By Angela Potter
Where do you call home?
How many kids do you have?
What was one of the hardest changes for you physically during your postpartum journey?
Lack of energy, lack of strength, and back pain. During my second I got a very rare pregnancy disorder that affects 1 perfect of all pregnancies. It's nick-named the "ITCH" for good reason! It's called Intrahepatic Cholestasis of Pregnancy and affects the liver during pregnancy.
After my son was born I was sick all the time and found out that I have a severe gluten allergy. I am sure it has to do with my pregnancy journey.
What was one of the hardest changes for you mentally/emotionally during your postpartum journey?
No longer working and having two kids under the age of 3. The baby cried all the time and never slept due to slept apnea which we didn't find out until later on. It was emotionally draining.
My husband works long hours and cannot help with the house work, the kids, and so on, making life harder then I ever imagined. I felt like I was always inadequate in every aspect of my life and I no longer felt myself. I had lost who I was as a person and I didn't care what happened around me any longer. I was drained. I was mad. I was not happy.
What surprised you most about the postpartum time?
How lost I became. Before I had a family I knew what I was going to do with my life, every step was planned. When I got pregnant I also stopped working and I had no idea what I was doing anymore. My life felt lost. Unorganized.
What has been your greatest joy in motherhood?
Being home with my kids is the hardest job I've ever had in my life. On the flip side seeing my kids grow up has brought me so much joy. Allowing them to be themselves and watch them grow each day has been the best joy a mom could ask for. The little things matter. Their little kisses, the soft words asking to snuggle, the hug goodbye, all of it matters and is so precious.
How was your postpartum experience different with each baby?
With my first, I had zero issues. Thankfully it was a perfect pregnancy and perfect postpartum time. It was the joy you see on TV. With my second I felt lost. I think it had a lot to do with being sick all the time and also the new unorganized life of taking care of two kiddos. I also stopped working after my second which I think played a major part in my life. I no longer had that release from kids. I was home all day with them, day in and day out.
What is one resource that felt invaluable to you during the postpartum time?
Time away from kids like the little trips to the store ALONE was huge for me. Online videos that were about self-development helped a lot. I also found some work I could do from home which helped a ton. I found that getting a daily system was HUGE. A schedule similar to working.
Finding little things that make you happy. If its walking, hiking, singing, reading, finding that one thing is so important. I found a hobby of sewing and I take walks almost daily which always changes how good I feel.
What is one piece of advice you would like give to pregnant moms in preparation for their postpartum journey?
Know you are never alone in your journey. Remember to take time to yourself. A good friend of mine who is a nurse told me something that helped change my daily life. She said when you get home from work set aside 1 hour to clean, dishes, laundry to help keep the house in order, then set aside the rest of the night to YOU and YOUR family. I found this simple task of organization made a huge difference in my journey.
My name is Jean Edwards, I have my bachelors of Science from Western Oregon University and certified in Payroll. I am a mom of two crazy but amazing kids ages 5.5 and 3. Married to my husband for seven years and I am a stay at home mom now for three years. I have a amazing business online where I help empower, uplift, and validate women all over the world. I found through my direct marketing business I've found who I was again. I found I AM worthy. I've learned the little skills from this amazing sisterhood to help get me out of postpartum. I now love who I am as a mother and as a leader for women all over.