Magical Postpartum Care: An Introduction

by Krista Harrison | Instagram | Blog

Welcoming a child into your family, be it through birth, adoption or some other means, is an experience like no other. Emotions run the gamut, from love and awe to fear and overwhelm. The arrival of a new child brings about the birth of a new parent – and this journey can be lovingly and creatively supported by your witchcraft practice! 

Many new parents are surprised by the “new normal” of parenthood. After the birth of my first child, I might as well have been a giant, sleep-deprived hormone who landed on the dark side of the moon. While I had prepared for birth, I put less thought into my needs once the baby arrived.

As I approached the birth of my second child, I experienced swells of apprehension as memories of my first go at postpartum and the postpartum depression that ensued came to the forefront. Luckily, divine inspiration struck and moved me to bring magic into my postpartum healing and care plan.

Why Magic?

I think of magic as energy work that focuses intention to create a desired change or effect. What I love about infusing magic into the postpartum period is its inherent creativity and adaptability. As a mother, I believe this is essential to helping new parents who are short on time and energy stay engaged with their practice. Have ten minutes of alone time in the bathroom while sitting in a perineum sitz bath? Awake during the wee hours for your baby’s 3:00 am nursing? Sleep deprived and low on energy? We can work with that!

In this way, we can relate to magic as an adaptive ally here to bolster our coping, hold space for our process and encourage the emotional, mental and environmental shifts needed to assist us during times of change. 

Photo courtesy of @ofsaltandpine – Instagram

How Magic Supports Postpartum

Whatever flavor of magic speaks to you – be it candle magic, charms, sigils, words and affirmations, kitchen witchery, altars and sacred space or something else – can be called upon to address themes that commonly arise during postpartum adjustment.

Physical and Emotional Healing

If you’ve ever birthed a child, you know firsthand the physical healing that awaits on the other side of birth. There are ways to assist this healing, such as sitz baths, belly binding, herbal remedies, yoni steaming, moxibustion and more. I’ve personally experimented with integrating magic and ritual into sitz baths, belly binding, steaming and tea preparation and noticed an ease and flow in combining them. I’ve also called upon cleansing and self-love workings to support the emotional healing postpartum so often catalyzes.

Identity, Loss and Transformation

Becoming a parent instigates massive changes to identity. This can be simultaneously exciting and overwhelming as we shed old skins and expand into new ones. My witchcraft practice proves to be a reliable container for this deep work as motherhood continues to grow me. I particularly enjoy setting altars and sacred space throughout my home to help me reconnect to myself and spirit throughout the day. 

Empowerment

Embodying the witch archetype and discovering your own path as a witch in and of itself is a dance with empowerment. As we learn to work with energy, there’s ample opportunity to cultivate our own energy and investigate our relationship to power. This is illuminating work and, I believe, beautifully aligned with the work of coming into one’s power as a parent. 

Community/Connectivity

One of the hardest aspects of my first postpartum was the loneliness I felt, which I learned is a common experience. But what if magic can bridge this loneliness to a sense of community and connection? For example: a group ritual with other witches or trusted friends and family; healing candles dressed by loved ones to be burned throughout your postpartum period; spell-work to call in community; joining or creating an online community where witchy parents can virtually gather, share and support one another.

Time to Celebrate

Let us not forget to celebrate! For all of its challenges, postpartum also gifts us with soul warming experiences, such as unconditional love, the grace of simple moments, play, curiosity, new learning, beginner’s mind and the blessing of witnessing your little one unfold, learn and grow. magic can help amplify and integrate these expansive states – and of course you can simply drink from these states as is.

Whatever your path and inclination, know that there is a wealth of magical resources within and around you, ready to join you on your postpartum journey.

About the Author: Krista Harrison is a mother, writer, healer, solitary witch and animist practicing home-based  spirituality. She’s a licensed transpersonal psychotherapist and certified hypnotherapist. Krista studied Depth Hypnotherapy, applied shamanism and shamanic counseling with Dr. Isa Gucciardi at Foundation of the Sacred Stream. She’s also certified as a postpartum doula and is a graduate of the Mothering Arts Community Supported Postpartum program. Krista currently studies spiritwork with Ren Zapotek and is training in the Akashic Records with Josephine Hardman at Purefield Healing. 

Among Krista’s many interests is reigniting her magickal practice in a way that supports her busy life as a mom to two young children. She writes about hearthcraft, spiritwork, animism, mothercraft, postpartum and maternal wellness and personal/spiritual development. Krista’s writing can be found on her blog and her Instagram, as well as on Medium.com where she writes personal essays.

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