It’s 2am and pitch black in my daughter’s room. I rock back and forth in my glider as I nurse her with one arm and flick my thumb down, down, down the rabbit hole.

I pause on a perfectly filtered photo of a table of my friends holding up their fun and colorful cocktails as the caption reads, “CHEERS to a night out away from the kiddos!” I then wake to feed her at 5am and as I open Facebook, another group of friends pop in my face at a wedding I should have been at. They’re dressed to the nines as I sit in what I loosely call my pajamas I’ve been in for two days. My thumb continues to whip my screen back down the rabbit hole where I pause on a shot of my colleagues going to our favorite restaurant in the city as I sit on my couch on maternity leave in the suburbs. The daily news at its finest.

So what’s really going on mom?

I don’t know about you, but I believe that as human beings we definitely have cravings beyond sex and a bag of Doritos. We, as humans, also have emotional cravings. We yearn to feel loved, to feel wanted, appreciated, validated, and included. We have a need for connection. As much as I crave some time to myself, I’m also not wired to be completely alone. I desire to be a part of something, to be in a community, to have experiences that I create and am invited to. When we become mothers, that connection is needed even more in order for us to grow. The problem is, we are moving farther away from it than ever before.

You don’t live next door to your mom or down the street from your sister. Your best friends don’t live in the same neighborhood as you all grew up in. Face-to-face connection has changed throughout the decades and as a new mom, now is the time you need it the most. Texts and Facebook posts aren’t the same. Mommy Facebook groups where you’ve found amazing moms in the same boat helps, but it doesn’t give you everything you need. But how can you change this as you sit on your deserted island with your baby?

Living as an outsider instead of an insider

Life as a new mom can feel a bit monotonous and boring. I get it. That was part of the reason I lived my life in FOMO-land. I spent most of my time living in other people’s worlds instead of my own. I’d compare and base my life off of a two-second photo in the tens of millions of seconds of a year. To top it off, you’re only getting about two percent of the real story in that photo. This applies if your friend tells you what they did, if you see it on social media, or if you read it in US Weekly. The power of media to influence huge decisions in life, emotions and values can be dangerous. Media in general is also a platform for bragging where we’ve passed the torch to anyone that has a Smartphone. Giving you small, sometimes inaccurate, snippets that create heightened emotions and disconnect you from what truly makes you secure in your life.

Sometimes you are missing out, and that’s just the way it is

The sooner we acknowledge the season of life we’re in, the sooner we will accept the life we’re in at that moment. When I look back to when my FOMO was at its peak, there was no way I was able to do some of the things my friends were doing. Nor did I want to do them. There’s beauty in simple answers to make acceptance a bit easier. Acceptance will allow you to plug into your life of today, heal and start your own journey.

You’re just going to miss out on some things right now.

That’s OK.

I promise it won’t last forever.

Ways to connect with friends versus waiting

We can all agree that waiting isn’t going to get you anywhere so how will YOU connect with your friends to let them know you miss them? If you’re stumped, here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. An actual phone call. Set down the pride and pick up the phone. No texting allowed.
  2. Send a funny card. Just because.
  3. Send a half birthday card as a surprise.
  4. Create a three-minute video of you saying hello and anything else you’d like to tell her.
  5. Mail a written invitation to coffee.
  6. Leave a thoughtful gift at her doorstep.
  7. Ask her if you can bring lunch to her office.
  8. Mail her a postcard from a place you’d like to eventually go with her- and set a date!

Nothing is permanent.

I tend to get in the mindset that what is going on in that moment is how it will be forever. When I sat in my home, day after day, night after night, it felt as if this was going to be my forever. I couldn’t identify with anything other than what I was living. It’s how Brooklyn sees just one moment of her day. I have to remind her how nothing is permanent and every day is a new day. Each morning brings new situations, decisions, feelings and results your way. What you’re going through today may not be what you experience tomorrow. Being united with the present is important but there is also that link to the possibilities of the future. With some hope attached to it.

For today, honor how you feel but know nothing is forever and you will find the strength to change it. My book talks about my “Power of Yet” exercise that Brooklyn’s kindergarten teacher ingrained in their brains. Anytime an event pops up, a promotion opportunity is thrown your way, or you casually find out that your friends did something without you, your response can be, “I’m not able to do that… YET!” A powerful statement that allows us to relax and look forward to what’s to come.

Stay well and honest mamas. You are not alone!

With honesty,

Michelle Mansfield Blog





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