I want you to know something, mama...
Matrescence is about more than just being a mother - this is about being a woman.
A woman who knows herself, who listens to herself, and who values herself.
If we deny this understanding, we deny her a chance to learn about herself.
We force her to go back to proving herself again, looking outside of herself for validation and success.
I remember when the beginnings of motherhood completely cracked me open, forcing me to re-evaluate everything in my life. It was the very first time I questioned who I was and what I was doing, and I felt the beginnings of something stirring within.
But, I didn't know what to do what those questions. I didn't understand what was happening to me. I searched for answers, for someone else talking about this, and when I found nothing, I pushed it away.
By pushing that away, I pushed my growth down. I denied what my body was trying to tell me, and what my intuition was calling me to do. I just got back on with life -...
Not too long ago, most of the transition of motherhood was invisible. We were so focused on childbirth, and the perfect birth plan, and then beyond that? All about the baby.
But that is beginning to change: post-partum doulas, acknowledgement of a fourth trimester, even post-natal depletion. It’s the beginning of a change.
But what about the invisible messy middle of motherhood? That time when the newborn bubble is long-gone, and the reality of juggling a toddler, or school holidays, or hand foot and mouth with a deadline at work kicks in?
This ‘messy middle’ is so important - but ignored. We are so focused on keeping all the balls in the air, we lose ourselves in the doing. We celebrate busyness and multi-tasking. We prioritise everyone else.
This is the part we need to reclaim mamas - all these years in the middle. No more invisibility. No more denial. Let’s reclaim the middle, and the woman within them.
*Image credit - Heather Robbins
* Adult language used in this episode *
This is an exciting time. We’re having conversations about what it means to be a woman, a mother, an equal, all over the world. New barriers are being broken. It’s revolutionary.
But as we change the conversation around motherhood, I am often asked ‘what about the dads?’ And my answer is usually - yes, there are big changes for men when they become Dads, but that’s not my passion. Someone else can pick that up and run with it. And I hope they do.
Well, mamas… I’ve found him.
Damian Waters, or Muddy as he is known to almost everyone, is the man behind The Wingman Collective (please go and follow him immediately. You won’t regret it).
And as I began to read his insights into being a wingman to his amazing wife, I saw something that is very very rare - but very very exciting.
Here was a man who recognised the ‘old system’ that he had been brought up in....
There's something you need to know, mama.
It's the secret to what you've been feeling since starting this motherhood journey. It's the missing link, the forgotten transition of womanhood.
Understanding this ancient yet thoroughly modern insight into motherhood will change everything. It will explain that pull to be there for your child's every moment, yet also crave your independence. It will stop the guilt and the comparison, and allow you to soften into the gift of motherhood.
It's called matrescence: the radical identity shift a woman goes through as she becomes a mother.
To celebrate the release of my brand new book - Mama Rising - I am so excited to share with you today the introduction to this new book all about matrescence.
And to be one of the very first to receive Mama Rising, and be invited to a world-first online event with Dr Oscar Serrallach and Dr Aurelie Athan, simply pre-order your book here.
Motherhood comes with a lot of expectations, both spoken and unspoken. Passed down from generation to generation, we inherent so many unconscious beliefs around what it means to be a good mother and woman.
Matrescence, if honoured correctly, can change that.
Matrescence is an invitation to examine not only who you used to be, but who you are becoming. It's a chance to look at your lineage, and decide how you want to create your future.
It's the time in your life when you get to look at who you were, and who you want to be.
Nagma Dawn is a mama of three who walked into one of my workshops a number of years ago with a tiny baby in her arms, and an open heart. She wanted to know more. She wanted to understand who she was now. She felt the stirrings of something within her - a desire to step back from the corporate career she'd been pursuing - but she wasn't sure what it was... or if she could do it.
In this episode, Nagma shares her story of finding herself through creativity and...
Matrescence forces us to redefine who we are.
It asks us to look at what’s working, who we think we are, what we’re attached to, and how we value ourselves - and not just in the first weeks and months of motherhood, but over and over again.
(In fact, it’s kind of never ending. But don’t let that put you off!)
But as we peel back those layers of identity and attachment, what does that leave?
As my guest this week - author, mama and now children’s book creator Amy Molloy - says:
If I’m not that person, then who am I?
This podcast is a reminder that we never stop asking ourselves this question - and that’s OK.
With each new layer we peel back, we’re getting closer to our true self.
You can contribute to the funding of Amy’s new amazing children’s book that also deeply supports and benefits the parent reading it (when we really need it the most) here.
Early motherhood brings a total shift of focus - from you as a woman and a partner, to Mother. We get that. We know that’s part of the process.
But after a while, you begin to realise that maybe, just maybe, you need to start shifting that focus back onto yourself a little - and your relationship. How do you reunite again, after being so focused on being a mama? How does the massive shift inside you translate to how you feel about your partner?
Over the years, the strain of trying to be Super Woman and juggle all the things began to show in my relationship. There were many times when I was filled with resentment that I was the one who shouldered so much. We both did our best, but it wasn't what it should be.
And I didn't know how to reconnect in a new way.
That is, until a simple sentence explaining what we, as women, really need began to change it all.
In this episode, I honestly share how things have changed in my relationship, and invite you to join in a special short...
It’s so easy to decide that now is not the right time.
Motherhood, household chores, school holidays, deadlines, illnesses… there’s always something. Always.
But we have two choices -
We can choose to keep putting ourselves on hold, waiting for that perfect moment when everything lines up and the heavens open for us to GET A MINUTE TO OURSELVES…
Or we can choose to do it anyway.
We can decide that it’s good enough for now.
Today on the podcast, I was inspired to record something for you after a recent coaching session. This mama, at home with two young boys, was telling me how she decided to listen to one of my meditations in the car - even with her son in the back, watching Paw Patrol.
And in this decision, she chose to honour herself - as a woman. Beyond being a mama.
Where have they gone?
Where have those milestones, those celebrations, those INITIATIONS of womanhood gone?
They have become invisible. Forgotten and push-aside for a faster paced life. A life where we are all meant to be the same, all of the time.
To honour motherhood differently, we need to honour womanhood differently. They go hand in hand.
To change the way women feel about being a mother, we need to change the way we initiate them into the very beginnings of this whole experience:
becoming a woman, then becoming a mama, then when our children leave home, then when evolve again in menopause.
These are the initiations we have forgotten.
But the invitation is there for you now, mama...
what do you need to be honoured?
and can you give that to yourself, or seek it out, now?