I remember it well. My estimated due date was December 18. The pressure that builds when you have a late December birth looming. The seduction of induction (my care provider and I started discussing it when I was 6 months along). The stress of not wanting to still be pregnant in the NEXT year. The fear of birthing when hospital staff might have their thoughts on holiday parties and family gatherings. Actually, who am I kidding. The stress of US missing holiday parties and family gatherings! I had always said I didn't want to have a baby in December and yet there I was 9 months pregnant in the busiest month of the year.
I am here today to share some of what go me through the pressure to birth way back in 2006, to help you prepare your body for birth (control what you can, release everything else) and to trust that it will all work out.
Many moms to be come to me in this month hoping that Reflexology can induce their labour. It can't. And please don't let anyone tell you that it - or any other technique - can. Natural means to "induce" labour are only designed to help your body prepare for labour. They are wonderful and *should* be used, but don't kid yourself that they *will* induce. Even medical means to induce labour are not as effective if your body and baby are not ready, thus leading to difficult and possibly surgical births. But this doesn't mean that all hope is lost!
Birth is an extensive process. And to be the most positive experience possible we should be using the 9 months of pregnancy to train for it. Just like you wouldn't wake up the morning of a marathon and decide to run in it without preparing first, you shouldn't wake up in the last weeks of pregnancy and decide that now is the time for you to prepare for your birth. Natural methods of preparing your body for birth - including Reflexology (by a trained professional) - should be done throughout pregnancy and regularly/consistently in the 3rd trimester. This is the training process. Working with your body to gently prepare it for the big day. You can read more about the many ways to naturally prepare for birth in my other blog post by clicking here.
So back in 2006 I spent my final month of pregnancy doing just that. Mentally preparing for the holiday time by getting holiday tasks like shopping and wrapping out of the way so I wouldn't be stressed during the birth and postpartum that I forgot something. This meant I was always on the move. Walking around shopping, sitting upright. Baking, cooking. Anything to keep my body working and preparing.
Warming up on those cold December days by drinking my red raspberry tea to strengthen my uterus. Booking my appointments for Reflexology well in advance because it shouldn't be an after thought of something to do (more about the benefits of reflexology in a minute). But also other appointments like my hair or nails. Not making promises we couldn't keep. This was HUGE. We didn't know when our baby was born so why commit to attending dinners or parties? If we could be there, bonus. If we couldn't, I think we have the best excuse possible for why we aren't! Don't spend each day watching the calendar or clock. Your baby will be born on the day it is to be born. Whatever day that is, don't worry about it. Trust that your baby and your body knows what is best. You can control how you prepare for that birthing day. You cannot control what day it will be unless you decide to induce medically. So let it go. Believe me it will be good training for later in parenting life when you will want to "not sweat the small stuff".
As much as you might worry that you are the cause of care providers "missing out", trust me they signed up for this. They know that they might be working on specific holidays and are totally fine with it. And if you have done your preparations ahead of time, hopefully you will have a positive, short birthing experience and make their day even brighter :)
So if I'm spending this blog helping you understand why you shouldn't stress about the day your baby is born, why the emphasis on Reflexology?
The benefits of Reflexology are huge, but especially for the pregnant woman in her final weeks of pregnancy. I don't just shout from the roof-tops about Maternity Reflexology for those birthing in late December, I shout about them ALL THE TIME.
Have a look at my top 3 reason why you should be using Reflexology to help you prepare for birth - anytime of the year!
1. Sleep. You wouldn't wake up the morning of a marathon not having slept properly the night before, so why would you want to go into birth with little sleep? One of the greatest benefits of Reflexology is that it helps you get a better quality of sleep. I can't make your baby stop pressing on your bladder making you wake to go pee every few hours (sorry, lol!!), but I can make the hours that you do sleep be quality hours. And the reflexology can perhaps help you to have a nap during the day to catch up on whatever you didn't get through the night.
2. Improved digestion. Have you ever looked at a picture of the anatomy of a pregnant woman? (see below). Those internal organs all get smushed together making it more difficult for them to function at their best. Reflexology, because it works with the body in a different way through the reflex points, can naturally help stimulate these organs to work better. And an empty bladder and empty intestine makes more room for baby to descent into the pelvis, placing more pressure on the cervix for dilation and effacement.
