This year has been a whirlwind. A true exploration into Self, birthing not only my beautiful son, but myself. I think, like most new mothers, I underestimated the changes this would cause in my world. Yes, I knew that there would be a re-balancing, but I presumed eventually that I would go back to work and life would settle to something like normal, a new normal. But I was WAY out on this one.
Before becoming pregnant our ‘plan’ was to work as far into my pregnancy as possible, so I could enjoy my maternity leave and the slow pace that would provide as I stepped into motherhood. I would then, like all mothers, slowly rejoin ‘real’ life, returning to my job as before. My plan lasted all of 5 minutes! Changes in circumstance left to my job being cut, so instead I went on Maternity leave with no secure plan for my future. For our future.
The Fourth Trimester is an incredible journey of emotion. Of awe and wonder, of self-doubt and worry. Until I was pregnant, I had only ever heard of the THREE trimesters. But in many ways this Fourth Trimester (which personally, I feel NEVER really ends), is the most important. It’s where the true changes occur, and it’s often where we feel the biggest change in support. Don’t get me wrong, its not always the case, and it’s not always intentional – life just happens. But as the excitement of meeting the newborn baby drifts away, we, as mothers, are left.
Left to traverse this difficult time alone. Our friends are at work, or busy with their own families. The ‘difficult’ bit often perceived as being over and done with – we are no longer pregnant, we now count babies age in months not days, and life just moves along as normal – while we remain in a newborn haze negotiating life at a new pace.
So what do you do? For me, I wanted connection and companionship, but I also urgently needed to look at finances and supporting my family. I could quickly see that returning to teaching full-time was not going to work for me or my family – my passion for teaching in a school environment was already wavering, and leaving my baby with a stranger for hours on end didn’t sit right with my parenting ethos. So something NEW was needed. A re-balancing. A realignment.
Those first few months, walking endlessly around Christchurch with little man, alone, and pondering, allowed me the space I needed to connect in with myself. It was uncomfortable – as self discovery SHOULD be. It makes us question everything we thought we knew, everything we felt. But it helped me to connect in with my core values – Whatever I do, I want to build community. I want to bring Joy. I want to hold a safe space.
And I was deeply aware that as new mothers, we needed these things more than anything.
So my training in Baby Yoga and Baby Massage began – enabling me to offer another service for women, which would be a platform for community, joy and support. It led to the creation of The Soulful Mamas Collective, which has since exploded into the most incredible support network beyond anything I could have hoped, and of which I am immensely proud.
But what I found, bit by bit, was that juggling motherhood and being self-employed is bloody hard work! Working until 2am may seem like a brilliant idea (or at least possible!) when you’re a student and want it all, but when you’re exhausted from chasing small humans all day and THEN try and stay up – it’s just not sustainable.
So now that we are reaching Little Wolf’s 1st birthday (what the hell?!?) I need to rebalance once more. The Soul Space is evolving – as it should – to bring together Yoga, Wellness, Holistics and Baby and Mama support – because this is who I am: a facilitator focused on Community. Joy. Support.
Over the next few weeks, you’ll start seeing a mixture of events, posts and photos relating to all elements of my work, pop up on The Soul Space Facebook page from now on. The two groups: The Soul Space Tribe and The Soulful Mamas Collective will remain open for you all to join, and will be more targeted in what I share. After all, connection is build through sharing and talking – a group is the obvious platform for this. So if you don’t want to miss out on anything Yoga then head over to The Soul Space Tribe. If you’re a mama and would like to join some incredible ladies for advice, friendship and a good giggle, head over to The Soulful Mamas Collective. Maybe you need both!
Thank you for staying with me on this journey – I have some fantastic events planned for 2020 and can’t wait to share them with you.
P.S. The cover artwork is by Chloe Trayhurn and is absolutely EPIC. You can buy it here: https://www.chloetrayhurn.com/prints/fearless-motherhood-print