I need a massage. For real, I’m not even using that as a fake lead in. If you were online this weekend, then you may have seen me post about what I am up to at the moment; and if you read that, you will know that I mean it with all my heart – I need a massage. And I will have booked one with the amazing Berneen from Mummy Massage by the time this post goes live.
But I’m getting ahead of myself, again, as usual. Berneen contacted me at the end of June to see if I would be interested in working with her and doing a review and giveaway. As you all know, I won’t do a review of anything I haven’t tried personally which meant I “had to” try her services…
Anybody who knows me will know that you can get pretty much anything from me for a massage; my husband buys me multiple vouchers for massages at Angsana Spa for every special occasion and my family and friends have finally caught on after years and either send me to amazing places for massages or send amazing people to me to massage me at home. I am not fussy as to where the massage happens; I feel both experiences have their advantages.
While Berneen does have a therapy room in her home, Mummy Massage specifically offers mobile massage for pre- and postnatal mammas; and as such was easily Mamahood Approved.
You book an appointment and Berneen comes to your home, creates a little oasis in the middle of your chaos, puts on some soothing music and uses beautiful natural products to figuratively transport you wherever your happy place might be.
Waxing lyrical on a massage isn’t hard, let’s be honest. As a mom, you are so stressed and tense and overworked and you haven’t had a quiet moment to yourself to actually physically unwind since the mini-human arrived. If somebody walks by and squeezes your shoulders you are likely to collapse in a puddle at their feet and think they are the best thing ever. At least I am. So ,let me tell you about Berneen objectively for a bit.
Berneen studied for 3 years at Isa Carstens health and skin care Academy in Stellenbosch before going travelling. While abroad she did 1 year in the UK at a men’s only grooming emporium; 1 year on The Dawn Princess cruise liner; and 2 years in Colorado where she managed a spa. Between 2007 and 2013 she worked on private yachts for the rich and famous, mostly affluent Russians. At her last job, the madame onboard fell pregnant and sent her to the UK to study prenatal massage and that’s when the pre- and postnatal massage bug bit her. After seeing her client through to the end of her pregnancy, she decided to call it quits on the yacht, got married and decided to launch Mummy Massage in June 2014.
She expanded her knowledge even further by training to be a doula with Robyn Sheldon of the Mama Bumba Way, in order to get a better understanding of what a mother’s body goes through in carrying and birthing a baby. She has studied reiki and lynotherapy and is constantly networking and learning in order to grow her knowledge and abilities. She is going for nuchal cranial reflexology at the end of October, which is sort of like osteotherapy. She is also looking into a Fit for Birth programme, where she will learn how to help mamas who want to have a natural labour by developing the essential stamina needed through training and a little yoga to keep them nimble and relaxed.
It boils down to the fact that this lady knows her business, and her business is mommy bodies.
My experience of meeting Berneen was as frazzled as it could have been. I was working to deadline on multiple things, Charly hadn’t slept all night and was miserable as sin and I had 100% forgotten she was coming. I was sitting on my bed in my pajamas, stressed and tearful and over the day already at 9:15. When like an angel she appeared, on my phone.
I am somebody who usually baths and shaves and prepares for a massage, I don’t want to be one of those gross people that these poor masseuses have to put their hands all over; but this day I was just that and I was mortified. We took over Charly’s room, as it has the light blocking curtains and a nice big space in the middle of the room and Berneen got to work setting up as I apologised profusely for being an unwashed yeti. She just laughed and somehow set my mind at ease; she pointed out that I am exactly who she wants to work with – a busy mom who never has time for herself, so some hairy legs were the least of her worries.
I genuinely liked her instantly; she was sweet and smart and has a way about her that takes the edge off. She chatted to me as she set up, asking about my life, my pregnancy, my aches and pains and problem areas, and explaining her way of working as she went.
Did you know it can take up to 15 years for your organs to naturally shift back into place after carrying a baby? Me neither, though it explains a lot. She also considers whether you might have a hip that is out of place, a sore back from feeding, a neck stiff from stress or work or a busy schedule or a monkey toddler that treats you like a jungle gym or muscle aches from mental stress.
“Moms really get forgotten after birth; everyone just wants to hold baby and ask about baby, and it is rare for the mother get the full focus and that’s what Mummy Massage focuses on – The Mummy!”
