With Mother’s Day just behind us, it is impossible not to think about how mothers grow into their role.
So often in our culture, we expect mothers to “just know” and to magically be able to parent perfectly. This is not a realistic standard for anyone, and increasingly, we are seeing many moms struggling with depression, anxiety, and feelings of overwhelm because they simply do not know what to do and don’t have a community they can connect with to figure things out.
That’s where Happy Moms, Happy Babes enters the picture.
Laquasha and Kara have collaborated to develop a group focused on building connections among expecting moms while also teaching skills for how to reduce stress and respond effectively to the situations that they have to face.
Laquasha has been working with high risk mamas for three years both before and after delivery. She specializes in connecting expecting moms with resources and teaching them skills for how to manage the ups and downs and unpredictability of life.
Similarly, Kara has been working intensively with parents with high risk children and has been helping both the parents and children learn skills on how to cope with distress and how to deescalate their emotions.
In Happy Moms, Happy Babes, Kara and Laquasha bring their unique skillset together to provide a supportive environment for moms to be able to learn mindfulness, relaxation, and compassion for themselves and their role.
Research has shown that social support is the best resource for reducing stress during pregnancy as well as the later symptoms of postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety.
Talking with other expecting moms who share many of the same experiences and feelings will promote and enhance social well-being.
There is also an overwhelming amount of research documenting the importance of mindfulness in reducing stress. Mindfulness is focused awareness on the present moment while calmly acknowledging and accepting how you are feeling without judgment.
Overall, practicing mindfulness can help us regulate our fight or flight response and reduce stress reactions in our bodies.
Hesitant or unsure if this is true? Check your heart rate now by placing two fingers on the pulse found at the base of your wrist. Then, check it again after this exercise:
· Recline or sit in a comfortable position with one hand on your diaphragm (the part of your stomach right below your ribcage).
· Take a smooth, long breath through your nose for 3 seconds.
· Raise your diaphragm and fill your lungs to about 75% capacity.
· Hold the breath for 1 second.
· Exhale slowly through your mouth for 4 seconds.
· Pause for 1 second before taking your next breath.
· Maintain focus on your breathing.
· If your mind wanders, just refocus on your breathing.
· Continue for 1 minute.
*** Don’t forget to recheck your pulse! If you can see a change in one minute, imagine what regularly practicing this could do!
Many women enjoy motherhood and all that it has to offer. However, the journey can be difficult.
The purpose of the Happy Moms Happy Babes group program is to provide expecting moms with education, emotional support, and stress reduction techniques to help manage potential risks of stress during pregnancy while also offering the chance to build a community of moms.
Limited spots available. Please register today via firstname.lastname@example.org
Sessions start Monday, June 7 from 11:30-12:30; cost is $10 per session; 9 sessions total