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I didn't really have a birth plan. I knew I wanted the epidural. I thought I was supposed to do everything I could to avoid a C-section (I still had one and had I known better, I would have asked for it earlier). But, other than that, I didn't give it too much thought. Also, babies don't really care about our plans. They pretty much come when they want and how they want and some things, we just can't be prepared for. But, I wish I had a postpartum plan--because I could have been way more prepared for that. I wish every mom would have a postpartum plan--like it was just part of the pregnancy process, same as a gestational diabetes test--at a certain month, the postpartum plan was created. A plan that a mom to be and her partner put in place with the OB that accounted for the types of support she would have after the baby. A plan that accounted for the possibility of maternal mental health disorders and listed exactly what to look out for and the names of clinicians to call. Did you have a postpartum plan? Do you wish you had a postpartum plan? What would you have wanted your postpartum plan have looked like?

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Happy Friday Fun Day! 🎄 This time of year can be pretty stressful. Will I buy the 'right' things? Will everyone get along? Will everyone be happy? Expectations. Lower the bar to what's best for YOU & YOUR family. Do what you can over this period. Like to feel less guilty about not doing it all?  Head to the bio for some info on how Happy Friday Fun Day!🎁🎅💝 #canberra #wearecanberra #thiscanberralife #cbrregion #mumsmatter #womanempowerment #hercanberra #canberralocals #canberrafitness #canberramums #canberrahealthandfitness #canberrastyle #canberrabusiness #canberralocals #cbr #wearecbr #mumsupportingmums #canberramumsinbusiness #mumsinbiz #mentalhealthawareness #breakthestigma #lovecanberra #canberrasmallbusiness #maternalmentalhealth #maternalmentalhealthmatters #newmothers

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Know the signs and then take action (i.e. rest) when necessary. You must learn to take care of yourself when you've reached your limits. Do you have any tips to cope with mental/emotional exhaustion? Let us know below 👇 - Follow @mentalhealthsave for more! ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ : : . . #selfcaretips #selfloveisthebestlove #mentalwellness #mentalhealthrecovery #psychotherapy #selfcompassion #selflovequotes #selflovejourney #itsokaynottobeokay #mentalhealthwarrior #panicattack #mentalhealthsupport #mentalhealthadvocate #mentalbreakdown #mentalhealthmonth #mentalgains #mentalhealthstigma #sociallyawkward #mentalhealthisimportant #maternalmentalhealth #anxietyfree #mentalhealthblog #mentalhealthweek

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I am happy to announce the release of my premiere art collection, “Motherhood, A Love Story”. If you've been following me on Instagram then you've seen this collection develop and evolve over the months. It's been a goal of mine (and a request by many of you) to release these as fine art prints. Today is the day.⠀ ⠀ These charcoal and acrylic paintings have been turned into giclée prints on archival paper. They are available in three sizes so you can pick the perfect fit for your space. There are more images to be released, but I decided to start with these six because I feel they work so beautifully together as their own collection. ⠀ ⠀ If your favorite from Instagram isn't listed yet, don't worry, it's in line to launch soon. But if you're ready to start building your collection now, I'm offering FREE SHIPPING on all orders so you can pick one today, and another one next week at no added cost. ⠀ ⠀ PRESENTING, MOTHERHOOD, A LOVE STORY: Link in bio!🔝. ⠀ ⠀ #lovenaava

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👏🏻BREASTFEEDING👏🏻DOESN’T👏🏻HAVE👏🏻TO👏🏻BE👏🏻ALL👏🏻OR👏🏻NOTHING!⁣ ⁣ I talked about how formula can EXTEND breastfeeding by giving mom a mental and physical break. This helps extend the total time baby gets breastmilk. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing! ⁣ ⁣ Head to my BF3, PUMP2, and PPD2 highlight to learn more. YOU ARE WORTH MORE THAN BREASTMILK!

