In this third and final installment of this series, we’ll look at the glue that holds a peaceful postpartum together:
Community is everything. Women need other women, and never so much as in the postpartum and early childhood season. This is an incredibly intense time of life, and it is so important to get connected so that you can stay healthy, balanced, and joyful while life upheaves all around.
Here are some incredible benefits of tapping into your tribe.
You need hands-on support to help you during postpartum, especially when it comes to getting rest (the second essential). You can lighten the load by hiring help, but it is equally important to have good people around who can bring you meals, massage your feet, and be those awesomely close friends who are ready and willing to fold your underthings and clean your kitchen while you sit and sip your tea. In my life there are incredible women who have seen me on my very worst days, and who have loved me through so much life. We are there for each other through births, postpartums, and through all the best and worst, and our kids will (hopefully) grow up together. I would love to move somewhere where winters aren’t so harsh, but seriously, losing these ladies is not even an option. Friends like these are treasures, and I want nothing more than for you to find women with whom you can do life and share burdens.
That said, support can take on many different forms. Relatives are an obvious choice, and hopefully, you have family who is willing to help out when newborn arrives. You can also find an incredible tribe for moral support, emotional support, and all manner of non-physical help online as well.
Sometimes you just need to know that you’re on the right track, doing the right thing, caring for yourself first and caring for your baby well. Hearing from other women is incredibly affirming. Also, this mothering gig deserves about a million more than the zero awards it gets, so it’s great to get a pat on the back from somewhere every once in a while.
Women who’ve gone before, are tracking with, and who are coming behind are an incredible resource and can be a deep well of information for all the things you’re experiencing.
This is a weird word, but actually, we do need accountability in postpartum. Sometimes accountability looks like GO SIT DOWN or TAKE A NAP or STOP CLEANING.
Sometimes it’s a listening ear when we’re going through the darkness. Or a call to follow-up on an honest conversation. A quick check-in when we’re moving forward into freedom and personal growth in any area can be an incredible motivator to stay on the right track.
Not only information but with food, meal trains, hand-me-downs, gifts, recommendations, and the list goes on. It’s incredible the resources that can be shared among new moms, and how much of an impact shared resources can have within a community.
Encouragement, Camaraderie & Commiseration
Being a new mom is hard work. You need women around you who can relate, who can laugh and cry with you, who can joke inappropriately, who understand the immensity of the task you’ve undertaken and will love you through it.
Society has done it’s best to try to convince us that we should be Awesome Island after birth. Awesome Island is not a real thing. We really, deeply need one another, and that is a beautiful gift. Other women have such incredible things to offer, and so do you.
We need grace.
We need rest.
We need each other.
P.S. If you’re all “That’s nice, Jes, but where do I find my people?’ fear not. I have written this blog post just for you.