I have been talking to a lot of people in person, and online lately about the concept of the 4th trimester. What I hear over and over and over again are mothers, and parents who wish they would’ve known more about the fourth trimester when they were pregnant, or just earlier in their transition to parenthood. What I have realized is that we need to continue to spread the love and the awareness about the 4th trimester and how vital it is for our physical, mental, and emotional healing.
I am so fortunate that I was introduced to this topic during my first pregnancy. I will tell you that I definitely still pushed my recovery, because I wanted to be tough for everybody… blah blah blah…But I shouldn’t have cared about that. I felt fantastic, but I know that the time that I spent bonding and connecting with my new family unit was more important than anything else I could’ve been doing.
Another big mindset block that kept getting brought up with other parents, was the fact that people just felt like they didn’t have a say in what their recovery would look like. They just figured that however their body responded, that’s what they would pay attention to and they would just do the best they could. The 4th trimester is complicated, but also simple at the same time.
I know that there are and endless number of parents that would benefit from preparing for a 4th trimester, which is why I have developed my course, Creating your 4th Trimester. But before that, I created a list of four mindset shifts that need to happen before you can prepare for a fourth trimester.
The first of these four, is what I want to talk to you about today.
You are not alone.
Now, I know that it can feel like you are. There are times where I have felt completely abandoned, alone, isolated… but during those times I have realized that I am maybe not reaching out and also doing my part. There is so much that can be done about preparing your own tribe early on in pregnancy, that we really need to start now.
Years and years ago, we stayed with family longer. Generations took care of generations, and we lived in these big family units where parents had more help than they do now. Technology and other opportunities have made it so the families live farther apart, which is good and fine… But we do need to make up, or attempt to make up the difference and find our tribes wherever we are.
These tribes can be neighborhood groups, friends, family, parent groups, organizations at your doctor’s offices, counselors, clubs, anywhere or you can find people who understand you and who will be there for you. It’s ideal that these relations are person to person,… Like finding somebody who can actually reach out and give you a big hug. but sometimes there are cases where we need to seek help online. There are great social interactions that can happen online, you just need to know where to look… And know when to step away when things get toxic… Just like in real life.
What is really important, is that we do an inventory of our tribe early on… Before we are desperate for their help and attention. Reach out to those around you who you feel comfortable with, make a note of people who make you feel good, and who have made an effort to serve you in the past. See what groups you are currently involved in, and ask those that you trust around you to help you find other groups that may be of benefit to you.
We are so so so not meant to parent alone. There are a lot of hard things that I can do by myself, I am resilient and strong, but I also know when I need help… And that is a strength in itself.
I encourage you to find the people that you feel comfortable reaching out to. And maybe let them know that you might call on them in the future. People love to serve, and most everyone loves to feel needed, so don’t be afraid to reach out.
You are not alone.
If you are feeling alone, please reach out to me. I’m sure that we can find something that will make a difference… And I will be here for you.