Spotlight: Seven Mothers Perinatal OT

While on maternity leave with my second child during the summer of 2022, I unexpectedly found myself feeling lost, stuck, and excruciatingly tired. This feeling was unexpected as I was doing things I knew would support me physical and mental health- this wasn’t my first time home with a newborn! I was regularly going to a pelvic floor PT, seeing a chiropractor, and going to Stroller Strides multiple times a week. As an occupational therapist, I had knowledge and skills in rehabilitation, so I knew what I needed to do to lift myself out of my current funk, but I just did not have the capacity to do those things. This struck me with the question- how can we better prepare women for the transformation into motherhood? Through the process of becoming a mother, or Matrescence, women experience intense emotional, mental, and physical changes and there are few supports to help women prepare, process, and cope with this major metamorphosis.

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I immediately knew this was my calling and that I would utilize my experiences as an occupational therapist, yoga instructor, and most importantly a mother, to support women during this transformative period. It was then that Seven Mothers Perinatal OT, LLC was born.

Occupational therapists (OTs) are uniquely qualified to support individuals through any major life transition, whether it is an anticipated event, or an accident or injury. OTs understand that “you are what you do” and what you do (your “occupations”) brings meaning to your life. Whether it is the simple ritual of brewing your coffee in the morning (and enjoying it while still hot!) or rejoining the sports team you played on, mothers often experience a sense of identity loss during the perinatal period. As a new mother, your life is inextricably tied to your baby, and you may not even want to re-engage in formerly important activities, or perhaps you cannot re-engage in those occupations due to various limitations (e.g. physical, time, location). A perinatal occupational therapist understands the dyadic relationship between mother and baby and can support recovery by addressing daily routines, pain management, ergonomics, feeding and positioning, energy conservation approaches, and self-regulation for mother and baby holistically. OTs serve as a guide to help you find your “what” and “why,” and identify a path forward, incorporating accommodations or modifications to overcome barriers.

Seven Mothers Perinatal OT is here to serve moms in the DMV through its one-of-its-kind workshop, Mama-Care Basics, and through virtual or in-person home visits. My approach as an occupational therapist is to guide clients through an introspective process to identify their own strengths, traits, and needs, and assess their home and relationships to adapt to the changes this tiny human will bring (or has already brought!) to their life.

Mama-Care Basics is being offered on November 11th , 2023 at Lighthouse Yoga Studio- for more information and to register, click HERE!

* Postpartum care overlooks moms, prioritizing only babies’ needs: Survey. BabyCenter's survey of nearly 2,000 U.S. moms highlights a critical gap in postpartum support for maternal health and wellbeing.