Postpartum Narrative

There are so many postpartum stories that we hear regularly, and they are all beautiful and really give a good insight in to what it is to be a mom. There are other stories though that don’t get told because they are the exact opposite of the ones that are shared so regularly. This can leave us feeling very isolated and alone because we can’t find stories that we relate to.

Specifically for me it was really hard to find stories about other moms who struggled with being physically and emotionally drained from their baby wanting to be held all day long and being very fussy. Not only was Emilia wanting to be held while she was awake she also wanted to be held while she was sleeping and would not sleep otherwise. When we would go on walks she did not want to be in the stroller, so I wore her. On top of this we exclusively breast fed which just added to the physical exhaustion. Surface level this sounds like some mothers dream come true, but for someone like me who isn’t a very physical person it was hard. I’m not a big hugger, I don’t feel the need to snuggle all the time, and if there is snuggling that happens I’m good after 30 seconds. It’s like that with every person in my life, I just didn’t really notice it until having Emilia and it was exaggerated because postpartum hormones just exaggerate everything.

I think it’s so hard to give yourself grace or to be patient with yourself when you don’t hear stories that are similar to your own. Guilt comes in waves and you end up feeling even more isolated because you feel like you can’t talk to anyone about your struggles and they won’t understand. There are all of these “normalized” parts of being postpartum, but what about the experiences that aren’t talked about all the time. What about those mamas? I’m here to tell you its okay to feel overwhelmed, exhausted, and to just need time alone. There is nothing to feel guilty for, nothing to feel bad about, and it’s okay that your story is different from other stories. Thats what is so beautiful about this life, we are all different, so we have different stories. Your story matters, you matter, and your experience matters.

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