I'm always up for a day at the spa, but when I'm pregnant, I feel like it's a medical necessity :). Add to that some chronic pain issues I've dealt with for years that have sent me in search of a good massage upwards of a hundred times throughout my life, and you've got quite the connoisseur of fine massages. Although I (almost) always enjoy one, it's very rare that I'd give a five star rating or even go so far as to refer a therapist or practice to someone else. To me an exceptional massage therapist is one who can find tension and then listen to your body's signals to know how deep to penetrate to release it, while still making it a relaxing experience for you. That's a hard skill to perfect, so I'm always in search of someone who fits this description.
At the beginning of this pregnancy, I started having some especially intense pain and longed for an amazing massage that could help relieve my stress. I researched the benefits and dangers of prenatal massage and felt really confident that it would be beneficial for me and (as long as the therapist was educated in this area) perfectly safe. So I was slightly devastated when I was turned down over and over again by people saying they wouldn't work on anyone under 14 weeks along (Rebecca dispelled that myth for me - you'll have to ask her why when you go).
When I found Salt Lake Prenatal Massage (owned by Rebecca de Azevedo Overson, LMT) and read their website, I was almost in tears (sounds dramatic, but who isn't a little more emotional during pregnancy?). I was so relieved to have found someone who was educated and specialized in this area. The only problem- I lived in AZ (oh you lucky Utahns). So when we traveled up to UT for the holidays, I could hardly wait to schedule my appointment.
When I got to Rebecca's office, I tried not to be too hopeful, in case it ended up being a mediocre experience like so many pregnancy massages are. It is just hard to be relaxed when most therapists make you lie awkwardly on your side. I almost hugged her when I saw that she used orthopedic pillows that allow you to lie face down, safely & comfortably, without ANY pressure on your belly or breasts. And then I asked her if I could buy them for my own bed (how I miss sleeping on my stomach!). Too bad they cost like $1000 :(
It also bugs me when the massage turns into more of a backscratch because the therapist barely dares to touch you in fear that they might accidentally hit the 'magic labor button'. Really? I know there are certain things that should be avoided during pregnancy (deep work in the legs, for example), but I'm pretty positive that rubbing my feet will NOT send me into labor (believe me- I've tried). So I was really impressed when for one happy hour I completely forgot that I was even pregnant and just felt my muscles release one by one. It was amazing!
Although I won't be able to head up to Utah whenever I get a crink in my neck, you Utahns can go and see Rebecca whenever you like (I'm so jealous). She even provides child care (how cool is that?) so you can come pre or post baby. And check out this tidbit from her website for you pregos that are desperately awaiting delivery: "Past Your Due Date and REALLY don’t want to be induced? Come DAILY for only $50/session until the baby comes. (We’ve yet to see a client more than 5 days in a row… just sayin’…we can help.)"
So from all of us child-bearing women, thank you, Rebecca, for having the courage to address this section of the population. You are performing such a great service and helping us to forget about some of the woes of pregnancy so that we can just focus on all that is wonderful about having a baby.
You can check her out at: http://www.slcprenatalmassage.com/
And stay tuned for an awesome Salt Lake Prenatal Massage GIVEAWAY!!!