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Here are the 5 Things I'd Do Differently, Knowing What I Know Now....

Today we are talking about the five things I would have done differently in my postpartum experience, knowing what I know now about matrescence!

Before we begin, let's acknowledge something: as first-time moms, we can often be labeled as "over the top," worrying about the smallest details. But honestly, when you're navigating uncharted territory, every little thing feels significant. Looking back, there's a whole bunch of concerns that I now realize I needn't have fixated on, yet realistically, hindsight is 20/20.

When it comes to self-care and nurturing during the winter that was my son's first year, there are a few things I could have done differently – things that I believe would be beneficial for first-time moms (and even experienced ones) alike.

Firstly, I should have embraced the season I was in and slowed down.

I remember wanting to jump right back into everything, feeling like I had to be out and about, following the example of other parents. But in truth, my birth trauma took a toll that went unresolved for nearly three weeks. With my son's oral restrictions causing sleep deprivation, I was exhausted and frustrated. Rather than recognizing that I needed rest and gentle movement.

I pushed myself to continue, believing that slowing down was unproductive. In hindsight, slowing down would have been the most productive thing I could have done.

Secondly, I should have asked for help and accepted it without guilt.

There was an overwhelming sense within me that I should be capable of handling everything on my own. I had this desire to prove that I could be a mom – a good one at that. And while I felt that asking for help would signify my inadequacy, the truth is, no one is meant to navigate motherhood solo. When we recognize that seeking help is not a sign of weakness but an act of strength, we truly empower ourselves and those around us.

Third, I wish I'd embraced the transformation within me.

I touched on this before, but I felt a need to remain unchanged, not realizing that motherhood itself is a transformative journey. I clung to my old identity, trying to be "me" despite the fact that I was fundamentally different. It was a struggle to reconcile the two versions of myself, and this disconnect brought about frustration and self-doubt. Looking back, I wish I'd allowed myself to say goodbye to the old version of me and fully embraced the values and aspirations that had evolved within me.

Another thing I could have done differently was hire a Matrescence Coach or Supporter.

Rather than relying solely on my own searching, seeking guidance from someone well-versed in navigating these intricate feelings of motherhood could have been immensely beneficial. These coaches offer a safe space to explore feelings that might otherwise feel shameful, untangling the threads of ambivalence and guiding you toward practical action steps. They can help you unearth the "gold in the grief" and make sense of the overwhelming emotions.

Lastly, I wish I could have accepted my circumstances earlier on.

I carried a deep sense of grief throughout my postpartum experience – a time that was different from my expectations. With factors like tongue tie, the pandemic, my personal injuries, and my mental health, it wasn't the smooth and blissful experience I had imagined. It took time to come to terms with it and acknowledge that while it wasn't the pleasant journey I'd envisioned, it was my journey. Embracing it, learning from it, and realizing that my son and I were perfectly made for each other – that was an essential step towards healing, a journey that I am honestly still on to this day.

In retrospect, I wish I had embraced these insights sooner, but as we all know, motherhood is an evolving journey. It's okay to learn as we go, to make mistakes, and to adapt. Remember, fellow mamas, we're all navigating this transformative path together. So, keep embracing your unique mom era, lean on the lessons you've gathered, and know that every step, even the challenging ones, brings us closer to our empowered selves.

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