With so many beautiful Instagram feeds with perfectly photographed families, it is hard not to start feeling like this perfect mum life can be real and really does exist. Of course we know there’s no such thing as perfection, but these perfect little Instagram pictures really can convince us different. On the days when motherhood is feeling like a bit of a struggle, these Instagram pages are literally the last thing we need to witness. Luckily there are some amazing women in the digital space being super honest and open about motherhood and womanhood today. I found them whilst on maternity leave and have basically been watching, reading and following them online for the past year. Admittedly their Instagram pages are pretty, but they have a lot more to say than simply, how much they love being a mum. I mean most of us love being mothers, but there’s so much more to say than this. These women talk about body confidence, about returning to work and tackling the 9-5 system, about the unnecessary pressures we put on ourselves as mothers and how to make maternity leave more bearable – as it can be a lonely place to be. What I personally find so inspiring about these women, is that they are conversation starters, doing something to help other mothers. I just have a lot of respect for that and in fact, its why I have started blogging again, because I want to be part of the conversation.
Needless to say, the online space is not the only place to have candid conversations about motherhood, there’s obviously friends and family. However, I can say, whenever I was feeling a little defeated, I didn’t necessarily always want to speak about it in that moment. So going onto YouTube, listening to a podcast or just browsing through an Instagram page I could relate to in that moment just lifted spirits.
Obviously we all experience maternity leave and motherhood differently. Some of us will hit the ground running as new mums, some of us may have postnatal depression and others of us will just take each day as it comes. I definitely feel I take each day as it comes. In fact, in hindsight I feel like I was a bit of a slow starter as a mum. I found myself doing things that I didn’t always love, because I felt it was the done thing or because other mums were doing it.
I never wanted to join an antenatal group, or a mummy group. I didn’t see the need to hang out with other women just because they had also just had babies and I definitely didn’t feel like I wanted to talk about being a mum ALL the time. Which is ironic, because now I feel like I talk about it a hell of a lot! I hated taking walks all the time, mostly because I just found getting out of the house so stressful and basically just didn’t really enjoy doing much without my hubby around to help me. But I would force myself to do all of these things because that’s what mums on maternity leave do. Then I listened to a podcast with Michelle Kennedy on Not Another Mummy Blog and Michelle said that she hated taking walks, that she didn’t want to sit in a coffee shop just her and baby and I was like, ‘OMG! I am not the only one!’ And just that recognition of, ‘just because you’re not doing this, doesn’t make you a bad mum’ made me feel great. Because Michelle Kennedy just seems so cool and if she doesn’t like taking walks, then I’m cool with not wanting to take walks too! Discovering the amazing mum community online has made me feel as though I am part of one of the coolest clubs in the world and has made me so conscious as a woman and a mother. I love it!
So before I get too mushy, go and check these amazing women out! I have selected some content that has really resonated with me, that I can turn to as my survival pack on my down days!
Emily Norris is a YouTuber, wife and mother of three boys. I discovered Emily when I was trying to figure out what the hell I needed to pack in my hospital bag. I had absolutely no clue and then I stumbled across her YouTube channel among many others, but I just loved Emily’s channel. She makes videos on her morning and evening routines, on how to entertain babies at home, her makeup routine, how she loses baby weight and loads of tips, tricks and mum hacks. Some of her mum hacks are amazing!
Mother Pukka – Anna Whitehouse
Mother Pukka is a blog for people who happen to be parents, created by Journalist and Editor Anna Whitehouse. She has also written the book Parenting the Sh*t Out of Life that I am dying to read. Also check out the Mother Pukka Intsagram page. Anna is constantly updating her Insta stories and she is hilarious.
Anna Saccone Joly
Anna Saccone Jolly is a wife and mum of three to two girls and a boy. I think I first came across the Saccone Joly YouTube channel when I went through this crazy phase of watching loads and loads of birth videos on YouTube and happened to watch one of her births. I later discovered that Anna had her own channel, where she gives monthly updates on her children, does make-up routines and haul videos. What I really like about Anna is her body confidence and this video has to be one of the most empowering.
Michelle Kennedy is the brains behind the dating app for mums to meet other like minded mums, called Peanut. I discovered the Peanut Instagram page before I discovered the app. I absolutely love the Instagram page, it’s a very chic looking, candid account about motherhood. Also, listen to Michelle Kennedy speaking on a mum’s guilt on Not Another Mummy Blog Podcast: Mum’s Guilt.