We sometimes take for granted the role of mothers. We think that a switch flips and you just know, you can manage. But it’s not that easy. You can pin a million articles about how to boost your supply, what toys create a sensory environment, how to keep the house clean, the laundry done, 5 minute meals, etc. but it doesn’t actually mean YOU can manage it.
In the day and age of Instagram perfectionism and Pinterest moms, we feel that the standard is set really high. When you see women bouncing back with the snap of their finger, no stretch marks, thick luxurious hair, their nails done; YOU FEEL LIKE YOU’RE FAILING. You sit there in a mindless scroll with your 3 day old mom bun and breast milk stained shirt, running on 4 hours of sleep and a cold cup of reheated 10x coffee.
So when she said, I’m not okay thanks for asking since no one asks. I felt that shit. DEEP in my soul.
What a lot of people don’t know is that I have had unmanaged anxiety for probably the last 10-12 years. Sure I went to therapy but throw in a hormone imbalance, miscarriage, marriage, moving across country and having a baby; I basically lost my shit. It’s been a rough go of it but I try.
I finally got medicated but the result of that was ending my triggering breastfeeding journey. I put so much pressure on my body to produce and nourish my baby that I forgot completely about nurturing myself. I forgot that I too am a person who exists. My life has my baby in it, it’s not just about my baby. It’s me too. After the first week on anti-anxiety medication, I was FLYING. I actually felt that motherly bliss that I didn’t realize I was lacking.
Can you believe I went 6 months going through the motions but not FEELING them? Wild.
But so many mothers do. Why is that? Because no one asks, ARE YOU OKAY?
Everyone is so enveloped in the well-being of the baby that they forget about the well-being of the Mom. A baby just arrived and will find their identity BUT the Mom’s identity is the one that’s compromised. And that is a very lonely place to be. To not be yourself and have no one ask.
Well why didn’t you tell someone?
I don’t know about you, but I don’t like to announce that I’m failing or feel as if I am. I am a type 2 perfectionist and if it’s not the best version of my capability, it’s trash. & I hold myself to that standard too.
So the next time you see a new mama or ANY MAMA, ask them how they are feeling. Check in on them. Make sure that they are doing okay. Help them when you can, offer a shoulder or a hand. Trust me, they will appreciate that so much more than the 50th muslin swaddle they have received since finding out they were pregnant.
& if you need it, slide into my DMs on Instagram. I am ALWAYS here for you ladies.
Read my miscarriage story here.