*Foreword: If you get all squeamish at the sight of a placenta, don't bother reading any further. However, if you're like me and find them intriguing and beautiful (or if you just have a healthy curiosity to see one), then by all means, happily read (view) on!*
Placenta's to me are one of the most amazing parts of pregnancy, birth and motherhood. I kept both of my children's placenta's. Our daughter's was kept for quite a long time, in our freezer, just waiting for the right time to be planted, which turned out to be after the birth of our son two years later. We planted both placenta's on the same day at my mother's house, which was extremely special. I love that we did it this way.
There was something truly special, and almost magical about my mother and I planting my children's placenta's together. I had no idea it would be as emotional of an event as it was for me. I actually was choking back tears almost the entire time. From the time we lay the placenta's on the rocks, ready to be covered with earth, to the time the planting was complete, and I felt the strong sense of closure. My son's placenta planting I have to say was the more emotional, because the birth was so much closer in time. I still felt that gnawing sense of "apartness" you feel from your baby just after giving birth. So planting his placenta was in a way, heart-wrenching to me. But afterward, I felt free. It was something I don't think I had really felt before.
Here, the fetal side of Levi's placenta...
I am so glad that I took photos of my children's placenta's before they were planted. They amaze me everytime I look at them.
One the left, Dakota's Plum tree. On the right, Levi's Camphor tree.
I love the idea of planting your child's placenta, and it has been a tradition among many cultures for many years (Navajo, Cambodia, Hawaii, New Zealand Maori). But I also love the idea of consuming the placenta. To me it's the logical and natural thing to do. And again, to many cultures for many years, it has been the logical and natural thing to do.
But our culture is just beginning to understand the awesome powers of the placenta. Placenta encapsulating is becoming increasingly popular. Placenta consumption has been known to help ward off the onset of postpartum depression, as well as facilitate milk production.
The next baby we have, we plan on cutting the placenta in half; planting one half under a tree, and dehydrating, grinding, and encapsulating the other half.