I was asked several months ago to create a postpartum class for a local midwife. She had set aside time to devote classes for her clients, which is another fabulous reason to hire a midwife! But that's another topic, for another day.
Anyway, back on track. I happily agreed what a novel thing to start the conversation about what postpartum may look like. Well, sadly both classes were canceled because there was not enough interest. Its as if there is no value in planning beyond a nursery and the necessary pieces of having a baby. This is hard people. Even after having one child the second can be a whole different experience with different emotions and events. This is one of the most difficult periods you will ever go through.
We plan our weddings to great detail, birthday parties, events and other things that require an enormous amount of time, effort and research. All in effort to make certain we have the best options and exactly what we want. We have these unreal expectations of the postpartum period and are ALL shocked by the sheer amount of effort it takes to get through some days. Then there is the outcry "NO ONE TOLD ME"... or " I NEVER THOUGHT IT WOULD BE LIKE THIS"
The current estimate of the postpartum depression rates are 70 to 80% this is recorded as 1 in 7 women. How many weren't recorded because they were sent away and told they had the "Baby Blues"
Its a sad situation. It is an incredibly isolating and lonely time in a mothers life. Even with well meaning family and partners that are willing to help, you find yourself wanting and needing more from the people around you and to top it all off you are touched out and EXHAUSTED from all of it. You are in shock as a result and don't know how to ask for help.
We have all been told... "if you need anything, call..." have you ever done that? do you remember who offered? We as women in todays world don't ask for help until its too late.
Don't wait until its too late. Do your homework. Know the signs of postpartum mood and rage disorders. The absolute best way to make it through postpartum is to have your due diligence done.
If you have a history of Psychiatric needs and or counseling this should be addressed as soon as possible and ideally even before you deliver. An appointment to talk about your fears or concerns can help set you in the right direction. Do you need a lactation consultant? Need a maid? A meal service? Take Out menus? Nannies? Pediatricians? Support Groups? Diaper service? Do you have a circle of friends with babies too? Share your information... Get the word out.
That said share and ask for what you need... I have seen miraculous things happen for some local families all because they asked for what they needed. We are all struggling, we are all working on the same goal of raising tiny humans and ourselves... It is not an easy job. Let's leave a map for the next new mom on how to navigate this period in time. Its the right and decent thing to do!
Author Michelle Moody
I lead a happy little life, where my mission is to spread love, empathy and healing through massage.