The Motherhood Evolution with Suzi Lula – Part 2
Posted on July 5, 2017
In Part 1 of my interview with Suzi Lula, we talked about her philosophy of The Motherhood Evolution. We hope you enjoy Part 2 as well.
1. Our wellness is directly affected by our relationships and the personalities of our children. We all know that. So how can we hold our own through challenging times with partners and kids? Is it even possible?
This is “the” question, isn’t it, Roma? One of the reasons that self-care is so important to commit and dedicate ourselves to on a daily basis and as a way of life is that we practice it on the days when we aren’t challenged with our children so that we have the bandwidth when we are challenged….because life will bring us situations and challenges to learn through and grow through. Self-care is the technology that creates the inner bandwidth to weather the “storms” that life will bring us as mothers with our children. Self-care allows us to be the “calm in the storm,” and isn’t this what we want and what our children want from us?
2. In the United States alone, approximately 600,000 women are affected by postpartum depression every year. What can pregnant women and new moms do to reduce that statistic?
That’s such an important question, Roma, and I’m so glad you asked it. Rarely does a day go by that I don’t encounter a mother who feels depressed, exhausted, disconnected, hormonal, someone who’s experiencing postpartum depression.
Yes, we can absolutely eradicate it. It starts by talking about it. Postpartum depression carries with it a veil of shame. Our culture teaches us that motherhood is supposed to look shiny, with the image of a white-picket fence, 2.5 kids, and the right car in the driveway. We don’t talk about anything “shadowy.”
But it’s time to take postpartum depression and the shadow side of motherhood out of the closet where we have neatly tucked it away. Only then can we take away its power.
One of the tenets of my work with self-care is to remove all sense of shame on the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual level.
3. Many of us are wearing both pants and skirts today. We are career driven yet try to look pretty while taking care of our kids and homes. Being spread so thin contributes to the lack of mothers paying attention to self-care, don’t you think?
“Wearing both pants and skirts today!” This is so true, Roma! This absolutely contributes the issue. And it goes deeper as well.
We value the doing, the activity, the tasks of motherhood over our being, our essence, our spirit, our presence. We value what we do over who we are.
We have been taught to value the cleaning of our house and the promotion and salary of a job over the quality of our life. Not that both aren’t important. They are.
When we learn to value our being over our doing (which comes from a self=care practice), then the “me” that I bring when I put on my skirt or my pants is a richer me, a more connected me, a more fulfilled me, a more joyful, fun, inspired, purposeful, thriving me! And I bring that rich quality of being to what I’m “doing.” This is what our children want to feel from us!
Also, we think that there’s not enough time in a day to practice self-care. In this way of being, we are then operating from a place of lack: not enough time, not enough support, not enough patience. We then are constantly telling our children, “Hurry up to get out to the door. Hurry up and brush your teeth. Hurry up and get to bed. Hurry up.” This is teaching them lack.
But the practice of self-care actually does the opposite. It takes us from a paradigm of lack into a paradigm of abundance. When we take 15 minutes or 30 minutes to truly nourish our spirit, time expands: Our heart expands, our patience expands, our peace expands, our vibration elevates, and the me I bring into the rest of my day, or the me I bring into my relationship with my son, is completely different. I am a different individual! This is why self-care is priceless to me. There’s no price tag I can put on myself when I am thriving and my son feels this coming from me.
The payoff I get from 20 minutes is exponential. Self-care is a portal that moves us from a place of lack to a place of abundance.
This cultivates a healthy sense of self-esteem, because when we take the time to nourish our bodies, our emotions, and our dreams, it feels good.
(As a side note, I absolutely believe that self-care will end all bullying. That’s another entire article and interview, I know! But when we as mothers “feel good” about ourselves, we develop a healthy sense of self-esteem. We model this to our children, and our children feel good about who they are. An individual who feels good about themselves doesn’t bully.)
4. You call your mission a movement. Do you feel The Motherhood Evolution is like global new-age women’s movements in any way?
Yes, I believe it is a new movement based on “ancient wisdom” teachings. The teachings of indigenous cultures that say connection, relationship, and quality of life are the most important things we are all seeking. We have such a short time with our children… let’s make it count
Mothers, women, innately have the gift of nurturing, connection, and peacemaking, and our gifts have been overshadowed and discarded in a widely masculine society. It’s time for women and mothers to value our feminine power and even more importantly our spiritual power.
I say that mothers are the untapped spiritual powerhouse on the planet right now. Just think of the moment you met your child for the first time. Think of this connection that you would die for. This is spiritual power, and our time is now to step fully into it. Think of what we’re passing on to our children and how we’re affecting the next seven generation on the planet.
5. You say that “self-care isn’t for the faint of heart.” I totally agree! So how can women who find it challenging to take care of themselves make their first steps in that direction?
Taking the time to slice an avocado, taking the time to cultivate spiritual practices that truly nourish us, learning the language of self-compassion… there’s nothing more important than creating a relationship with yourself that is connected, peaceful, self-accepting. It takes courage to do this in the midst of all that we have to do as mothers for our children: the laundry, dinner, working, taking them to gymnastics, dance, piano, violin, and so on.
We teach people how to treat us. Cultivating the courage to say to your family and friends, “I am committed and dedicated to caring for myself first” teaches others that it’s good for both of us.
I call it mutuality. It’s mutually beneficial. If I’m caring for myself and am fulfilled, I have an overflow of energy, vitality, bandwidth, inspiration, for those around me. This is good for me, and this is also good for my children. It’s mutually beneficial. When I am fulfilled from the inside, it will always be mutually beneficial for those around me. When I feel good in my own skin, when I learn what my needs are, how to ask for what I need, when I learn about boundaries, and I feel good, and I walk into a room, everyone feels how good I feel. Without saying a word, they feel good because I feel good.
Self-care is a mental shift from thinking that self-care is selfish to self-care is the most important gift I can give myself and certainly the greatest gift I can give my children.
We want to belong, so often we don’t want to be the first one in our group to say that I believe in taking care of myself first, I don’t feel guilty at all! So, that’s why I’m saying it for everyone! Your children will thank you for it!
So how can we take the first step?
Mothers set the spiritual tone in the home. To start, we want to take many, simple, easy doable steps. This starts with reprioritizing.
When my son was young, I became very clear that cleaning my house was secondary to my mood and the tone in my home. So I would forego cleaning and put on a piece of music and dance, light candles, take breaks, cut fresh flowers. I invested in the tone of my home, taking a moment for myself, and modeling this to my son. Every mother is looking for her “pause,” and the best thing to do when we need that pause is to show our children how to de-escalate: Go to a chair, take a few deep breaths, de-escalate.
This is a practice, a process, and it takes time and investment, but the results are priceless!
Learn more about The Motherhood Evolution at www.SuziLula.com.Tweet