Upon my journey of reflection whilst writing my book, I was able to dissect so many learnings and insights from my experience.
Some for my own personal growth, whilst others have been for the greater good of all women who are suffering from this condition moving forward.
I also feel like my background of being a pharmacist and then going on to study Ayurveda, Ayurvedic Yoga teaching and paediatric massage, coupled with my lived experience, moving all across Australia and seeing different perspectives and way of life, has allowed for me to see so clearly this paramount need for synergy of our Eastern AND Western modalities.
I have seen friends and people through our multiple moves around Australia, who have adopted the Eastern way to living.
I know that with conscious living and a lot of people wanting to live in a manner that is ‘low-tox’, medication and Western treatment may seem to go against this lifestyle choice.
I have also had colleagues and friends who have adopted the Western way to living and are ‘doubtful’ or perhaps ‘sceptical’ of the Eastern modalities and their effectiveness in therapy.
However, I do believe that we cannot live in a world that is so ‘black or white’, where we choose only Eastern or only Western modalities. The synergy and optimum outcome and harmony is through the best application of both.
We need to understand that not all science is ‘bad’ and not all holistic practices are ‘good’ or proven, and vice versa.
We need to move forward not living in such extreme ends and to find the cohesive balance between the two.
Where I have seen the pain in waiting for my Western allopathic treatment to work whilst I was unwell, it led me to sit in a silent room like a hermit, completely immersed and entrenched in my darkness.
Had I looked at all aspects within my life; and incorporated subtle effects of nutrition, sight, smell, touch and sound; I believe they would have brought upon balance, harmony and soothing to my aggravated mind, body and spirit.
Learning how to balance this aggravation through our diet, lifestyle, practices and mindfulness all form the foundation within Ayurveda to support the mother post-delivery.
Strategies like eating warm, oily, heavier foods, spices to stimulate digestion and nourish the body, as well as practices to help keep the body moist/oily, warm, solid and grounded are some examples of what can be used.
The use of Eastern modalities in practices and lifestyle, will help nourish the body whilst waiting for Western treatments to work.
I will work tirelessly to be a huge advocate for this best application of both systems of wellness for our women of course; but in general too! This ‘all or nothing’, ‘black or white’ mindset does not serve anyone, and it is in the balance and harmony between the shades of grey where the real beauty and benefit lies!
In addition to Western medication, other lifestyle strategies that may assist in synergy can include;
+ Exercise; even as little as 20-minutes per day can enhance endorphins and ‘good chemicals’
+ Eat nutritionally dense food and Prana (life-force) rich food vs packaged and ‘convenient’ type foods that are processed and refined that are devoid of nutrients. Eating warm, moist and oily (not fried) foods utilising the 6 tastes of Ayurveda, utilising the kitchen pharmacy with different spices to help bring balance forms the basis of eating Ayurvedically
+ Try to eat on time and not skip meals
+ Try to sleep in the closest type of routine as possible (Ayurveda says to sleep half the amount that you have missed the day before, in order to assist with this deficiency)
+ Reduce stress through mindfulness practices; through meditation, yoga, breathing, exercise
+ Reduce alcohol and illicit drugs
+ The use of sound; utilising frequency music, mantras and relaxing sounds vs loud, aggressive and stimulating music
+ The use of calming and grounding imagery, that is not over stimulating, is calming and soothing to the nervous system; the use of colour and tones can have subtle effects within the body
+ The use of grounding scents to bring earth and fire elements to the imbalanced system
+ Ayurvedic body therapy practices designed to rejuvenate and nourish the body by bringing qualities designed to exert an opposite effect of air and space imbalance
+ Self-care strategies such as Abhyangha; self-massage, with warmed oil to bring balance and rejuvenation to the body after birth
+ Omega supplements, probiotics for gut health, B-group vitamins and correction of any nutritional imbalances; would form part of the Western model of healthcare
As an Australian born Indian woman, I gawked at what my parents would tell me as being old wives’ tales. I could not understand ‘why’ I should follow them arbitrarily without knowing how or why to do them or what benefit that they would bring me.
Only through studying have I gained a full appreciation of their value and merit within the healing process. I believe that my role is to re-ignite their use in the modern world with full explanation as to how they work, so that we do not lose or dilute this ancient wisdom as the years go by.
Now we live in a society where the ‘bouncing back to routine’, and being out and about is worn as a badge of honour. Yet, Ayurveda encourages allowing space for nourishment and rest.
Now is the time to call on our tribal and primal practices that are still deep within, and to lean on our community and tribe for the full support during this time in our life. I love that simple, mindful choices utilising all of our senses in Ayurveda exert subtle therapeutic effects and harnessing on our tribal networks allows our mothers to feel supported, seen and held.
The synergy of utilising Western treatment, whilst bringing about nourishment and rejuvenation to our mother is what I hope to endorse moving forward.
Harnessing this rationale of soothing her body, mind and SPIRIT in an organic and beautiful way…feels so incredibly powerful and necessary right now. One that certainly my body was crying out for in so much desperation…