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I walked into my children’s preschool this week + one of the teachers greeted me in the corridor. It was just us + she said ‘I’ve been thinking about you.’ ⁣ ⁣ I was caught off guard. ‘You have?!’⁣ ⁣ Without hesitation she said, ‘Yes. I’ve been thinking about you since Monday + I just wanted to give you a hug.’⁣ ⁣ Insert complete mush face 😭 + heart explosion here. 💓 ⁣ She grabbed me, hugged me + kissed my forehead.⁣ ⁣ You see — as someone who doesn’t have a healthy relationship with her mom this act was more than random kindness — it was in some way a maternal gift that I’ve needed lately. ⁣ ⁣ It truly meant everything to me.⁣ ⁣ To elaborate, I’ve been struggling with this last leg of my pregnancy + it’s tough not to have my mom in my life. A choice I’ve made for my emotional wellbeing. But, I don’t have a genuine substitute + sometimes it’s just hard.⁣ ⁣ So, to really be seen by someone who could feel I needed a little love + support — And, who gave it so effortlessly + willingly is further proof, to me, of the goodness in this world.⁣ ⁣ And for that moment — #IAmGrateful⁣ 🙏🏻✨ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ .⁣ #RandomActsOfKindness #MaternalMentalHealth #HugSomeone #KindnessIsFree #SuperAttractor #EarthAngels #ThankYouUniverse #ThirdTrimester #KindnessMatters #GratefulHeart

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For all the mamas out there suffering from prepartum depression, I see you. I experienced it with my second pregnancy. It’s feels like hell — actually it doesn’t feel like anything, which is a kind of hell. It’s hard to see it now, but you will rise from it, or it from you. You will see something beautiful one day and you will notice it, and life will flicker back on just as the life in you shines on. #prepartumdepression #pregnancydepression #mentalhealth #maternalmentalhealth #mentalhealthawareness #motherhood #mothers #pregnant #pregnancy #poetry #poemoftheday #poetryofinstagram #poetsofinstagram #poem #writersofinstagram #writer #poetrycommunity #writerscommunity #writing #teammotherly #thisismotherhood

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|| #12daysofpostpartum || Day 5 • thank you @sammylee83 💜 . “Motherhood, what I longed for, having two daughters and a family. What I wasn’t prepared for was finding out that my first born would be diagnosed with Early Precocious Puberty at the age of 5 years old. When this journey began and I got the call from the children’s hospital I was still uncertain about what was to come. I remember sitting in the doctor’s office thinking is this really happening, holding back the tears to be strong for our daughter, my fiancé holding my hand. I was 4 months postpartum with our second daughter and thought is she going to go through the same thing? . After many tests and scans, the possibility of a brain tumour was narrowed out from being the cause of this. What a relief that was! I do have to say the Alberta Children’s hospital and all their resources are amazing! My daughter has to get monthly injections in her thigh which isn’t your typical little needle to stop her body from going through puberty. We have managed over the years and she’s done amazing! . Fast Forward to two years later, when it was decided she could handle having her injections spaced out to every 10 weeks. Things slowly started shifting for her. January 2019, she started saying things like she didn’t like herself, hated her hair (it’s extremely curly), didn’t like her skin colour and the beauty marks on her face. Asking us why isn’t she like everyone else? This is when I started to question myself as a mother and why is my little girl feeling like this! She’s so kind, smart and beautiful inside and out. Then the summer hit and things got really dark for her. She would tell me and her dad every night at bedtime that she didn’t want to be here, she wished she was dead, why did we choose her to be our daughter, why was she even born and that she just wanted to jump out of the window and run away. We felt so helpless as parents, not knowing why she was feeling like this, is this a cry for attention, is this a sign of depression. . I personally started to suffer from postpartum anxiety which didn’t start until my second daughter was a year...” (cont’d 👇🏻).

