MENTAL MUTHA MEETS THIS MAMA DOES
MENTAL MUTHA MEETS THIS MAMA DOES
Are you a mental Mum or a Mum that’s mental?
As my depression came before the kids did I would say I’m a Mum that’s mental!
What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? Meditate? Talk? Hide?
I have to stop. Breathe. Rest my soul. And start at the top of my to do list. Working through the things I have to get done helps me feel less overwhelmed - as does letting go of the things that really don’t matter. And for the rock on my chest, to the anxiety that refuses to go away, I say ‘enough’. That is starting to help too.
Do you discuss your mental health with your mum mates?
For the most part I’ve been very high-functioning with my depression so it’s not necessarily obvious that I’m having a bad day, but since I’ve been open about it through social media I’ve found it much easier to talk about with friends. Now lots of them have shared their own mental health story with me too and it’s so good to have those people to go to if you need a bit of support.
How do you tackle mental health chats with your kid’s?
We lost my lovely Mother-in-Law when the kids were just 3, and 11 months. It hit my eldest really hard so we’ve had to talk a lot about feelings. The grief he felt was huge and it took a long time for him to start to heal. They’re only 4 and 2 now so we’re still only at the beginning of this journey, but I want to try and make sure it’s an open and ongoing conversation.
Who helps you in the dark? (In your pits, your mental rock bottom - who is your hero?)
My husband has been there through it all - I actually met him as I was slipping into the blackness, and without him I don’t know how things would have turned out. He was the one who arranged to work from home on the days he was afraid to leave me. He is the one who has held me when there was nothing but numbness and despair. And he is the one who calls out the madness now I am much better. He sees it, and the triggers, and he helps me navigate around them.
What helps you in the light? (Meditation? Procrastination? Perspiration? People?)
Purpose. It’s a tough line to tread because if I do too much things get a bit overwhelming and the black hole beckons. BUT if I can get it right the more I’m doing the happier I am.
Is it hard to talk about your mental health? (Doesn’t mean on Instagram necessarily, but do you feel the stigma is lifting and do you feel safe to speak your mind, even if it is possibly ‘mental’?)
I always try to talk honestly about anything and everything - to the point that I’m blunt and say the wrong thing at times! But I’ve always found the truth to be far less exhausting. I call a spade a spade, and that means talking candidly about my depression and anxiety too. I hope the stigma is lifting - definitely I think that the more we talk about it the better.
Where’s your head at? (Right here in this moment, today)
Today has been a good day! It’s been more juggle than struggle, which is about as good as it gets!
Soft Play or Rehab?
Soft play with a vanilla latte and a blueberry muffin!
Jacobs Creek or a Jacobs Cracker?
Nut Job or Nut Allergy?
Definitely a nut job. Who doesn’t love a cashew? Or a toasted hazelnut lathered in cream and maple syrup!
Self Care or Self Sabotage?
Historically I would definitely say Self Sabotage, but I’m getting better. Although achieving some decent Self Care with two kids and three jobs feels like a bit of a joke! Still, you have to try, even if it’s just a rare poo in peace
Journal or jog?
Cook! It’s the one thing that really clears my head.
Ask for help or happy to hermit?
A bit of both for me really. Sometimes I just have to pull up the drawbridge but recently I have learnt to say out loud “I’m having a bad day”, and I’ve learnt to stare my depression in the face and lean into it quietly, defiantly. Then it gets a bit smaller and at that point I can ask for help too.
FOLLOW THIS MAMA DOES
THIS MAMA DOES, founded by Christina Pickworth, is brand that can help tell a story, make a statement, perhaps send a little SOS into the world with a smile, where there might otherwise be lonely meltdown. A chance to laugh with other parents in the solidarity of sleepless nights and shitmageddons. Because the kids might be all kinds of wonderful, but the parents doing all the snot-wiping and tantrum negotiating on 3 hours of sleep and 4 cups of coffee are pretty fab too!
This Mama Does, not this mama can or this mama will, THIS MAMA DOES. Because all mamas do incredible things every day for the little people they love. Sometimes they just need wine as well.
If you'd like to read more conversations with Mental Muthas, click HERE.
Women talking unashamedly about their mental health and parenting innit.