The birth of a baby, means the birth of a mother
When a baby is born – so is a mother.
There has been much wisdom and traditions cultivated through cultures all over the world, about what new parents need during this time. We have lost much of that wisdom, focusing on things that don’t really matter or understand the evolution of the woman into the mother.
What does the pregnant mother experience?
We find out we are pregnant, we must keep it a secret for 3 months, just in case.
We often feel quite sick and worry about losing the baby.
We need to hide our feelings and symptoms – to pretend!
Second trimester – we get to revel in letting people know. We get showered with enthusiasm, birth stories and advice. The noise has begun.
We have a thirst for knowledge because that is the currency of this age. We compare ourselves to what we see on the highlight reel of social media.
We think if we know everything then we can control things, avoid bad things happening, or not be left in a vulnerable position.
Instead, it leaves us with a feeling of ‘not quite enoughness,’ in the pit of our guts – as we strive to ‘get it right.’
Last trimester – We have our baby shower. We get given stuff, play games and eat merrily.
Nesting – We decide to work right up until 40 weeks, so we can have more time with the baby afterwards. We think to ourselves, ‘I’ll only get bored anyway.’ We ignore our feelings of needing to rest and disconnect from the loud noisy world and be in our nest.
All through this – our wise women come in the form of our health professionals.
Different ones for pregnancy, birth, post-natal, and after that.
It’s fractured, there is conflicting advice, and it focuses on the ‘aliveness,’ of mother and baby. It doesn’t reflect the deeper changes at play.
Then we give birth – and what a ride that is, as we discover we were never in control.
And we wonder why we struggle to make the transition from maiden to mother!
Things are changing.
Our body is growing, which makes us tired, because that is a big job.
Our brain is changing. It is being shattered and reorganized. Synaptic pruning is happening, to help us be a mother. We can’t listen to heavy conversations; we don’t like crowds or violent movies. We are intuitively protecting ourselves and our baby from avoidable stress.
Our amygdala is growing, which is getting us ready to be hyperalert and vigilant about the survival of the baby.
Our limbic brain becomes more active and means we are more emotional. This will help us to get ready to attune and bond with the baby. Our cortex rational brain gets turned down to help us read our baby. We need to feel not think.
Nobody tells us this, they just laugh at our mistakes, and call it ‘baby brain’. We are left feeling embarrassed and stupid as we try to push against the changes.
What do we need?
To understand this journey and be surrounded by people who can guide us through this massive change.
We need the right education, the right support and a community that makes us feel safe.
The 40 days after birth
This is a precious incubation time of our adjustment to the baby.
We need loving care and be ‘mothered.’ To be surrounded by people who understand what we have been through. People who can make the mother the heroine of her own story.
We need to be massaged, held, and protected just like our baby.
Our nervous system needs to rest – our hormones need to readjust into a lactating state and our body needs to recover from birth,
We need to stay close to our bed, lounging around, and sleeping with the baby close.
We need whole, warm, nutrient-rich cooked foods made with love, served in bed.
We need wise women – who can sit and listen to our birth story without judgement – and without “but you got a healthy baby.” Who can help put us back together.
We need time and not to be rushed to get back to normal!
How can we do better?
We need to change this story. To remember it is not only the birth of a baby, but a family. To recognize this period as foundational for the development of the new family. We need to explore the blueprint of potential that lies in every one of us, to activate the resources mother nature has imbued us with, so that our road can be well-lit, less rocky and focused on the things that matter. To set the scene for physical health and full recovery after birth, successful breastfeeding – for mental health, and the ability to adjust to the high needs of a newborn. To help us to strengthen our significant relationships and create a village.
It is this story that has been the driving force behind the development of Transform Parenting.
Creating education, support, and community from pregnancy to the first 7 years of parenting.
Our ‘Thriving as a New Parent,’ program for both mothers and fathers in the first year.
Our ‘Transform Parenting Village’ membership, with live weekly coaching and exploring parent growth zones online.
We have individual birth debriefing, parent coaching and for those who want to dive deeper into their own inner struggles – Rapid Transformational Therapy.
We have a team of 6 coaches and over 20 regular speakers and growing.
🤰 For a free gift for pregnant couples, go here.
👨👩👧👦 For a free gift for new parents, go here.
Tracey Anderson Askew, Founder of Transform Parenting
Teacher, Childbirth and Parenting Educator and Hypnotherapist.
She is the mother of 4 beautiful young men and two crazy dogs. She has had a husband of 30 years and counting – which has been her greatest achievement, as he is just about fully trained 😊She loves the bush, cooking for large crowds and hiding under the covers reading.