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Placenta indifference...

post #1 of 55
Thread Starter 
Am I alone in the feeling that I am really not into the whole placenta thing. I really don't want to be carrying around a placenta for any extended period of time, I don't want to save it or freeze it, or crush it and eat it. The thought of planting it near a tree may be fine but I'm not even sure I will put the effort into that either. I know there are tremendous benefits to the placenta, but I really just want my baby in my arms, unattached to the cord. I feel like as a mother who will be having a homebirth I should be walking around for hours with the placenta wrapped up next to us, but it is just not in my birthing vision. Anyone else not really into hanging onto the placenta? How long do I need to keep it attached for anyway? What is the norm for homebirthers? What is the least I have to do but still allow the baby to get what s/he needs? When does it stop pulsing?
post #2 of 55
Mine stopped pulsing pretty quickly with DD. I felt it to be sure... I wasn't interested in lotus birth, and we cut it then. I think I had just been hanging onto DD and cuddling a bit, and it was ready... no clear sense of time, but it was quick, minutes, not hours

I was indifferent last time, too, but this time I'm looking into getting it made into capsules b/c I want every possible advantage for energy and mood boosting. I know with DD and a baby, it's going to be a tough couple months at first
post #3 of 55
I'm at the end of pregnancy #3 (just got some bloody show, woo hoo!). For my first two babies, which were birth center births, I was completely indifferent about the placenta, and I'm still feeling pretty indifferent. I believe in both cases I didn't deliver the placenta until several minutes after the cord stopped pulsating. It didn't take more than a few minutes for it to stop- I was still happily cuddling the baby both times, and I barely knew what was going on when DH cut the cord. I took quite some time afterward to deliver the placenta, in fact during my first birth I went almost an hour and was bleeding a lot so they ended up giving me a pitocin shot. But the point is that once it was out, they showed it to me, and I looked at it and said something like, "Cool." And then they took it away. I think my birth center had an option of letting me have it, but they did say something to me about sending it on to their partner hospital to be examined. Not sure what for.

This time I am planning to have it encapsulated and to take it as a supplement afterward for as long as it lasts. I have had severe depression on and off my entire adult life, and the worst times with it have been several months postpartum. My MW informed me that ingesting it could help me avoid needing to go back on antidepressants, or at least delay the time when I would need to. If I'd known about that before I probably would have done it before. If that wasn't the case, I would have no interest in the placenta though. I don't really have a good place to plant a tree, and frankly that doesn't seem as poetic to me as it does to some people. (I grew up on fruit tree farm, so it sounds similar to throwing the placenta in the compost heap.) I can understand why some people are interested in all that, and I appreciate the placenta's value, but when I'm done with it, I'm done with it.
post #4 of 55
My interest in my placenta was purely medical (I encapsulated mine and took the pills regularly over the course of several months). But I didn't feel spiritually or mystically tied to it or anything. To me it was just a piece of flesh that happened to be saturated with some really useful hormones.
post #5 of 55
I had placenta indifference too. After my MW had checked it out, I asked if I could just toss it in the trash. She looked at me shocked and told me, "no, I will take it home and put it in my garden, your placenta is a wonderful fertilizer". Basically, implying that it would be really wasteful to throw it out. DH was opposed to her taking it so we put it in the freezer, where it has sat for the last two years. In the two years that it has sat in the freezer, I have become attached. Now I want to bury it in the yard of a home we plan to staying in for sometime.
post #6 of 55
I was not particularly attached to the placentas with my first two. However, before ds3 was born, we went to a friend's child's birthday party where they planted his placenta... and ds1 (age 4 at the time) was entranced. He wanted to know what had happened to his and his brother's placentas, and was insistent that we do something with ds3's placenta. So, we kept it. It's still in the freezer because I haven't gotten around to planting it.

I do have a friend who encapsulates placentas, though, so I think this time around we will do that, and maybe also keep some to plant.

Most all of the chord blood is pumped to the baby within the first 2-3 minutes after birth. It might be just a little bit longer before it stops pulsating completely. Unless the chord is really short, you hardly even notice the chord during those first moments, and I think cutting the chord is actually more of an intrusion into the birth moment before then, anyways. I think there is just a natural place after the birth process where it seems time to stop and cut the chord, and that can totally vary based on circumstances, but I don't think the exact timing needs to be a big deal after those first couple of minutes.

