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Introduction to motherhood

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Do you remember a time in your life when your mood changed rapidly, you were on an emotional roller coaster, and your body changed and grew in various places?

A time when so much was new that you first needed to figure out who you are and what you want?

It was probably something like that for you in puberty, right?

But we mean a different phase. Namely, the phase in life when a woman becomes a mother - from motherhood.

Two topics make our hearts beat faster: birth and motherhood

The term was coined by us and based on the English term "Matrescence like Adolescence", i.e. motherhood like puberty.

Motherhood doesn't happen overnight or even in nine months. And unfortunately, unlike with puberty, almost nobody knows that. Instead, you are expected to know exactly what to do by the time your child is born, at the very latest. After all, you are a woman, so being a mother should be innate to you. You have to feel the greatest love at first sight and know instinctively what exactly your child needs. All of this is expected while your body and soul feel unlike how they’ve ever felt before.

This can be quite unsettling when you don't feel the way you're expected to, either by yourself or by others. As an added bonus that comes with your new role, many also experience a constant sense of guilt.

Scientists have found that mothers' brains change so much that a computer can use brain scans to predict with 100% accuracy whether the image is of a mother's brain or not. This enormous remodeling process usually only occurs during puberty.

Why has nobody told us this?!

For a significant period, research had neglected to focus on women, and mothers were only of interest, if at all, when examining their impact on children's development. However, the inner experiences of women undergoing the transformative journey of motherhood were largely disregarded.

It is high time for change! We aim to make that change!

We strongly believe that when we acknowledge the profound transformation women undergo when becoming mothers, our journey will become significantly smoother. Embracing this new role and getting to know the new people in our lives, including the baby and ourselves, takes time. This experience can be tumultuous, intense, and occasionally uncomfortable, representing a substantial period of personal growth.

Patience, compassion, and, above all, support are indispensable. Just as we provide assistance to adolescents today because we understand the challenges they face and how vulnerable that time can be, we also need similar understanding and support for mothers.

We need a language, a term, to precisely describe this phase. This terminology allows us to communicate with others and recognize that this experience is not just individual but shared by many. Language promotes visibility and connection. This term should convey that it's entirely normal to feel disoriented, overwhelmed, and yet profoundly happy as you navigate this journey.

Our message to you is this:

You are absolutely fine if, during the first few months or even years, you repeatedly feel unprepared for motherhood, experience exhaustion, seek support, and need to take breaks. You are not alone, and it's totally okay to ask for help and take time for yourself.

Be patient:

We are not mothers, we become mothers!

And that takes time and, above all, support!

Magazine

The "village" around us

Autorin Annika Brix

"It takes a village to raise a child." The meaning of this very simple phrase will only become clear to you once you have children. The wonderful Annika Brix (doula & co-founder of Oracelle) wrote about this topic for us. The result is a highly emotional article that will bring tears to every mom's eyes because it encapsulates this sentence so vividly.

Written by

Schwesterherzen Doulas

We are Sarah, 32, and Natalia, 37, sisters and colleagues. We provide emotional support to pregnant women and couples during pregnancy, childbirth, and the early postpartum period as doulas. Our own (rather suboptimal) experience a few years ago ignited in us the desire to support women/couples as well as possible during this unique and formative time.

We have personally experienced that important information is not always easily accessible, sometimes even contradictory, and that there are still many taboos and myths surrounding becoming a parent. It is a vulnerable phase in which we rely on reliable and loving support. Therefore, it is a heartfelt concern for us to positively influence this time through our work.

During our regular research on topics related to parenthood, we came across the term "Matrescence" two years ago and immediately knew that the knowledge about it has enormous potential to fundamentally change our perception of motherhood and significantly improve the experience of mothers.

The intense feelings, personal development, and disorientation that many of us feel when becoming mothers - all of that is normal! It is a genuine developmental phase that we have given the (Germanized) name 'Muttertät.'

Warm regards from Munich,

Natalia + Sarah

Profiles we love and recommend

@schwesterherzen.doulas

Here you will find plenty of doula knowledge and support on the "Journey to Motherhood".

@reflectingmotherhood

Annika reflects on motherhood on her account and takes you along on this incredibly emotional journey.