I grew up in Sweden - the land where social distancing was a thing long before Covid-19. I have always seen myself as quite independent and okay on my own. Being alone never scared me. Not that I do not have friends and family, I do, and I always enjoyed their company, but I guess I also took them for granted once. The last few years have brought a lot of insight and new realizations in to my life.
Living in countries away from my home country has made me realize that family is not to be taken for granted. Living away has also in a strange sense made me more connected to certain parts of my own cultural heritage.
Becoming a mother, and bringing two beautiful new souls into the world, has further changed me in ways I could not have predicted. Life itself literally has a different meaning now than it once did.
Motherhood specifically has thought me several really important lessons - and these lessons keep on coming on a daily basis. Firstly, it has thought me that alone time and personal space is no longer to be taken for granted - those two little humans may not be in my belly anymore, but they are certainly attached to me still at all times, one way or another. Secondly, and importantly, it has thought me to be more conscious and in tune with my own instincts and intuition.
Becoming a mother comes with a lot of different challenges, but I think one of the major ones is actually to be able to see through all the different opinions, well meant but ill put advice, and judgmental comments and looks of society, family members, some friends, even care providers and different professionals... Everyone has an opinion about everything, and everyone seems to think their way of doing things is the only right way. If you ever used Google to look up anything regarding pregnancy, childbirth or parenting, you're likely to have been overwhelmed by a flood of information and different opinions in the matter. No doubt some of those opinions made you feel like something is wrong with you, with your baby, or the way you do things. Maybe you tried to do things differently for a while because of it, and then ended up feeling like a failure because it didn't work like you hoped, or because you felt you were not being true to yourself.
Let me share what I discovered. When I got to a moment of changing mindset - and I've had several moments like this through the last years - by deciding to listen to my own voice instead of everyone else's, suddenly a lot of things made more sense and seemed to work better. I have come to the conclusion, that when it comes to myself, my body, and my babies (which ultimately come from my body), there is only one person who can really know what is right, and that is me. Of course, also the father has an important role here, so don't think I'm leaving them out, but for the moment being I would like to focus on the mothers.
The reason I would like to focus on the mothers and female intuition, is because of another important realization I have made during the last couple of years, and especially since entering the birth world, and that is the importance of female community. I think so many mothers in our modern society are struggling and practically burning themselves out because they are trying to be and do it all, and often alone. I know, because in many ways I'm one of them. We feel like failures when we don't manage it all the way we want to, thinking something must be wrong with the way we do things. And I would say yes, something is wrong with the way we do things - we're doing it all alone, and we're not supposed to.
There have been several occasions when I've realized the amazing and healing power in coming together as women. When we connect and support each other, we are capable of so much more.
The advice and support that a new mother needs, is not necessarily that provided through Google searches and professional opinions based on different methods and approaches. She needs the support of likeminded women, who have gone through or are going through similar experiences. Women who can show her it's okay to do things your own way and make your own choices. Women who empowers her and allows her to reconnect with her intuition and instinct. Women who believes in her and encourages her to trust in herself and her own ability. Women who will be there to listen and hold her when she breaks and needs help up. Because everyone breaks sometimes, and it's okay to need help. We heal faster when we are heard, seen, and supported through it. Becoming a mother has made me realize these things, because I've noticed when I've missed them myself at times.
All this is also a leading reason for why I have chosen to dive into the birthing world. Because creating life and giving birth is one of those super powers we women have, and yet many go through it not feeling like super women at all. Many women go through pregnancy, birth and motherhood lacking the right knowledge, the right support, and the trust in herself, her instincts and her body. That is not okay to me. Every woman deserves to give birth the way she chooses, and be supported in being the kind of mother she chooses to be.
The reason why I do what I do these days, is because I've realized we need more togetherness (and yes, the global pandemic did help emphasize this!). We need to be better at supporting each other. We need to empower each other to empower ourselves. Women, in my humble opinion, are not meant to do all this separate from each other, we are meant to do it together.
If you are a woman or mother, and any of this resonates with you, please see this as me reaching out my hand to you, inviting you to connect.
If you're looking for more specific ways to connect and share/receive support and information, go check out Mamamoon School, a platform created for mothers by mothers (including myself), or keep an eye out on my upcoming events for opportunities to connect and get to know other mothers.