Blooming Pregnancy Spa and Imaging Center

Central Texas women now can enjoy a relaxing pregnancy massage and have the option to bond with their baby before seeing them in the delivery room.  Blooming Pregnancy Spa & Imaging Center is opening in August 2010 in Southwest Austin at 5601 Brodie Lane in the Sunset Valley Village shopping center. Owned and operated by prenatal massage specialist Patti Justice, Blooming Pregnancy Spa & Imaging Center is a full service pregnancy spa and ultrasound imaging center.

I was very surprised to be contacted by Patti’s team and asked if I would be interested in doing a write-up about this new business.  I was thrilled and on Monday I had the extreme pleasure of speaking with Patti Justice about her new clinic.

Inspiration

After a number of years in massage therapy, Patti was practicing several massage techniques and had the occasional pregnant client.  She found herself connecting strongly with these mamas and they’d all keep coming back.  Patti kept hearing how hard it was for these women to find other therapists to take them and she realized this was a much needed niche and something that she began to feel very important about.  She had a natural gift.  At this point in her life, she had already begun to feel that she had gone about as far as she could go in terms of clients, techniques, etc. in traditional massage and was going to have to make a change.   She saw two options; go back to school and do something totally different, or just go big and start a clinic of her own.  As she researched opening her own space, it became clear from the start that it was alot to take in and she almost gave up and had pretty much decided to just go back to school to be a ultrasound technician.  Except, everytime she started to move in this direction, pregnancy massage kept popping up in her research and while she thought she was being guided to go back to school everything kept coming back to combining the two.  The idea of opening a clinic was starting to become more prevalent in her mind.  She found that clinics such as these were beginning to pop up all over the country.  This was in fact a much needed service.   She contacted a clinic in Ohio whose director was graciously willing to help Patti draft a business plan, and who continues as a consultant and guide with Blooming Pregnancy Spa.  As soon as she began to research the Austin market she knew she had found the right idea for this community.   At this point she was divorced, never owned a business before and was up against alot of odds.  But things kept moving forward and one of her biggest obstacles, finances, all came together once the vision was clear.  Through the beauty of family and their amazing sacrifices and help, the clinic is privately funded and had found it’s footing. 

Patti definitely had times where she felt like the under dog and everyone told her this wasn’t going happen, it was too risky, etc..  So it is still very surreal for her to have opened the doors and be so warmly welcomed.

Benefits

One of the most obvious benefits to pregnancy massage is the physical aspect…bones are moving, hips are spreading, it can be a very uncomfortable time especially as you get into the third trimester.  Blooming Spa uses a special pillow developed just for pregnant women in a side lying position,  which helps align the mom and helps her feel supported so the tension can leave those muscles while she is getting her massage.  It has been described by some as a feeling of floating and most say, total relaxation.  

The emotional aspect is equally as important.  Massage helps decrease stresses and balance hormonal flucuations.   It also helps the mama to be feel nurtured and cared for, which is just as important as taking care of her physical well being.

Products

Patti has gone the extra mile by taking care and only using all natural products – Mamma Mia and Naturopathica.  No toxic chemical or synthetic products are ever used, even the nail polish is vegan.

Community

Patti would love to start a network and a referal list for local midwives.  They also have a huge multi purpose classroom and would love to have educators come in to facilitated classes, turning it into a community type of education center.  Patti’s vision includes yoga classes, fertility classes, postpartum depression support groups, the list goes on and on.  She plans on reaching out to the Central Texas Birth Network as well.

One aspect of fertility she feels strongly about is preconception issues, especially for women choosing to wait until past the age of 35 to conceive.  They already have a pre-conception massage protocol in place to help women conceive naturally and plan on expanding into acupuncture as well.   Patti feels strongly about educating women in natural techniques to heal their bodies prior to conception and even beyond birth.

Ultimately, Patti would like the center to be known as a place to empower women before, during and after becoming moms.  In her words, “Women supporting women.  Girl Power!”

Imaging

The Imaging aspect of the center is not without controversy.  However, Patti feels strongly that if used appropriately it is perfectly safe and can even help women bond with their babies before birth.   It can also be tremendously reassuring to moms who have had experienced one or more miscarriages.  The hormones released through constant stress can be extremely detrimental to the development of the baby.  So it can be more than calming to see your baby growing and developing into a healthy little human.   Patti also feels that it is one of those things that can add to the whole experience of being pregnant.  But even if women don’t want the imaging service, the spa is always available for not only massage but facials, manicures, pedicures and skin care.

The Blooming Pregnancy Spa and Imaging Center will be celebrating their Grand Opening this Saturday, August 28 from 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Enjoy prenatal yoga sessions with Jess G. at 12:30 and 1:30 p.m. (pre-register at  info@bloomingpregnancyspa.com to reserve your space). Plus car seat safety tips from Safe Kids Austin, baby photo tips from Amber Snow Photography, and a pregnancy pickles and ice cream social at noon. Door prizes include items from Picket Fences, Amber Snow Photography, Blooming Pregnancy Spa & Imaging Center, and more. For contact information, click here.

I hope you all come out to support this amazing new woman owned business here in Austin.  I felt a strong connection to Patti during our conversation and how much passion she has for the service she is providing.  With all our support, we can help shape this into the community space that many moms here can utilize and create an environment where we can connect with each other.  Where we can be okay and find the support we need that is unique to all us mothers.  We become moms with so many beautiful and wonderful thoughts and fantasies about how life will be, only to be shown the harsh reality and frustrations that go hand in hand with it all.  And while there are more beautiful parts than not, no one is allowed to talk about how hard it is.  Wouldn’t it be great to just have a place where it’s okay to just be human and to say, I need this for me?  As moms, we tend to put ourselves last and feel selfish if we do any differently.  But we also need to realize that it’s okay to take care of us too.  That is is important so that we can continue to be healthy for our babes in both mind and body.  Patti is providing the space, all we need to do is show up.

And as a bonus, Patti is giving away a year’s Spa Membership to one of my lucky readers.  You can find out all the details on the membership here.  It is valued at $99 and would be a wonderful gift for yourself or some other mama you might know.  To enter, just leave a comment.  I will pick the lucky winner by random number generator on Sunday, August 29th.  Comments will close Saturday at 11:59PM CDT. 

Good luck mamas…and a special good luck to Patti!  I look forward to visiting the spa just as a mom and to continuing to support the community it is building.

Peace!

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