You don’t need us to tell you that giving birth in the U.S. typically leaves much to be desired, and frequently involves being slapped with hefty medical bills. One American mom in Japan is highlighting her birth experience on TikTok, showing off the spa-like atmosphere, incredible food, and overall care and attention to moms and babies.
Related: This mom’s video of a playground in Japan will have you wanting to pack your bags
TikToker Nicole Patrice (aka @nicole_does_japan) is chronicling her family’s adventures after moving from Kentucky to Japan. While Nicole explained that her first birth back home was “traumatic and discriminatory,” this time around, she felt “very loved” and so did her new baby Jonah… and when you check out the video tour of where she delivered, you’ll want to immediately start looking up real estate in Japan.
Having had a C-section two days prior, Nicole took followers around the Nagoya Birth Clinic, where she paid out of pocket for a five-day stay in the special “precious suite.” Though she was separated for 24 hours as baby Jonah received phototherapy treatment for jaundice, she was able to snuggle him and feed him in the clinic’s nursery, as well as focus on her own healing.
@nicole_does_japan Day two after having a C-section in Japan. Pain management has been surprisingly easy. I came off of my IVs the day after my surgery- and I fully believe that not relying on pain medication has allowed my body to heal and create a threshold of tolerability, that I did not experience with my first C-section. In Japan, they don’t give a lot of unnecessary medication in regards to narcotics. I think the strongest thing that I had was Tylenol. the food, and the peaceful atmosphere all attribute to my healing. It’s been a dream giving birth at the Nagoya birth clinic. ##birthinjapan##japanpregnant##nagoyabirthclinic##nagoya##japanesefood##hospitalfoodreview##LifeInJapan##Csection##dayinmylife ♬ Lofi/Fashionable/Rose Piano/10 minutes(1455693) – nightbird_bgm
Nicole showed off the restaurant-worthy meals designed to enhance healing and support lactation, including onigiri (Japanese rice balls) and noodles as well as Korean food like bibimbap (a rice bowl with assorted meats, veggies, and eggs). She walked past the on-site aesthetic clinic, which offers facials and other cosmetic dermatology services, though it was closed during her stay between Christmas and New Year’s.
She got to enjoy a cozy reading area, adorable props for family photos, and an in-room hot water heater for tea and coffee. Breakfast and afternoon tea was served in her room, while lunch and dinner were served in the restaurant. “It was so nice to have really delicious food prepared for you so that you wouldn’t have to worry,” she explained. “They really care about mothers here, and they just want us to rest and relax and really enjoy our time.”
Commenters couldn’t believe that this luxe stay cost less than $3,000 USD, as Nicole explained the family is not insured and her husband gifted her the suite as a Christmas gift. “It’s crazy how underlooked birth and healing is in America,” wrote one person. “I just love how progressive, considerate and healing the Japanese view and approach the birthing and recovery period,” added another. “Okay America we gotta do better with after birth facilities cause it looks so nice and cozy ” concluded yet another.
Related: Study finds more than 1 in 3 women have lasting health problems after giving birth
Of course, no place is perfect, but it’s clear that the culture in Japan supports and nourishes moms, babies, and families, and other countries should take some notes. All mamas deserve this kind of care, even though so many are not treated well and then sent home so quickly.