MENTAL MUTHA MEETS MARY MEADOWS
Mary Meadows is the Badass Life Coach for mothers and well, for me actually. When I first found Mary I must admit my inner rebel thought "F**K IT, I don't need a Life Coach/what is a life coach?" and now I need to admit that I have pretty much spoken to Mary every day since that first meeting and it's almost been two years. Mary Meadows is badass. She has years of infertility treatments under her belt, she is a PND survivor and she is now a single MUTHA to Albie (6) and a Shih Tzu called George named after George Michael. OBVS.
HOW? How does this badass MUTHA make YOU feel OK and keep herself mentally healthy too?
MENTAL MOTHER MEETS MARY MEADOWS THE BADASS LIFE COACH
Are you a mental Mum or a Mum that’s mental?
Both! Having depression, severe anxiety disorder and being a mother to a crazy 6-year-old, can often leave me feeling mental, frazzled and overwhelmed by life. I made a decision a few years ago not to be held back by my mental health, to own it, to be proud of the fact that I am self-employed, solo parenting, and also managing my mental health. It’s been an adventure which has led me to the place I am at now. The mental moments are fewer now I have tools, techniques and people who support me and my mental wellbeing.
What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? Meditate? Talk? Hide? TALK!
I am a big talker, and believe this was and is key in my recovery from post-natal depression and depression. Sharing our stories, whether that’s at a soft play, a playdate, or social media helps us feel less alone, there is so much power in ‘me too’!
Do you discuss your mental health with your mum mates?
Absolutely! When we think about ‘health’ we tend to put so much emphasis on our physical health, but it’s our mental health that’s important too, maybe more so. Talking to our mum friends, people that understand the stresses and strains of our lives, that hold an empathy for our situations is a much-underestimated tool for understanding. A nod, a wink, a squeeze whether its virtual or in person can help us get through the toughest days. Knowing it doesn’t get better, YOU get better.
How do you tackle mental health chats with your kid?
Talking about our emotions, our feelings, letting them know it’s not all about the ‘happy’ reassuring them that with strong emotions they pass, they come and go. Highlighting how we are feeling in a certain moment, naming our emotions, modelling how to face them, not to ignore them and hope they will go away. Raising an emotionally intelligent human being is my goal always.
Who helps you in the dark? (In your pits, your mental rock bottom - who is your hero?)
ME. It took me a long time to realise, and it sound cheesy, but I am my own hero.
What helps you in the light? (Meditation? Procrastination? Perspiration? People?)
A notebook and pen, a much-underestimated tool that’s cheap and always available. The power of writing down how we feel in the moment, what we are thankful for, what went well today, what we are going to do more of tomorrow. Is a way of moving forward, because that’s the way we are going whether we like it or not! Also knowing and accepting that a ‘bad day’ will come, its waiting for us, it’s what we do in-between that builds our resilience, our coping strategies, so that when it comes we are READY.
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’?)
Sometimes, but every time I do I am reassured by the response that I am not alone, and that there is so much strength in vulnerability, getting comfortable with being uncomfortable is something that I try to remember when it feels hard.
Where’s your head at?
Procrastination is how my anxiety and depression usually shows, most days, most things seem hard. Today being particularly difficult, however I know myself so much more, I understand myself more than I have ever done, and in that understanding comes compassion. So, this might be the only email that I respond to today, but it’s one more than I would have done a year ago and that’s progress, that’s moving forward, that’s success for me.
Soft Play or Rehab?
Soft play, my kid is 6 and nearing the end of what soft play has to offer, I’m enjoying it whilst I can.
Jacobs Creek or a Jacobs Cracker?
Jacobs cracker, with ALL the cheese
Nut Job or Nut Allergy?
Nut job always, who doesn’t love a squirrel! (You were referring to the film, right??)
Self-Care or Self Sabotage?
Self-care, but the badass version. Setting boundaries, having hard conversations, saying NO.
Journal or jog?
Ooo both, except I like to call it ‘writing in my notebook’
Ask for help or happy to hermit?
Ask for help. It’s one of the toughest things, but it’s always there if you have the courage to ask.
Follow Mary: @Marybadassmeadows
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If you'd like to read more conversations with Mental Muthas, click HERE.
Women talking unashamedly about their mental health and parenting innit.