3. Decrease of stress and anxiety. Being at the end of your pregnancy and thinking about the upcoming birth amounts to enough stress, let alone having the end of your pregnancy be in December. Reflexology is known to have a great impact on decreasing the stress/tension that gets built up in the body. As much as I talk about the importance of movement in preparing your body for labour, it is also important to balance that with rest for your body. Stopping the hectic times by receiving a Reflexology treatment and allowing your mind and body a chance to rest is important. You will walk away having a more relaxed outlook on life. Your feet will be less swollen and tender as a result of carrying the extra pregnancy weight. And the good news is that those benefits will stay in your body for a few days! That's right, the effects will continue working after the treatment so one treatment helps you prepare your body naturally for a few days. Which could result in the birth of your baby because you are mentally and physically prepared.
Remember to always stay informed. Induction is not always the wrong solution. (I did end up being induced due to medical concerns with my son. After my Estimated Due Date. Under much guidance from medical care providers, myself, my partner and my close friends. An informed choice.) There are many reasons why we are at a great advantage in society today because it is an option. But birthing in December is not a great reason for induction. And inducing before you are full term if there are not other medical reasons for it is also not a great reason.
Trust your body, trust your baby. Control what you can, be surprised by the rest. Save medical interventions for when they are medically necessary. I am here to help you do all this!
About your author:
Tanya (formally Goreing but recently married so now Tanya Hill) is an alternative health practitioner, doula and educator. She is passionate about improving the health and wellness of families, especially surrounding pregnancy, birth and parenting. Practicing in Cambridge ON, she offers in home and in clinic treatments.
By Tanya Goreing RRPr, Doula, Educator
The benefits of a simple touch are felt the moment contact is made. It relaxes, lowers the blood pressure, slows the heart rate, boosts the immune system and eases anxiety. Close your eyes for a moment and remember what it is like to have someone stroke your hair or give you a genuine hug. Those simple gestures can calm, comfort and express caring instantly and make a person immediately feel better – either physically or emotionally. It is a form of communication that goes beyond what any words could.
For an infant who has been embraced within his mother’s womb for nine months, the power of touch is not only desired, but necessary for normal development.
As a parent, you have the power at your fingertips to help your child grow!
Learning forms of healthy touch with your infant is an extension of the healing power you already possess and will help you to feel confident that your motions and movements are beneficial to your infant. As you bond with your baby through daily massage and reflexology techniques, you will start to tap into your parenting instincts and respond more confidently to your baby’s cues (communication).
The ideal time to do infant massage or reflexology is when baby is in the quiet alert state. In the early days, weeks following birth this time period will be very short. But as your baby grows, this time period will also increase. Starting with small routines and doing them daily or even throughout the day will help you to bond with your baby over and over. It will create a positive state of balance for the body which will help establish a pattern of good health and well-being. This helps your baby to remain calm, feel loved and protected and relieve stress.
Your infant is not the only one to benefit from this experience! The sense of touch will be powerful to you as well. It will relieve your stress and anxiety, lower your blood pressure, regulate your heart rate and create an overall sense of relaxation. Since most of what we experience as a new parent is very overwhelming, seeing your infant respond positively to your touch can be very empowering. When working with an infant, especially one who is experiencing discomfort, being relaxed and at peace yourself is the best medicine you can provide. Remember this is a positive time for both you and your baby. There is no reason to feel rushed or pressured. Go slow and work within your baby’s limitations. Do not force movements but rather respond to your baby’s cues. If now is not a good time, there will be another chance to try later. Use your instincts and good judgment and rest assured that as long as you have positive intentions and use healthy touch, the simple fact that you are bonding with your baby will have powerful healing benefits! Have fun with it and enjoy your baby!
About the author:
Tanya Goreing is a trained Baby/Child Reflexologist and Infant Massage Instructor. Her clinical practice, Soul Treatments, is located in Cambridge ON and specializes in the optimal health of Women and Children. She regularly offers workshops to help new parents so they can learn about healthy touch and so much more! To schedule an appointment call 519-221-0155. To learn more about her services, visit her website at www.soultreatments.ca
By: Tanya Goreing RRPr, Doula, Educator, Infant Massage Instructor
I think I’ve mentioned before, my goal is to “change the world”. With that in mind, I quickly realized once becoming a mother that the best way to go about that goal was to start with our children, and making healthy lifestyle choices that will enable them to grow up healthier and happier. I could talk forever about the various lifestyle choices one could make in the best interests of their children, but today I’m going to focus on the benefits of alternative health!
