Every month we talk to a wonderful mummy that you might recognise, about her journey from girl-about-town to stylish mummy. This month I chatted to the lovely Emma, who is a mum of 5 (she knows a thing or two) and is the brains behind @Mothering _it. Her platform aims to empower modern mothers (a bit like mine) and share the good, the bad and the everything in between side other parenthood. Her grid is often very raw and honest, and she is currently covering her postpartum journey in a really beautiful and open way.
What would be your one tip to a pregnant first time mum?
Trust your instincts, listen to your emotions, your feelings, know that you know best for your body and baby.
How did you prepare for your baby’s birth? Is there anything you would do differently?
My first two births I did no preparation all I was used to hearing was other people’s horror stories from labour. I think buried my head in the sand and thought it was ok to just expect an awful and traumatic experience.
With my third, fourth and fifth babies I learnt from my first two that birth is the most empowering experience, that you can have choices and can have a positive experience- even if things don’t go as planned or envisioned. I found hypnobirthing and learning to listen to my body and researching how our bodies birth really helped me understand and to feel in control.
What is your must have hospital bag item?
Drink with a straw! Drinking water helps your cervix to dilate*(this isn't medically proven) and using a straw helps with your breathing.
Describe your birth experience in five words.
Empowering, beautiful, unique, exciting, healing
Those early days of motherhood can be quite lonely, what did you do for emotional, physical and practical support?
Gosh with my first to third baby I have a very different answer to the mum of a fifth baby.
I felt very alone as a first, second, third time mum. I thought no one else experienced the things I did- I thought it was abnormal to have bad days or bad feelings. So I did it all alone pretending I was fine. Which resulted in me having postnatal depression.
So when I fell pregnant 4th & 5th time I knew I had to help myself. I reached out to my friends and I talked, I started my social media account so I could get support and give support. I started being honest with myself and that for me was the start of recovery and finding a comfort.
I don’t have much physical support around me other than my husband now, but we work together and do the best we can. I’m always honest with him and we are quick to forgive each other on a tired day.
As a woman your body changes so much through pregnancy, birth and postnatally. How did you find dressing for your new shape? What are your top tips for dressing a bump and then postnatally?
Winter time wet look leggings and a big baggy jumper with trainers or boots.
Summer stretchy puff sleeve milkmaid style dresses perfect for feeding and postpartum!
Also a good pair of high waisted jeans size up and use a hair Band during pregnancy/postpartum to expand them with an oversized tee shirt. Saves buying maternity jeans if you don’t need to and also allows extra room for postpartum.
For many women their confidence can dip after having a baby, what advice can you give new mums to boost their self-esteem?
Oh it really can- I’m right there now in that dip. Keep looking after yourself, do things that make you feel good and keep talking. Your feelings are valid.
As a mummy it can be hard to fit in ‘me time’, how do you make sure you get yours?
This is something that has taken me years to learn. By saying no and making myself a priority so that I can keep all the wheels turning I know my cup has to be full.
Even if it’s a five minute shower, making something to eat, seeing a friend, taking a phone call in peace- it matters. Setting boundaries and making yourself a priority without letting guilt or fear of what someone might think of you get in the way. Do you, be happy and let yourself feel well. Happy mum, happy baby
What are your must have products for Mums?
Pk beau changing bag
Elvie Breast pump
Mumbabra maternity bras
You can follow Emma on Instagram @mothering_it