Setting Boundaries and The Fourth Trimester

One of the most insightful lessons I have learned this year has been understanding my boundaries. This practice is constantly evolving and I’m sure I will never be perfect at it, but I will try my hardest. What are boundaries? Boundaries are different for everyone, but for me personally, boundaries entail saying “no”, knowing my mental and physical limits, and not compromising my belief system. A new concept that I am trying out is actually scheduling my self-care and personal priorities first and then scheduling my professional and other obligations during the day/week/month. It has been a huge mindset shift to make myself a priority and I have found that I am able then to show up fuller in all aspects of my life. For the next couple months in 2020, try scheduling your self-care first and see how it changes your perspectives.

The fourth trimester is the immediate time post childbirth. In the current US medical system, many birthing people are forgotten about during the fourth trimester. This may be due to the fact that for most medical practitioners, the goal of childbirth is to make sure mom and baby are safe and alive… that’s it. Safety is VERY important and I am thankful that safety is the main goal, however, childbirth is transformational in many aspects. This requires more touch points and various medical providers providing resources for optimal healing.

In the Western culture, we have this idea that pregnant people are very fragile and that postpartum people are ready to live their normal lives after 6 weeks. This is just simply backwards. The postpartum space thrives on connection and support and this can last for a long time. Understand that the fourth trimester is forever… there is no time limit or expectant timeline to hit certain milestones. Your experiences and timeline are valid and they may look different compared to others surrounding you.

Medical providers who can help are:
😀Chiropractors: address posture and pain reduction
😀Pelvic floor physical therapists: address incontinence, swelling, pain, prolapse, exercise, and constipation
😀Licensed mental health counselors: address emotional well-being
😀Social workers: provides resources for new moms and their families
😀Postpartum trained personal trainers: guide you through correct return to exercise
😀Licensed massage therapists: address pain and stress
😀Dietician: address eating disorders, nutrient depletion, and body composition

Who has helped you during the fourth trimester??