Every single week in the month of May I attempted to sit down and write a blog. At the end of April I became excited knowing we were entering May, Maternal Mental Health Month. As a mom of two, I was looking forward to talking “mom talk” and all that goes with it. Mommin’ ain’t easy! And it affects our mental health more than we ever realize. So, I was on a mission to write the best blog for the month of May. But May came and I was knocked sideways. Between end of school year projects, testing, class parties, Field Day, extracurricular activities, work, life and a house that never could get cleaned, I was zapped. And every time I sat down to write I had a mental block. May drowned me.
As I sit here this evening, and I can feel the dust starting to settle as we soak in these Summer months, it dawns on me. I was about to write a blog for you lovely ladies about meeting your mental health needs when clearly I wasn’t even meeting my own last month! I was tired and running ragged y’all! And it was time for me to remember what my own advice would have been.
So this blog is for you but it’s also for me. A reminder for us all. Motherhood is truly the hardest yet most rewarding job we will ever do. As my mother would say, “the days are long but the years are fleeting.” Maternal Mental Health Awareness is about recognizing our mental health needs at every stage of our maternal journey. For some of us, that journey right now involves being in the thick of motherhood. For some of us it’s discovering the sweet sound of a heartbeat in our bodies that’s not our own only to find out we weren’t able to carry that pregnancy through until the end which results in a devastation and emptiness unlike any other. And for some of us it’s the recognition that we are now empty nesters yet still very much needed in our children’s lives. No matter what stage of the maternal journey we are in my hope is that we remember to take care of ourselves. May we recognize our own needs as much as we do the needs of others and serve ourselves when our tanks get low.
When we are at our best we can be our best for others.
Originally my plan was to provide you all with a list of tips, tricks, suggestions or information on Maternal Mental Health. We talk a lot about self-care and it certainly is of the upmost importance. But for today I think I will focus on just one thing. One tiny word that can be a great reminder for us all, no matter our stage of the journey. Grace. May we love ourselves enough to give ourselves much needed and deserved grace. Maternal Mental Health looks and feels different for everyone. Some of us will suffer great depths of depression and anxiety, unsure how we will pull ourselves out of the dark. And some of us will suffer guilt, stress, panic and heartburn like no other, as we are caught up in the whirlwinds of never having enough time, money and energy. Some of us will have raging uncontrollable hormones that cause us to lash out in anger to an extent that shocks even the closest of people to us. Some of these issues are complex and will require medical intervention, medication management and therapy. And some will require long talks at the coffee (or wine) shop with our bestie. And ALL of these interventions are perfectly fine!! But along the way, may we find the love within to grant ourselves grace. Grace to start each day anew and fresh. We can face most anything in life with a good amount of love, courage, boldness, humor, patience, some close friends and a good therapist along the way. But may we also face it with grace. This is my prayer for you. Please pray the same for me.
If you or someone you know would like additional information about Maternal Mental Health please feel free to reach out to us. We would love to help you on your journey. We are a group of women on a mission to help other women. Let’s chat! You can reach us at (706) 237-7577 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org