I was pregnant when I started my journey to become a reflexologist. My main goal at that time was just to have my own business with flexible hours that would allow me the freedom to walk my child to school, and be there at the end of his school day to pick him up. It didn’t take long to realize that reflexology would play an even greater role in our life! 5 weeks postpartum my exclusively breastfed child was in horrible pain from digestive issues (gas and constipation). I felt helpless, vulnerable and panic stricken at my lack of knowledge to help my child. I did much of what any “normal”, sleep deprived new mama would do. I called the doctor’s office (where the secretary assured me that this was very normal, even for exclusively breastfed babies, and if I was bothered by it I could give him prune or pear juice), I called my friends (bring on the fennel tea!), I cried. 5 days in, after trying everything people suggested, the lightbulb went off and I decided to try reflexology. And I was rewarded with results – that were obtained safely, naturally and effectively. I could hardly contain myself and knew I had to teach other new moms how they could do this as well! The postpartum period is stressful enough. It was time to give new parents some extra tools to empower them.
At home, we implemented regular reflexology into our routines after that. Until of course the time came when he could get away from me!! That child never sat still for a minute once he figured out how to move. I was so disappointed that our bonding time over reflexology was going to come to an end. But, two years later, my heart melted when he handed me his feet one day and said “Mommy, rub my feet please?” Words of joy to a mama reflexologists ears!
Now, as a young boy, he understands the benefits of touch therapies very well. He has felt them, he has seen results, he hears me talk about them, he has learned that relief doesn’t come specifically from a medicine cabinet. He is so healthy that he actually tries to play sick sometimes because he sees that other kids are off school lots for illness! (We reward him with special days off school instead, health days of fun!!) For the times he does feel a bit “off”, like a tummy ache, his first request is for a tummy massage. If I happen to be under the weather or not having a great day, he will often massage my back or feet or head to try and help. To me, that means I am doing my job – not only as a parent, but as a health care practitioner! Spreading the benefits of touch therapies with the younger generations so they can grow up healthier. Healthy children are our future, and we can help build that future today!
Tanya Goreing is a trained Baby/Child Reflexologist and Infant Massage Instructor. Her clinical practice, Soul Treatments, is located in Cambridge ON and specializes in the optimal health of Women and Children. She regularly offers workshops to help new parents learn about healthy touch and so much more! To learn more, visit her website at www.soultreatments.ca
The Final Weeks!
Your Birth Journey is about to Begin
By Tanya Goreing RRPr, Doula, Educator
As a Maternity Reflexologist and Doula, I work with many women in their final weeks and days of pregnancy to help prepare naturally for the beginning of their birth journey. What I have found by working with these women is that there is a lot of misinformation out there that leads to women feeling fear, anxiety, and having mal-positioned babies. All of this causes longer labours, more interventions and mistrust of the mom’s instincts.
I work hard to re-educate women in these final weeks and help them to work with their body to prepare for a happy, positive birthing experience. I encourage each woman not to focus on *the* date, but on the subtle changes she sees her body. I empower her to understand that every “sign” of impending labour is another step in the right direction and each of those signs is an important step closer to the birthing time. Every step made before the birthing time is a step that doesn’t have to happen once labour begins. That equates to shorter labours and less interventions which = positive birthing experiences.
As much as I tell people to be patient and trust, we are a society of “doing”! And this is a good thing when it comes to birth because we need to be active participants in our own birthing experiences. We need to listen to our body, move as it requires us to move, stop when it needs rest and learn to trust our natural instincts. And the final weeks of our pregnancy is a time to DO. Why? Well think of birth like a marathon. If you were about to run a marathon, would you wake up the morning of the marathon and jump out of bed ready to do your best?Or would you train and practice in the months, weeks and days leading up to the big day? Likely you would want to prepare for the event physically and emotionally. Birth is the same. It is a physically taxing experience that is emotionally charged. You will be pushing your body and mind to their limits. Therefore, you should take time in the final weeks and days to prepare for the experience.
Below is a list of things that a woman can do in the final weeks or days leading to her birthing time. This list is not exclusive, nor is it to be in exchange of recommendations given by medical practitioners such as mid-wives and obstetricians. Every body, every baby and every situation is different. You may find that some of these suggestions are not practical for you, and you may add other thoughts that seem like the best for your situation. Use this list as a guide.
3rd Trimester Suggestions
Red Raspberry Leaf tea – this will help to strengthen the uterine muscles for more effective contractions when they to begin. Some women are not recommended to do this. Speak to your medical practitioner to ensure you are not an at risk candidate.
Prenatal Yoga Stretches – gently stretching your body, especially if you sit for long periods of time through the day, is a great way to help prepare your body for the physical demands required of it during your birthing time. Find a class in your area or search for a DVD or online resource that is specially designed for pregnancy. You can also check out the book: Active Birth by Janet Balaskas
Sitting on an exercise ball – push your couch or computer chair aside and bring on your birth ball!! Sitting on a ball will help you stay in an upright position which means baby is encouraged to be in an optimal birthing position. Each and every time you lay back, even on a semi-recline, your baby is able to turn into a posterior position (spine to your spine) and this will cause back pain, hip pain and back labour once your birthing time begins. To help ensure your couch doesn’t call to you, have the exercise ball in the same room as your tv or near your computer, wherever you spend your leisure time. Not only will gravity be on your side, but the ball will help you to keep your pelvis open and if you decide to do hip circles (which I highly recommend!), you will be releasing any tension held in your lower back and hip area. And the ball will be your friend in labour as well.
