Why a mothermoon matters to your baby

I talk a lot about mothermoons and why they matter to a mum, but what I haven't talked about as much is why they matter to your baby.

The first three months after your baby is born is often called the fourth trimester and is thought of as the last stage of a baby's fetal development. Unlike other animals, our babies are completely reliant on us as their parents for meeting all of their needs when they are born in order to survive.

Going from one to two...what have we done?!?!

I remember it vividly.

Shortly after we arrived home from the hospital with baby #2, I was lying in bed cuddling her while my eldest was maniacally jumping on the bed as three year olds do. I had been in hospital for two days and he missed us and was over the moon about his baby sister. He was alternating between the jumping and smothering her with kisses.

The house was in a state from having transferred to hospital. Various pieces of furniture from the lounge were still in different parts of the house and the birth pool and assorted kit were still in in the front room. I don't do well with mess and clutter at the best of times.

My partner and I looked at each other and said 'what the hell have we just done?!?!'.

What a new mum really needs

Hint - it's not another babygro.

I've had so many messages from people in response to my previous blog about how it resonated with their experience and how they wish they had had better support after giving birth. As I read these messages I was frustrated by how many other women had a similar experience to mine.

Studies have found that there is a lower incidence of postpartum mood disorders in cultures that have rituals that provide support and care for a new mother. Around 1 in 5 women in the UK will experience mental health issues during pregnancy or in the year after giving birth  Given these statistics, all I can think about was how desperately we need a cultural shift in how we support new mothers and what a difference it could make to their well-being and experience of becoming a mother. 

Mothermoons - how it all began

I spent yesterday morning with a fantastic group of women speaking at The Circle for Women's Vitality's event Happy Mummy, Happy Family where I got to talk about why it's so important for new mothers to take a 'mothermoon' after they've had a baby.

What I didn't do yesterday was share my why.  

Why I feel so passionate about changing the culture around how we support new mothers, why I’m passionate about the work I do as a postnatal doula and why I want to start a postnatal revolution.

It started as these things usually do with my own experience.