Mother's Day Special
Dr. Lydiana Garcia
How I Managed My Struggles as a First Time Mom
After being in the paralyze mode for several months, I started realizing that there was something happening, that I was not connecting to my son. I definitely seek out help and connect with my friends. I met this great group of moms that we're not into that BS of "I love my child all the time, I can do this forever" kind of mode which maybe that is true for some people. They were very true and honest like “today, I hate this..” Or “I just want to go out and not have to care about breastfeeding.” And I love that because as women, and whoever identifies with the feminine, have lost that connection of who we are and all these other expectations that are given us or just wanting the pleasure of things that we enjoy. Even if it's drinking our coffee or going to the movie theater by yourself, whatever it is, I feel like patriarchy and a lot of other collective kind of traumas have taken out our choices, or our identity that we can be this attuned, happy person with ourselves.
After noticing and continuing to see my body going downhill, I realized they are all signs that I need to slow down and pay attention to myself. I was really focusing on my son - what was good for him, the sleeping arrangement that was good for him, the breastfeeding that was good for him, and all these kind of things. But they are all from a very kind of a survival mode, in a way. I was overly focusing on his needs but by ignoring mine, I was really getting so angry. But then I felt horrible about it. It was a mess, to say, you know, it was completely a mess.
When I hit rock bottom, I realized I needed to change things as they are not helping me or my son but is only impacting our attachment. Slowly, what has helped me the most through this journey are:
- Finding a support group of amazing moms,
- Going into therapy,
- Going inwards and exploring,
- Doing some kind of sleep training,
- Noticing ways to earn money that did not require my ability to think and reason out, because I was not sleeping and doing really well,
- And, putting myself in priority, too.
When I started to prioritize myself and start noticing things that are important for me, then I started feeling more attuned to my son because I was happier. I was not holding that much resentment. And I was able to process the anger in a different way. And then I was able to be more present. And this is the part that I think is key. It's so important that we’re building a relationship with our children, that we are present with our children.
A lot of times, we resort to all this books and all these people including whatever has been recommended in the podcast episodes that I have with guests or with what I've said. But then, when we do those recommendations, we're not necessarily taking in consideration your current situation, your variables and everything else that goes on. That’s when the discernment has to come for you, for moms and for caregivers to put in perspective what applies to you and what doesn’t because not everything applies. Even my journey with my son won't apply to my daughter, I can feel that already the pregnancy has been completely different.
Empowering Ourselves as Women and Mothers
The whole purpose of me sharing this different pieces of my story is to lower any kind of stigma, guilt or shame that you probably have as a mom because we all do have them. The other thing is to normalize that it is freaking hard but that is not how people talk about it. When you put in that mask that everything is fine, it’s not helping you and your child. Here are some of the negative effects of not being true to your emotions and with what you’re going through.
- Children will learn that pattern of not being true to themselves. Your child could feel the energy of how you really feel. When you’re communicating something that is not attuned to your emotions, that brings a lot of confusion especially for children. As they're learning to communicate, they also learn that pattern of not being true to themselves.
- People will live with resentment and anger. We're having a lot of people with a lot of resentment, with a lot of anger because they're not living to what they want. This could also lead them to doing all this other things that sometimes are harmful for themselves or others, as they try to figure out who they are. Let’s be honest with ourselves and stop putting that mask especially online and in social media because that is how we’re going to continue to evolve.
- Continuing generational trauma. My grandmother, for instance, she wanted to be different, she wanted to have a profession and have more financial wealth. Because of that, she sacrificed so much. She’s not necessarily smiling but that whole thing of holding back the anger and trying to accept things, although they’re not really accepting. And then my mom also struggle with being authentic or being herself. I remember how she would apologize right away whenever she would be upset about us.
Patriarchy and all other things has taken so much of our power away and has made so many ideas about super negative connotation like women were hysterical, we’re witches and we’re so many things. So a lot of that is in our psyche, and we believe those things and we question our worth. If you do have a womb, you have the ability to procreate and create new life, you have the ability to provide this amazing nutrition to your child, you have the capacity that men don’t have. So I would say, really tap into that power that has been taken out from us because by taking that power, then they can control us, with medicine and with many other things just like how women in Puerto Rico were being experimented or sterilized without consent. All these ideas of beauty or of feeling happy are a lot of times implied by patriarchy, not only by men, but also by other women that continue that message because a lot of times, women are the ones raising the children, passing that message through generations.
And now as I'm thinking back, I think it's important that we continue to dismantle all these ideas of what women are supposed to, especially in motherhood. There are days that are really sucky and ugly that you just want to run away. Then, there are days that are amazing, you’re like "wow, I live for this.” And there's so many in between. That's part of parenthood and motherhood. And that's basically what I wanted to give you is that whole idea that wherever you are, you are okay. And to keep and put in that little drop of who you are. That's also helping the future generation to be more authentic with themselves. We need that, we need more people to be authentic to live the life and their purpose so that way we can keep them moving and evolving.
Today is Mother’s Day but I feel like every day should be a mother’s day. Our job, our profession of being moms, is one of the most under paid and undervalued. We have a lot of power to raise the future generation and to change things that we don’t like. So let’s take it back.
Again, Happy Mother’s Day!
I hope any of these are helpful for you and that you and your loved ones are safe.
You can listen to the full episode at https://www.thebeyondresiliencelife.com/blog/bonus-mother-s-day-special.