make it stop

**Trigger ALERT**

Please be aware that this post is about things that may or may not trigger deep emotions and reactions in some people, especially those with a history of Post Partum Depression. If you feel that you are not ready to read this post, please don't.

Today I am full of so many emotions, that the only way I seem to be able to cope with any of them is to kind of turn them all off and be numb. And when I do find the strength to deal with my feelings, the one emotion that keeps rising to the top is ANGER!

I AM MAD!

REALLY, REALLY MAD!!

You see... {brace yourself}

I found out today that a girl I once knew, a girl I worked with, a girl whose wedding I attended...

Smothered and killed her four-month old baby boy.

I am sorry, but yes, this tragedy happened yesterday. I don't have all the details. All I know is that a child is dead, another has lost a baby brother and likely a mother too and a husband and father is grieving so much that my heart is breaking into a million pieces for him.

Am I mad at this girl that I once knew?

NO.

No, I really am not. I feel such profound sadness for her that I hardly know what to do.

So who exactly am I mad at?

Well, let's see...

How about MAINSTREAM MEDIA!

This morning when I first saw the cover of the May edition of TIME Magazine, I was a bit angry. Now, I am SPITTING ANGRY! Are you fucking kidding me TIME editors?

"Are you MOM ENOUGH?"

WHY? Why are you asking this question? Why do mothers have to prove themselves? Why do we have to be perfect? Is there a quiz at the end of this gig that I was not aware of? WHO THE FUCK IS KEEPING SCORE?

And why?

Whose ideals are moms supposed to be living up to? Since when do we all have to be the 'yummy mummy'? Or the stay-at-home, make all the perfect snacks and crafts on Pinterest, make sure my kids are all in the right classes, have the right clothes, are in the right diapers, eating the right foods, I-am-going-to-go-insane-if-I-have-to-keep-up-with-this-facade-of-perfection-and-plaster-this-stupid-smile-on-my-face-all-the-time MOMMY!!

Because you know what, this IS exactly what is happening.

Moms are suffering. And a lot of them are doing so in silence. We get told it is normal to feel the 'baby blues', that this is OK and it should pass. We are supposed to be tired, that is what waking up every 2 hours to feed a tiny new person does to you. But what if it is more? What if the blues don't pass? What if you don't feel that immediate connection with your baby? What if you are so far gone into that deep, dark place that you don't even realize the harm you may be doing to yourself and potentially to your child? What if  you are one of the 1 in 5 mothers that has post partum depression and really NEEDS HELP?

And yet, you still put on a happy face. You still tell everyone that you are fine. That the baby is fine. You go through the motions and forget the emotions, because they are too much for you. Too much guilt, too much pain, too much stress, too many diapers, too much crying, too much EVERYTHING.

And compounding this is what?

Magazine covers asking you if you are "MOM ENOUGH?"

Book covers telling you that motherhood is undermining your status as a women.

Newspaper articles and blog posts constantly pitting one group of moms against another, fuelling these so-called "mommy wars".

Don't they get it?

Don't they know that there is already a war being fought by so many? Up to 20% of new moms are fighting a war that many are not even fully aware is even happening.

And deep, dark, horrific battles are being lost by the most unfortunate of these brave warriors.

So tonight I am asking everyone...

CAN WE PLEASE STOP FIGHTING WITH EACH OTHER!!

Stop comparing your way to my way.

Stop looking at that other mom and thinking that you should be anything LIKE her or that your child should be anything like hers.

Stop posting 'link bait' on your sites or Facebook to get the page views and comments that inevitably start more battles in this useless war.

Can we please instead....

START to really see each other for what we are.

Start LISTENING to the answers we get when we ask a new mom how she is doing. Is she really 'fine'?

Start LOOKING at each other without the veil of judgement clouding our vision.

Start SHARING our mothering journeys, the good roads and the bad ones, without fear or shame or guilt.

Mamas, if I have learned anything in my journey through motherhood so far, it is this.

While it may indeed take a village to raise a child, it takes a whole TRIBE to raise a MOTHER!

And whether that tribe is an online one or a local moms-group or a family, that tribe can lift her up or they can tear her down. With their words, their comments, their actions and yes, even their inactions.

I choose tonight to be part of the TRIBE that lifts mothers up.

I choose to LISTEN, to SUPPORT, and to SEE mothers. In all their beautiful glory and yes, in all their not so perfect and glorious times too.

Because, in those not so glorious times...

THAT IS WHEN A MOTHER REALLY NEEDS TO BE SEEN AND HEARD!

So tonight, I don't care about what is on the cover of TIME or who is shocked by it and all the rest of the noise that is cluttering my online spaces.

And I am not mad anymore.

Tonight I am mourning the loss of a little baby boy and the tragedy that surrounds his family.

And I am wondering if his mother had a tribe of her own really listening to her and seeing what was going on, before it was too late.

 

All I ask is that we do a bit of a better job taking care of each other.

That is what the Tribe of Motherhood is to me.

Love and light to you all,

Natasha~