The Australian mom let it all out in a Facebook post that's resonating with other moms who also feel pressured by the perfect images populating their Instagram feeds.
A letter to my people #nojudgementclub
It feels like a sick joke you never quite understood until this moment. All those cute bonds ads, miniature Nike shoes, adorable baby shower gifts, baby spam on instagram, squad dates with your mum posse and those god damn laceylaners lied to me. Not once did I see an ad with a mum locked in her cupboard crying in her leaked stained pjs from 3 days ago, covered in sweat and vomit, praying to every god imaginable for the strength and patience to go back to the shitshow that is now their life. The once calm, poised, patient goddess, who could sling cocktials, swear with sailors and dance uninhibited until tomorrow afternoon, can bearly hold a conversation, hold her eyes open or the tears back from this new found “bliss.”
And the irony, oh the irony that everyone hates it at one point or another but you have to remember that hating it out loud is a kick in the face to everyone that would give everything for a moment of “hating it.” So you post the photo, you cliché the fuck out of your status because your hashtag loving it hashtag mumlife hashtag soblessed and when people ask you, you say with all the vigour of 2 hrs sleep “its honestly the most amazing thing that’s ever happened to me,” and when there’s no cameras, no people and no judgement you let out the loudest FUUUCKKK YOOOOUUUU known to man, although it’s under your breathe, or screamed into a pillow, or yelled from the foetal position of your cupboard because your little ones finally asleep. So we somehow pick our shattered self off the floor, trying to piece together a resemblance of a person and do it all again.
Cheers all you amazing parents that dust yourselves off and do it again, with the smile of a thousand curse words, shattered souls and hopefully a strong coffee or wine in hand. Your my people x o x
Ellyatt's "people" responded vigorously.
The success of her post has prompted Ellyatt to start a blog (Storms Sanctuary) and Facebook account where she's continued to share the messy reality of parenthood.
Stretch marks? She's got those.
An Ode To Stretchmarks
I trace my stretchmarks now with tenderness, like a dear old friends embrace after a long hiatus. Once angry and red, hard to love and accept are now soft and familiar, like laugh lines or wrinkles from lots of love and sun. No, they don't feel like they once did and won't ever again but now I have a road map of Kaiser that will never leave me.
I stroke my stretchmarks and feel home. His home. Although being pregnant feels endless it was for a brief moment. In that brief moment I was his home. So I lovingly trace my stretchmarks and feel him home, the miracle of skin stretching to build his house, I feel the brief moment where his heart beat in mine, I feel him growing strong, my life to his.
So now my dear old friend stretchmarks, I will love and cherish you as hard as it may be. For only a fleeting moment this was his home, and as he grows and leaves to find his life, his home with new friends, maybe even a family, I will have you old friend as a beautiful reminder of his first home, just him and I.
Happy Monday feels Xx
Drinking? Ellyat does that.
When you’re younger, you drink to have fun. You drink at parties, you drink to celebrate, commiserate, cry with a pack of friends after a break up, you get my drift. Yes, we Australians have a problematic drinking culture, but my late teens to early-twenty memories of drinking is a blur of clubs, pubs, parties, boys, festivals, girl dates and all round glorious tom foolery.
I, pre-motherhood, had those days where I “needed” a drink. You know, fight with your boyfriend, shit day at work, just any excuse for a shindig. Now that I’m a mum, I never NEEDED a drink so fucking badly in my life. *pause for judgement that this mum is an alcoholic but you wouldn’t because we don’t pass judgement here do we*
The first two months were the worst. It was the sleep deprivation, the fact that you’ve been pregnant for nine months, abstaining from the things you loved the most; cheese, sushi, fitting into clothes, brunch and mimosas, but now you HAVE the baby you have to LOOK AFTER the baby and. So that life you thought was coming back…..non-existent. I craved a wine, I craved a whiskey, I craved the stiffest, strongest straight metho-kind of drink known to man. When I started expressing and storing my milk, I was straight to wine. At first just a sneaky wine at the end of the night before dads turn to feed. AARRRGGHH I felt like a human, even though there were no friends, I looked like a tired mess, was in my PJs and it was 11pm on a school night I felt like a queen. Then…..…a glass wasn’t enough.
