Sam: I did!
Allana: I just plopped it right on a cookie sheet and stuck it in the –
Sam: WHOA! Stop right there Allana. I didn’t make you eat it. Let’s not invoke The Silence of the Lambs sequel, shall we? (I just pictured myself standing threateningly over your postnatal body with silverware and a napkin.) No. I simply related a personal anecdote about how I did it, and then helpfully proffered some tips on how you could do it too. Should you choose to.
Allana: Yep. And that’s when I put it on a cookie sheet, cranked up the oven and –
Sam: Please stop. Many people reading this have already almost barfed. Sorry. Let me start from the beginning. Let me answer the first, and perhaps most obvious question: Why THE HELL did I do this? I’m not sure, but it definitely felt right at the time.
It was a suggestion from my super-crunchy doula that drove directly into the super-crunchy heart of my inner granola-person. In America you are Not Allowed To Keep Your Own Placenta Because It Is A Dangerous Biohazard, so it felt satisfyingly counter-culture to watch my doula smuggling my placenta out of the hospital in a piece of Tupperware. She took it to a Chinese herbalist, who agreed to dehydrate it and pulverize it to be put in capsule form, if I agreed to give him half of it. Then he did it. Then I ate it, one pill a day, over time, until they were gone. I did the same thing for my second, but not the third, as I still have leftover pills from the second go-around.
And so? For me, it was like taking a mega dose of iron, except in this case, the iron was generated by me, in my very own miraculous human body! What could be better? I wouldn’t take one every day or anything, as they do make me feel ever-so-slightly jittery, but they are there for when I need them, and that comforts me.
I will say that right after the first baby was born, my husband nearly fainted every time he opened the bathroom cupboard and saw them sitting there. Now he is very nonchalant about the whole thing. But he might not have been so comfortable if I had personally attempted to dehydrate it in our own oven. Where things like “frittatas” and “chocolate chip cookies” come from.
Allana: Well, it should be said that the oven thing didn’t work for me the first time, and it had the added bonus of making my friends and family scared for my state of mind. But Sam mentioned something about how insanely shiny her hair was after ingesting her afterbirth so I wanted to make sure I did it right the next time.
Sam: Can you not call it afterbirth’? I realize it makes no sense to be squeamish about this one small detail.
Allana: No. No it doesn’t.
Sam: The hair really was impressive though.
Allana: It was like a Tiger pelt. You looked like an older female version of Justin Bieber but with less money and more kids. It was really difficult to not constantly stroke your scalp when talking to you. Anyway, I screwed up the first one by convincing myself it would be as easy to cook as a flan.
Sam: Can we mention at this point that we both know someone from Canada who fried it up and ate it like a piece of liver?
Allana: Yeah! We do.
Sam: Oh God.
Allana: I think in nature, most mammals eat their placenta. And besides the major side-bonus of soft shiny teen boy hair, it’s rich in iron, B-12 and hormones made specifically for your body by your body; it can also help to increase your breast milk and ward off post partum depression (yes, please). Not to mention the fact that it helps to heal your hoo-ha. It did for me, anyway. Not sure how many well financed double blind scientific studies can prove that conclusively, but anyway. And admittedly, I am one of those people who thinks – “Why pay someone to do it when I can just do it myself?”
Sam: Not exactly true.
Allana: Correct. That was a lie. I am more like – “Why pay someone to do it when I can just get my husband to do it?” In my defense I am married to a sexy geek who spent his youth taking things apart and putting them back together. If he could MacGyver a working muffler out of tin cans, popsicle sticks and a couple of wires, surely he could lift my placenta out of it’s protective bio-hazard container which was handed to me at my awesome Canadian hospital, cut it into small strips, put in into a meat dehydrator and then pulverize it in a coffee grinder before turning it into capsules – while I sit in the other room watching television and yelling “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU’RE DOING THIS.”
Sam: Do not try this at home. Or…maybe…do.
Allana: So did it work? I think so. My hair didn’t get Bieber’d like Sam’s but I didn’t suffer crippling PPD like I did the first time around (Stay tuned for the next post. I don’t know how I’ll work a joke into that one, but I’ll try.) which I’d trade for good hair any day. And my general disposition and health seemed to fare way better the second time around.
Sam: I should add that my hair eventually did fall out though. I mean, it was delayed a bit, but it still fell out.
Allana: I bet it looked silky though, on the bath mat.
Sam: Holy Hell. I think we might be hippies way down deep.
Allana: It’s true. Since taking the placenta pills I’ve also noticed an increase in my consumption of 70’s soft rock and an intense jealousy of anyone who plays the sitar.
Interested in Placenta Pills? Ask a local midwife or doula in your area to “hook you up” with the right people. And do not fear The Google–but DO prepare your eyeballs for some images that may burn themselves forever in your brain.”Placenta Teddy Bear.” That’s all we’re going to say on that subject.
MORE ON BABBLE:
I ate my placenta, and you should too
The hidden benefits of eating your placenta
8 amazing and unusual things to do with your placenta
6 ways to eat your placenta — smoothies, jerky, and more!
To eat or not to eat my placenta …