Joy. Overwhelmed. Frustration. Loneliness. Happiness. Confusion. Fulfilled.
These are just some of the words that described how I felt after the birth of my daughter.
Most new mothers are challenged to reconcile the reality of motherhood and its unrelenting emotional and physical demands with the pre-natal blissful dreams they once entertained. As a new, first-time mother I was no different. Motherhood came with feelings and thoughts that were in stark contrast to the dreams and expectations I had cherished before my daughter was born. Though I loved her beyond expectation and belief, I found myself becoming anxious, nervous, lonely, and yes, bored with my new life. I had no support around me having recently moved to York Region – and no friends who had babies. My husband worked and I found myself becoming socially isolated and trapped within my home. Even worse, I felt like no one really understood what I was going through.
I was lucky to be connected to York Region Public Health where I was able to participate in the Transition to Parenting program, however once this program was over I was once again in the same situation – no one to go with for a stroller walk or to arrange a play date.
In 2008, between bouts of crying, coping with anti-climactic disappointment, and feelings of elation, I reached out to the internet community for companionship and support. I wanted to be connected with other new moms who lived in my area but all I could find were out-dated articles and information on parenting groups. I wanted to connect with real moms. I wanted to be able to talk with them face to face and feel a sense of support. Since nothing was available I had the idea for an organization to help new parents—particularly new moms—and Life With A Baby was born. New mothers began to connect through the LWAB website and its discussion forums; we attended social events that offered peer support, speaker series, and workshops. Most importantly, through LWAB we enjoyed real personal connections that helped us as new parents to navigate the uncharted ever-changing course of life with a baby.
The most rewarding part of this journey is seeing the parents who took part and benefited from the program starting to organize LWAB chapters in their communities, volunteering and leading workshops in their areas. Our core team of eight is made up of amazing committed moms who are as passionate about the program as I am and committed to moving the program forward.
At Healthy Start Healthy Future, as our babies grow, we grow; as our babies change, we change. Like you, we simply adjust every facet of our lives to embrace life with a baby. Let’s continue to support each other as we take on this enjoyable and exciting journey together.