mom on maternity leave

Dear Urban Mamma, mom on maternity leave

Dear Urban Mamma,

MAMMA GOALS

(deep breath…. Here I go)

Either you’re about to go on maternity leave, or are experiencing those last few golden moments before your new bundle of joy comes into the world. Maternity leave is your golden time and here’s a little love note especially for you

I love you! I know we’ve never met, and we haven’t had a chance to bond over an almond chai (I SO love them) but I feel like I know you. After all, if I’m going through something, chances are it’s not unique to me. Starting this blog has been a dream of mine whilst also evoking a lot of fear which I have conveniently hidden behind. A fear of putting myself out there owning what I believe, the way I want to live and, at my very core, being me without having to be perfect all the time! I can’t live another moment this way – constantly being afraid of what people might think or pretending to have my shizzle together when on the inside it all feels like a game of make believe. My little boy is on the way and he deserves a Mamma who is living wholeheartedly (thank you Brene Brown)!

first day of maternity leave

Today is the first day of my maternity leave; something I never thought would happen. From the age of 16 and as recently as 12 months ago, many medical professionals told me I would never be able to have children. In fact, the word “impossible” was used (I guess medicine isn’t an exact science!). This news wasn’t a problem for me. I wasn’t clucky, I didn’t want kids (or so I thought) and I had other more ‘important’ things to focus on. Life felt fine most of the time but, in moments where I wasn’t busy, a nagging voice would question my validity as a ‘real woman’. The solution was simple, make my life about my career – the only place I have ever felt safe and most in control.  I sacrificed a lot for ‘work’ but now, at 38 weeks pregnant, I’ve realised living the highest expression of myself is the most important purpose in life and not the career I was building or the collection of Chanel jewellery in my cupboard. Becoming a Mamma is breath-taking and I’m super excited to meet my little man!

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t need the pendulum to swing all the way into the land of mummy obsession. I’m reluctant to make my baby my life as I believe my role as his Mamma is to love, empower and provide a space where he can freely become the man he is destined to be while continuing to live my best life of which he is an integral part. To be the best Urban Mamma I can be, I need to be fulfilled from the inside out and live the life I dream in my heart. Although I might be a little ambitious (and naïve) in my approach, I see motherhood as an opportunity to embrace my femininity, reactivate my spiritual practices, cultivate a positive and happy soul, desire and love my partner, recreate my strong, healthy, sexy body and get my home organised (oh and grow my cooking ability which is pretty basic right now! I spend so much money at farmers markets only to have my fridge act like a morgue for all things groceries).

I have always been independent – a bit of a loner, never feeling comfortable to let people in. I have sought control over connection, pushing over purpose and fear over faith. This approach has provided a certain level of success and was right for me at the time, yet I have realised it has been my greatest glass ceiling. It came at the cost of burn out, a divorce and shallow friendships.  I am ready for change! I’m ready to break through my own ceiling, to connect and let people in. If I’m going to live and enjoy a rich, healthy, happy and connected life I can’t do it alone. They say it takes a village to raise a child, and I believe it also takes a village to raise a Mamma and this is the reason I started Urban Mamma.

a new side hustle

My dream for Urban Mamma is to create a place for over a million Mamma’s to come together across the world.  A place where we can share stories, tips and insights, inspire each other to create happy healthy bodies, relationships, families and homes. Most importantly, a place to hang out be friends and celebrate one another for our differences and craziness.

There is power in women coming together, there is power in the collective but I never thought I needed a bunch of women in my life – it was always something I didn’t have time to focus on (after all I was waaaaaaaay too busy for that stuff…. AKA I was fearful and didn’t know how to navigate the nuances of female friendship).

Now, as I feel the first threads of the fabric of being a Mamma and having met some incredible women, I believe in the power of sisterhood (don’t roll your eyes) and motherhood. Not in a feminist, burn your bra, rule the world kind of way but in a spirit of love and friendship.  I have experienced such a profound shift already and I haven’t even given birth yet.  I can only imagine what it will be like when I hold him in my arms – be prepared to see a lot of pics.  A Mamma is entitled to brag! Being on maternity leave has given an opportunity to dream and ponder.

what can we achieve together?

Imagine the impact we could have on this beautiful world if we came together in developing ripples of love for ourselves, happiness and kindness in our homes and an acceptance of how each of us decide how to parent. Imagine being surrounded by Mammas who want to hack the system and enjoy motherhood without the baggage of their own upbringing. There are so many homes having lost the essence of love and family and too many children not knowing their worth and value. This must change.

The only way to do this is to be real and for this reason Urban Mamma will be an honest account of embracing motherhood and what is actually happening in my life, not some Instagram fabulous perception engineered to generate ‘likes’.

Surrendering to this next chapter of my life has been a challenge – saying goodbye to work for now, releasing the vision I had of who I would be and even the dynamic between the myself and the man I love. I accept this is where I am and will use this blog to embrace the truth of my deepest calling and I want you on this journey with me so we can share, learn and grow together.

I hope Urban Mamma becomes a place where friendships are made, magic moments are experienced, and individuality is embraced. A place where cooking disasters are laughed at, non-toxic cleaning products are researched and houghnuts are simply a way of eating.  I aim to re-wild the definition of motherhood, debunk the myths around how mothering should be and most importantly create a place where we get to document our own unique stories, inspire each other to be good to our bodies and thrive in each stage of being a Mamma.

In my first step of being real, raw and honest I would like to make these promises… to always be myself. To share my beliefs no matter how ‘earthy’ they may be or how I think I will be perceived, to not sugar coat things (coconut sugar of course) and, most importantly, to follow my heart and be the real me. There is no perfection in life; only moments of healthy happy and sometimes messy living.

So Urban Mamma, join me in creating this community and let’s have a wild time together as we enjoy our maternity leave.  In the comments below, let me know who you are and what being a Mamma means to you. Have you had a similar journey to me?  Let’s invite other mammas to join us and together create happy healthy bodies, families, homes and self.

Want to read more? Read How to Prepare for Labour

Much love,

AKA Urban Mamma

(Exhale…. Ahhhh I did it. I took a step towards living the next chapter of my life)

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