Having a child is supposed to be one of life’s greatest joys, yet it can be the hardest year… and future years of your life! Cases of postpartum anxiety and depression are on the rise. When you start to consider why, it’s really not that hard to see! We live in a world now where we are supposed to “parent” kids rather than just “raise” them. There are baby development classes for newborns. If your kid isn’t walking and talking by a year you are referred to specialists. And social media is creating more comparison traps then ever before!
I struggled with postpartum anxiety after having Ellis. I felt anxious and upset. At first, I attributed it to a lack of sleep. But she was sleeping through the night at a very early age (pure dumb stroke of luck). Eventually, I realized it was more. I knew I needed help and with my amazing support system (including my Lead family), I realized getting help was OK and going to talk to someone was OK. One of the biggest takeaways I got from my counselling sessions was that it’s completely OK to feel the way I did. Talking to someone that was unbiased was extremely helpful to me. I learned to say, “I feel upset and anxious, and that’s OK!”
I also learned that I needed to fill my own cup regularly in order to be happy and present for my daughter. As a new mom, I was suddenly responsible for a living breathing tiny human. Prior to being a mom, I could barely keep a plant alive, how was I going to be successful doing this?! But, the more I started to take time for myself during the day or week I realized how much more energy and positivity I had the rest of the time. Everyone’s “happy place” is different, so find what works for you. I found that working out, attending block therapy classes (amazing for the postpartum aches and pains) and massage therapy treatments were my favourite ways to unwind and reset. Side note – if you have never treated yourself to a 90 minute or 2 hour massage, now is the time!
I found that being on maternity leave can be isolating! Luckily, we live in a world so full of opportunities for new connections. So, reach out and find people you can rely on. Support comes in many forms, it can be family, friends, mom groups or maybe even a counsellor. Find people that make you laugh, that you can cry with, that don’t care if you haven’t washed your hair or only put mascara on one eye (yep that happened). Find the ones you can text to ask questions or just someone to lend an ear. I was so lucky to have a great support system and get the help I needed. If you are struggling and don’t know where to start, please know you can always approach me at the studio anytime! And if you’re looking for ways to unwind or get help…the Lead studio and clinic have an endless supply of options!