Tuesday, August 06, 2013

Helping new moms

Recently, there was a very sad news story here in Winnipeg.  A mom and her two children, an infant and a 2 year old, died tragically.  The story caused compassionate ripples of sadness-it is a heartwrenching one-throughout our community.  May they rest in peace.

However, the news gave me a chance for reflection.  The thing is, I am still so close to this experience of having infants that I know I wasn't alone when I thought--no, that is too neutral a word, felt torn up with thinking, that could have been me.  Or another new mom down the block...or really anyone who just felt for a dangerous moment, completely unable to cope.  I didn't know this mom, but that didn't matter in the slightest.

Sleep deprivation alone can cause this, never mind postpartum depression or psychosis.  Last week, we had a run of 5 consecutive nights when one of our 2 year old twins (FINALLY) slept through the night.  (The other twin sleeps consistently through the night but takes very short daytime naps)  So, last week, I got more hours of sleep than I have gotten, in a row, in 2.5 years.

It's over now.  Last night, our smaller twin was up from 3:30-4 with me, which is not at all unusual.  No sense getting used to sleep.

(Please don't rush to describe Dr. Ferber or any other fail-safe techniques that you used.  I am so glad it all worked for you.  In the words of our pediatrician--some kids just don't sleep well.  We are doing the best we can, according to what fits our values and specific situation.)

Anyhow, late last week, I submitted an op-ed to our newspaper.  It came out almost immediately.  You can read it here:

New Mothers Need Supports

I hope it helps make a difference somehow.  A small part of me is thrilled I am slowly getting this part of my life back, the writing part.  I so wish it wasn't in memory of this terrible loss in our city.

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