107: Postpartum Recovery For Lifelong Health, with Kimberly Johnson
The Sex, Money, and Food Podcast
Sex, Trauma and nurturing with Kimberly Johnson
Welcome to this of The Sex, Money and Food podcast! When you hear the words postpartum what first comes to mind? Depression, right? In our culture we only think of postpartum as postpartum depression, but it actually means the period of time after a mom has given birth.
On episode 107 of Sex, Money and Food we are joined by Kimberly Johnson to talk about this very topic. Kimberly is a certified sexological bodyworker, doula, Somatic Experiencing trauma resolution practitioner and postpartum care advocate.
Today she explains what needs to happen for a woman during post-partum so she maintains lifelong health, how we can support other women and what it means to be a certified sexological worker. This is a fascinating conversation so be sure to join us on the 107th edition of Sex, Money and Food!
More About This Show
The first thing Kimberly and I talk about it is what it means to be a certified sexological worker. She explains that it is someone who can legally work with someone’s genitals during body work. Normally those areas aren’t included, they are covered up and tucked away from sight. Doing so sends messages to us that those parts of ourselves are shameful or separate in some way.
However sexological bodywork says those areas are parts of our bodies that need attention too. In fact, those areas may need more attention because of the labels, experiences and misunderstandings our genitals experience, yet never process and integrate.
She goes on to explain that this type of work looks different depending on the person’s needs. Some workers specialize in more daoist/erotic massage, some specialize in scar tissue remediation, and some in arousal.
We also discuss what trauma is exactly and why humans carry it but wild animals don’t. But the heart of today’s interview is postpartum and how this time in a woman’s life can be fully experienced to support her long-term health throughout the rest of her life and what we can do in a culture that doesn’t acknowledge the slowing down necessitated by postpartum.
In essence, if you’ve ever had a baby you’ve been through post-partum. Post-partum is just the period after you have a baby. Cultures around the world acknowledge a period between 20-60 days after a baby’s birth that is considered a sacred window.
Tweetable: “Trauma is just an incomplete cycle in your nervous system.” – Kimberly Johnson
During this time if women are properly nurtured and supported they will return to optimal health. But if they are not well taken care of, if they don’t eat the right foods and aren’t allowed to properly rest and that rest period isn’t honored, then disease will set in and it will be difficult to get rid of.
Kimberly explains that this is a time when as much as a mother gives to an infant she needs to receive that equally. She is giving loving touch, nourishing food, contact, spiritual companionship to her baby and she needs that in return. If she doesn’t receive this treatment it becomes dysfunction like depression, anxiety, and other illnesses.
And it’s difficult for women to get this type of support in our culture. We celebrate and glorify women being super woman. We don’t acknowledge that postpartum is a completely different time in a woman’s life and should be lived as such. However if a woman doesn’t or can’t experience a healthy post-partum time in her life then her
long-term health isn’t going to be good.
And just because someone looks like they are healthy – doing headstands two weeks after their baby is born for example – doesn’t mean it isn’t damaging them internally. A lot of people exercise at such a high level because their anxiety levels are so high they must have physical activity to bring their system down.
Our lives have become so sedentary that our exercise is becoming more high impact. Instead we should aim for finding a balance of being on our feet and sitting down, walking a few miles leisurely or walking to and from places rather than just our cars.
Our entire culture needs to know this, not just women. We can help facilitate a healthy postpartum for the women in our lives by dropping by to check on the new moms, doing the dishes for her, and bringing her nourishing and healthy foods. We can ooh and ahh over the new baby of course but it’s important we remember to make sure the new mom is getting what she needs nutritionally, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
We wrap up today’s show by talking about why people get depressed during postpartum, why there’s so much trauma in birth today and how to recover from it so we all have health for the long-term. Find out about all of that and much more on this episode of Sex, Money and Food with Kimberly Johnson!
Kimberly Answers the Questions
Q: Rank the following in order: sex, money, food.
A: Oh wow! It kind of depends but I guess I’d go sex, food then money.
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