Last week I spoke in New Jersey about the importance of self-care during pregnancy and post-birth, but my conference highlight was visiting with three moms who’ve survived postpartum depression/anxiety/OCD who are trained to support other women going through it. There was a fourth mom there who offers support online but didn’t know any moms locally and these three embraced her like they would each other.
It reminded me again that we must be the ones to lead the charge to dispel society’s myths about motherhood and to ensure that all moms, whatever point of motherhood they’re at, get the emotional health care they deserve. We must challenge our own biases about anxiety and depression, and accept them as “health conditions” just like heart disease or diabetes. We must accept that self-care is self-preserving and that women who make their emotional health a priority have more not less to give. As Laura Nash said beautifully, “You can’t give away what you don’t have.”
So, we’ve decided to declare November “Self-Care Month” with the self-care contest/challenge running from Nov.14-18. We think this is the time when women need to be most reminded to keep their emotional pitchers full with all the season’s demands. Please get your friends, co-workers, moms, daughters, neighbors and all your female peeps to join us for fun and great giveaways.
Also special thanks to my friend Susan Ellis Murphy who mentors the SNJPC support moms and works tirelessly to ensure the health of SNJ moms.