No one said motherhood was easy. But nature kind of implies it. After all, it is so easy to have children, even the lowest of animals can do it. They don’t seem to go through nearly as much drama about getting pregnant and raising their children to term. Then again, that is only how it looks to someone who has never spent an hour watching The Animal Channel. In nature, motherhood is fraught with danger and heartache. The challenges are so immense that were humans to face those same difficulties, the race would quickly go extinct.
What mother lions would tell mother humans is that you don’t know the half of what lies in the road ahead. You can read all the books and take all the advice and still find yourself unprepared for the journey. It is impossibly hard on day one, and after week one, feels hopeless. Before long, you are utterly defeated with 18 years still to go. Even the mother lions don’t know the half of it. You might even feel a little betrayed because despite all the questions and answers, there are still far too many important things of motherhood no one told you about. Here are three:
Postpartum Depression during Motherhood
No one likes to talk about depression. Because we do not talk about it, there is a lot about it that doesn’t get shared and passed down to the next generation. One of the things you might not have known is that there are different kinds of depression. One of them is common to motherhood: postpartum depression.
Postpartum depression is that little slice of torment reserved for about 15% of all mothers. It does not discriminate. PPD cuts equally across all ethnicities, cultures, nationalities, education status, and every other classification. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among PPD sufferers. TMS is a safe and effective postpartum depression treatment.
Postpartum depression is much like any other depression insofar as we don’t know exactly what causes it or how to predict it. You can get it during and even before pregnancy and motherhood. Since this is a condition that affects so many mothers, there are plenty of people you can talk to. Don’t hesitate to call your doctor if you are pregnant and experiencing symptoms of depression. What you should not do is feel isolated and alone. This is the kind of thing you need to know about so you can get help before it’s too late.
Here’s something no one tells you: Super moms take shortcuts. In fact, they take all the shortcuts. If there is an easy way to do something, they know it, and use it every chance they get. You should definitely do the same. When you are a mother, there is no shame in doing things the easy way. Most of the time, the easy way is the only way anything is going to get done.
For example, This Instant Pot macaroni and cheese recipe highlights the importance of having kitchen gadgets that take the guesswork, time, and effort out of preparing lots of healthy meals. The brand doesn’t matter. Those electric slow cooker pots are modern miracles. You can take the further expediency of cooking a big pot of something at the beginning of the week, freezing, and reheating it throughout the week. It is a time-honored motherhood shortcut that will afford you the time for all those diaper changes.
Prioritize Pictures over Videos
It probably seems like a video of your baby’s first steps are more important than pictures of the same. And in a perfect world, perhaps it would be. But if you are constantly behind a camera lens waiting on those big moments, you are going to miss everything else. The best camera for taking baby pictures is probably one with an insanely fast shutter because babies are not known for holding cute poses for very long. Pictures end up being more valuable than videos because 10 years from now, you are not going to set up special equipment to watch those unedited videos. But you can casually flip through photos and easily share them with everyone.
Don’t be too hard on yourself when it comes to your personal journey with motherhood. Anyone could have put that diaper on backward. Just know that you are not alone when it comes to postpartum depression. And while you’re at it, take as many shortcuts as you can and prioritize photos over videos. Your future self will thank you.