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The teen phase has been brutal for me. All of my kids were easygoing toddlers, so perhaps I had this coming. I didn’t expect to feel so beat up or sad by the mean comments. I thought the years of good relationships would yield Disney-worthy mom and child laughter. I didn’t expect my kids to morph into angry strangers. I didn’t expect that I’d become so overwhelmed and lose my shit. But all of it has happened. • • If you’re parenting tweens or teens, please know I’m in the trenches with you. There’s no one size fits all solution and no milestone book to fit all kids. • • The teenage years are an emotional rollercoaster which are kicking my butt! There, I said it. Somebody had to. @lessonsfromtheminivan ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~🚘 #parentingteens #momofteenagers #momofteens #grownandflown #momprobs #momproblems #momstruggles #parentproblems #parentstruggles #scarymommy #momtruth #momsirl #momminainteasy #mommingainteasy #tiredasamother #tiredmom #momfail #badmom #badmomsclub #maternalmentalhealth #consciousparenting #anxiousmom #mothering

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Excited to start my birth work journey! ❤️

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At the end of your day have you ever forgotten what you actually did? Have those thoughts creeped in that say you didn’t actually do anything worth mentioning? You wasted your day? You haven’t done enough? Me too. Our overwhelm and stress, especially as mamas, likes to lie to us and convince us that the mundane work and even the not so mundane isn’t noteworthy or didn’t even happen. We forget so easily. My challenge to you (and what I just did an hour ago for myself): Make a list of all the things you DID do today. Make sure to include: -⭐️Making and feeding meals because that’s A LOT of time and definitely worth mentioning. -⭐️Repetitive and mundane things like changing diapers because LORD KNOWS that’s like going in to a wrestling ring at least 7 times a day. -⭐️Education/reading or research because we often see that as a frivolous step in getting things done but it is SO important and so worth our time After I looked over my list I noticed a few huge things that I had completely discounted. Like installing our new car seat, reading a book and unloading a million groceries. I hope this helps encourage you to not discount your day or the importance of what you do. Overwhelm loves to lie to us but this is a great way to fight back 👊🏻 Tag a mama friend who needs this ❤️

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Thinking about coming to my Autonomous Birth Workshop on the 15th, but wondering whether it’s for you or not? Here’s my checklist…⠀ ⠀ .⠀ ⠀ ⠀ ⠀ THIS IS FOR YOU IF⠀ ⠀ You want to know all your options.⠀ You want to be the one making the descisions when it comes to your pregnancy, birth and postpartum.⠀ You want to learn how the maternity system works.⠀ You want to maintain your bodily autonomy.⠀ You want to know your legal birthing rights.⠀ You want to make alternative or natural choices.⠀ You want a physiological/natural birth.⠀ You want to reconnect birth and pleasure.⠀ You want to connect to your intuition and baby.⠀ You love to question things and go your own way.⠀ You want to wake up your most powerful self.⠀ ⠀ .⠀ ⠀ ⠀ THIS IS NOT FOR YOU IF⠀ ⠀ You don't like challenging the status quo.⠀ You trust your care providers no matter what.⠀ You want an induction or c-section for non-medical reasons.⠀ You want to be tested for everything you possibly can.⠀ You trust others more than your own intuition.⠀ You believe birth is something that you just have to 'get through'.⠀ You don't value your birth.⠀ You don't value your intuition.⠀ You're not open to alternative points of view.⠀ You view babies as non-sentient beings.⠀ You're planning on circumcising.⠀ You're planning on sleep training.⠀ You don't value health and wellbeing.⠀ ⠀ .⠀ ⠀ Just over a week until the workshop. There’s only one spot left. Link in bio to book your spot in circle. Or DM me to organise a custom payment plan. ✨⠀

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I should tidy the house. I should go back to work. I should be financially contributing to my family. I should stay home with my kids. I should be loving every minute of this. I should have my body back by now. I shouldn’t eat that ice cream. I should eat kale. I shouldn’t drink so much coffee. I should exercise more. I should spend more time with my kids. I should feel happy. ⁣ ⁣ How many of you have said something like this to yourself? 🙋‍♀️⁣ ⁣ Should is a word rooted in guilt and pressure. It is a word that is based on either the expectations of others or what we perceive the expectations of others to be. It is a word that offers an immediate judgement on our current state and tells us that we are not good enough. That we are somehow doing something wrong or the way we feel is not normal. ⁣ ⁣ Mama, stop “should-ing” yourself.⁣ ⁣ Be compassionate and kind to yourself in the season that you are in. ⁣ ⁣ Instead, try saying to yourself, “I will accept myself for who I am right now with the resources I have available to me. I am doing the best I can in the moment I am in.” ⁣ ⁣ Tag a mama in the comments who needs to read this 💛

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