Once it stops pulsating, valves in the baby actually shut off blood flow, so I don't really see any medical value in keeping the chord attached for a long time. The lotus birth idea has never really captured me. For people who feel spiritually or emotionally drawn to it, I think it's a great practice... just not really for me.
post #7 of 55
I had a mild interest last time - I looked at it in the bowl once it was out. That's about the extent of my interest.
post #8 of 55
I don't plan to do anything special with it or to keep it attached after it has stopped pulsating.

We will leave it on long enough for the baby to get all the benefits from it, then it will be cut and I'm sure the midwife will inspect it and then into a freezer bag it goes. We will jsut be throwing it out afterwards....
post #9 of 55
We've never done anything with ours. Maybe that's bad but I just didn't feel drawn to plant it, freeze it or encapsulate it. We've had homebirths for all our births and we'd wait for the cord to stop pulsating, then DH or one of the older kids would cut it. DH (science teacher) and the kids love looking at the placenta and learning about it, but after that we throw it out. I've never really felt a draw to lotus birth.
post #10 of 55
I'd say about half the placentas I've had contact with get sent to medical incineration.
Most people want the 'tour' tho. A few don't, just wanna know it's healthy.
Even incineration is kinda a cool thing to do. You're releasing it's nutrients to the world as heat and gas instead of giving them to plants, but it's still recycling.
I know encapsuling is in vogue, but where us the evidence? Curious...
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post #11 of 55
I'll probably take a quick peek at it if I'm not busy with something (someone ) else and then in the garbage it goes.
post #12 of 55
Don't worry. It will stop pulsating before you are ready to get up and do anything with the baby. If you are like me, the placenta will be a non-issue. If you are not into it, that is okay. Let the midwife deal with it when you and your baby are both free of it. It's up to you. Of you can do like us, and put it in your freezer for an indeterminate amount of time. Then toss it haphazardly into the garden next time you are planting a bush or tree.
post #13 of 55
From a science perspective I'm interested in having it explained to me. Then the MW can take it away.
post #14 of 55
nak

i wasn't too interested. with dd1 i never even saw it, the midwives bagged it and took it away. with dd2 i was going to plant rhubarb on top of it, since it tastes good and likes dead things. It's in my freezer right now, i don't know if we'll still go for rhubarb, we quite fancy a japanese maple now. mine was very interesting - heart shaped with a velamentous battledore insertion and a true knot in the cord!
post #15 of 55
I haven't had much interest in mine, though this time I feel differently. I'm looking into the health benefits of encapsulating it.
post #16 of 55
I may plant mine, since we're planning on planting trees anyways. But it may just get tossed, since she isn't really going to be born during a tree-planting time of year. So no, I'm not that attached to it after it's not attached to me
post #17 of 55
They kinda repulse me. I had a birthcenter birth last time and after I delivered the placenta in the tub we all moved to the bed and they wrapped the placenta and put it in a bowl on a small stool in the bed next to me. I really just wished it would go away and was relieved when the midwife finally cut the cord. I was afraid it was going to tip over on us. I did have blended berry shakes with it but I never made them, dh did.
post #18 of 55
I think it is interesting to look at once it is out, but that's it. I considered planting this one but I'm afraid my dogs will dig it up and eat it (gross, I know, but totally possible).
post #19 of 55
I wasn't too much interested in any of mine (actually didn't even ask to see the last two).

As a MW I think they're fascinating. For all of my own I didn't seem to care. I have noticed that a lot of women like to take a look but don't really think of the placenta as being all that significant, nevermind sentimental.
post #20 of 55
I was interested in mine for some smoothies and encapsulation.
However, I was not interested in lotus birth. We did keep the cord intact until it stopped pulsing and would have kept it until I birthed the placenta, but DD's cord was short and I wanted to be able to kiss her and BF.

I must say, preparing my placenta was a wonderful experience. It was nice studying it and knowing that it had been inside of me nourishing my baby all those months.
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