Well, technically I’m not keeping it for long- I’m swallowing it (I think). Yup, this blog post is not for the faint of heart so stop reading now if you will be grossed out!
I’m not going to pick it up off the floor and start gnawing on it. I have decided I will have my placenta made into capsules (like vitamins) and I will be swallowing 1-3 pills 2-3 times per day. Why? Well, technically humans are the only animals that don’t eat the placenta so there must be some benefits. Right? At least nature believes so. I guess for us humans it’s not socially acceptable and deemed gross. Although it can’t be any grosser than eating a hot dog. But my dog snacks out of the cat’s litter box so (playing devils advocate) nature doesn’t always know best.
The placenta is what nourishes your baby while he/she is inside you. It is believed to help with milk supply, increase your energy, minimize bleeding, and most importantly help fight off the baby blues and the dreaded postpartum depression. It should be noted that eating the placenta, or the scientific term of placentophagy, has not been studied much and some doctors don’t even believe in it. It should also be noted that there is a small percentage of women who have gotten sick from it so you really need to know your body and monitor yourself.
The following website lists the results of some studies as well as some of the substances the placenta contains… http://www.placentawise.com/research-studies-supporting-placenta-encapsulation/
So for a small fee ($225) this woman (she’s also a doula and myofascial release practitioner) will pick up my placenta at the hospital and take it to her office where she will clean, steam and dehydrate it and then grind it up and put it in capsules for me to swallow. Sounds like fun right? I checked with the hospital and I will have some forms to fill out before they will release it to me. I had to add the following to my birth plan- I will be keeping the placenta. Please put it in a container WITHOUT chemicals and give it to me. Do not send it to pathology.
I’m also having an imprint made similar to the picture above. Will I be hanging it on the wall in my family room? Probably not. It will most likely be put in a closet and brought out when Jackson is old enough to understand what it is. After he vomits and is horrified but what his mom did it will go back in the closet. So why do it? Why not? If I decide NOT to do it I can never go back and change my mind. I think its kinda cool. Look at it- it looks like a tree- the tree of life! She will also take the cord and make it into a heart shape and then when it dries I will have another nice little keepsake for the closet. Some people have skeletons in their closet- mine will have placenta parts. I can also request the “broth” which is the leftover water from when she steams the placenta. Some women like to make a tea out of it or use it for cooking- no thanks. She also makes these things called Tinctures which is the extract from the placenta that can be made into an essential oil. Might be passing on that one as well.
Will these pills do anything for me? I won’t know until I try. Who knows if I will even swallow them. I might chicken out. I might start to feel like a contestant on Fear Factor and think I’m eating a cow eyeball or something. One thing I know is I will definitely be able to have my placenta regardless if I have a natural birth or c-section. So I guess this is the only thing I know FOR SURE. Everything else is a crap shoot or a guessing game- like when is this baby coming? I’m 39 weeks, 2 days today- tick, tock little Jackson.