April 7, 2023
Matrescence, Welcome to New Motherhood
April 7, 2023
Matrescence, Welcome to New Motherhood
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aaToday we want to share with you a word we wish every expecting couple to have in their vocabulary:

Matrescence. Think Adolescence, but for mothers.

Matrescence is the time period of adjusting to life as a new mother.

It’s similar to adolescence in that everything feels new and unfamiliar, hormones are raging while your body goes through an immense physical, mental + emotional change.

In addition to all the other reasons this time is hard, this internal experience makes the period after having baby even more tough. Even for those who have a fairly calm experience, the hormone shifts are A LOT.

Many of expecting moms have said they don’t want people telling them ‘you’ll never sleep again’, or ‘enjoy your life while you have one.’

While we agree that those aren’t particularly helpful things to hear, it’s also still important to know that there is going to be a shaky, sometimes grueling, postpartum transition period.

The postpartum period is a time of adapating to your new baby, and how your life will forever be different. 

Babies need so much in their first few days, weeks, and months. And realistically a lot of what they need involves their mother.

So while we don’t have the perfect answer for how much to share with expecting couples about the challenges they will surely face, we do want to be a calm voice in your head letting you know – you are doing it right, others are feeling what you’re feeling too, and you are not alone.

And knowing about this period of matrescence helps.

If you’re pregnant, we highly encourage you to create a postpartum plan to support you in your period of matrescence!

And if you’re already with babe, just know that this period of adjusting to being a mother is major.

It’s chalk full of emotions. And is not the same thing as postpartum depression or anxiety.

The simplest overview of this could  be, matrescence is having low moments, balanced out by also having lots of joyful moments.

Postpartum depression/anxiety territory can often feel like there are no high moments. The joy isn’t there to balance it out. And the low moments just don’t really seem to go away.

And really we’re not here to diagnose anything medically, so if you’re at all concerned or the low moments really seem to lag on forever, then please do reach out to a trusted provider!

If you have spoken with a trsuted provider, and agree with them that what you are going through does not need medical attention, but still have some really tough, incredibly challenging moments – know you are going through matrescence, like all our elders have before us.

  • Reach out to a trusted friend, who’s been there before.
  • Try some belly breathing and gentle postpartum yoga.
  • Go for a walk and enjoy some fresh air.
  • Take an epsom salt soak.
  • Make the effort to go to a support group for new parents.*
  • Check out one of our baby yoga classes.

Being around others currently going through what you’re going through too, is often the best way to move through these times. When they only way out is through.

And if you need someone to talk to, know Our Yoga Family is here for you. Email or give us a call anytime.

You’ve got this, mama.

(ps to read Jess’s matrescence stories, along with others, checkout the hashtag #mymatrescence on Instagram!)

*If you live in Bozeman check out support group options from Roots Family Collaborative!*

The other night, just before bed, right when I was hoping to have a little bit of space and time for myself, my daughter came out of her room and was pretty upset, and offloaded all the things that were majorly stressing her out. From overhearing about a pilot dying from a local wildfire, to friendship and social dynamics, and a petty crime that happened to our friends.

She needed to offload majorly. And as much as my own nervous system was needing some time for myself, my heart cracked a bit wide-open for her. I could tell it was an important parenting moment to show up for her, to remind her what’s hers to carry, and know how to not hold it all in our bodies and systems.

I’ve been there before. I know how we can put all of our anxieties and worries at bay until just before bed, or while we’re sleeping, and they want to creep in and finally have a space to process when we’re in a safe space.

That processing space is so fundamental to our health and if we push it aside, it will only grow into a mighty roar. And can eventually grow so much and a part of us that we don’t even know what it is to feel safe and calm in our bodies.

The very first thing I made sure to emphasize to her is that right here right now, we are safe.

We are safe.

In this house, in this moment, all our needs are provided for, and we are safe. We talked through the other anxieties and I let her know that our friends are safe and that they are OK too. I saw her nod and instantly start to feel better.

I also shared how we are exposed nowadays to more in one year than our great grandmothers were in their entire lifetimes.

That’s it’s easy to feel overly responsible for a lot of it (and it’s good to care), but that it’s important we don’t carry it all, all the time and we have to find ways to release the heaviness and the worry.

I could feel her whole system take that in and begin to release.

A couple of days later, I was sharing this with a girlfriend, wondering if I shared too much with my daughter. I try to be pretty honest and not hide life and death and all in between, when it arises, and without going overboard (we don’t watch the news in my household but she still gets exposed to life). And my friend said, honestly, I wish someone had had that conversation with me when I was younger. I still need to have that conversation with myself.

What my work in this world really comes down to is helping us to feel safe & held within ourselves.

Once we have the inner resources to access a place of safety and calm within, we know it’s possible, we cannot only have deeply meaningful spiritual experiences,  but we can feel more joy, ease and contentment in our day-to-day. We can be better resourced to get through the shaky, the lows, the tense, the scary, the overwhelming.

And as we head into a year, that will be fraught with plenty of worry or anxiety over the state of the world & our country, it almost feels like a radical act to tend to ourselves deeply. But it is called upon as much as ever.

In the end, I’m so thankful that my daughter can come to me to share her grievances before she goes to bed. And I can help her learn how to regulate her nervous system, offload stress, and have tools for when the heaviness of the world feels so much.

And even though she doesn’t always want to listen to what I have to say, or use the tools I offer her, I know she’s learning and at least she has access to them. And hey, the next night she actually did a whole somatic nervous system offload practice with me and deeply enjoyed it! We just have to keep showing up for ourselves and know it’s benefitting all those in our world.

And let me end by sharing the words I shared with her – “Right here, right now – you are safe. Take in your home, know that your family is safe. Know that your home is safe and protected, you are cared for and in this moment: It’s OK to relax & let the rest go.

Sidenote: I know not everyone is safe and my heart breaks for them. But focusing on what’s out of our control, robbing our systems of nourishment, means we have less energy to show up and support those who need it the most. It’s not selfish to care for yourself knowing others suffer, it’s self – ish. It just means we’ll have more clarity, insight, and lasting energy to tend to those who can’t tend to themselves, and we’ll be pouring from a more overflowing cup instead of a drained and empty one.

If you want more support in this, read below:

Jess with Cacao Ceremony

Receive nervous system offloading practices from me on the regular, for deep release & maintenance:

The Wild Fem Co is my virtual community, online full/new moon moon restorative & yin yoga classes. Monthly intentions, nervous system releases, deep nourishment with rituals and spiritual toolkit workshops, & meditations releasing stress & connecting you to your magic weekly.

Tiers: 3 options for joining depending on the type of support desired, starting as low as $20

Location: anywhere you have internet access!

Get my ebook, Unveiling Intuition: A Journey to Uncover Your Magic

This guide shares the fundamentals of understanding how to make deep, lasting change in all parts of ourselves, how to access our inner magic, and how to go beyond limiting beliefs, thoughts and actions to find what truly serves us. It allows us to create a foundation for our spiritual and stress relieving practices.

Jess with Cacao Ceremony

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