Published:
May 7, 2021
Last Updated:
May 10, 2021

IIN Staff Picks: Motherhood Advice

To celebrate Mother’s Day and honor moms of all types, we asked the IIN Staff to share how motherhood surprised them, the advice they received (and wish they’d received), and how new moms can be supported post-partum.

What surprised you most about becoming a mom?

“Beyond the depth of how much one can love someone, not being able to just run to the store without a gazillion bags, stuff, and oh yes, the baby!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“How well I operate on inconsistent sleep. How natural it has come to me (doesn't mean it's easy!) through listening and trusting my intuition and child.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“How rewarding it is. Only the burdens and problems had been stressed to me, so this was unexpected.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

“The immediate sense of knowing that I felt really surprised me. The phrase "mother knows best" is so real! Before my daughter was born, I spent hours wondering what I would do with her all day, and when she was here, it was like I never questioned it.”

- Anna Glennon, Education

“I was surprised how much love entered my life along with the birth of my daughter.”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions

What was the best piece of advice you received before becoming a mom?

“To enjoy even the tiniest moments, as they grow up fast!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“Don't neglect yourself, it's equally as important to take care of your needs.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“When the baby is napping, do something you couldn't do while she's awake. You can unload the dishwasher or maybe do a quick workout with the baby strapped to you, but you can't sleep or do something that really rejuvenates you while she's awake.”

- Anna Glennon, Education

“It sounds cliché, but the best piece of advice I have heard is to enjoy every minute of it.  Too often I hear parents say that it goes so quickly.  This advice helps remind me to be present with my child and with this moment in my life.  I want to know that I lived the width of this experience and didn't just let it pass me by.”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions

How did becoming a mother change you (physically, mentally, emotionally)?

“It made me a better human being - seeing the world through the eyes of a child!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“Mentally and emotionally, I've become much more patient, compassionate, and forgiving for myself and daughter. Emotionally and physically, I'm an entirely new person. I don't believe in the 'bounce back' mentality, once a child is born a mother is born, and the body is forever changed.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“It provides a new level of emotional support and confidence.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

“Becoming a mother has helped me become a stronger person and more decisive, as I'm needing to be firm and make decisions faster.  Being a mother also helped me realize the importance of self-care.  I'm a better mother by far when I've taken care of myself throughout the day.”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions

What kind of post-partum support was the most impactful for you (and your family)?

“Having family there to support was the best!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“Planning for postpartum first and foremost, understanding hormonal shifts and emotional waves will happen and they're normal. Rest is productive. Preparing for the physical healing with nourishing prepared foods, comfortable loose-fitting clothing, and frozen witch hazel pads. And, having a few people as my go to for emotional support that I could contact any hour to vent, cry, or ask questions.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“Having flexibility with my work hours and remote work.  Hopefully that will be more the norm in the post-Covid world.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

“I attended a postpartum support group every Monday for six weeks, starting with the week my husband went back to work. It was led by a mental health professional and a lactation consultant, and was attended by other moms whose babies were all born within the same month as our daughter. It was transformational. Not only did I make friends, but it was such a safe space to share the unique challenges, emotions and changes that I was undergoing. Every time I shared something that I thought was ugly about myself or wouldn't be received well, I was met with unconditional love and compassion. It was a huge lesson for me in loving all parts of myself, and actually was quite transformational for my coaching as well.”

- Anna Glennon, Education

“For me the most important support was to have plenty of healthy food options ready to eat!”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions

How has your motherhood experience shifted as your children have grown older?

“Watching my son from afar and being so proud of the man and dad he has become!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“It's very gratifying to watch children become separate and independent people.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

What's one thing you wish you had known before becoming a mom?

“How to create nutritious meals for little ones, with less sugar.”

- Janet Verney, Education

“That my own childhood and upbringing could resurface and influence the way I parent.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“You will need to be self-reliant.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

“I had so much time before kids!  I wish I had finished learning French, my husband's first language.  I'm still learning now; it's just taking a lot longer.”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions 

When it comes to motherhood and health, what do you wish was talked about more?

“Keeping your gut health optimal for a healthy mama and baby!”

- Janet Verney, Education

“Mom's health and well-being are equally as important as the child's. It's not selfish to dedicate time for mom, however and whatever that looks like. I also wish we'd talk about loss more and the toll that takes on a mom's emotional, mental, and physical health, and how we could better support the mom in the short and long-term.”

- Janelle Laurito, Marketing

“Self-acceptance. There is too much of a drive towards perfection, and everyone's a critic.”

- Marketing Technology Team Member

“Self-care is super important for moms and their health!  Whenever I lose control of a situation at home, I can always trace it back to not taking care of myself that day.  When I have prioritized self-care, I am creative with communication and solutions, fun, and things flow!”

- Rachel Lajoie, Admissions

Thanks, Mom

Motherhood is hard, and babies don’t come with instruction manuals. Getting support from a partner, parents, friends, and other new moms are all ways mothers can find help when they feel unsure of how to handle the challenge of motherhood. If you’re reading this right now and you’re a mom, know that you are doing great! If you know a mom, whether your own or someone who has been like a mom to you, be sure to thank them for all they do today.

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