A glass, turns into a bottle, turns into I’m only drinking hard liquor. So instead of wine we bought whiskey. My husband and I at the end of the night would have a night cap. Straight, strong with three ice cubes. That was enough, enough to wind down, enough to feel like humans and enough to take the edge off. Only one drink, that was our little ritual and I loved our adult time.
This goes on and our one drink ritual becomes all I look forward to in the day. When we have a shit day I think, when the fuck is it whiskey o’clock. When hubby was at work I’d count the hours until he’s home like we all do to have a break and be so excited for drink time. I would resent the fact that I had to express like a cow just for dad to give me a break, I would resent having to express all day JUST so I could have that one drink and I started resenting the fact that I could only have one.
So time goes by and I realise there is always alcohol in this house. I wouldn’t have to express so much if I didn’t want to drink so bad AND I am not coping. I am looking for something external to fix this internal mess. I stopped drinking all together. Then it was food. I wanted chocolate. After a particularly hard day with bub I would ask hubby to bring home chocolate. Fast forward a little and we’re having dessert every night.
It’s a bitch of a thing. We all have our vices, we all need to make it through whatever hard time we’re facing baby or not. There may be one period or another that you lean on something a little too much. Food, Trash TV, Alcohol, Drugs (alcohol is a drug but hey) even Exercise. We’ve been told our whole lives, everything in moderation. Well moderation goes out the window when you’ve got a newborn and you’re clutching at anything to cope. The hormones, the no-sleep thing, the breastfeeding, your aching post pregnancy body, the fact that you created this little miracle with
your loving partner but now YOU can only feed him, and most likely YOU care for him and now you HATE your partner, the loneliness, the lack of personal space, the cries you don’t yet understand and the leaking breasts ALL contribute to mum-aholic-ism.
We all have our ism, and you know what…. WE ARE STILL AMAZING! I realised I couldn’t cope without my ism and I made changes. This will sound corny, but I started to write again. I wrote and I cried. I cried and I called a queen who of course gave no judgement, only lots of love and shared their shared dose of reality. I talked to my partner and started giving myself nights off quite early. I went out with the girls, or took myself to a coffee shop (yes coffee was an ism for a while) or simply went for a walk. The problem isn’t our isms, (and if your ism has got the best of you get help queenie, you’re stronger for admitting you need it) it is the unknowable life of a parent. It is the lack of “real-talk” baby classes, that teach you how to change a nappy, but not that changing a nappy could cause world war three as they arch their back in defiance and pee in your eye or vomit on the only dress that hides post baby bulge before your first night out baby-free! The ism can be beaten, but your ability to cope and soldier on is what needs attention.
So let’s all check our judgement at the door the next time a parent admits to smashing a bottle of wine to cope. You’re my people, the ones honest enough to say MAN DOWN OVER HERE. You need a tribe, a group of supportive, loving warriors that will be there with either another bottle, bucket or tissue. You need a god damn trophy for surviving, a fist bump for being so strong because there’s only so many ‘I can do this’ rocking back and forth one person can take. Share your struggles, maybe instead of smashing a bottle alone, call a queen, have a glass and laugh away your troubles. Don’t cope alone, don’t feel ashamed for not coping, don’t let the “you sound like a whinger,” or the “don’t be so vain,” because you’d die for a shower get you down. If this 15 minutes of fame has taught me ANYTHING, it’s that there most certainly is a #nojudgementclub out there just waiting for you. If you haven’t found one, I’m right here.
Feeling bad about having dropped your baby that one time? Eh, you're not the only parent to have done that.
Kai was fiiiine.