Stay active – unless there is a reason you are on bed rest, staying active through walking and stretching are still necessary (although strenuous cardiovascular activity may not be recommended for your situation. Check with your health practitioner to confirm) even though you may be feeling like the goodyear blimp. Women in history were active in the household activities throughout their pregnancy and this included chasing toddlers, gardening, cooking, hands and knees floor mopping, etc. and they had less medical interventions in birth. Remember that the next time you are tempted to go put your feet up.
Final weeks (36 – birth) suggestions
Continue doing all of the above and also add:
Dance – Let’s get this party started!! Remember the days at the high school dance or the clubs when you had no inhibitions and didn’t care who was watching you shake your booty? Get back there by putting on your favorite “get moving” tunes and have a dance party in your kitchen or living room (even the bedroom – see oxytocin below)! Dancing releases feel good endorphins that are necessary for birth. The movements are also great for keeping your hips loose and open, and encouraging baby to be in an ideal birthing position. If you are more into formal group sessions, check your local area for Dancing for Birth TM classes.
Hydrate – again thinking about the marathon, do the athletes do it without being fully hydrated? Nope! Your core body temperature is elevated during pregnancy which can lead to sweating, thereby a loss of essential bodily fluids. During the birthing time this is heightened even more! As well, increased fluids will help keep your bowels moving regularly and this is good for making sure baby has lots of room to move into a good birth position. So do yourself a favor and remember to drink lots of water. (If you don’t love the thought of drinking water, you can naturally flavor your water with fresh fruits). Other sources of fluids can be used as well.
Reflexology – although reflexology by a trained professional can be safe and effective to help with many issues throughout pregnancy, as a certified maternity reflexologist I have seen first-hand the benefits of a series of treatments in those final weeks as you prepare for birth. Could you use a better quality of sleep in those final weeks to prepare for your birth marathon? How about hormone balance? All of this and so much more is available by receiving this amazing “foot massage”! I suggest finding a local reflexologist who has been trained to work with maternity clients, or who have experience working with this population.
Chiropractic – through pregnancy your body is rapidly changing. Similar to reflexology, chiropractic care all throughout pregnancy can be helpful for easing back and hip pain and restoring balance, but in the final weeks it will help to keep your hips and pelvis in proper alignment which helps your baby get into, and stay, in an optimal birthing position.
Staying upright and using gravity – anything you can do in the final weeks to stay off your back and maintaining an upright position is best! Do the dishes instead of letting the dishwasher do it, go for a walk, gentle lunges and squats. Even sleeping on a slight incline can be beneficial.
Perineal Massage and Kegels – these activities, when done properly, will help prepare and strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. This in turns is a great help during the pushing phase of birth to help ensure there isn’t any tearing or you don’t require an episiotomy. Well prepared pelvic muscles will also help your body birth your baby with less effort on your part.
Final days suggestions
Oxytocin – also known as “the love hormone”, this is the hormone released from your pituitary gland that begins contractions. It is necessary for bonding with baby as well. To help it be in full flow and ready for contractions to begin, you can do activities such as cuddling with partner, watching a romantic movie or reading a romance novel, nipple stimulation, looking at pictures of your wedding day or other loving events.
Bathroom breaks – because you are still remembering to stay well-hydrated, you will want to make sure you take the time each hour to use the bathroom. Even if you feel like you don’t have to go, the motion will help your brain and body get into an “elimination” mode, keep bladder empty so baby has room to move and open your pelvis.
Laugh, Have Fun, Relax – again you want happy endorphins flowing and to keep your body loose and open. The best way to do that is to release fears and anxiety and embrace positive thoughts, positive moves and be joyful. Remove anything from your life in those final days that are causing you stress (even if that means well intentioned friends or family who are calling to say “have you had the baby yet”). Watch funny shows or movies, find the joy in each new day as it brings you closer to holding your new baby!
What other ways can you think of that will help you prepare both emotionally and physically for your birthing time? We would love to add your thoughts to our list!
Your author, Tanya, is a mom, health care practitioner, doula and educator. Her clinical practice Soul Treatments, which specializes in the health of women and children, is in Cambridge ON Canada.
