Updated: Aug 4, 2020
By Charlotte Pointeaux, Certified Womxn's Life Coach, Sacred Circle Holder and author of Simply Sacred Self-Care
Wow. My mind has been a swirling messy flowy stream of ideas since I reached the end of my first trimester at approximately easter time last year. Once the sickness and surprise of my third pregnancy subsided, a surging rush of creative life force overtook me, and has been with me ever since….
Even during the hazy newborn days the ideas would flow, popping like bubbles in my brain in the quietest of moments during the night whilst I would feed my baby, when my mind wandered aimlessly, particularly when I was frozen to the spot unable to “do” anything because the milk feeds were slow and steady.
There’s something particularly magickal about that...
That as we become a mother, either for the first time or the next time, when we're battling the urge to do, do, do as we women are conditioned to, instead have to surrender into the very present moment with our baby and our new selves, because the baby essentially pins us to the spot and forces us to STOP.
Feeds, sleeps, nappy changes, the odd bath, repeat. It often feels like such a monotonous period, whether this is a source of joy or frustration to you. The early weeks are a rolling blur as we adjust to the newly birthed baby, and the newly re-birthed mother. During this phase I find myself feeding my little one in a quiet reverie. Before they’re old enough to hold my hand and gaze lovingly into my eyes as they feed, I find myself without much to fixate on. And so my mind wanders…
In these moments I’ve had such striking clarity, deep insights, personal revelations, shocking epiphanies and genius strokes land.
Reflections on all kinds of things, from how I’m truly feeling about a situation with pinpoint accuracy, when before all I could feel was unease, to creative business ideas, to heart-striking truths about what I really want and don’t want, to niggling suggestions about better ways to do things with greater integrity or potency. All the ways my life no longer aligned, and all the things I most craved and desired become crystal clear. Amongst savouring the milky moments, and feeling into the intensity of the highs and lows of new motherhood; when my mind truly surrendered and stopped forcing, when I was ready to receive, inspiration flowed.
This week has been challenging me.
I’m in the midst of the four month sleep regression which I am SURE is a real thing (hello 2 hourly wakings around the clock, goodbye settled bub for the entire 6pm-midnight stretch!), It’s felt hard, and I’ve been leaning heavily on self-compassion as a self-care tool, and the knowing that the adage “this too shall pass” is 100% true.
Sleep will return, experience tells me this is true. However, when you’re deep in the fog of sleeplessness, coupled with pre-school aged kids waking and taking FOREVER to fall asleep at night, frustration can be thick, and sticky, and intoxicating. If left unchecked it cloys to your awareness, chokes your perspective, strangles your normally grounded mind. Self-compassion steps in to remind me that this really is just a sticky phase, it will pass, all is not lost, it won’t always be like this.
This reminder slips down more easily when you can gift it to yourself, yet can feel unsympathetic and unhelpful when coming from an outsider, such as the well-meaning neighbour who has long forgotten what the throes of new motherhood feel like. But remember, she knows all too well how it feels to have grown babies who don’t need you anymore, her heart longs for those precious, intense moments where you are your baby’s entire world, where their eyes and fingers and hearts lock onto yours. She has wisdom, and perspective, even if it feels irritating to receive right now. And so, instead of looking outwards, it’s truly a skill to gift yourself self-compassion in these moments, and self-compassion is your best friend.
The same applies to honouring our creative flow in this creation phase.
It can feel super frustrating when our physical energy is dormant (akin to our inner winter) whilst our creativity bursts forth into new life (like our inner spring). This flux leaves us desiring to move, and make, and think, and express, but we don’t possess the physical energy to back it up. I feel like the postpartum period sits us on the fence, swaying back and forth between our inner winter and spring phases, not knowing quite which way to land. Which is actually in turn a gift - we can use this to our advantage.
As our energy waxes and wanes, ebbs and flows, it’s an invitation to surrender. Deeper than you ever have. Just when you think you’ve surrendered, you’re being called to drop in some more. More? Yes, more...
Rest when your energy drops.
Let go of all the shoulds, just let that shit go.
House work? Shopping? Tidying up? Showering and dressing, even, if it feels too hard, just let it go.
Well then tend to those cares, but just enough to feel better.
But caution, if these cares spill into obligation, resentment or bitterness you know you’ve gone too far into victimhood, and martyrdom.
It’s too easily done, and BOY have I spent a lot of time and energy in these dark, dark places. Trust me when I say it does not support you to revel like a pig in victimhood and martyrdom.
Instead, wwith gentle, loving compassion, ask yourself “what will happen if I don’t do the dishes / washing / shopping / see that friend or shower right now?”
If it can wait, then do and let that shit go. Friends understand. They’ll still be there for you when you actually have the energy to see them. And enjoy how goooooood it feels to roll into bed when the baby naps, without the expectation of sleep, only to enjoy some peace. Play some soft music, read a few pages, light a candle or burn incense. Just pop the phone away, and savour the moments you have to yourself.
In these quiet gifts of time comes the inspiration.
When you don’t force it, the quality creativity flows.
I find the more I puzzle on something, or allow frustration to build when I just really want to spend some time being creative, then the worse my actual output is.
The creative juices will flow, just in the quieter moments, of which there are so many when you have a new baby to love. And in good time, with gentle tenderness to your own heart, the opportunities will land.
It’s pretty incredible that as we grow, birth and raise a baby, so too do we raise ideas. When our natural female cycle returns we’ll not have access to this great creative force all month long as we do now, but whilst it’s tempting to harness it constantly, the magick is in surrendering to rest when we need to, to give space for the creativity to bubble and burst forth again on the other side.
Whichever stage of life you’re at - whether maiden, pregnant, a new mother, a mother of older children, a grandmother, or if you’re birthing ideas and businesses but not children, remember your ebbs and flows. Wax and wane. Ease and grace. Rest and manifest.
We women are Goddesses.
Our inner superpowers are unmatched. How incredible is it that we can be such divine portals for creativity and creation, and be holders of such wisdom and gifts. Just remember that rest and switching off is the essential ingredient to our creative life force. Don’t fall into the trap of hustling in this masculine achievement and results-focused world. You are a woman, you are divine.
Honour that, align with your feminine flow, and the magick will follow soon enough.
SO tell me Mama - what has your experience been? Have you felt this irresistible well of creative energy and source rise within your pregnancy and/or postpartum, or has it evaded you? What do you do to tune into your inspired flow? I'd love to know your experience too, I'd be honoured if you'd share with me...