Something small that I had never considered before that made a real difference for me was being able to take off my bra completely. I am still breastfeeding Charly at 18 months, and I am one of the lucky few who has a very strong milk supply; unluckily for me, this means I am still using breast pads and I never get to just go bra-less – I can see you all flinch at that, as do I. Anyway; Berneen washes all of her bedding after every single massage and provides soft comfortable sheets and pillows, and encourages you to get completely comfortable without concern. I LOVED this. I MISSED this!
This lady has truly magical hands. As mentioned I am a bit of an “expert” on massages, because I have had so very many and varied kinds. Before I fell pregnant, I was having weekly massages, and I couldn’t get enough of the firm to hard pressure. Since falling pregnant, the time has vanished and my special treats have diminished somewhat, and my body has also changed drastically. I bruise incredibly easily and my body is constantly achy and sore, so I tend to request a light to medium pressure to avoid the pain the next day. Sadly this means my body doesn’t always feel as relaxed the next day either. I’m not sure how Berneen managed it, but somehow she didn’t have to use excess pressure to leave me feeling amazing and no bruises or even bruised feelings the next day.
She gave me tips and advice on how I could stretch my body to get the regular kinks of co-sleeping with a toddler out. She also recommended dry body brushing to get my lymph system working; I have been told before that the fact that the top of my feet are extremely sensitive to any pressure is a sign that my lymphatic system isn’t up to scratch. Essentially she saw “me” and addressed my personal trouble points holistically and in the massage.
Having a massage at home is something I adore. Having to dress up, sit in traffic and be nearly crashed into by seemingly hundreds of awful drivers and being harassed at every intersection on the way there; and then having to get back into a car and face it all again after the massage can often wipe out any benefits of the treatment itself. This way I even managed to lie down with Charly when she napped after Berneen left and let my body just rest after the attention.
I loved the products she used. She uses homeopathic and aromatherapy baby-safe essential and carrier oils from Lillian Terry International. They made my skin feel incredible and they smelled divine.
She didn’t rush. This is something I have encountered everywhere I go, even the best spas. That clock starts ticking the second you enter the room – they don’t account for the time you sit and listen to the intro that you could give them given half the chance; they don’t account for the time you take to get out of your clothes and onto the bed; your session ends at the exact minute designated, and you can feel the massage “speed up” as the end approaches.
Berneen takes her time, the clock runs but soothingly and you aren’t aware of it, if you have a particular problem area, she will put the extra effort into it without penalizing you at the end by cutting something else short. It’s about the quality of experience for you, not about getting done and moving on. That matters to me.
I also love the way she structures her Mega Mommy Massage package; 5 massages in total, 4 for varying stages of pregnancy and then one that she insists you keep for after baby arrives, which is when she feels you will need it the most. I love that she cares enough to want to be a part of your entire journey.
And yes, YOU can stand a chance to win an amazing one hour massage with Mummy Massage!
How to enter…
1) Like Mummy Massage on Facebook
3) Share this post on social media with the super easy buttons at the end of the post
4) Comment below to let me know where you have shared & shown the love
If you belong to a Mamahood Group you can also enter by…
1) Liking Mummy Massage on Facebook
2) Sharing the review from the Pregnant in Cape Town & Ever After Facebook page once you’ve liked it
3) Comment DONE on the giveaway post in the Mamahood Group (IF you comment on the Mamahood group, you don’t need to comment anywhere else).
You can earn an EXTRA entry by following each of the below. If you follow all the steps you would have a total of 5 entries to the competition
*You can see how I do the draw here.
1) Comment on the pinned post on the Pregnant in Cape Town & Ever After Facebook page telling me why YOU NEED this amazing massage
2) Follow me on Twitter (you can just click my sweet little pink birdie button)
Follow Mummy Massage on Twitter
Share this post to Twitter with the easy share button below
Comment on this blog post with your Twitter handle (your entry is only counted if this is done)
3) Follow me on Instagram (you can click on the little camera icon below)
Comment on this blog post with your Instagram handle AND if you are already following me (your entry is only counted if this is done)
4) Subscribe to the blog at the bottom of this page
Comment on this blog post when you have subscribed OR if you are already subscribed (your entry is only counted if this is done)
The winner will be announced on Thursday the 2oth of August. Good luck everybody!!
Sending all the love xx
*Sadly this giveaway is only open to those currently living in Cape Town