See that sweet little guy? This week he was one of my clients as I specialize in maternity and infant/child reflexology.
I couldn't wait to come home and tell you all about him because "Mr Smiley" was a total picture perfect client. If I was to do a treatment on an infant who just let me do the treatment, it takes about 10 - 15 minutes. Usually, however, infant clients take double that. This is normal and totally understandable. I am a stranger, they might be hungry, the treatment can work really fast so we might need a diaper change, they have short attention spans, the ideal time to do the treatment is during active alert and we can't always be sure when that will be - the list goes on! Let's just say that I book an hour for an infant treatment, and even then know that I might have to go over.
So why does all this matter? Because the adorable little man I had the pleasure of treating this week is 10 months old so he is happy to sit during the treatment. He decided my in home treatment supply bag and some of it's contents were the most fascinating things of all time and he happily played with it while I did his treatment. 10 minutes, no fuss, no concerns, all smiles :)
That's a good way to start your work day!! Could it be that he's already comfortable with me having heard my voice in-utero as I worked on his mom to help her prepare for a happy birth? Could it be that him and mom attended my infant massage class and because she's practiced he's used to healthy touch? Maybe. My guess is that his mom is pretty awesome and he is a happy, content baby. Thank you Baby M and Mama K for being the great people you are!
Tanya Goreing RRPr of Soul Treatments Wellness Center is conducting clinical trials!
We would like to learn more about the effects regular reflexology treatments have on the conditions listed below. If you, or someone you know, suffers from any of the conditions and would like to see how all natural, alternative health care can offer improvement, please contact Tanya Goreing of Soul Treatments at 519-220-2887 or email@example.com
Reflexology is an ancient healing art that could be seen as a modern day “foot massage”. These safe, natural techniques work on the principle that all the body parts –organs, tissues, glands, etc – are connected through the reflex points in our hands and feet. While reflexology does not claim to prescribe or diagnose specific conditions, the reduction in stress, relief of tension, improved blood circulation and continuous work with the nervous system have shown positive benefits in a variety of conditions based on the body’s improved ability to help itself.
We are looking candidates to conduct 3 clinical trials. If you meet any of the following criteria, please contact us!
----> Woman aged 18 – 45 suffering from PMS symptoms including (but not limited to) unusually heavy or painful cycles, irregular cycles and mood swings.
----> Woman aged 45 + experiences symptoms of menopause or perimenopause including (but not limited to) hot flashes, irregular or non-existant cycles, night sweats and mood swings.
----> Children who have been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
Qualified participants must be able to demonstrate their commitment to the study by agreeing to:
* Time Commitment – Participant must have the available time to receive up to 20 full reflexology treatments (30 min – 1 hour each depending on the participant) spaced anywhere from weekly to monthly, based on the needs and specific health condition of the participant during the posted hours of operation at Soul Treatments.
* Financial Commitment – Treatments will be offered at the reduced rate of $25 per treatment (regular $65 Adult, $40 Child).
* Location Commitment – Without exception, all treatments will be given at the Cambridge clinic location of Soul Treatments.
* Health Disclosure Commitment – Confidentiality is very important at Soul Treatments and your private/personal information will never be shared. However, it is important for the practitioner to be knowledgeable of your complete health history and full disclosure is a necessary requirement of the study.
* Results Commitment – Participants must understand that while their personal results will never be shared, the results of the overall study may be used in future marketing and promotion of alternative health care benefits.
When I first completed my certification to become a reflexologist, I worked at an amazing clinic with some great colleagues for a few months. It was a crazy time for me and after a few months I realized that as much as I loved the team I was with, it would be easier for me to work from my home. My son was still young and it was hard to miss bedtime snuggles.
But that was 5 years ago!!!
Today, my son isn't so little anymore, and our home isn't so big ;) So it was time to take the next step and find a home away from home for Soul Treatments.
I am so excited to be partnering with Oh Baby Fitness to open a center focused on the family health needs of our community!! Our new space will offer pre/postnatal fitness, nutritional support, maternity and child reflexology, massage and chiropractic services, breastfeeding support and informational workshops. As a one stop shop for growing families we will offer child minding services and work hard to have a variety of programs running each day to cater to the unique needs of our pregnant clients and new parents as well as their children.
You can visit us starting October 1st, 2012 at 426 Queen St. W in Cambridge. We are 2 minutes from the 401 and easily accessible from Cambridge, Guelph, Kitchener or Waterloo as well as surrounding areas.
I look forward to seeing you there!
Can you believe it's almost the end of summer!! This year the summer flew by. I remember as a kid it used to last forever and I'm sure that's the way my son felt this year, but for me it seems like I blinked and I was trying to find back to school items because it's just around the corner. It seems my little baby isn't such a baby anymore as he begins grade one and full time school!
