first few days after the birth were a bit of a blur, I didn't get much sleep and was crawling through the days. Then baby started to sleep and I started taking these magic pills and I feel AWESOME. I woke up yesterday singing, "I'm walking on sunshine...yeah" and today singing Top Of The World by the Carpenters. Seriously I did.
Local gals, I encourage you to check out Mary Cleveland's page for more info. She is also a doula, a mother and a beautiful person inside and out.
And she also dried up the umbilical cord into a heart. How precious is that?! What a beautiful keepsake. So, I know that one day when Alasdair brings home a fiance and I pull out the heart shaped umbilical cord to show her, she might be a *little* freaked out and might hear horror movie sound effects going off in her head, but it's all good, right?
So that's what we do with the "other stuff". Isn't it awesome?