In last month’s Motherhood Circle, we spent time thinking about the things we want to make time for that make us feel like a whole woman. So often in motherhood we only look to the things that make us a “better mom”, but if we look at the list in reverse - first seeking things that make us feel like a whole woman - we find that many of those same things help us feel like a better mother, too.
The exercise asked us to create a list of activities big and small that fuel our feminine spirits, and then commit to one per day, one per week, one per month, one per year. We asked ourselves, “What do I need to let go of in order to make space for me to receive?”, and then, “Where do I need to assert myself more in order to make space for me?”.
When I look back over my own list, I find I have made space for quite a few things that fill my soul this month.
A friend asked me recently when I struggled most with postpartum depression. This is a friend I have known since my oldest child was a few months old. And she didn’t know. Many of my friends didn’t know, maybe still don’t. They didn’t know because I didn’t know.
They didn’t know because I was afraid to use the words postpartum depression. I believed the stigma that postpartum depression only happens to moms that don’t love their babies, moms that don’t take care of themselves naturally, moms that aren’t me. I believed that postpartum depressions was only postpartum psychosis. I didn’t know it included social anxiety, anger, and obsessive thoughts. I didn’t know that I wasn’t alone.
They didn’t know how I struggled because I wasn’t able to name my pain. It felt too multilayered to pin it down as “sad”. I had no idea how to explain the social anxiety that took over my us...