Over the summer I was able to work with 4 clients using Maternity Reflexology to prepare for labour. That's 4 beautiful babies that are now welcomed to the Soul Treatments family :) It was so exciting and such a pleasure to be a part of such an experience with these woman.
I also got to have some visits with my beautiful Doula baby girl who was born on May 19th. I loved being there for her birth and working with her mom and dad to prepare for their new world as a family of 3.
I also had a chance to take a bit of a vacation with my family (we usually only have winter vacations so this was a great treat!). I hope you had an opportunity to get away and enjoy the sunshine and great outdoors as well!
In my busy baby work, I just realized I didn't send any specials for the summer! So I'm taking advantage of that by releasing some fall specials early. See below! There will be more specials coming as I settle into my fall routine.
Allergy Relief - Package for $150
We lucked out at the beginning of the month, but no more. The pollen count is up followed by itchy, watery eyes and runny noses. Regular Indian Head Massage combined periodically with Reflexology can provide the much needed relief from the stuffy sinuses due to allergies. Book three Indian Head Massage treatments (1/2 hour sessions) and receive a combo treatment (1 hour session) for only $30 (savings of $25).
Healthy Pregnancy - Package for $150
The summer heat can cause serious issue for pregnant feet! Swollen extremities can strike a pregnant woman (or any of us) at any time of year, but during the hot days of summer, it can be especially bad. It's not comfortable or healthy for your body to be holding onto all of that fluid. Did you know that reflexology can help? Not only will we be supporting your urinary and lymphatic systems to work more efficiently but we will be improving the circulation in your feet significantly. Bring your "small shoes" because today's shoes will be floppy when you leave! (It is important to know when to see your doctor. If swelling is accompanied by severe headache or blurred vision, nausea or vomiting, dizziness or double vision, decreased frequency of urination, and/or rapid pulse you may have pre-eclampsia and should seek the advice of your medical care provider immediately.) Maternity Reflexology (read more about this in my recent blog post!) is also great for other pregnancy ailments such as nausea, insomnia, indigestion and can be used to naturally prepare your body for labour. Book three sessions for the package price of $150 (savings of $15)!
***If you are looking for more support for your pregnancy and birth, remember to ask about my Labour Support and Doula services!***
Soul Treatments is opening it's own new space! We have joined with Oh Baby Fitness to start a Mom and Baby whole body wellness facility. If you are (or know someone who is) an alternative health care practitioner with experience in, or interest in, Materntiy and Postnatal care, and are looking for a new opportunity, please contact me to discuss this unique opportunity to join our clinic. Stay tuned with grand opening details coming soon!
Enjoy the first day back to school! I look forward to seeing you again this fall :)
Almost six years ago I took my reflexology training. I was 7 months pregnant at the time so my feet were "patched" with cute band-aids so the other students knew what sections of my feet should be avoided. Why would they do that? Simple. Pregnancy is considered a contraindication in the standard reflexology training. What is a contraindication? It is a condition considered "do not treat" for the therapist. So if someone presents with such a condition, the therapist must not treat them, or must alter the treatment, until that condition no longer exists.
Does that mean pregnant woman cannot benefit from a reflexology treatment?! Absolutely not!! Reflexology can help with nausea, vomiting, heart burn, insomnia, anxiety, swollen feet (edema), hip/joint pain, back pain and the list goes on. Reflexology can also help a woman when she is approaching her due date to get her body prepared for the upcoming birth. It can benefit during labour to regulate contractions, ease discomfort by gating the pain, stimulate hormone secretion and give mom some time to rest.
So what is a pregnant woman to do when she wants to take advantage of the benefits of reflexology? She can find a reflexologist who has gone further in his/her studies to include maternity reflexology training. Think about it. A doctor (or general practitioner) is trained as a doctor right? But when we are pregnant, our care is transferred to an Obstetrician (or Midwife) - someone who has furthered his/her training to specialize in pregnancy and birth.
Often I have other reflexologists say to me: "I have treated many pregnant clients so I feel qualified to work with pregnant woman". I worry when people say this because it means they have not taken the extra time to invest in their business and further their training to include working with maternity clients. If the practitioner does not have a vested interest in working with this special category of clients, why would a pregnant woman or new mom want to work with them? Let's look back at the doctor example. Some people would feel comfortable with their doctor delivering their baby. They have an established relationship with that individual and want to maintain that bond to help them through the birth process. But more often than not, we feel we would be in better hands with someone who has gone beyond that "general" training and specifically trained in the type of care we require at this phase in our life - maternity care - that is offered by an obstetrician or midwife.
