I hear mothers ask this question as they’re wondering what they’re doing wrong…. Why am I feeling so dead tired, even now that my baby is sleeping mostly well? Why am I struggling to think or remember things? Is this ‘mom brain’ ever gonna go away? Why am I feeling overwhelmed by small tasks and why can’t I recover from a minor stressful situation for the rest of the day? Why is my body aching everywhere - I feel like I’m ‘old’ now… Is the ‘baby weight’ gonna come off ever? Are my hormones gonna boycott date nights forever now? Is it possible to have postnatal depression even years later? I guess this is normal…
Mama, this is definitely super common, but for sure not ‘normal’. What you’re going through is estimated to affect more than every second mother, and that’s not just new moms but also moms with older children. It’s a syndrome that’s touching all spheres of a mother’s life - physical, emotional, mental, relationships, work, home, sleep, energy, hormones and the list goes on and on. It’s called Postnatal Depletion.
Many mothers think at first that this is all in their head, as they’re being sent home from the doctor’s office with a prescription or two and the recommendation to just ‘wait it out’. Or the well-meaning advice by friends or family that they should ‘just enjoy this time, because one day they will miss it!’
Mama, trust your sense that there’s something not quite right here. It’s not that you did anything wrong - not at all - but that you’re ‘feeling off’ is real. It’s your body telling you, that it needs help. Your symptoms are your body’s messages for you - and they will get louder and louder if you keep on ignoring them. Don’t settle here. You don’t have to resign yourself to this zombie-like experience.
There are many factors at play why Postnatal Depletion happens. First of all, many women are already depleted as they enter pregnancy. Then, after they grow and nurture a human for 9 months, they go through a hugely transcendental and taxing experience called ‘child birth’, and after that they take care of that baby human pretty much 24/7 and while breastfeeding they keep on growing baby from their own resources. During pregnancy and child birth, sleep, hormones, and digestion take a major toll so that women easily turn from feeling capable, confident, and ambitious, to helpless, anxious and unmotivated. Did you know that moms literally give pieces of their body to baby? During pregnancy a woman’s brain shrinks 5 - 8%!! Because baby siphons off building blocks to make his own brain. No wonder the terms ‘baby brain’ or ‘mom brain’ exist.
These amazing women just want their energy, their body and their life back, but they keep on waking up just as tired as they were when they went to bed. So they reach for crutches such as coffee, sugar, junk food, and anxiety meds to simply make it through the day. They suck it up, because they don’t want to complain or admit they don’t have it all together. They’re afraid they’re not a good mom… and they think in the end they wanted the baby so now they have to pay the price, isn’t it so?
No, it doesn’t have to be like this. You don’t have to sacrifice your energy, your health, nor your body or your life for your baby. How is your child gonna thrive if you don’t? Or your relationship? Traditional cultures still knew that when the mother is taken care of and thrives, then the whole family does, and so does society. Unfortunately we have forgotten a lot of precious ancient wisdom and common sense and instead normalized what’s simply unacceptable.
So many mothers are putting themselves last and their health on the back burner. They do that because of the love for their family. All that while most women don’t have enough or not the right kind of support. Modern society doesn’t seem to value mothers enough to offer real support in this crucial time of postnatal recovery. Countless moms are never able to catch up on on their recovery and Postnatal Depletion turns into chronic health conditions they have to deal with for the rest of their lives.
Mama, I would like to give you permission to stand up for yourself. Claim your real power - despite what society is like, despite what family and friends might be like, despite your environment, and despite your feelings of you just wanting to hide. No-one can really do it for you. If you can’t do it for yourself, do it for your children and your partner. This is often a bigger motivator for mothers who put themselves last. They need you. They need you to rise to your full potential. They need you to be able to cry out your pain, speak your truth, and really smile again from the inside out. They need you strong, radiating, and joyful. That’s what you really are, goddess.
I’m here to advocate for you, beautiful woman. When you’ve decided that you’ve suffered enough and that you’re ready for real change, go get help. When you open up to it and are ready to accept it, it’ll be right there. If you choose to work with me or with someone else. It doesn’t matter. You know who can help you best. But I want you to know that you don’t have to settle because ‘you’re a mom now’. This isn’t just about your children’s birth, this is about your rebirth as well. You’re not supposed to be the person anymore that you were before kids. You don’t have to fit into your old you anymore. You get to grow into a new you, stronger, wiser, more beautiful and more powerful. Come out of your cocoon and dare to fly.