I once received a phone-call from a new Grandmother. She wanted to check that if her newly postpartum daughter was to attend my postnatal yoga class she wouldn’t be judged for the way she gave birth. She was also afraid she may not be welcome because of the way she was feeding her baby.
My heart sank. I feel so sad that any new mother has to feel that way, and fear the judgement of others at a time when, quite frankly, we are all just doing the best we can.
If I have learned anything in over ten years of Mother Nurture Yoga it is that everyone does ‘Mothering’ differently, but however you do it, it is just so spectacularly beautiful and generally so spectacularly undervalued.
Whatever your feeding choices, everyone is supported here with practical assistance. I strongly believe in the importance of being relaxed and comfortable while your baby is feeding, so the LOVE can flow along with the milk (wherever the milk is flowing from). You will be offered cushions for support, a drink of water and positive feedback. If you wish to breastfeed or express while you are here, that’s super cool. If you need a kettle or microwave to warm bottles we have it. Just do what you need to do and please know that I judge you to be utterly brilliant however you do it!
Here is a virtual High Five and some other judgements I’ve already made about you:
1. You Are Incredibly Strong
You have worked 24/7 to grow a new tiny human, often while also continuing to do your day-job, or care for your toddler, or elderly relatives – and just generally being helpful and amazing. You have made extraordinarily difficult choices about about work, lifestyle, relationships, labour and birth, feeding your baby, how to be a parent and all sorts of practical things – like which car seat to buy so you can impressively swing it round on one arm with your super-human motherly strength!
2. You Are Probably Incredibly Tired
Aside from the fact that you haven’t had a full night’s sleep in three/six/nine/thirty-six months (delete as appropriate), you hold in your mind just such an enormous amount of information about your whole family’s routines and timetables, food preferences, clothing preferences, emotional sensitivities, coping strategies and general needs. Just having all that in your head is exhausting and it has a name – ‘the mental load’ – check it out and talk about it with your partner.
3. You Have Super-Human Powers
You can endure what most people agree is the most intense physical experience available to humanity (birth in all its forms), you wake up in the night seconds before your baby wants a feed, you can carry a sleeping child up flights of stairs and lay them down in the most awkward of cots without waking them up, you can tell the difference between tired, hungry or wet from just from the subtle difference in a your baby’s squawk/cry/raging scream (delete as appropriate). You are just totally incredible.
Keep Up the Great Work!