It was my goal to specialize in prenatal, postnatal and baby/child care when I started my alternative health care practice. So I went beyond my "general" training to specifically train in the type of care I wanted to provide for my clients. What some people see as a "formality" or a "piece of paper" was much more important to me than that. It was so important that I had to look hard to seek out specialized training even though there is currently no one in Canada that offers such training. I helped organize for a trainer from abroad to come to Canada and offer Maternity Reflexology and I traveled to the United States when I heard a trainer from the UK was offering her training in Baby and Child Reflexology. I had a vested interest in the needs of my clients and a desire to learn more so that I could service them better. Was it easy to do that? NO! But I think that shows the level of dedication and the true passion I have for helping this specialized group of people.
There are very few people in Canada who have been worked to take advantage of this specialized training. In fact, I am one of only two practitioners in the surrounding area of Kitchener/Waterloo who is qualified to offer these services. There was a total of 20 people in Ontario who took the Maternity Reflexology training and they are scattered throughout various regions in Ontario and neighboring boarder cities in the US. Even less of those are actively practicing it (if you are in the Belleville/Trenton/Kingston area, you can look up my good friend Michelle Stroud of By the Moon. She shares my passion in birth services!) There is another Maternity Reflexology training offered in Europe, so you might find a few who have pursued that training by traveling abroad. So far, I am the only practitioner in Canada who has taken the Baby and Child Reflexology training. Within the next year, there will be training offered through The Healing Arts Learning Organization that will help make these services more accessible, but for the time being, if you want a specialized practitioner, do your research and find one that is dedicated to your needs.
My name is Tanya Goreing and my company Soul Treatments is dedicated to your maternity and childcare health needs! If you have questions, please do not hesitate to let me know.
Isn’t it crazy how quickly time passes? In the moment, it doesn’t feel like it at all. Ask a pregnant woman who is nearing her due date and ready to give birth and that last 9 months will feel as though it was an eternity. But ask that same woman on her child’s first birthday and the 12 months previous will seem like a blur. And before we know it that same child is starting school. When we look back, the years are like a drop in the bucket and it’s hard to imagine how we got to where we are today in such a short period of time. But when we are in the middle of it all, it seems like the time is passing so slow and we will never make it to our goals.
I used to hate it in job interviews when the interviewer would say “Where do you see yourself in 5 years?” How am I supposed to know today where I will be in 5 years?! There are SO many different journey’s my life can take between now and then and while it is important to have goals and visions of the life you want to achieve, I don’t ever want to limit myself to what I can dream. I have proof that what I couldn’t have imagined IS possible if you don’t put limits on yourself and stay open to all the possibilities life provides. I am living the limitless life!!
Just over 5 years ago, I was working – full time and part time (I always planned on being an entrepreneur). I was in a committed relationship and we lived a pretty carefree life. Sure we had a home (mortgage) but we also had 2+ incomes, no kids and tons of freedom. We could go on vacation when/where we wanted. We weren’t sure we were going to have kids. Not that we didn’t love kids, we just didn’t know if WE wanted any. We kind of liked life as it was. We were comfortable. I loved my “part time” job in direct sales, was top in my franchise working toward goals and achieving them week after week. My full time job wasn’t awful, I just loved the idea of working for myself so I worked very hard day and night to turn my little business into something more stable so I could live a more flexible life.
Then one day I discovered I was pregnant. It was the most stressful moment of my life to say the least. As much as I felt an instant protective instinct over this little being inside of me, I didn’t know how my partner would react or how I felt about what this would mean to the life I loved.
And then suddenly.......I stopped worrying. Maybe my life was going to take a different path then I expected. Maybe I really didn’t know exactly what I wanted. Maybe the universe was throwing me a curve ball and seeing where my hopes and dreams really lied.
Long story (ok, longer....) short, my son was the best dream I never imagined. Being pregnant was scary and new and exciting. The thought of bringing a new life into this world – a little “us” – was an amazing opportunity.
What I knew though, was that life as I knew it was going to change and I need to figure out how to make it change – FAST!! I didn’t want to be that stressed out, crazy mom with a day care raising her child 12 hours a day. I needed to set priorities immediately for the new life inside of me. I was 8 months pregnant when I took my Reflexology training. It was the greatest experience of my life. I was so excited to know that I could help others in their health goals. My years of having my own direct sales business were a great base to helping me learn how to start my own Reflexology business. I asked my trainer – Can I do this? Can I make a viable business with just Reflexology?
Her answer wasn’t YES!!
