No, a lotus birth doesn’t mean that you give birth in a lotus flower although that does sound nice.
It’s when you delay cutting the cord after birth and keep the baby attached to the placenta untill the cord drys and falls away naturally.
Although lotus births seemed to only have popped up recently the fact is that its actually an old cultural tradition. It is still widely practiced in parts of Indonesia and South Africa.
The practice allows the umbilical cord to fall off naturally and without force allowing a soft transition for the baby from womb to earth side.
Babies seem to have a unspoken relationship with their placenta. Baby have been seen holding and hugging their placenta in the womb.
The benefits of lotus births are mainly spiritually connected and not medical. There is no scientific evidence to back up the practice and medical professionals generally do not support it.
A lotus birth is a very personal and somewhat scared practice and I’ve never met anyone why performed it and had no spiritual connection to it.
Before going ahead with a lotus birth it’s important to have a good look at the benefits and risks.
As we mentioned above there are no scientifically proven benefits to lotus births.
However some believe that allowing the umbilical cord to fall away naturally once it has dried up allows a smooth, gentle and soft transition from the womb to earth side.
Cutting the cord and removing the placenta is seen a violent and trauma inducing moment for the baby as he/she has shared a tight space with the placenta since conception.
Now some also believe that it allows for an easier post partum healing period. Having a new born baby is difficult enough but having to care for and carry a placenta attached to a newborn is even harder.
Movement is extremely limited and time must be put into making sure the placenta is clean.
This leads to a very slow and careful postpartum process which some believe aids to a much more gentle and efficient rest time.
Of course there are going to be risks seeing as a placenta is a piece of flesh and once it is disconnected from the uterus it is ultimately dying.
Making sure the placenta doesn’t become infected is the most important issue. Keeping it clean with sea salt, dried herbs and homeopathic oils is what many use.
Its smells are masked with lavender and herbal essences and it is kept in a bucket or placenta bag.
This really is the main issue and most dangerous issue.
This as well as the inconvenience caused by having the placenta attached for 3-10 days steers many new mothers away.
On a personally note we believe that it is if course the mothers chose and we will support her decision. However we do urge her to do enough research into it before making the decision.
Lotus birth by Shivam Rachana is a good book to learn more about the practice and its spiritual attachments.