Anxiety

Why moms benefit from journaling (and how to get started)

Journaling and mindfulness

Do you as a person sometimes get ignored within that all-consuming title of “mom”?

Moms often forget to look inward, because we’re so busy taking care of the pressing task of the moment—diapers, dinner, piano practice. Our feelings and aspirations matter, so give them some attention!

I’m here to share some ways journaling can help.

This post describes different types of journaling to help you find a good fit for you. It also includes tips for starting a successful journaling habit so you can reap the benefits from this practice.


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Dealing with postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety

New mother with baby

So many new mothers deal with postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety. In fact, up to one in seven mothers face postpartum depression after birth. On top of that, seventeen percent of mothers (or more, depending on who you ask) experience postpartum anxiety.

But it’s not enough to just assume, “Well, it’s hormones, I’m supposed to feel this way,” and keep carrying on. Yes, it’s true that most mothers experience “baby blues” during the first few weeks after birth, but postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety go deeper than that, and can occur later.

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Is it safe to take antidepressants while breastfeeding?

breastfed newborn

There are several posts on this site about mental health and anxiety for new moms because this is a subject that impacts so many of us.

But we haven’t discussed a part of mental health that is unfortunately more taboo in our society: Antidepressant use. Since I want to focus on one of the more common antidepressants, I’ll focus mostly on Zoloft and breastfeeding.

I’ll be honest, I’m a little nervous to be talking about my own journey with antidepressant use for all the internet to see. But I know that when I was grappling with starting to use one, I would have liked to find an article like this. Plus, the stigma won’t go away if we don’t start to open up. So I’ll start with me.

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Stop yelling and be a calmer mom

Does it seem like you’re always snapping at your kids or your partner? Do you find yourself wondering, “Why am I so irritable? Have I always been like this?”

Does it seem like no matter what you do, you can’t get yourself under control (and God knows you want to, if not for yourself, at least for your children)? If so, this post is for you. (more…)

How mindfulness can make you a better parent

mindful parenting

Mindfulness can make or break a whole afternoon with your child! How can this concept teach you to use responsive parenting instead of reactive parenting?

Case in point: A week or so ago, I unexpectedly ended up being the one to pick up General Leia from school. When she saw me, the first words out of her mouth were, “Can we go over to Nana’s and Poppa’s to do my art project?”

I won’t lie, I was a little disappointed. I was hoping for a “Hooray! I’m so happy to see you, Mother dearest!”

But I told her cheerfully, “Sorry, we can’t play go to Nanna’s and Poppa’s house tonight. We have to go get your brother and sister and then go home.” This started a whole dramatic ordeal in which Leia’s world was ended and she cried as I walked past the other moms picking up their own cherubs from school. Awesome.

My instincts in that moment were not MOTY material. Ungrateful little kid, you could at least pretend you liked me. Honestly, I wanted to be snarky with her, because my feelings were hurt.

But I thought about where she was coming from, how I wasn’t who she expected that afternoon. Perhaps she had been thinking about doing that art project all day, and then there I was instead, blocking her from painting and creating. So I tried to stay positive, and after a bit we somehow made going to the pharmacy to pick up a neti-pot into a little adventure (you get adventure where you can!).

Of course, I don’t always do that well when my kids are in a bad mood. It’s hard to do!

But what if, instead of reacting according to our instinctive, negative emotions, we stopped and evaluated our thoughts first? 

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