She said, if anyone can Tanya, I know it will be you. It’s not the norm, but with some hard work and maybe some other things to compliment it, you can do it.
That was all I needed. Someone who believed in me, and some motivation. What better motivation then the little face that was looking up at me keeping me up at night, teaching me to breastfeed, change diapers?
Was the road easy? Was the path exactly what I planned or expected? Ah...NO! I thought I would easily slide into motherhood and build a business and kiss my full time job away. I was SUPERMOM after all right?
Enter – the unexpected journey to today!!
I didn’t expect a child who started having stranger and separation anxiety at 3 months old. How was I going to build a business that way? I achieved my certification quickly and easily, but does anyone know how hard it is to build a business? A business that is going to replace the lucrative income you currently make at your full time job. And with a partner that worked nights and a toddler who still scream cried every time I was out of the room. And what about sleep? Would that EVER come? How long would it be before that child slept through the night and I could sleep in my own bed again? Would he sleep with me until he was a teenager (because people convince you he will!!)? I had given up my old dreams to have this child, was I going to have to give up my new dreams too?
Wow, how fast time goes. I can barely believe that I am the same person today that I am describing in the paragraphs above. Do you know why I’m not the same person? Because I never let those negative thoughts stand in my way. I rolled with the punches instead of crumbling in defeat. I created my new journey by taking advantage of opportunities as they came my way. I worked at it, hard work!! I didn’t stop at my reflexology training. I added Hot Stone and Indian Head Massage. I didn’t stop at being a Reflexologist. I knew others had to learn this as well and I was passionate about teaching them so I began instructor training. I wasn’t just a Reflexologist – like any other in the community, I specialized my practice based on my passions of working with children and pregnant women. I traveled to Cincinnati OH to take Baby and Child Reflexology with Sue Ricks who had traveled from the UK to teach us. I networked with other reflexologists in other communities and helped bring Maternity Reflexology training to Canada. And then I learned about Doula work and felt it was a great way to compliment my services. And then one day I learned that the beautiful woman who was teaching the Doula programs in my area was looking to retire and had approached my training organization about adding the programs to the list of alternative health practices we already taught. Since I had just completed my instructor training, the question came to me – would I want to train to instruct the Doula programs for HALO? What an opportunity!!
But I couldn’t do that, right? My son was barely 2, and what was that sleep thing anyway? How long could a person go without a full night sleep? How could I be a Doula when I still worked full time and my partner was gone have the week? What would I do if I got a call in the middle of the night when my partner was gone? What would I do if I got called during the work day, what would I tell my employer? This wasn’t reflexology clients who I could plan into my own schedule! This was 24/7 on call and needing to leave at a moment’s notice to be bright and chipper and happily helping a woman overcome her fears and achieve her goals. Not to mention that after all that I would have to mentor other people in this journey as well! Market and advertise and organize classes and have people staring at me (I hate public speaking by the way!!) while I tried to explain things to them that I was just figuring out myself. I couldn’t do that!! I didn’t have time. I didn’t have patience. I didn’t have the perfect sleep through the night child. I didn’t have the supportive partner who always looked at the bright side. He wasn’t even home most of the time because at this point he traveled for work. HOW COULD I EVEN CONSIDER DOING THIS?!
But I did it.
The one thing – other than my motivation and determination – that has always seen me through is the big picture. I don’t know the details of that big picture most of the time, but I try to not focus on that. I focus on where my heart is, listening to my instincts when opportunities come my way, being grateful for all that I do have (My partner does travel 4 days of the week, but he is home 3. My parents are in town and my step-dad is retired so is always happy to spend time with his grandson if I get called away. I have supportive friends and family and colleagues who I can always turn to in order to vent if I am having a rough day. They won’t hold it against me, they will listen and then be there for me when I finish my pity party and am ready to tackle the world again), remembering the things that are most important to me and not sacrificing on those, remaining open to all possibilities the are available to me and always doing my best.
Do I worry about money? Sure, who doesn’t!! Especially the day I did finally leave my full time job since I’m not independently wealthy. But you know what I have learned? If you don’t stress about how the bills will get paid, work hard and stay focused, somehow they do get paid. I can’t explain why to you because I don’t know. But not stressing about it has helped me.
Can you believe that it was only just over 5 years ago that this journey began? I can’t! I never could have imagined I would be where I am today when people asked me – “Where do you see yourself in 5 years”.
Never let fear stand in your way. Don’t stand in the way of your own success! You can be the best YOU possible so build your own success and make it happen. There will always be excuses why you can’t, be the reason you CAN.
Tanya Goreing is the proud mother of one boy and the owner of Soul Treatments. The natural health of woman and children is her passion!