Today 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 addtion to all the other reasons this time is hard, this internal expereince 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 adapting 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 really 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.
Times are tough. It WILL get better.
(ps to read Our Yoga Family co-founder Jess’s matrescence stories, along with others, checkout the hashtag #mymatrescence on Instagram!)
*If you live in Bozeman come to an Our Yoga Family Support group or check out options from Roots Family Collaborative!*